Is Campbell's Tomato Soup Healthy?

A bowl of tomato soup.
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Campbell's soups, an American food staple, have dominated the U.S. condensed soup market since their inception more than 130 years ago. Everyone knows they're "M'm M'm Good," as the firm's commercial jingle states, but you may wonder if they're good for you, as well. Each can yields 2.5 servings, according to the nutritional label. Mix one can of soup with one can of water or milk to prepare.



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A serving of condensed soup, which equals 1/2 cup, according to Campbell's, supplies 90 calories. Preparing 1/2 cup of soup with milk instead of water would add another 45 calories if you use skim milk, 65 calories if you use 2 percent milk and 75 calories if you use whole milk. Even a serving made with whole milk supplies less than 10 percent of your required daily calorie intake if you eat an average 2,000 calories per day.

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Nearly all the calories in Campbell's condensed tomato soup come from carbohydrates. The main ingredient in the soup, tomato puree, made from water and tomato paste, is all carbohydrate. So are the second and third ingredients, high fructose corn syrup and wheat flour. Each serving contains one of your five recommended daily servings of vegetables, according to Wegmans grocery store. One serving supplies 20 g of carbohydrate, 12 g of them from simple sugars -- the type most likely to quickly raise blood sugar. A serving contains 1 g of fiber.



A serving of tomato soup contains a small amount of protein -- 2 g. "The Merck Manual of Medical Information" suggests a daily intake of 60 g of protein. Preparing the soup with any type of milk adds 4 g of protein to a serving.


A serving of soup contains no fat unless you make it with milk. Using 2 percent milk adds 2.5 g of fat per 1/2 cup serving, while whole milk adds 4 g.



Processed soups, like many processed foods, contain large amounts of sodium. A 1/2-cup serving of the tomato soup supplies 480 mg of sodium. While the average American consumes 3,436 mg of sodium per day, the American Heart Association suggests an intake of 1,500 mg per day to decrease the risk of high blood pressure and heart disease. Campbell's uses lower sodium sea salt in addition to regular salt in this product, according to the nutritional label.



All processed foods contain additives to preserve the shelf life of their product. Campbell's tomato soup contains potassium chloride, citric acid, ascorbic acid and monopotassium phosphate. The label also lists "flavoring" as an ingredient without explaining what those ingredients are. The label lists no artificial coloring.




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