15 Canned Chicken Noodle Soups, Ranked Worst To Best

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What's better on a cold fall or winter day than a can of chicken noodle soup? We all know the classic Campbell's commercial, where the snowman comes in from the cold and, and via the magic of Campbell's chicken noodle soup, transforms into a real boy. There's a reason that commercial is such an iconic piece of marketing; it captured the essence of chicken noodle soup and the way this humble dish can thaw even the most frozen of hearts and cure even the sniffliest of colds.

But not all chicken noodle soup is the same, especially when you're dealing with chicken noodle soup from a can. Some options are more salt than soup. Some lack flavor altogether. Some are flashy noodles and chunks of carrots, but little else. To help you find the best chicken noodle soup for your next comfort food meal, we're ranking all of the most popular canned chicken noodle soups from worst to best.

15. Campbell's Condensed Chicken NoodleO's

Yes, Campbell's is often synonymous with canned chicken noodle soup, but that doesn't necessarily mean that every Campbell's chicken noodle soup product (and there are quite a few, as you'll soon see) is a winner. At the bottom of our pack? Campbell's Condensed Chicken NoodleO's.

This product was made with children in mind and it shows. You get the fun shapes — those NoodleO's are near-identical to what you'll find in a can of SpaghettiO's — some barely-there carrots and chicken ... and nothing much else. The flavor is bland, but if you were to eat the entire can, you'd still somehow end up consuming 50% of your daily recommended sodium (via Campbell's).

The additional fact that the soup is condensed doesn't make matters any better. No hungry consumer — or parent with a hungry child, for that matter — wants to spend all this extra time adding water to a canned soup and then simmering it on the stovetop, especially when other brands offer soups that you can simply throw in a bowl, toss into the microwave for a few minutes, and then eat.

14. Campbell's Organic Chicken & Stars Soup

Moving on to the next soup on our list, Campbell's Organic Chicken & Stars Soup ranks a little higher, as it retains the fun shapes and kid appeal that the Condensed Chicken NoodleO's soup offers, but with a better flavor. Plus, it's not condensed (if you purchase the boxed version) and you can actually see the chicken and carrots in the broth. Just note that there's also a non-organic Chicken & Stars soup that comes in a can and it's very, very different. For the benefits described above, you want to go with the organic variant that comes in a box.

This soup also ranks higher than its NoodleO's counterpart due to the shape of the noodles. The stars provide more textural interest and aren't as slimy as the O's. Unfortunately, you will still find that same high amount of sodium in this soup and eating the full box will account for 50% of your daily recommended sodium intake (via Kroger).

13. Campbell's Healthy Request Chicken Noodle Soup

Campbell's Healthy Request Chicken Noodle Soup is a (relatively) new take on the OG chicken noodle. Designed to be heart-healthy, the brand introduced its Healthy Request line in 1991 (via Campbell Soup Company) and has been expanding and tweaking the line ever since. In 2009, Campbell's revamped the line by reducing the sodium in each can of soup even further, reports Food Ingredients First, and, more recently, in 2011, Campbell's added more soup options to its line, for 33 different Healthy Request products (via Campbell Soup Company). To be considered a Healthy Request soup, the soup must contain a maximum 410 milligrams of sodium per serving, meeting U.S. government criteria for "healthy foods" and enabling Campbell's to display the American Heart Association's hearty-healthy logo.

So where does Campbell's Healthy Request Chicken Noodle Soup go wrong? Essentially, it packs the same downsides of the OG chicken noodle soup (slimy noodles, questionable chicken, etcetera) but now with less flavor. Sure, there's less salt, but any home cook knows salt goes a long way in making a tasty soup. The one thing it has going for it? This soup comes in both cans and a microwavable bowl, for easier eating on the go.

12. Annie's Organic Chicken Noodle Soup

Sure, Annie's Organic Chicken Noodle Soup stands miles above the lackluster and frankly disappointing Campbell's options we've covered thus far — but it still doesn't even make it to the middle of our list. That's because, for all that Annie's Organic Chicken Noodle Soup offers, it does so at a terrible price point.

