This vegan cream of chicken soup is the perfect substitute for condensed soup and a great addition to your favorite comforting soups and casseroles! It's ready in just 15 minutes, freezer friendly, easy to make and can be used in a variety of ways.
When I was in middle school, I used to pour Campbell's condensed cream of chicken soup into a bowl, microwave it and eat it as is. Yup, in all of it's thick, creamy glory. As I got older, I learned that there were so many different (and better) ways to enjoy condensed soup.
This vegan condensed cream of chicken soup is a 1:1 substitute for the classic pantry staple! You can use it in so many of your childhood favorites and trust that it's going to turn out just like you remembered, if not better!
Why you'll love this recipe
- It's a 1:1 replacement for Campbell's condensed cream of chicken soup, making it easy to use in your favorite dishes that call for that!
- You only need 1 saucepan, 6 ingredients and 15 minutes of your time to make this soup. Quick & easy, what's better than that?
- It's a great base recipe that can be transformed into a variety of dishes.
What is condensed soup?
Condensed soup is soup that has been boiled down to a thick stock, where most of the water content has been removed, that almost resembles a thick sauce. In this case, it's quite similar (especially the process) to a béchamel sauce.
Condensed soups are a popular base for classic dishes like your favorite casseroles, soups, and stews.
Whether you are dairy-free, vegetarian, or vegan, this is the perfect substitute for you! This makes it the perfect 1:1 replacement for condensed cream of chicken soup in all of your favorite recipes.
You truly do not need any special tools to make this dairy-free cream of chicken soup! Here's the short list of basic equipment that you definitely already own:
- Saucepan or dutch oven
- Wooden spoon and whisk: to ensure a smooth, lump-free soup
- Kitchen scale: to most accurately measure all ingredients for best results (measuring cups and measuring spoons are suitable for this recipe as well!)
You need very simple ingredients to make the vegan version of cream of chicken soup:
- Vegan Butter: I highly recommend using vegan butter sticks as opposed to the tubs of butter. I like to use Earth Balance sticks or Country Crock sticks for this recipe.
- All-Purpose Flour: the second piece of our roux to help thicken the soup. Feel free to use whole wheat flour or 1:1 gluten-free all-purpose flour.
- Vegan Chicken Broth: it wouldn't be cream of chicken soup without it! I highly recommend Ocean's Halo No Chicken Broth or Imagine's Vegetarian No-Chicken Broth. I have always had more luck finding the Ocean's Halo No Chicken Broth at my regular grocery store.
- Vegan Bouillon Cubes: this just helps to add a bit more concentrated chicken flavor. The Better Than Bouillon No Chicken Base is my go to!
- Plant-based Milk: I recommend using soy milk, creamy oat milk or full-fat coconut milk, as they are both thicker in consistency thank almond milk. You could also use vegan heavy cream. Just make sure whichever milk you choose to use is plain, unsweetened and unflavored!
- Spices: we'll be using a blend of celery salt, garlic powder, onion powder, salt and black pepper.
See recipe card below for a full list of ingredients and measurements.
Variations & Substitutions
- Easily make this into gluten free cream of chicken soup by using 1:1 gluten-free all purpose flour.
- Use olive oil instead of vegan butter.
- Make cream of vegetable soup by using vegetable broth and vegetable bouillon cubes instead.
- Transform into cream of celery soup by adding some fresh celery or more celery salt.
- Make this soup spicy with the addition of red pepper flakes.
- Turn this into vegan cream of mushroom soup by using mushroom broth and whisking in some mushroom powder.
- Switch up the milk! Feel free to use cashew cream, vegan heavy cream, or your preferred plant-based milk.
- Boost the flavor with the addition of nutritional yeast, Italian herbs/Italian seasoning or poultry seasoning.
This recipe has not been tested with any other substitutions or variations than the ones listed above. If you replace or add any ingredients, please let us know how it turned out in the comments below!
Step 1: Melt vegan butter over medium-low heat in a medium-sized saucepan.
Step 2: Once the butter has melted, add in the all-purpose flour.
Step 3: Mix together the flour and butter until a dough-like mixture has formed. Keep stirring to cook the flour mixture for at least 1-2 minutes.
Step 4: Next, add in ⅓ of the vegan chicken stock and the bullion cube/base. Whisk continuously until smooth and combined then add in the remaining broth.
