Gluten-Free Soups (Updated June 2016)

Craving hot soup? Here's which brands and flavors are gluten-free

Wondering which soups are gluten-free?. Getty Images/Michael Grimm

Most people who are new to the gluten-free diet don't imagine that soup is a risk — after all, soup and bread have little in common, right?

Er, wrong. Many canned soups contain gluten ingredients, frequently in the form of thickeners. "Cream"-based soups usually feature far more wheat flour than cream.

So if you need gluten-free soup, what should you do? Fortunately, the growing popularity of the gluten-free diet has led major soup manufacturers to produce some soup flavors that don't include wheat, barley or rye as ingredients.

In addition, a few specialty soup makers produce mostly gluten-free soup.

Gluten-Free Soup List

Note that this list applies only to the United States; for products' gluten-free status in other countries, including Canada, you'll need to check with the manufacturers. Here's the list of gluten-free soups:

  • Amy's Kitchen. A total of 26 of Amy's 30 soups are considered gluten-free to less than 20 parts per million (ppm), including two frozen soup varieties. They will be prominently labeled "gluten-free." Some selections also feature reduced sodium, and most are organic. Look for Amy's products in the health food section of the grocery store.
  • Bookbinders Specialties. This Philadelphia-based gourmet soup company was one of the first to offer gluten-free soups. Offerings include: New England Clam Chowder, Southwestern Clam & Corn Chowder, Butternut Squash & Mushroom, Sweet Burgundy Onion, Zesty Tomato, Cuban Black Bean, Sicilian Tomato-Zucchini, and Tuscan Minestrone to its gluten-free lineup, and also offers gluten-free clam juice (if you want to make your own clam chowder or clam sauce). All are tested to below 20ppm, and are available by mail order or in supermarkets, mainly in the northeastern U.S. Be aware that Bookbinders also makes gluten-containing soups.
  • Campbell Soup Company. Unfortunately for those who long for an iconic red-and-white can of Campbell soup, none of the company's most famous soups appear on its gluten-free list. Only five products from Campbell's organic soup line (not its regular soup line) are considered gluten-free: Chicken Tortilla, Creamy Butternut Squash, Garden Vegetable with Herbs, Lentil, and Sun-Ripened Tomato and Basil Bisque. Note that these are boxed soups, not canned soups (don't pick up the wrong product!), and also note that the Campbell organic line includes multiple gluten-containing soups that are processed on some of the same equipment or in the same facility.
  • College Inn. College Inn makes broths, not complete soups. Three of these broths — garden vegetable broth, organic beef broth and white wine & herb broth — are considered gluten-free to 20ppm, according to the company's gluten-free list.
  • Frontier Soup. Frontier makes 28 varieties of gluten-free soup mixes, including such flavors as New Orleans Jambalaya, Texas Wrangler Black Bean and Nebraska Barnraising Split Pea. All are certified gluten-free by the Celiac Sprue Association (CSA), which requires testing to below 5ppm of gluten (lower is better). Frontier discloses that these soups are not made in a gluten-free facility, but adds that its gluten-containing soups and ingredients "are segregated in all phases of production and storage with thorough procedures to guarantee to no crossover of wheat/gluten products with gluten free products." This, combined with the CSA certification, makes these soup mixes a trustworthy choice. Frontier Soup mixes are available online or at upscale supermarket chains.
  • Gluten-Free Cafe. Gluten-Free Cafe is a Hain Celestial Group subsidiary. It offers seven soup choices: Beef Noodle, Creamy Chicken Orzo, Vegetable Quinoa, Chicken Noodle, Black Bean, Cream of Mushroom, and Veggie Noodle. The pasta in the soups is (obviously) from non-gluten grain sources — it's rice pasta. Gluten-Free Cafe products are considered gluten-free to less than 20ppm.
  • Health Valley. Health Valley is another Hain Celestial Group subsidiary, but it's not one that offers gluten-free products. Some Health Valley soups appear to be gluten-free by their ingredients, but none are listed on Hain Celestial's gluten-free list, which means they may contain hidden gluten or be subject to gluten cross-contamination in production. There are better choices for gluten-free soups.
  • Healthy Choice. Healthy Choice is a ConAgra company. ConAgra will declare wheat on its labels but not all gluten sources (gluten, of course, can come from wheat, barley or rye). Therefore, you're best served by steering clear of Healthy Choice soups, even if they appear to contain no gluten ingredients.
  • Imagine Foods. Imagine, another Hain Celestial Group company, reports that many of its soups are gluten-free to 20ppm. Hain Celestial marks gluten-free products with a red, upside-down triangle with the words "gluten-free" in it, so look for that symbol on Imagine soups before buying. Imagine soups come in boxes, not cans, and usually are found in the supermarket "natural" section. Beware: many of Imagine's newer "chunky-style" soups contain gluten in one form or another, and the rest are not marked "gluten-free," likely because of gluten cross-contamination. Imagine broths, simmer sauces and gravies all are marked "gluten-free."
  • Pacific Natural Foods. Pacific, which makes soups in shelf-stable boxes instead of cans, includes many of its soups on its gluten-free list. Check the ingredients on each soup to see if it's safe or not. Pacific tests its products to less than 20ppm levels. Be aware that gluten-containing products may be manufactured in the same facility or on the same equipment as Pacific's gluten-free products. Like Imagine soups, Pacific soups usually are found in the "natural" or health food section of the supermarket, although sometimes stores will stock them next to more conventional soups.
  • Progresso. Progresso (a General Mills company) labels many of its soups "gluten-free": you can choose from varieties that include traditional Manhattan Clam Chowder, reduced sodium Garden Vegetable, Creamy Mushroom, Lentil with Roasted Vegetables, and traditional Split Pea with Ham, among many others. Progresso soups are tested to less than 20 ppm levels, and those that are considered gluten-free will carry prominent "gluten-free" designations on the can.
  • Swanson. Swanson, a Campbell Soup company, makes 14 beef, chicken and vegetable broth products that are considered gluten-free to 20ppm. These products include low sodium and unsalted beef and chicken stock. Swanson broth products come in both cans and boxes.
  • Wolfgang Puck. Wolfgang Puck (another Campbell Soup company) had listed several of its soups as "gluten-free," but since has withdrawn that designation. Instead, the company reports that it intends to label some products as "gluten-free," but that all products share production lines with gluten-containing products, making cross-contamination a concern. The company says that when it finishes evaluating what it can safely label "gluten-free," it will add those designations to its labels.

One Final Note

As you're perusing this list of gluten-free soups (and possibly thinking about your next bowl of piping hot minestrone), remember that most of these soups are considered gluten-free to less than 20 parts per million (ppm) of gluten. This is a low enough gluten level to have them qualify for "gluten-free" labeling, but they may still contain enough gluten to give you a reaction, depending on your sensitivity level. For more on this, see Why Gluten Parts Per Million Numbers Matter.

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