I have a confession… I HATE canned soups! What I hate even more is browsing Pinterest and viewing recipes that are using the slogan “Healthy” only to click the link to find it is actually just another recipe using cans of 98% fat free cans of soup and adding extras. Yes these recipes may be low calorie but they aren’t low sodium or by any means “healthy” due to the fact that your getting a whole lot more then just mushrooms and milk. Here are the ingredients in a can of Campbell’s Cream of Mushroom Soup:
WATER, MUSHROOMS, VEGETABLE OIL (CORN, COTTONSEED, CANOLA, AND/OR SOYBEAN), MODIFIED FOOD STARCH, WHEAT FLOUR, CONTAINS LESS THAN 2% OF: SALT, MONOSODIUM GLUTAMATE, SOY PROTEIN CONCENTRATE, DEHYDRATED CREAM (CREAM [MILK], SOY LECITHIN), YEAST EXTRACT, FLAVORING, DEHYDRATED GARLIC.
What these ingredients tell me is that Campbell’s wants to make their soup out of highly refined soybean oil instead of real cream or milk because it is cheaper for them to produce. Then to make you think you are actually getting cream they add some fillers to thicken it up as well as two forms of MSG and “flavoring” (whatever that means). Obviously this soup can stay on the shelf because there is nothing remotely “healthy” about it.
That was the bad news. But now I have some good news to tell you. You can make a fresh, creamy mushroom sauce in about the same time it would take you to open that can and heat it. It isn’t much more expensive either because other then buying the mushrooms, which run in the $1.78 range, you probably have the other stuff on hand. I know the classic “Campbell’s Tuna Casserole” recipe that everyone is familiar with also includes canned tuna, but since canned tuna contains soy and “chicken broth” we stay away from that as well. The chicken broth is a huge unknown because the ingredients in the broth are not labeled.
I know the process of making this is not that picture worthy but these pictures basically spell out the steps. Melt the butter while cooking the mushrooms, add flour until gritty, add milk and stir until it thickens and THAT’S IT! If you have other recipes that include canned soups you can easily switch the ingredients up to copycat the canned version. If you aren’t using mushrooms just melt butter, add flour, add milk. Super easy! As I mentioned I don’t use canned tuna so I baked some wild caught Flounder and topped the pasta with the fish. Alternatively, you could break it up in the mixture (my kids like it that way). I called this a “casserole” even though I didn’t bake mine but you could throw it in the oven for a few minutes if you wanted to and top with some sharp cheddar or homemade bread crumbs. That would be even more delicious!