Hot soup on a cold day hits the spot, but beneath that warm and fuzzy feeling your favorite store-bought bisque may be hiding excessive sodium, sugar, or saturated fat. Before you buy, read cans carefully. "Look for soups with no more than 480 mg of sodium and 2 g of saturated fat per cup," says Heather K. Jones, RD, author of The Grocery Cart Makeover. Other red flags: unrecognizable ingredients--which are probably chemicals and preservatives--as well as added sugar and hydrogenated oils. "You want the foods you put in your cart and in your body to be as clean as possible," Jones says. (Check out Eat This, Not That 2013, the no diet weight loss solution! )
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You should also be mindful of portion sizes, adds Bonnie Taub-Dix, RD, author of Read It Before You Eat It. Most cans of heat-and-eat soup contain two and a half 1-cup servings. "If the serving is half of what you normally consume, remember to double all the nutrition numbers," Taub-Dix says. Feel full faster by choosing a soup packed with appetite-taming protein and fiber.
To help you make smarter soup choices, we've rounded up seven to stock in your pantry, and seven others to skip.