This soup features egg noodles, chicken chunks, carrots, and celery. In terms of ingredient quality and ingredient-to-broth ratio, Annie's clearly wins over the previous soups; versus just garlic and onion, Annie's infuses its broth with flavors from herbs and spices such as rosemary, sage, and thyme. The sodium content is slightly less than what you'll get with the above soups as well (via Annie's).

However, Annie's soup is much more expensive than some of the other soups that rank higher on our list and that offer comparable flavors. At the time of writing, an eight-pack of Annie's Organic Chicken Noodle Soup was $30.89 on Amazon. Comparatively, you can get a 12-pack of Campbell's Well Yes! Chicken Noodle Soup, which ranks at the very top of our list, for just $23 on Amazon.

11. Progresso Light Chicken Noodle Soup

Progresso's Light Chicken Noodle Soup exhibits the same issue we witnessed with the Campbell's Healthy Request Chicken Noodle Soup. When you start making chicken noodle soup healthy, you naturally lose flavor. It's a problem for every brand that tries to do it. Luckily for Progresso, the brand does enough to redeem itself, giving it a ranking higher than Campbell's Healthy Request. The soup, much like the Annie's option above, features big, hearty egg noodles, carrot and celery slices, and chunks of chicken that actually look like real chicken.

If nutritional content is a concern for you, though, you'll be glad to know this soup packs only 130 calories per can (via Progresso), compared to the 150 calories you'll find in a can of Campbell's Healthy Request Chicken Noodle Soup (via Campbell's). Unfortunately, if you're watching your heart health, you'll likely still want to opt for the Campbell's offering, as a full can of Progresso's Light Chicken Noodle Soup will account for more than 60% of your daily sodium intake.

10. Progresso Chicken Noodle Soup

Progresso's regular chicken noodle soup ranks just above its lighter counterpart, as it's only the teeniest bit better in terms of taste and only a bit unhealthier. Sure, there's a whole extra hundred calories per can (via Progresso), but if your entire lunch is still just 230 calories, you likely won't notice the difference. So what makes up that hundred extra calories? It appears that, when you compare the two soups' ingredients lists, while they both have the same primary ingredients — chicken broth, chicken meat, carrots, egg noodles, and celery — the quantities for certain ingredients differ. In the light version, for example, carrots are the second ingredient, after the chicken broth. In the regular version, the second ingredient is cooked white chicken meat, indicating the higher-calorie soup contains more chicken but fewer carrots.

Beyond caloric content, the regular chicken noodle soup contains 6 grams of fat per can, 50 milligrams of cholesterol, and 15 grams of protein, compared to the light version's 1.5 grams of fat per can, 30 milligrams of cholesterol, and 11 grams of protein. The traditional soup also contains more iron, but less calcium, than the light variant.

9. Campbell's Chunky Classic Chicken Noodle

Firmly in the middle of our rankings, it's Campbell's Chunky Classic Chicken Noodle soup. Campbell's introduced its Chunky line of soups in the 1970s, to wild success (via encyclopedia.com). It's easy to see why. The soups are ready-to-serve rather than condensed. They seriously are very chunky, with lots of heft and weight to both the ingredients and the broth. Plus, they're an easy lunch for when you want something lower in calories than, say, fast food, but still hearty enough to keep you full through the afternoon slump.

When it comes to Campbell's Chunky Classic Chicken Noodle soup, while the ingredients might be quite similar to what you'll find in Progresso's Chicken Noodle Soup, there are a few key differences. The broth, for one, is thicker, and extra ingredients like chicken fat, chicken skins, and vegetable broth make for a flavor reminiscent of what you'd find in a homemade broth, one that had been simmering on the stove all day, cooking away a roasted chicken carcass and your vegetable scraps. Of course, you do pay for all that flavor. This soup includes more fat, cholesterol, and calories than its Progresso counterpart (via Campbell's).

