Is cream of chicken soup gluten-free Campbell’s?

Gluten-free diets have become increasingly popular in recent years, driven by a rise in gluten sensitivities and celiac disease diagnoses. For those following a strict gluten-free diet, checking labels and understanding ingredients is essential to avoid gluten exposure.

With its wide availability and versatility in recipes, Campbell’s Cream of Chicken soup is a pantry staple for many home cooks. But is this popular canned soup safe for those avoiding gluten? Let’s take a detailed look at whether Campbell’s cream of chicken soup is gluten-free.

What is Gluten?

Gluten is a protein found in grains like wheat, barley and rye. For those with celiac disease or non-celiac gluten sensitivity, gluten triggers an autoimmune reaction that damages the small intestine. Even small amounts of gluten can cause symptoms like abdominal pain, bloating, diarrhea and fatigue in gluten-sensitive individuals.

To manage their condition, those with gluten-related disorders must adhere to a strict gluten-free diet, avoiding any foods and ingredients that contain gluten. This includes avoiding obvious sources like bread, pasta and baked goods made with wheat flour. But gluten can also hide in less obvious places, like soups, sauces and seasoning blends.

Reading labels is key to spotting these hidden sources of gluten.

Evaluating Campbell’s Cream of Chicken Soup

To determine if a food is gluten-free, you need to carefully read the ingredient list and nutrition labels. For Campbell’s Cream of Chicken soup, there are a few important factors to evaluate:


The main ingredients in Campbell’s condensed cream of chicken soup are chicken stock, whole milk, cooked enriched egg noodles (wheat flour, egg), modified food starch, chicken meat and carrots.

The wheat flour in the egg noodles clearly indicates there is gluten present. Other Campbell’s cream soups like Cream of Mushroom and Cream of Celery do not contain egg noodles and are labeled gluten-free.

“Contains Wheat” Warning

In the allergen information under the ingredients list, Campbell’s states the product “contains wheat,” further confirming gluten content.

Lack of Gluten-Free Labeling

Campbell’s Cream of Chicken soup does not make any gluten-free or wheat-free claims on the can label. The company’s website also does not list Cream of Chicken as one of their gluten-free soup varieties.

Based on these three factors – the wheat noodle ingredient, allergen warning and lack of gluten-free labeling – it’s clear that Campbell’s traditional Cream of Chicken soup is not gluten-free.

Risk of Cross-Contamination

Even if a product doesn’t directly contain gluten, cross-contamination during manufacturing can introduce small amounts of gluten. This risk depends on whether the product was made in a dedicated gluten-free facility.

Campbell’s Cream of Chicken soup is produced in facilities that also process wheat-containing foods. The company does not consider this product safe for those with celiac disease due to the potential for cross-contact with gluten.

Individual tolerance levels vary when it comes to cross-contamination. The amounts picked up through cross-contact are usually small, but some gluten-sensitive individuals react to even trace amounts.

Gluten-Free Alternatives

While Campbell’s traditional Cream of Chicken soup contains gluten, the company does offer some gluten-free soup options:

  • Campbell’s Cream of Chicken Healthy Request soup
  • Campbell’s Cream of Mushroom soup
  • Campbell’s Cream of Celery soup
  • Campbell’s Chicken Noodle soup made with rice noodles
  • Campbell’s Chicken and Mini Stars soup made with rice pasta

Checking the ingredients list and allergen statements is always advised to confirm gluten-free status. Campbell’s also produces their gluten-free soups on dedicated production lines to avoid cross-contamination.

Homemade alternatives are another option. Gluten-free cream of chicken recipes often use rice flour or cornstarch as a thickener instead of wheat flour. Pureeing cauliflower or potatoes also naturally thickens up the soup.

Is Progresso Cream of Chicken Soup Gluten-Free?

Progresso is another popular brand of canned cream soups. But unlike the traditional Campbell’s product, Progresso Cream of Chicken soup is certified gluten-free.

