CarolCooks2…Friday Food Reviews…”Soup”

Welcome to Friday Food Reviews where I will be covering a different food or product each week and looking at… what are they?  where do they grow, what can we substitute them for in a recipe, are they safe to eat, how to store them, how to use them, cook them, anything connected to that food. or product..all the why’s and the wherefores…it will, of course, be mainly my own opinion or a known fact…good or bad…there may even be a tried and tested recipe…or three…

This week it’s…Soup…Why “Soup” ?…it’s soup because one of my regular readers and commenters the lovely Liz Gauffreau poet and author asked me to… Liz said, “ I’d be interested in your take on real soup made from scratch versus processed. For me, the processed soup just doesn’t taste right“…so I rescheduled this Friday’s post for next week and bumped all my posts forward a week…

I decided that I would use two of the most popular soups as examples however if you put your favourite soup in google and ask what the ingredient are it brings them up…easy to do…I also used Heinz soups as an example…

Chicken Soup…Heinz…for starters it only contains 3% chicken below is a list of all 18 ingredients…

Water, Chicken (3%), Modified Cornflour, Rapeseed Oil, Cream (Milk), Dried Skimmed Milk, Wheat Flour (contains Calcium, Iron, Niacin, Thiamin), Flavourings, Milk Proteins, Cornflour, Salt, Yeast Extracts, Onion Extract, Stabiliser – Polyphosphates and Sodium Phosphates, Garlic Salt, Spice Extract, Colour – Beta-Carotene.

Polyphosphates and Sodium Phosphates

Sodium phosphate can be found in fast food, deli meat, processed meat, canned tuna, baked goods, and other manufactured foods. It serves a variety of functions:

  • It thickens food. It stabilizes the texture of processed foods, such as mashed potato mixes.
  • It cures meat and meat products. It helps to keep deli meats and bacon moist, avoiding spoilage.
  • It’s a leavening agent. It helps dough rise in commercially prepared cakes and breads and in cake mixes.
  • It’s an emulsifying agent. It acts as a stabilizer to keep oil and water mixed together in certain types of food, such as processed cheese.
  • It balances pH levels in processed food. It stabilizes the balance between acidity and alkalinity, extending shelf life and improving taste.

Food-grade sodium phosphate is categorized by the FDA as GRAS, which means “generally recognized as safe.” This may be because the amount of sodium phosphate added to processed food, is relatively low…however studies found that sodium phosphate, when used as a food additive, can impact health differently than naturally occurring phosphate. This is because it’s absorbed differently by the body…

By contrast, my homemade cream of chicken soup only has 8 ingredients…generally, I make an old fashioned chicken soup the same as my mum’s a clear chicken soup made from chicken carcasses and vegetables but for comparison purposes, I have chosen to share a cream of chicken soup.


  • 2 cups of good chicken liquid stock or homemade chicken stock.
  • 900 gm of chicken, skin removed
  • 1 large brown onion, chopped
  • 2 celery stalks, chopped
  • 1 med leek, trimmed, halved, washed and chopped.
  • 50 gm butter
  • 1/3 cup plain flour
  • 1/2 cup cream
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley.
Let’s Cook!
Place 3 1/2 cups of water plus chicken stock, chicken, onion, celery and leek in a large saucepan
over medium heat…Bring to the boil then reduce the heat to an active simmer cover and cook
for one hour. Transfer the chicken to a bowl and allow to cool slightly then remove and discard
the bones and shred the meat…set aside then strain the stock mixture into a large heatproof
jug and discard the solids…
Next, melt the butter in a pan over medium heat, add the flour and cook, stirring for 1 minute
or until bubbling gradually stir in the stock mixture and cream, cover and bring slowly to a boil
then reduce the heat to medium and add the shredded chicken. Cook, stirring occasionally for
about 15 mins or until the soup thickens slightly then season with salt and pepper…
Garnish with the parsley to serve.
Of course, you can add chopped chives or add some sweetcorn or fried onions there are so
many ways you can elevate this beautiful cream of chicken soup…I know it takes longer to make
but it keeps in the fridge for a few days…or if you can freeze the chicken liquid and the
shredded chicken and complete the final steps when you wish to eat and serve…
There is also considerably more than the 3% chicken which is in the canned soup…fresh soups
are the  only soups I have purchased in the past and the good brands are generally free from
preservatives and use organic vegetables and sustainably sourced chicken.
Tomato Soup… Heinz…
Tomato soup is one of my favourite soups…Heinz has 13 ingredients in their can of tomato

Tomatoes (89%), Water, Modified Cornflour, Sugar, Rapeseed Oil, Dried Skimmed Milk, Salt, Cream (Milk), Milk Proteins, Acidity Regulator – Citric Acid, Spice Extracts, Herb Extract…

In fact, in amongst the ingredients of Heinz canned soups – one of which is Cream of Tomato soup …you’ll find not only a dash of polyphosphates and sodium phosphates but some beta-carotene colourant, modified cornflour for thickener and two teaspoons of sugar per serving. Yummy…Not!

Homemade Tomato Soup…


  • 8 or 9 tomatoes, cored and quartered
  • 3 red bell peppers, seeded and quartered
  • 2 small yellow onions, cut into wedges
  • 6 cloves garlic, unpeeled
  • 5 cups homemade vegetable broth
  • ¼ teaspoon smoked paprika
  • ½ teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • salt and fresh ground black pepper, to taste
  • olive oil

Let’s Cook!