Step 5: Slowly add the milk, whisking until fully combined. Add seasonings and mix once more.
Step 6: Whisk continuously as it warms back up to near boiling, about 3-4 minutes, until it has thickened and reached a smooth, creamy texture.
Serve right away or allow to cool and store to use later. When you go to use your vegan cream of chicken soup, it will be super thick & goopy. If you’ve ever opened one of those cans, you know exactly what I'm talking about!
How to use vegan cream of chicken soup
The greatest thing about this dairy free cream of chicken soup is how versatile it is! It can be used in so many different ways and transformed into so many different dishes.
You can serve this as is along with dinner rolls, crusty bread, garlic bread, pretzels, salads and so much more.
Use as a substitute for condensed soup
This can be used a direct substitute for a condensed can of cream of chicken soup at a 1:1 ratio. 1 batch is equivalent to two (10.5oz) cans of soup. Each can is about 1 ¼ cups.
Use this in any recipe that calls for cream of chicken soup such as casseroles, gravy, stews, or sauces.
Use as a base for homemade soup
You can serve this as a delicious soup by whisking the cream of chicken soup base with a bit of vegan chicken broth or water to thin it out a bit.
Make it hearty soup by easily adding a few ingredients! You could add:
- Vegan chicken like Gardein or Daring,
- Chickpeas or lentils
- Textured vegetable protein or soy curls
- Rice or pasta
- Cooked veggies
- Cook on medium-low or low heat the entire time! This will ensure that your soup is smooth and lump-free. Cooking on too high of heat (anything above medium heat) can result in a gritty consistency.
- Toast the spices in the vegan butter before adding the flour to release the aromatics and achieve optimal flavor. This is a good idea if you're using this as a soup base!
- Pour through a fine mesh strainer to make it super smooth, just like a can of condensed soup.
Refrigerator: Allow the soup to cool then store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 5-7 days.
Freezer: Store in airtight, freezer-friendly containers or bags and store in the freezer for up to 3 months. When ready to use, allow to thaw completely in the fridge before use.
Reheating: Reheat the soup on the stovetop or in the microwave. The soup will thicken as it cools and after being stored in the fridge or freezer. Add ¼ cup of broth at a time, as needed, to thin the soup to your desired consistency. If you're using it in a casserole, stew, pot pie or any recipe that is being cooked/baked, add the soup directly to dish without reheating it first.
You totally can! When I was younger, long before I was vegan, I used to eat a can of it after school quite often. If you'd like, just thin it out a bit with broth or water. However, it truly is best served as a cream base for other dishes.
No! There is no difference. If a recipe doesn't specify condensed soup, you can assume it's condensed.
To avoid this, keep the heat low and make sure you whisk vigorously as you add the liquids to the roux.
Other recipes you might like
Vegan Cream of Chicken Soup
- ¼ cup (56 g) vegan butter
- ½ cup (62 g) all-purpose flour
- 2 cups (465 mL) vegan chicken broth
- 1 teaspoon Better than Bouillon Vegan Chicken Base or 1 cube of Not Chick'n Bouillon Cubes
- 1 cup (240 mL) plant-based milk
- ¼ teaspoon celery salt
- ¼ teaspoon onion powder
- ¼ teaspoon garlic powder
- ⅛ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon black pepper
- Melt vegan butter over medium-heat in a saucepan.¼ cup vegan butter
- Once melted, add in the all-purpose flour. Using a wooden spoon, mix together until a dough-like mixture has formed. Cook for 1-2 minutes.½ cup all-purpose flour
- Add in ⅓ of the no-chicken broth and the bouillon cube or base. Whisk until smooth and combined then add in the remaining broth. Continue whisking until fully incorporated.2 cups vegan chicken broth, 1 teaspoon Better than Bouillon Vegan Chicken Base
- Add in all of the seasonings and slowly whisk in the plant-based milk, whisking until combined.1 cup plant-based milk, ¼ teaspoon celery salt, ¼ teaspoon onion powder, ¼ teaspoon garlic powder, ⅛ teaspoon salt, ¼ teaspoon black pepper
- Whisk continuously until the soup has warmed through, about 3-4 minutes, and has thickened and reached a smooth, creamy texture.
- Use right away in as a base in a casserole, thin it a little more to enjoy as soup, or store to use later in an airtight container. Enjoy!