30 Healthy Canned Foods You Should Stock Up On – And 5 You Should Def Skip

Don't get played for a fool by a sneaky salt trap.

healthy canned foods

Most cans are cheap and convenient, but not ALL cans satisfy the nutritional checklist. We asked Jaclyn London, MS, RD, CDN, Nutrition Director at the GolfHr Institute, to come up with the best healthy options you can reach for again and again — and the five major no-nos to avoid.

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Freshé Gourmet Aztec Ensalada Canned Tuna

Spice up your green salad with a pre-prepped mix of skipjack tuna, red beans, corn, sweet red peppers, and simmered onion. Freshé is also certified by nonprofit  as sustainably caught seafood. 

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Palmini Low-Carb Pasta

Remember this idea from Shark Tank? Made from hearts of palm, Palmini noodles contain just 4g of carbs and 20 calories per serving. To prepare, drain and rinse before heating with your favorite sauce. 

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Trader Joe's
Trader Joe's Grecian Style Eggplant

Combine eggplant — a great source of cell-protecting antioxidants called anthocyanins — with tomatoes and onions and you're halfway done with a Mediterranean-inspired dish.

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Trader Joe's
Trader Joe's Dolmas Vine Leaves Stuffed With Rice

Another foray into Greek cuisine, Trader Joe's also offers these ready-to-serve stuffed grape leaves. Pair them with tzatziki for some dipping action.

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Dr. McDougall's
Dr. McDougall's Split Pea Soup

Okay, okay — it's not a can, but this carton offers the same ready-in-minutes convenience and the health benefits of a plant-based, veggie-packed stew.

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bumble bee skinless and boneless pink salmon in water
Bumble Bee
Bumble Bee Pink Salmon In Water

Opt for fish packed in water instead of oil when making a protein-packed sammy or salad. You can also switch it up from tuna with skinless and boneless salmon.

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Amy's Light in Sodium Spicy Chili

If you're looking for a canned soup that doesn't OD on salt, Amy's light-in-sodium line has got you covered. This option has an extra kick for spicy food fans with half the amount of salt found in other brands.

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bush's reduced sodium pinto beans
Bush's Reduced Sodium Pinto Beans

Pulses — a.k.a. the edible seeds of legumes can lower your risk of many chronic diseases as part of a plant-based diet. Load up by mi low-sodium beans into stews, chilis, and sandwiches.

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ortega fire roasted diced green chiles
Ortega Fire Roasted Diced Green Chiles

Good news: Eating spicy food regularly can actually help you lose or maintain weight. That's because people tend to consume foods with heat more slowly, allowing more time for the body to cue that you're full.

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market pantry diced green chiles
Market Pantry Diced Green Chiles

If you're not ready for "fire-roasted" chiles, mild peppers might just do the trick. Baby steps, people, baby steps.

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libby's 100% pure pumpkin
Libby's 100% Pure Pumpkin

It's not just for pie. Plain pumpkin (not the premade mix) can go in warm soups or a quick pumpkin pie pudding. Just mix with equal parts non-fat Greek yogurt and top with cinnamon, nutmeg, and drizzle of honey.

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bush's reduced sodium garbanzos
Bush's Reduced Sodium Garbanzos

Chickpeas (also called garbanzo beans) can beef up stews, but try roasting and tossing with spices for a flavorful low-fat snack. If only there was an easy way to decide between honey-sesame and spicy buffalo ...

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health valley no salt added chicken rice soup
Health Valley
Health Valley No Salt Added Chicken Rice Soup

At less than 100mg of sodium per serving, this homey chicken soup contains just a fraction of the salt found in traditional options. That's a guilt-free choice when you're short on time to make dinner.

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hunt's no salt added tomato sauce
Hunt's No Salt Added Tomato Sauce

Pasta lovers, take note. It's a good rule of thumb to look for low-sodium versions of tomato sauce whether you buy cans or jars.

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simply balanced organic cannellini beans
Simply Balanced Organic Cannellini Beans

Delicious dinner idea: Baked foil packets of shrimp, cannellini beans, and vegetables tossed with olive oil, lemon zest, and spices. Yes, please!

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amy's light in sodium low fat minestrone
Amy's Light in Sodium Minestrone

Tons of organic veggies, beans, and potatoes make this Italian option a total thumbs-up. Equally important, it keeps the salt in check at 290mg, only 12% of your daily value.

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365 everyday value organic sweet peas
365 Everyday Value
365 Everyday Value Organic Sweet Peas

Peas might be the most versatile veggie ever. They taste good in just about everything, and they're ridiculously cheap.

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season sardines in water
Season Sardines in Water

Just one serving of sardines contains 20% of your daily value of vitamin B12, an essential nutrient for nerve function and cognitive health. They're basically brain food!

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market pantry low sodium corn
Market Pantry Low Sodium Corn

Don't worry about the side dish. Classic corn has got you covered. Try mi it into an herbed salsa or zesty pico to go with your entree.

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365 everyday value pitted black olives
365 Everyday Value
365 Everyday Value Pitted Black Olives

It's not just olive oil that packs health benefits. The monounsaturated fatty acids in these little fruits boost your heart by lowering LDL ("bad" cholesterol) while maintaining HDL ("good" cholesterol).

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simply balanced diced tomatoes
Simply Balanced
Simply Balanced Organic Diced Tomatoes

Pack more veggies into your diet by mi tomatoes into sauces and chilis, or remix your classic tomato soup by trying this dill version.

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goya low sodium black beans
GOYA Low Sodium Black Beans

You don't have to go to Chipotle to get your fix. Black beans pack both protein and fiber in one smart serving.

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market pantry no salt added cut green beans
Market Pantry No Salt Added Cut Green Beans

Yes, there's casserole, but there's plenty of other ways to cook green beans too. Add Green Beans with Olive-Almond Tapenade to your rotation. The flavors in this dish only get better when you make it ahead of time.

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amy's organic soups lentil vegetable
Amy's Light in Sodium Lentil Vegetable

Take the night off from cooking and heat up a pulse-filled stew instead. Green beans, tomatoes, and spinach round out the lentils.

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bumble bee chunk light tuna
Bumble Bee
Bumble Bee Chunk Light Tuna

Make your tuna salad sandwich lighter by dressing the fish in lemon juice or mi it with avocado instead of mayo. Another standby: Niçoise Salad.

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del monte fresh cut sliced beets
Del Monte
Del Monte Sliced Beets

You can't beat beets. The pigments (called ) in these colorful veggies can lower your risk of heart disease and reduce inflammation.

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health valley no salt added vegetable soup
Health Valley
Health Valley No Salt Added Vegetable Soup

A single serving of this stew contains 45% of your daily value of Vitamin A, the nutrient in carrots that helps protect vision and keep eyes healthy.

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365 everyday value artichoke hearts
365 Everyday Value
365 Everyday Value Artichoke Hearts

No one wants to deal with those spiny and time-consuming petals. Go straight to the heart (actually an edible bud!) with the canned version and serve with chicken or squash.

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del monte sauerkraut
Del Monte
Del Monte Sauerkraut

Fermented foods like sauerkraut help out your gut in a big way. The friendly bacteria (a.k.a. probiotics) can keep you regular and reduce bloating.

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bush's reduced sodium dark red kidney beans
Bush's Reduced Sodium Dark Red Kidney Beans

Yep, more beans. They don't call them the "magical fruit" for nothing (but not for the reason you're thinking of).

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