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why do processed foods taste so bad

as an example a canned soup even a so called good/organic brand with no artifical ingred why does it taste lousy you put the same ingred together at home and it is edible(i hope lol)

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  1. I would guess there is a missing ingredient in the can that is in the homemade soup. It could be 'love.'

    1. Because it is meant for the "population at large" so the taste must be as generic/bland as possible.

      You can then add flavouring of your choice.

      And it must survive shelf-life.

      1. because it has has the sh-t boiled out of it.
        the high temps and high pressure involved in canning destroy the flavors and the textures. canned soups are flavorless mushes that normally contain tremendous amounts of salt to offset their true nature.

        as another example, because the flavor of garlic is completely different after it has been exposed to the heat and pressue of canning. canned marinara sauces, even the ones using good ingredients are, imho, horrible. the best of them are the ones that don't have much garlic in them to "turn".

        1. I try to avoid processed foods. I suspect it's made for the masses and loaded with sodium and other fine chemicals. I make my own in large batches and freeze.

          1. That's a sweeping generalization. All food is "processed" except for that which you pick off the tree (for example) and eat directly, so the term is not helpful. As for canned soups and such, some are better than others. Soup made from scratch has an inherent advantage in being made from fresh ingredients, and in admitting ingredients which may be too expensive for commercial soup or impractical for canning.

            Another advantage of homemade soup is that the cook will make it the way he likes it.

            3 Replies
            1. re: GH1618

              I'm not sure there is any way to doctor a Cambell's soup (or any other canned soup IMO) to be edible other than Campbell's chicken noodle when one is sick (even undoctored). We always keep one can - for that special occasion.....

              1. re: Clams047

                Since your handle is "Clams047:" I doctor up Campbell's Chunky New England Clam chowder by adding more water, Better than Bouillon lobster base, and paprika. You have to further cook it to soften up the potatoes, because for the last couple of years, they have this weird, almost undercooked texture.

                The chicken and sausage gumbo can be doctored by adding a little chicken stock, cayenne, and then add gumbo file to the bowl.

                I think that the company had made some changes in the last few years. Many of my former favorites are now sub-par. Like the vegetable and the country beef. I used to ramp up the country beef with beef stock and cholula, but it seems to have too much of a gloppy consistency now.

                1. re: Clams047

                  Canned soups have improved in the past 20 years or so, including Campbell's, but they are still canned and typically have too mush salt. Nevertheless, they are certainly edible.

              2. I guess you're talking about this sort of "industrial processing" of food.
                Yet, it seems to sell really well, so someone must like it. Even if it's just lots of sugar and/or salt. But, people tend to love those basic tastes. Over time, if this is the food that you're used to it will shape your taste perceptions. I think taste is a very personal thing.

                8 Replies
                    1. re: jpc8015

                      Ha - I'm an environmental engineer, but I worked with process chemical engineers. One of them had a frito lay project, and had to go to their factory somewhere. The problem that FL was having is that the goop that's sprayed on the cheetos was eating through their brass valves as it was being pumped through pipes.

                      Having said that, I love me some spicy cheddar jalapeno cheetos. I'm sure my intestines will suffer.

                      1. re: rudeboy

                        The jalapeno ones are the best. I do not like the flaming red hot Cheetos.

                        1. re: jpc8015

                          I make my own junk food snack sometimes with Cheetos, popcorn and honey roasted nuts. Mmmmm......salty, sweet, crunchy ....and you still get the benefit of orange fingertips :)

                          1. re: sedimental

                            Wow, so you crunch up cheetos and add them to popcorn. My kids will go all locust on that!

                            1. re: rudeboy

                              I don't crunch them up, but that is a cool idea! I just mix them together whole...everything in the bowl.

                            2. re: sedimental

                              Try eating it with chopsticks- no telltale orange fingers and you feel like you're eating more because you're getting small bites.

                    2. Canned = some kind if preservatives, plus overcooked vegetables and proteins
                      Homemade= fresh ingredients, veggies etc cooked to the way you like them, no funky ingredients.

                      Why would you ever expect canned be come close to homemade might be a better question....

                      1. They have to be processed extensively to be edible.

                        1. Processed foods *do* taste good, to those used to processed food.

                          Example: Most people love my Mac n Cheese. There's no secret to the recipe, it's just that I use artisan cheeses I pick up at Grocery Outlet, so it's a bit different every time.

                          But if you're used to the boxed Kraft version, or frozen, or homemade from Velveeta, you'd probably not like mine.

                          5 Replies
                          1. re: RelishPDX

                            I made a bechamel gruyere type mac and cheese for the kids. The wife loved it, but the kids like the boxed Shell and White Cheddar pasta roni better. They will mature, thankfully.

                            1. re: rudeboy

                              Yes...Don't despair! My kids were the same. The lure of high fat, salt and artificial flavor will temporarily win. My "kids" are now pushing 30. They call (and text!) asking for recipes :) both are really great cooks and adventurous eaters. I tease them, without mercy, about their history of complaining that my versions of foods didn't taste like "Kraft ". Hahaha. It's all good! You are doing a good thing for them. Really.

                              Edit: be sure to write down their favorites or family recipes for them for the future. They will want them!

                              1. re: sedimental

                                They captivated me for a good long while. Give them the tool and knowledge and hopefully it'll be a phase.

                                1. re: sedimental

                                  i got to admit my kids (now 27 29 30) as toddlers refused spagettios 1 little brat threw them at me for trying to serve them figure that one what kid hates them go figure

                              2. re: RelishPDX

                                The thing is, you can like both. It's not an either/or proposition.

                                I've had exceptionally good mac and cheese at a finer dining restaurant with homemade noodles, aged cheeses, etc (for about $17, IIRC). I also like the Kraft stuff from a box.

                              3. I love processed foods.

                                Some of my favorites include, without qualification and limitation:

                                - kimchi
                                - potato chips
                                - pretzels
                                - Fig Newtons
                                - Wheat Thins
                                - cereal
                                - canned tuna
                                - canned sardines
                                - Jelly Belly jelly beans
                                - Butterfingers
                                - and, yes, even canned soups

                                I could go on and on and on but I'm running out of bandwidth.

                                1. There are plenty of processed foods that are damn good, at least to me!

                                  Justin's dark chocolate peanut butter cups, Stacy's nearly naked pita chips with hummus, TJs gyoza and Alsactian (sp) frozen pizza, Cape Cod BBQ potato chips and I Love Beets sweet fire flavor just to name a few.

                                  There are even a few with ingredients I can't pronounce that are pretty damn good too. Sometimes nothing tastes as a good grilled cheese with Campbell's tomato soup.

                                  3 Replies
                                  1. re: foodieX2

                                    Of course you make that sandwich with "processed American cheese food" slices!

                                    1. re: PHREDDY

                                      Yes! On pepperidge farm white bread!