Welcome to the Souper Bowl—Where You Decide the Best Soup of All Time!

Grab your biggest pots, sharpest knives, spoons and ladles! The temperature is dropping and that means it’s time to make a hearty pot of soup. From creamy chicken soups to veggie-packed noodle soups, there’s a recipe for everyone, so get cooking!

If you could choose the best soup recipe ever, what would it be? We're giving you the chance to crown a winner in our first-ever Souper Bowl contest. Why soup? I would argue that soup is the most popular food in the world. Practically every culture has a favorite—from ribollita in Italy to Vietnamese pho. Soup can be super fancy or dead simple. Heavy with meat or vegetarian. Thick and creamy, or light and brothy. You can easily cook one up in 20 minutes—or let one simmer all day long. Perhaps the best part? You can follow a recipe or just use up scraps in your fridge, freezer and pantry—either way you'll have something super delicious and satisfying to nourish your soul.

And, it turns out, people have strong feelings about soup—some fast-food and casual restaurants have even developed a soup following (looking at you, Panera and Olive Garden!). Based on how popular soups are on EatingWell.com, you agree! Soup recipes always seem to make our top 10 list (in 2022, that included Creamy Chicken Noodle Soup with Rotisserie Chicken and Weight-Loss Cabbage Soup). And one of our most popular recipe collections last year was Soup Recipes to Make Forever. And who can blame y'all—soup rules. It's great for serving a crowd, eating some and freezing some, or doing weekly meal prep—I myself try to cook a big pot of soup on Sundays when it's cold outside (my creative name for it is Soup Sunday), making enough for a few lunches over the next week. And soup is almost always made in one pot, making dinner cleanup a breeze.  

bowl of vegetarian lasagna soup
Vegetarian Lasagna Soup | Credit: Jen Causey

Soup can be really good for you, too. A study from Iowa State University looked at the diets of more than 10,000 Americans and found that people who ate soup had greater intakes of vitamin A, fiber, magnesium, potassium and iron, and ate more servings of dark greens, legumes and other veggies. Plus, soup may reduce hunger and increase fullness. It's hydrating by nature, and getting enough water is essential to many of the body's important functions, and not getting enough can affect energy levels, cause mental fog and moodiness and even increase the risk of stroke.

So we felt the best way to honor everything that's good about soup was to celebrate it with a contest—The Souper Bowl!

Here's How the Souper Bowl Voting Works

We've created a bracket that you'll see below. We organized 32 soups into four categories: Chicken Soups, Creamy Soups, Vegetable Soups and Noodle Soups, which we felt represented some of our favorite and most popular soup recipes. The winner of each matchup will be determined by popular vote on EatingWell's Instagram account, playing out as a running vote in our stories. 

Voting begins for Round One on January 3, and we're kicking off with Chicken Soups. The remaining three categories will have their Round One matchups over the next three days. Then we'll give the soups the weekend to rest up before voting for Round Two on January 9, with Rounds 3 and 4 taking place over the following two weeks, culminating with the Souper Bowl Championship on January 24. So mark your calendars!

If you're more of the voyeuristic type, you can come back here to see results as they roll in. We'll be updating this page with results throughout the contest.

In the meantime, go make some soup! Most of these recipes are hot off the burner and were developed with the Souper Bowl in mind, and we can't wait for you to try them. Please make them and share your thoughts by leaving a rating and review—we look forward to reading them (yes, we read them!).

a graphic of the Souper Bowl bracket round 5

The Contenders

Chicken Soups

Is chicken soup one of the most iconic comfort foods? We think so. It's commonly cooked up as a medicinal meal to help alleviate cold symptoms—and there's actually science to prove why. Plus, chicken soup's anti-inflammatory properties may keep symptoms from developing into an upper respiratory infection. But a pot of chicken soup is simply warming and delicious—sick or not. Minestra Maritata beat out Green Chicken Chile Pozole handily. Head over to our Instagram stories on January 23, when it faces off against the creamy soup champ, Chicken Enchilada, in the semi-finals.

Credit: Photographer: Jen Causey; Food Stylist: Ail Ramee; Prop Stylist: Claire Spollen
2 bowls of Copycat Panera's Tomato-Basil Soup
Creamy Soups

Thick and rich and utterly satisfying, creamy soups like chowders are so hearty. While these types of soups may get a bad rap for being packed with saturated fat, we have some tricks up our sleeves for making them healthier. Who made it through Round 3? Sorry, Slow-Cooker Thai Chile & Corn Chowder—Chicken Enchilada Soup is the creamy soup champ! Mosey on over to our Instagram stories on January 23 to vote in the semi-finals, when it competes against Minestra Maritata.

Credit: Photographer: Jen Causey; Food Stylist: Ali Ramee; Prop Stylist: Claire Spollen
Bowl of Kimchi Tofu Soup
Veggie Soups

Let's face it, very few of us eat enough vegetables. But when we do, there are a plethora of potential health benefits—including a reduced risk of heart disease, improved brain health and better weight management. And soup can be a really delicious way to get your five-a-day! We're not that surprised that Slow-Cooker Mushroom Soup with Sherry won this category, it's been popular with our fans since we first published it. Cruise on over to our Instagram stories on January 23 to vote in the semi-finals, when it goes up against Spinach-Tortellini Soup.

Credit: Photographer: Jen Causey; Food Stylist: Ali Ramee; Prop Stylist: Claire Spollen

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hand holding chopsticks showing noodles from Bok Choy Soup with Shrimp and Noodles
Noodle Soups

From chicken noodle and minestrone to pho and ramen, there are so many popular noodle soups around the world. And noodle soups are an easy way to get a few more grams of fiber each day when you choose a whole-grain pasta like those made from whole wheat, brown rice or buckwheat. This was the closest match-up, with Spinach-Tortellini Soup just beating out Creamy Mushroom & Orzo Soup with Lemon & Parmesan. Slurp your way over to our Instagram stories on January 23 to vote in the semi-finals—can it beat Slow-Cooker Mushroom Soup with Sherry to advance to the final round?

Credit: Photographer: Jen Causey; Food Stylist: Ali Ramee; Prop Stylist: Claire Spollen

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The Finals

Well, folks, here we are, it's time for the final round of voting! The last round had Minestra Maritata facing off against Chicken Enchilada—the former was no match for the creamy deliciousness of enchiladas in soup form. And Spinach-Tortellini Soup barely edged out Slow-Cooker Mushroom Soup with Sherry for the win. Head over to our Instagram stories January 25 to vote for your favorite. Only one can win the title of Souper Bowl favorite!

The Winner

It's creamy. It's spicy. It's cheesy. What's not to love? Chicken Enchilada Soup brought home the win, beating Spinach-Tortellini soup by a mere 50 votes. You should make both and decide which really was your favorite. And rate and review the recipes, of course. Thanks for playing!

a photo of the Souper Bowl winner Chicken Enchilada soup

Credits

Coordinating Staff Editors: Carolyn Malcoun & Alex Loh

Visuals & Design: Maria Emmighausen, Cassie Basford, Jesse Blanner, Sarah Maiden & Sabrina Tan

Special Thanks: Penelope Wall, Victoria Seaver, Sophie Johnson, Addie Knight, Allison Little, Anne Treadwell, Beth Stewart, Jim Sheetz, Nadine Bradley, Dotdash Meredith Food Studios and the entire staff of EatingWell