12 Best Back-of-the-Can Recipes

No need to get your cookbook out if you have one of these canned foods on hand
12 Best Back-of-the-Can Recipes

If you know which cans to stock in your pantry, back-of-the-can cooking is easy.

There are plenty of times that I stand in my kitchen looking at the pantry staples available to me and think to myself, “What the heck am I going to make for dinner tonight?” Sometimes I need to make dinner in little time and with little fuss, other times I just don’t have the luxury of hunting through cookbooks for an attractive idea. What do I do when I’m not sure what to make? I pull all the canned items out of my pantry and look at the recipes printed on the labels. Surprisingly, there are a lot of reliable back-of-the-can recipes.

Click here to see the 12 Best Back-of-the-Can Recipes (Slideshow)

One of the tricks to cooking from the back of the can is knowing which cans you should always have in your pantry. If your regular cooking routine involves a lot of onions, garlic, and cilantro, try keeping cans of beans on hand for a quick rice and beans dish; if your family loves pasta, stock creamy canned soups to make a variety of simple sauces; and if you regularly cook roasts in your oven or slow cooker, keep plenty of cans of chicken or vegetable stock and tomato paste. Stocking up on canned pantry staples that fit your family’s taste and your cooking style will make cooking from the back of the can easier.

The other secret to easy back-of-the-can cooking is making substitutions when they make sense. If you’re picking through your pantry for ingredients to make a quick, no-fuss dinner, and a back-of-the-can recipe calls for red onion but you only have yellow onions on hand, use them. If a recipe calls for garlic and you don’t have any, just leave it out or substitute a few pinches of powdered garlic. These modifications will change the taste of a recipe slightly, but the dinner you make will still be delicious. And, most importantly, it will be convenient.

If you’re looking for a few reliable back-of-the-can recipes to get you started, we’ve rounded up twelve of our favorites.

Broccoli Alfredo

(Credit: Campbell's)
An elegant pasta dinner comes together easily using creamy canned soup. Don’t like cream of mushroom? Try your favorite creamy soup instead.
Click here to see the Broccoli Alfredo Recipe

Easy Chicken Enchiladas

(Credit: Campbell's)
Enchiladas may sound like a complicated dish, but with the help of condensed cream of chicken soup, you can cook up bold, authentic flavors in no time. 
Click here to see the Easy Chicken Enchiladas Recipe

Click here to see more of the best back-of-the-can recipes

8 Quick and Easy Dishes You Can Make with Canned FoodsThe Best Back-of-the-Box Recipes6 Quick and Easy Pasta RecipesHow to Turn Canned Foods Into Amazing Dishes3 Simple Spaghetti Recipes for Busy Weeknights

Kristie Collado is The Daily Meal’s Cook Editor. Follow her on Twitter @KColladoCook.