8. Progresso Traditional Hearty Chicken & Rotini

Progresso earns high marks for its Traditional Hearty Chicken & Rotini soup. The only soup on our list to include rotini, the soup's unique noodle shape provides textural and visual interest, setting it a little bit higher on our list than the regular Progresso chicken noodle soup. Compared to the traditional soup, this variant is also lower in both calories and fat (via Progresso). If you like a soup that really puts the focus on the noodles, this is a soup for you. The noodles aren't slimy, as is the case with some other chicken noodle soups, and they're cooked just enough to still retain a bit of bite. Additionally, if you're not terribly keen on celery, this soup pushes its celery down into the "less than 2%" ingredient list, keeping the focus on the chicken, noodles, and carrots. Like the other chunky-style soups on our list thus far, this soup is also ready-to-eat, no additional water required.

7. Wolfgang Puck Organic Free Range Chicken Noodle

When a soup sports the name and face of such a celebrated and long-revered chef as Wolfgang Puck, you expect it to be delicious ... right? Unfortunately, Wolfgang Puck's Organic Free Range Chicken Noodle soup doesn't quite live up to the hype surrounding the famous chef, even if it is good enough to grant it a solid spot in the middle of our rankings. With a smaller can size than what you'll find with Progresso and Campbell's Chunky soups, you get one serving per can of Wolfgang Puck soup, making it easy to see immediately how your waistline and heart health might potentially suffer from this quick, microwavable lunch. All things considered, your waistline's not going to feel too bad about this decision; at 100 calories per can of soup, that's even fewer calories than some of the "light" soup options (via Kroger). Your heart may skip a beat at the sodium content, though, with nearly 40% of your daily sodium intake all wrapped up in this small, 14-ounce can.

When it comes to flavors, Wolfgang Puck certainly wins out over those low-cal soups above, though, incorporating herbs and spices such as parsley and turmeric. The brand has also made an interesting choice to go with vegetable stock, versus chicken stock. Unfortunately, the main ingredient of the soup isn't a stock of any kind; it's water.

6. Campbell's Chunky Creamy Chicken Noodle

If you find the Campbell's Chunky Classic Chicken Noodle and the Progresso Chicken Noodle soups to be a bit thin and watery for your taste, we have the soup for you: Campbell's Chunky Creamy Chicken Noodle. The brand calls it the "pinnacle of soul-warming comfort food" and while that might be a stretch, it's certainly no lie that this soup is thick and hearty. Think the filling of a chicken pot pie, just in soup form and minus the veggies no one wants anyway (like peas) and throw in some egg noodles. Yeah, there are a lot of calories per can (480), as well as sodium (1,720 milligrams), but what can you expect from a chicken soup that has "cream" in the name (via Campbell's)? The first two ingredients for this soup are chicken stock and real cream, so you can rest assured you're not just chowing down on some mystery dried-dairy concoction.

5. Campbell's Original Condensed Chicken Noodle

You had to know it was coming up at some point. Yes, Campbell's original condensed chicken noodle soup ranks in our top five. Sure, it's not awesome, as far as chicken noodle soup goes, and, if you were ranking soups on pure flavor alone, you could probably find a tastier option that's already been mentioned on our list. However, we're looking at soups from a range of standpoints and this one receives a high grade based partially on its nostalgia factor. After all, who doesn't remember sitting down as a child and enjoying a tasty bowl of Campbell's chicken noodle soup?

But beyond the nostalgia factor, this soup also deserves a nod for its long and storied history. Created in 1934 and sold for about a dime a can upon introduction (and then called "noodle with chicken" soup), the soup took the Campbell's brand to success, nearly a century ago. Today, Campbell's chicken noodle soup is one of the top 10 most-purchased shelf-stable grocery items in the United States, with more than 200 million cans sold every year, according to the Campbell Soup Company.

