These popular American soups are delicious and satisfying!
When you think of American cuisine, I’ll bet your mind goes to apple pie and burgers, right? Maybe hot dogs and milkshakes?
But what about soup?
Soup is a worldwide dish that changes from country to country. But one thing stays the same: you should have to eat it with a spoon.
Though many soup recipes are full of meat, veggies, pasta, rice, and noodles, there still needs to be a broth or thick liquid that holds it all together.
At least, that’s how I see it! So, how many American soups can you name?
Gumbo must be near the top of the list, and probably New England clam chowder. But there are so many more to choose from.
Between spicy chilis and creamy pumpkin soup, you won’t run short of filling flavors to keep you warm and satisfied.
1. 15 Bean Soup (Easy Recipe)
If you know any “soup-haters,” then I’m sure you’ve heard them say they don’t like soup because it’s boring and unfulfilling.
Well, that couldn’t be further from the truth with this fantastic recipe!
Not only is it loaded with flavor from the herbs and ham hock (you can also use smoked sausages), but it’s super hearty with all those beans!
15 bean soup mix is available in most stores and is a breeze to prep.
2. Authentic New Orleans Gumbo
I spent my first week in New Orleans eating and drinking my way around the city.
I think I had gumbo every day, in one form or another, and it never got old.
It all starts with a dark roux, which may sound like a witch’s brew, but it’s really just flour and oil that gets cooked down until it’s deep and rich.
Of course, you can make your gumbo with just chicken, or only seafood, or even vegetarian-friendly if you want.
But if you’re looking for something authentic, it needs to include vegetables, chicken, sausage, and shrimp!
3. Chick-fil-A Chicken Tortilla Soup
If you have leftover chicken and a pantry full of staples (beans, corn, onions), you can make this super flavorful soup in less than 30 minutes.
Once the onions have softened in a pan, add green chilies, taco seasoning, broth, black beans, navy beans, corn, and chicken.
Give this a stir until it’s coated in the seasoning, and let it come to a boil.
Add the cream right at the end, so it doesn’t curdle.
4. Old-Fashioned Beef Stew
Beef stew is one of my fall faves. It’s so hearty and rich, and the most you’ll have to do is chop veggies and sear the meat.
I like mine thick and chunky, so I cut the veggies pretty huge. This also helps to keep them from turning to mush as you stir everything around.
That also means I add them to the pot about 10 minutes sooner than the recipe suggests.
Keep it simple with onions, carrots, and celery, or raid the produce aisle and throw in some squash or parsnips.
5. Vegan Corn Chowder
I adore corn chowder, and I usually make it with a lot of heavy cream.
But recently, I’ve been looking to include more vegan meals into my diet, so I just had to try this one.
Essentially, all the ingredients stay the same, except for the milk.
This recipe calls for light coconut milk, which I was skeptical about for two reasons.
One: I didn’t want my corn soup to be coconut flavored (it wasn’t!).
Two: I didn’t think it would be thick enough (it definitely was!).
Between the corn, potatoes, and slew of other herbs and spices, you don’t taste the coconut at all.
And if you blend some before serving (I did 1/3), it thickens up beautifully.
6. Saimin – Hawaii’s Noodle Soup
Similar to ramen, this soup is broth-based and full of noodles.
There’s no doubt you noticed that colorful pink swirl on top.
That’s the kamaboko, a Japanese fish cake made from processed seafood which you should be able to get at your local Asian supermarket.
You’ll also see that this recipe calls for Spam, which is incredibly popular in Hawaii.
If you’re not a fan, feel free to swap it out for some shredded pork or chicken.
7. New England Clam Chowder
Full of smoky bacon, creamy potatoes, and briny clams, this is a dish you’ll have to try from the source.
Much like gumbo in the Big Easy, you can’t make a trip to New England without ordering a big bowl of their signature clam chowder.
Your best bet here is to find fresh clams, which you should be able to get at the fish counter. Alternatively, frozen or canned whole clams will work, too.
I wouldn’t recommend minced because you don’t get the same texture. However, the flavor will still be there, so it’s a good last resort.
8. Homemade Tomato Soup
The key to the best tomato soup is to roast the veggies before adding them to the soup.
I like to use a variety of tomatoes and add them to a tray with onions and garlic. Then, roast the whole lot until blistered, juicy, and dripping with flavor.
Since tomatoes can be quite tart and acidic, I like to add cream at the end to mellow it out.
I also like to roast off red peppers and carrots for a more rounded dish.
9. Panera Broccoli Cheddar Soup
As much as I want to try new things at Panera, I always wind up with the chicken and wild rice or the broccoli cheddar soup.
