Transforming Canned Tomato Soup Into Chili Is Easier Than You Think

Are you tired of looking at the can of tomato soup on the top shelf of your pantry? Then turn it into a pot of chili. You'll have to add other ingredients like garlic, onion, and beans, of course, but it's an easy meal to put together. Every chili recipe usually calls for diced tomatoes and often tomato paste, so you've already got a head start with that canned tomato soup.

Chili is also easily customizable, so you can use other ingredients you need to clean out of the fridge. Have a bunch of leftover carrots? Peel, shred, and add those to the pot for more flavor and texture. Most chili recipes use kidney beans, but if you have a can of cannellini beans or even black beans, use those instead. This classic dish can use different cuts of beef, ground turkey or pork, chicken for white chili — or even skip the meat altogether — so pick the protein depending on what's in your fridge, or what foods are on sale in this week's circular.

Making chili with canned tomato soup

To start a pot of chili using canned tomato soup, sauté garlic, onions, and any other vegetables you need to use up until they're fragrant and translucent. You'll add the protein either before or after depending on the cooking method you're going with. After your meat and vegetable base is cooked, add beans, diced tomatoes, and your canned tomato soup. Many recipes use chicken stock or water to thin out the chili, so this canned soup will act as the replacement. You probably don't want to use canned soup plus stock because chili is meant to be thick.

To curb that acidity from the canned tomato soup, skip the tomato paste if it's in your recipe. Another way to cut through the extra tomato flavor is to use the right toppings. Serve it with shredded sharp cheddar cheese (or whatever shredded cheese you have in the fridge) and a dollop of sour cream. Tortilla chips, corn chips like Fritos, chopped red onion, and diced avocado all pair well with the acidity of tomatoes, and are always ideal toppings to finish off the chili. And don't forget a dash of hot sauce if you like heat in every bite.