Snow's Ocean Classics Clam Chowder (Big Lots)

A can of Snow's Ocean Classics Clam Chowder, perched atop a Big Lots shelf
Not worth it.

Sick with a sinus infection, but not wanting anything to do with the boringness that is chicken noodle soup, I decided to throw reason to the wind and grab a can of this from my local Big Lots.  Though I didn’t have much hope for it initially, a quick scan of the ingredients actually had me a little excited:  Fresh clams and clam juice is listed first?  Potatoes second?  Heavy whipping cream’s up there?  Hmm…maybe this stuff won’t be so bad after all!

While “bad” might be a bit of a stretch, it would be an even farther stretch to call this stuff “good”.  Like most canned soups, it’s packed to the gills with salt, but unlike similar soups, it somehow could use a boatload more, because this stuff is ultra-bland.  The texture of the soup itself is pretty spot-on, and the use of heavy whipping cream is pretty evident.  But for having so many clams, you really won’t notice that much as you down the can, mainly because they’re cut up into such small pieces that you will probably end up swallowing most of them whole.  They do create a slight “fishy” taste, but it’s more of a background flavor than something that stands front and center.  The potatoes are the only decent-sized things in here, and there’s at least a fair amount of them swimming around.

If this can was a dollar, I could be a little more lenient and give it some extra points for “value”.  But at $1.49 a can, I could get a similar offering from elsewhere and be much more satisfied.  Again, it’s nowhere near so offensive that it can’t be eaten, and in a day’s worth of hunger, I slammed through the entire bowl in under five minutes.  It’s just that at no point during that time did I actually enjoy what I was eating.  It was more out of necessity than anything else.  Even if you’re absolutely craving clam chowder, I’d advise you to fulfill your intense need elsewhere.

Overall: 5/10.  A surprisingly bland soup, considering clams, potatoes, and heavy whipping cream are at or near the top of the ingredients list.  The chowder does have a good texture, in that it’s pretty thick and creamy, but at $1.49 a can, I can’t even recommend this product based on value.  In a pinch, it will do, and it’s certainly edible, but for roughly the same price, you can do a whole lot better.