Most canned soup sold at stores tastes watery, overcooked, too salty, and in need of additional fresh ingredients.
I normally add fresh ingredients to Progresso brand Lentil soup and turn it into a fantastic stew consisting of additional ingredients such as shitake mushrooms, garlic, and green peas, along with various spices.
Campbell's rebranded its Gold Label line as "V-8." Those soups are so thick, you have to spoon the contents out. Among the best and thickest soups sold at conventional supermarkets. My favorite is the Butternut Squash soup, which I also add some spices and ingredients to such as fresh squash and a small bit of kale or spinach.
I recently tried the Muir Glen brand for the first time and was blown away by its chicken tortilla soup. I did not have to add any additional spices, and was surprised at how spicy it was. Word of warning - this soup tastes very salty.
The soup is thicker than the normal canned soup (although not as thick as the V-8 line), but the tortilla soup did not contain cream, as far as I could tell. I think the thickening came from the potato ingredient or soy components. Most of its ingredients are organic, which is why this soup is premium priced.
Campbells has a healthy request version of Chicken Tortilla soup. It is made with a cheese component, and although it is more watery, it still tastes better than the normal canned soup.
Jyoti has its version of canned curried lentil soup (called "Sambar" on its can), which is decent. Not as thick as the Progresso, Muir Glen, or V-8, but offers a pleasant spice flavor to lentil soup.
If I can't get out to a restaurant for very good soup, or make time to do my own from scratch, any of these that I listed are a more than adequate substitute!
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