The Robust Seasonings To Elevate Canned Clam Chowder

Former "Top Chef" contestant Eli Kirshtein noted to Insider how a few simple ingredients can improve your favorite canned clam chowder. This self-proclaimed "sucker for Campbell's New England clam chowder" seasons it with a splash of Worcestershire sauce, a bit of hot sauce, and some grinds of black pepper, which kick up the taste a few notches.

Piperine, pepper's pungent component, and capsaicin, the spicy component of hot sauce, not only lend deeper, tangier notes but also bring out extra flavors. Because of their inflammatory properties, which increase the sensitivity of taste receptors, adding a dash of black pepper or hot sauce to soup may make it taste saltier, even though no more salt has been added.

Meanwhile, Worcestershire sauce imparts a magical mixture of vinegar, molasses, tamarind, anchovies, plus aromatics and seasonings. This blend, first concocted in Worcester, England during the 19th century, adds the umami flavor, or fifth taste, to the ultimate tangy, savory, sweet, and salty flavor combination, transforming that ordinary bowl of clam chowder into an unexpectedly rich experience.

Turn soup from ho-hum to got-to-have-some

The best time to add spices, such as pepper and salt, to your soup is generally somewhere in the middle of the cooking process. When you're simply warming canned soup, mix them in right after you turn on the heat. Chef Kirshtein also recommends you griddle a piece of sourdough in butter and place it in the bottom of a bowl before pouring the soup on top. You can also scoop out a fresh loaf of sourdough and fill it up for an authentic San Francisco treat and serve a green salad or citrus coleslaw on the side for the perfect sweet and savory duo.

You can also add a little sweet smoked paprika, zest with parsley or cilantro, and toss in some oregano. Packed with nutrients, all these spices turn up the heat on both taste and health. Indulge your inner child and pair your piping hot chowder with a gooey grilled cheese sandwich, or serve it with corn on the cob, french fries, or a classic bacon, lettuce, and tomato (BLT) sandwich. Top with oyster crackers, and voila! Enjoy a hearty meal while adding a little spice to your day.