Progresso’s Cream of Chicken soup is produced without any wheat, barley, rye or oats. It’s made in a dedicated gluten-free facility to prevent cross-contact.

Both the original and lower-sodium versions of Progresso Cream of Chicken soup are gluten-free. However, some other Progresso cream soup flavors do contain gluten.

Always check the label each time you purchase, as ingredient formulations can change. But overall Progresso offers a good gluten-free option if you want the convenience of canned cream of chicken soup.

Is Homemade Cream of Chicken Soup Gluten-Free?

Making your own homemade cream of chicken soup is the best way to control the ingredients. With basic ingredients like chicken broth, milk or cream, and chicken, the soup can easily be customized to be gluten-free.

To thicken the soup, cornstarch or potato starch work well as gluten-free alternatives to regular wheat flour. Other tasty additions like carrots, celery, mushrooms and herbs can create a flavorful gluten-free cream of chicken soup.

When starting with homemade chicken broth and avoiding thickeners containing gluten, homemade cream of chicken soup provides a nourishing comfort food that is safe for those with celiac disease or sensitivities.

Gluten-Free Substitutions in Recipes

In recipes like casseroles and chicken pot pie that call for cream of chicken soup, you have a few different options to make it gluten-free:

  • Substitute with Campbell’s Healthy Request or Progresso gluten-free cream of chicken soup
  • Replace with homemade gluten-free cream of chicken soup
  • Leave out the soup and use chicken broth plus cornstarch slurry to thicken
  • Use alternate thickeners like rice flour or xanthan gum as needed in the recipe

With some simple tweaks, classic comfort food recipes can easily be adapted to be gluten-free and satisfy any craving for creamy casseroles.

Is Gluten-Free Cream of Chicken Soup Nutritionally Equivalent?

Going gluten-free often leads to an improvement in nutrients. Research shows that a gluten-free diet promotes:[1]

  • Higher levels of B vitamins
  • Increased antioxidants
  • More omega-3 fatty acids
  • Reduced levels of unhealthy trans fats

Enriching gluten-free pasta with vitamins and protein helps make up for any nutritional deficits compared to traditional wheat pasta. Some brands even use legume flours to add extra protein and fiber.

Gluten-free cream of chicken soups can provide just as much protein, vitamins and minerals found in conventional wheat-based varieties. Go for options made with wholesome ingredients like carrots, celery, mushrooms and quality chicken meat whenever possible.

Should You Go Gluten-Free?

Eliminating gluten from your diet should only be done after an official diagnosis from a doctor. Self-diagnosing gluten intolerance can lead to unnecessary dietary restrictions. Be sure to consult a gastroenterologist if you suspect a problem with gluten.

That said, around 1 in 141 Americans has celiac disease. This autoimmune disorder causes damage to the intestines when gluten is ingested and the only treatment is a gluten-free diet.

If you have unexplained digestive symptoms or a related condition like thyroid disease or type 1 diabetes, ask your doctor about testing for celiac. This involves a simple blood test and possibly an intestinal biopsy.

For those with a medical need to be gluten-free, carefully reading labels and using reputable brands like Campbell’s Healthy Request and Progresso can help make sticking to a gluten-free diet easier and less restrictive.

The Bottom Line

When it comes to enjoying creamy comfort foods, you don’t have to give them up if you follow a gluten-free diet. Campbell’s, Progresso and homemade options make it easy to find or make gluten-free cream of chicken soup.

Always double check the ingredients and facility protocols of any pre-made soup. But you can feel confident enjoying your favorite casseroles, stews, pot pies and more by using gluten-free swaps any time a recipe calls for cream of chicken soup.


[1] Miranda J, Lasa A, Bustamante MA, Churruca I, Simon E. Nutritional Differences Between a Gluten-free Diet and a Diet Containing Equivalent Products with Gluten. Plant Foods Hum Nutr. 2014;69(2):182-187. doi:10.1007/s11130-014-0410-4

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