Preheat the oven to 375F/190C

Grease two baking sheets and place tomatoes skin side down on one, then lightly coat the peppers and onions in olive oil and place on the other baking tray also throw the unpeeled garlic into the tray…Pop it in your preheated oven for about 45 minutes.

When the tomatoes and peppers are roasted heat your vegetable stock in a pan big enough to take the tomatoes and peppers. Add your roasted tomatoes and peppers to the vegetable stock and simmer for 15 minutes.


Allow your soup to cool slightly and then either use a stick blender or your liquidiser blend to your desired consistency… I prefer mine a little chunky. Taste and season.

Serve with a swirl of cream or natural yoghurt if liked…


To summarise although my tomato soup has about the same amount of ingredients mine consists of fresh vegetables and spices…I roast my tomatoes and peppers to bring out the natural sweetness and there is no added sugar…it is the closest tomato soup I have made which is very similar to my favourite processed Heinz soup BUT without the additives…

I hope this has been helpful to you Liz…

Thank you for reading this post and as always I look forward to your comments xx

40 thoughts on “CarolCooks2…Friday Food Reviews…”Soup”

  1. Pingback: CarolCooks2…Friday Food Reviews…”Soup” — Retired? No one told me! – Guam through my eyes

  2. pfiddlergal

    I love making homemade soup. Usually use canned tomatoes though. Out of season tomatoes are so tasteless in New England. Also I like that you are sharing your take on processed foods. Learning a lot.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. CarolCooks2 Post author

      I agree about out of season tomatoes luckily because its so warm here most of the time the tomatoes have a good flavour…I have a thing about processed food and the fact that most of time it os bad for us and there is generally always a substitute 🙂


  3. dgkaye

    I’m a soup lover. so I appreciated these recipes. My chicken soup is very similar – minus the creamed part, but I’m going to try my own tomato soup now. 🙂 xx

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Pingback: CarolCooks2 weekly roundup… 22nd -28th May 2022-Monday Musings, Health, Food Review “Real food v Processed Food” and Saturday Snippets where “Dance” is my one word prompt. | Retired? No one told me!

  5. Liz Gauffreau

    Thank you very much, Carol. Both of these recipes sound so good! And they’re different from the tomato soup and cream of chicken soup I already have, which is even better! As for the processed versions, “generally recognized as safe” doesn’t exactly fill me with confidence.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. CarolCooks2 Post author

      You are very welcome Liz…I understand that words like this are used otherwise they would inundated with law suits but words like “generally and “may” never fill me with confidence as we have learnt over the years…plus the FDA need to up their game drastically what they allow is scandelous and definitely not safe (mini rant)over…lol..Have a great weekend, Liz 🙂 x

      Liked by 1 person

  6. marianbeaman

    My husband fixed some tomato soup for lunch today. He also likes to add extras: scallions, cheese, etc. I wondered about the stringy bits–he told me they were shredded carrots. Ha!

    Liked by 3 people

  7. beetleypete

    Who doesn’t love soup, with some nice fresh bread? I confess we do not make soup, as we do not have the gadgets for that. But I buy fresh soups frequently, and they are always enjoyable, and filling.
    Best wishes, Pete. x

    Liked by 2 people

  8. Jessica

    Yum! Homemade soup is so wonderful. Excited to try your recipes. I made vegetable soup nearly every day in January (winter here.) Soups are so filling and nutritious.

    Liked by 3 people

      1. Jessica

        I’m doing ok. Had some hard missing mom days this week, but hanging in there. 🙂 The sun is actually out today. It’s been cold and rainy for dayssssss… supposed to warm up. Hoping we can use our pool soon. Summer here.

        Liked by 1 person

    1. CarolCooks2 Post author

      Thank you so much …we love a good bowl of soup and the beauty is you can change a recipe everytime you make it and use up odds from your fridge you can add pasta,noodles so many variations :)x

      Liked by 2 people

  9. Pingback: CarolCooks2…Friday Food Reviews…”Soup” – MobsterTiger

  10. petespringerauthor

    Thank you for providing evidence to justify your opinion of Liz’s questions, Carol. Aren’t facts wonderful? Somehow we’ve gotten away from them or used unsubstantiated “facts” as proof.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. CarolCooks2 Post author

      So much info everywhere , Pete its a minefield… I go to the manufacurers who may change names to confuse us etc but they have to give basics of the ingredients if anything its worse than they tell us… Have a great weekend, Pete 😊 x

      Liked by 1 person

  11. Chel Owens

    We’re doing a terrible poetry contest about soup this week too! It must be fate.

    Do you core the tomatoes so you don’t have seeds? Do you have tomatoes where you are? What’s a brown onion?

    Liked by 2 people

    1. CarolCooks2 Post author

      I only take the white core out not all the we have tomatoes of course all different types..Brown onion is a normal light brown-skinned onion or a cooking onion I think it may go by a few names…Yes, that’s fate..I only did soup as Liz said she would like a comparison between processed and homemade soup …Hope you and baby are well he must be getting big now :)x

      Liked by 3 people

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