The latter being creamy and bursting with great taste! Not to mention it’s full of broccoli, so I count it as a healthy meal.
Since this starts with a basic roux, it should be pretty thick without blending anything.
But If you don’t like chunks, go ahead and blitz the soup once it’s cooled down.
10. Kansas City Steak Soup
Made famous by the now-closed Plaza 3 restaurant in Kansas City, this thick and hearty soup is much more of a stew than a soup.
Not only does it contain the holy trinity of soups: carrot, onion, and celery, but it also includes a whole package of frozen veggies for added color and texture.
To ensure the meat comes out fork-tender, be sure to reduce the heat and let the soup cook for a couple of hours.
11. Lobster Bisque Recipe
Having “lobster” in the title, no doubt you think this is an expensive and complicated soup.
But that’s not the case! The yummy, creamy base is a cinch to whip up, and if you start with pre-cooked lobster, this will be even easier.
Most larger stores will sell lobster tails in the fish section and frozen, both raw and cooked.
Also, you can get it from the counter and ask the butcher to cut open the shell for you.
Most people don’t have kitchen shears at home, which you’ll need to break through the shell.
12. Traditional Brunswick Stew With Pork and Chicken
If you check online, you’ll see that both Brunswick, Georgia, and Brunswick County, Virginia, have made passionate claims over the origins of this tasty soup.
I can’t tell you who’s right, but I can tell you that this soup has strong southern roots!
It’s almost like chili, with corn, tomatoes, and BBQ sauce. But instead of ground meat and beans, this dish is packed with shredded pork and chicken.
Since this recipe has BBQ sauce, I like to add sweet potatoes to the mix for extra color and sweet flavor.
13. Wendy’s Chili Recipe
When it comes to making chili, I recommend starting a couple of days early.
Sure, it will taste delicious right out of the pot. But if you leave it to sit for a day or two, you’ll notice it not only thickens up but that the flavors are enhanced too.
When picking your canned tomatoes, I think fire-roasted work the best, and also those with green chilis included.
But you can always add extra jalapaños if you want more heat.
14. Creamy Pumpkin Soup Recipe
I’ve found pumpkin puree year-round in my local grocery store, so you don’t have to reserve this recipe for the fall.
That being said, there’s nothing like picking pumpkins and making the puree yourself.
Try roasting chunks with brown sugar and cinnamon for a tasty side and flavorful pumpkin you can blend for cakes and soups.
15. Great Northern Bean Soup
Great Northern beans are a type of white bean that looks similar to cannellini or navy beans.
Thought to get their name from North Dakota, you can substitute these into most bean recipes with ease.
They’re pretty mild in flavor and will give this soup a lovely, subtle nutty undertone.
This soup is vegan-friendly and bursting with veggies, so it’s still super filling, even without any meat. Though, you can add meat to the mix if you want.
16. Cream of Mushroom Soup
Once you see how easy this recipe is, you’ll never buy canned cream of mushroom soup again!
The best thing about this recipe is that you can keep it simple with fresh brown mushrooms (which will be cheaper) or mix things up with various types.
Maitake mushrooms are incredibly flavorful, so a little will go a long way.
Another great option is to get a bag of mixed, dried mushrooms, so you’ll get lots of character and textures.
17. Rotisserie Chicken Noodle Soup
Chicken noodle soup is the best for those cold, wet, dark days when you need a quick pick me up.
If you use leftover rotisserie chicken, you can have a batch ready in under 30 minutes.
You can speed this up even further if you opt for frozen veggies.
No rotisserie chicken? No worries! Just plop a couple of chicken breasts in the pot and let them cook right in the broth.
18. Chipotle Black Bean Soup Recipe
I’m a massive fan of black bean soup, so making it at home is a no-brainer.
Canned beans will speed up your prep, but dried will keep the cost down (not that canned beans are that expensive).
This is best served with some tortilla chips, and cotija cheese sprinkled over the top.
19. Paula Deen’s Taco Soup
How about we take everything we love about tacos – ground beef, chilis, black olives, taco seasoning, jalapeños, and cheese – and turn it into soup?
Tacos are great, but they take a bit of prep when serving a family. So instead, this soup gives you the same great flavors, just in one easy dish.
I like a small cup of this with a chicken and cheese quesadilla or a bigger bowl and a nice chunk of spicy cornbread.
20. Black-Eyed Pea Soup
Even though this soup is vegan, it’s beyond tasty and impossibly smoky. I swear you’ll think that it’s full of smoked ham after just one bite!
I struggled to find canned black-eyed peas, so I went for the dried kind. All you’ll need to do is rinse them off and sit them in cold water overnight.
Or, a faster option is to bring them to a boil and then leave them (covered) for about an hour.
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