President’s Day and White House Soups

Each February, in this case today, Monday the 19th, Americans celebrate President’s Day to honor the birthdays of two of the nation’s greatest leaders, George Washington and Abraham Lincoln, as well as to recognize the contributions of all U.S. presidents. This holiday has a rich history and an unusual but delightful culinary angle—soup!

The History of President’s Day

Originally established in 1885 in recognition of President George Washington, the holiday was traditionally celebrated on his birth date, February 22nd. It became popularly known as President’s Day after it was moved as part of 1971’s Uniform Monday Holiday Act, which aimed to create more three-day weekends for the nation’s workers. While several states still have individual holidays honoring the birthdays of Washington, Lincoln, and other figures, President’s Day is now popularly viewed as a day to celebrate all U.S. presidents, past and present.

Presidential Palates: Soups in the White House

The culinary traditions of the White House are as diverse as the individuals who have resided there. Meals have varied from grand state banquets to more humble family dinners, but soup has been a recurring theme at the President’s table. Let’s take a spoonful of history and explore some of the soups associated with U.S. presidents.

George Washington’s Favorite:

Unsurprisingly, the first U.S. president had a taste for classic, hearty meals. George Washington’s affection for Noodle Soup is well documented, with references to his love for “a well-prepared soup” appearing in numerous historical accounts.

Thomas Jefferson’s Influence:

Thomas Jefferson brought a world of flavors to the White House. After his time in France, he ingrained a sophisticated dining style that included French-inspired soups such as one made with peas, a dish that had been popular in French cuisine.

Abraham Lincoln’s Simple Tastes:

President Lincoln had relatively simple tastes when it came to food. Historical notes suggest that he enjoyed a basic soup with the mainstay vegetables of the era, such as potatoes, carrots, and turnips, perhaps reflecting his humble beginnings.

Modern White House Favorites:

In more recent times, presidential soup choices continue to pique public interest. For instance, President Dwight D. Eisenhower was known for his Old-Fashioned Beef Stew, President Harry Truman took a liking to his wife’s Chicken Noodle Soup, and President Lyndon B. Johnson had a Ranch-Style Chicken Soup specially prepared frequently at the White House.

Celebrating President’s Day with Soup

Why not celebrate President’s Day by stopping by SoLe’ SoupS and picking up a creamy puree possibly inspired by Jefferson or a robust beef stew à la Eisenhower? Not only do they offer warmth and comfort during the cold February weather, but they also serve as a delicious tribute to the country’s leaders.


President’s Day is more than just a holiday to honor America’s commanders-in-chief. It’s a day that can be infused with culinary traditions of the White House, especially through the warm and inviting flavors of various soups. From Washington’s Noodle Soup to more modern specialties, the connection between our presidents and their preferred broths is a charming part of our national history. Relive it on your next visit to SoLe’ SoupS. We’re open this Monday, February 20th, from 11am to 6pm.