Canned soups seem like the perfect backup plan — especially when you need lunch or dinner in a pinch — except for the fact that they're not always the healthiest option. Often packed with sodium and other unmentionables, canned soups aren't typically a choice that nutritionists or registered dietitians would recommend.
The good news is, you don't have to write off canned soups completely. We asked multiple registered dietitians for the prepared soups that they keep on hand and why.
1. Amy's Organic Rustic Italian Vegetable, $40 for 12, 14-ounce cans
Not all canned soups are loaded with sodium. If this is a concern of yours, it's obviously helpful to look for the words "reduced" or "low" in sodium on labels before you buy. "I really like Amy's Organic Reduced Sodium soups," says Brigitte Zeitlin, MPH, a registered dietitian and owner of BZ Nutrition, "Especially the hearty Rustic Italian Vegetables for the plant-based protein."
2. Epic Bone Broth, $38 for six, 14-ounce jars
You've probably heard a lot about bone broth recently. It's a nutrition-packed, savory stock that's been around forever, but it's recently become trendy thanks to the Whole30 and Paleo crowd. "This stuff is made with amazing ingredients, is low in sodium, high in protein, and has collagen boosting benefits," says Zeitlin.
3. Healthy Choice, $19 for 10, 15-ounce cans
It might be helpful to find a brand you like and stick with it. "Healthy Choice soups are not a bad choice because they are low in calories and usually have less than 500 milligrams of sodium per serving," says Rebecca Elbaum, a registered dietitian.
4. Boulder Organic! Chicken, Quinoa, & Kale
"While it only has 110 calories per serving, this soup is loaded with whole food ingredients like white beans, quinoa, and extra virgin olive oil, making it hearty and satisfying," says LeeAnn Smith Weintraub, MPH, a registered dietitian. Plus, it's all organic.
5. Health Valley Organic No Salt Added Minestrone, $35 for 12, 15-ounce cans
Another option that's actually not high in sodium, this can is also a great source of fiber and has no artificial ingredients, Weintraub says.
6. Pacific Foods Organic Creamy Tomato Soup, $4 for 32 ounces
Although it seems like a total comfort food, tomato soup is actually an excellent way to get your lycopene for eye health, Weintraub says. "I also love Pacific Foods Organic Cream of Mushroom. It's a lighter option for when you crave the richness and umami of cream of mushroom soup, but don't want one that's loaded with fat and calories."
7. Amy's Organic Lentil Soup, $32 for 12, 14.5-ounce cans
"Lentils are a fantastic plant-based protein source rich in iron and fiber. I always keep this stocked in my pantry," Weintraub adds.
8. Pacific Foods Bone Broth Soups, $5 for 17-ounces
"Made with a base of chicken bone broth, these are packed with 7 to 10 grams of protein per serving, so they have some staying power," says Kara Lydon, a registered dietitian and the blogger behind The Foodie Dietitian. She likes the Chickpea Curry and Caribbean Black Bean options.
What about you? What are your favorite healthy premade soups? Tell us in the comments below!