Do you ever wish you could snap your fingers and have a warm, home-cooked meal appear on your table? Us, too. While we can't grant that wish, this incredible tuxedo soup comes close. It's so easy to throw together that it feels like magic!

pot of leftover tuxedo soup, from Shelf Cooking

Are we the only ones who have a collection of recipes saved specifically for those nights when we still don't know what the heck we're cooking at 5 pm? Most of our nights fall into that category for the record, so if you're in the same boat, this is a safe space. We feel you!

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Lucky for you, we're here to save this day with this EASY tuxedo soup recipe. You guys, this one is SO easy. Hands down, it's one of the simplest soups we've ever made. All you need is a few pantry staples and a can opener. For real!


a spoonful of tuxedo soup, from Shelf Cooking

While we love this recipe just the way it is, we also know how it feels to realize you're missing a few ingredients just before you start cooking. Don't panic! We guarantee you can use whatever you have on hand to make this soup extra yummy. Here are some suggestions:

  • Bowtie Pasta Substitute – No bowtie? No problemo. Try penne or rotini.
  • Chicken Broth Substitute – If you're all out of canned broth, you're in luck! We've got a simple chicken broth substitute for you to try. You could also use beef bullion or vegetable broth.
  • Green Beans Substitute – No green beans? Use lima beans, peas, carrots, or corn. We even like to toss in some diced zucchini if we have it.
  • Seasonings – Feel free to experiment here! If lemon pepper isn't your jam, use your own blend. Try garlic or fresh herbs.
  • Sour Cream Substitute – If you've run out of sour cream, throw in some plain Greek Yogurt in its place. You can also use cream cheese in a pinch.
  • Stewed Tomatoes Substitute – Use diced or crushed instead, and toss in some fresh green pepper.

It's also worth noting that you don't have to use canned chicken. If you have shredded chicken in the freezer, pop that in. Want to keep things vegetarian? Ditch the meat altogether. Have some ground turkey or beef to use up? Feel free to add it to the mix — the more, the merrier! You do you, boo.


a bowl of tuxedo soup, from Shelf Cooking

Whenever we make soup, we love to double the recipe, so there's plenty leftover for another time! If you'd like to do the same, keep these quick tips in mind:

  • Cool Before Freezing – It's tempting to rush through clean-up after dinner, but make sure to cool your soup to room temperature before you toss it in the freezer.
  • Leave Out Dairy – Soups with dairy often separate when frozen, which changes the texture. So, if you plan to make a batch to freeze, leave the sour cream out! After you thaw the soup, you can add it in as you're reheating, per the recipe instructions.
  • Save Room – Don't forget that liquid expands when it freezes! Save some room at the top of your container to avoid a messy explosion.
  • Skip the Noodles – Pasta in soup tends to get mushy when you defrost, so leave the bowtie out if you're planning to freeze a batch. Just boil up a fresh box of noodles to add to the soup when you're ready to serve.

In general, soup will last for about a year in the freezer! If you plan to eat your leftovers within a few days, just store them in the fridge in an airtight container and then reheat in the microwave or on the stove.


a bowl of tuxedo chicken soup, from Shelf Cooking

Now, what to with those leftovers? Besides serving with a warm ooey, gooey grilled cheese, of course! Well, we have a few ideas for ya:

  • Bread Bowls – How delicious would this be in a sourdough bread bowl?! And you won't have to do dishes. Sweet!!
  • Chicken Noodle Casserole – Thicken your leftover soup with some flour, cornstarch, or cream cheese, add some additional pasta, and place in a casserole dish. Top with crushed crackers, pats of butter, and plenty of shredded cheese. Bake at 425°F for about 15 minutes, or until bubbly and browned.
  • White Chicken Chili – Give this soup a facelift with just a few simple ingredients! Toss in a drained can of white beans and one jar of salsa verde, and boom! You've got white chicken chili. Serve with jalapeño cornbread muffins for a tasty southwest meal.

No matter how you serve up these leftovers, you'll be glad you have them around. Tuxedo soup is one of those foods that even our pickiest eaters love. Enough about us, though!


If you've got five minutes to spare, you'll have a filling dinner on the table in no time! We're about to show you how to make one of our all-time favorite soups. Are you ready?

a bowl of tuxedo chicken soup, from Shelf Cooking


It really doesn't get easier than this hearty, creamy, and incredibly delicious soup!
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 35 minutes
Course Main Course, Soup
Cuisine American
Servings 8


  • 3 cans chicken broth
  • 1 can green beans, undrained
  • 1 can Italian stewed tomatoes, undrained
  • 10 oz canned chicken
  • 2 tsp lemon pepper
  • 2 cups bowtie pasta, uncooked
  • 1 tsp lemon juice
  • ½ cup sour cream
  • Pepper, to taste


  • Combine all ingredients except for pasta and sour cream. 
  • Bring to a boil, then add the pasta and cook until al dente.
  • Stir in the sour cream, then serve and enjoy!


You can also adapt this recipe for the slow cooker. Just drop your ingredients in the crockpot and cook on low for about 4 hours, saving the sour cream for the last 30 minutes.

We like to sprinkle grated parmesan cheese on top. It only adds to the yumminess! To round out your meal, serve with a salad or whip up a quick batch of our legendary no-knead rustic bread.

So dang easy, right? And wait until you taste it. This soup is picky-eater approved. Promise!

What's your favorite thing to serve with a hearty bowl of soup? Leave us a comment below!

Pantry tuxedo soup in a bowl, from Shelf Cooking

Looking for more quick and easy dinner ideas?

Have a soup-er duper day!