4. Amy's No Chicken Noodle Soup

For a chicken noodle soup with no chicken, Amy's knocks it out of the park, which is no surprise given the Amy's brand's success in the ready-to-heat-and-eat food world in general. At first glance (and first taste), you'd never know there's no chicken in this soup. Instead, the soup blends onions, carrots, celery, tofu, pasta, and leeks for a vegan take on chicken noodle soup that still manages to taste traditional and not too much like vegetable soup (via Amy's). 

In addition to being vegan, the soup is also dairy-free, lactose-free, tree nut-free, and kosher, so it fits a range of specialty diets that the soups above just can't. The only thing the soup could maybe improve upon would be swapping out the wheat noodles for gluten-free noodles. In terms of nutrition, though, Amy's doesn't really stand out from the pack, with 180 calories per can, 6 grams of fat, and nearly 50% of your daily sodium.

3. Campbell's Homestyle Chicken Noodle

Campbell's Homestyle Chicken Noodle soup does everything right that the original chicken noodle soup does, with its comforting simplicity, broth-y base, and wealth of noodles, but kicks things up a notch with a better noodle option. Whereas the OG chicken noodle soup's noodles can be slightly limp and — let's face it — slimy, the Homestyle Chicken Noodle soup is packed with shorter, slimmer noodles that retain their texture without falling apart in the broth. 

The homestyle variant also includes carrots, whereas the OG chicken noodle soup does not (it's strictly broth, noodles, and chicken bits) (via Campbell's). Nutrition-wise, the two soups are nearly identical, too, so why wouldn't you go with the soup with the better noodles? It is worth noting, though, that the homestyle version is similarly condensed, so you will need to do a little extra work before lunchtime. But, if you're already putting in the effort, the homestyle chicken noodle soup is clearly superior to the original chicken noodle soup.

2. Healthy Choice Chicken Noodle Soup with Bone Broth

Healthy Choice only managed to squeeze one soup onto our list. The brand's traditional soups really aren't anything to write home about and, if you want a diet-friendly soup, you'd do best to look toward Campbell's or Progresso. However, when it comes to Healthy Choice's Chicken Noodle Soup with Bone Broth, the brand has a clear winner on its hands.

Bone broth has been trendy for a few years now, touted for its health benefits and undeniably rich and tasty flavor. Typically, though, bone broth isn't exactly cheap (at least not compared to traditional broth) and making it yourself at home can be both messy and smelly. So, if you can find a canned chicken noodle soup with a bone broth base that's both budget-friendly and delicious, you jump on it — and that's exactly what Healthy Choice is offering.

Healthy Choice's Chicken Noodle Soup with Bone Broth only has 190 calories and 830 milligrams of sodium per can, which actually puts it among some of our less-salty soups (via Healthy Choice).

1. Campbell's Well Yes! Chicken Noodle

But at the top of our list is a chicken noodle soup from the company that knows chicken noodle soup probably better than anyone else. Campbell's Well Yes! line launched in 2016 as a series of ready-to-serve soups with simple, nutritious ingredients, as well as no artificial colors, flavors, ingredients, or modified starches (via Campbell Soup Company). 

The line's chicken bone broth-based chicken noodle soup was ahead of the bone broth trend when it came on the market and the extra ingredients and flavors — such as diced tomatoes and white beans — make the soup just more delicious than Healthy Choice's bone broth chicken noodle soup. And while the list of ingredients maybe doesn't live up entirely to the brand's promise of "simple" ingredients (locust bean gum isn't exactly a simple item that you find in your everyday pantry), the soup does include an admirable amount of minerals, nutrients, and vitamins that you'll be hard-pressed to find in most chicken noodle soups in any sort of notable amount, including Vitamin A, potassium, iron, protein, and fiber.

So, for a delicious, traditional-yet-modern, hearty, comforting bowl of chicken noodle soup, look to Campbell's Well Yes! Chicken Noodle.