This recipe for homemade tomato soup from scratch is easy to make and fairly quick, making it a weeknight option, plus it tastes so good you'll never go back to soup out of a can. See more Quick Healthy Recipes here.
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Tomato soup and cheesy something - tuna melts, open face melts, grilled cheese or quesadillas - is one of my favorite basic, comforting meals from my childhood that I often served to my kids. It's one of those "fall-back recipes" to have in your menu planning arsenal for busy days.
Back in the day, canned tomato soup was a staple in our house. I actually didn't even think about making it from scratch - did people really do that? Not anyone in my circle.
But then, as you know, came the curse of label-reading. Uck. And that's all I'm going to say about what I found on the label.
Really, though, I can't believe how many years I just bought things completely oblivious to what was in them. And if I'm being honest (and I try to be here...), part of me looks back with fondness on the time when I just threw things in my cart and went on my merry way.
The other part of me is horrified. So that part wins.
And you know what? Once I finally did make tomato soup from scratch I realized how easy it is. But more importantly, I found out how much better it tastes. Way more like tomatoes and a lot less like watery ketchup (thanks to all the added sugar in canned soups).
Can you make this with fresh tomatoes?
Yes you can - that's another great thing about this easy recipe, it works just as well with chopped fresh tomatoes as it does with canned tomatoes! So when you've got lots of fresh tomatoes coming in from the garden, this is the recipe for you.
What about the skins?
You can skin the tomatoes if you'd like before chopping so they're more like canned (here's a quicker way to peel tomatoes), but I've found that after cooking and blending, the skins aren't really noticeable. So it's up to you.
Okay, let's make some homemade tomato soup - I promise this is the best tomato soup recipe and you really will never go back to canned!
Homemade Tomato Soup Recipe
These are the ingredients needed to make a basic tomato soup. Occasionally I'll add orange juice (I know it sounds weird, but it adds sweetness and flavor) and in fall always fresh basil, but this is the basis for all the variations:
- carrots (No, you don't have to add carrots technically, but this recipe went from "good" to "wow" when I did.)
- chopped tomatoes (both fresh and canned work)
- chicken or vegetable broth
How to Make Tomato Soup
Making homemade tomato soup from scratch is as simple as sautéing onions in butter, adding the rest of the ingredients and boiling for a bit before blending everything up until smooth. Yep, it's that simple.
I used to pour the soup (in batches) into a blender and would often get sprayed with hot liquid. Not fun, plus there were extra dishes to wash.
Then I discovered immersion hand-held blenders and was in love! I started with a cheap-o plastic one because it was only seven bucks and I wasn't sure how good they would work (little did I know). It lasted for a few years, but the plastic didn't hold up well in hot soup (duh...since then I've read all about how plastic and hot things should never go together...).
Now I use a Cuisinart Immersion Blender with an all metal, removable neck and blade. It's not too expensive and works perfect, holding up to hot soups and sauces (like our favorite pizza sauce) with no problems.
When I first started making homemade tomato soup I used only onions and tomatoes as the vegetables. We all liked it, but when I added some leftover carrots one time to use them up, that's what took the soup from good to great.
Really - I've had guests say it's the best tomato soup they've ever had!
While making soup from scratch is obviously not as quick as opening a can, this recipe takes only 20 to 30 minutes from start to finish, which is still a quick meal.
While it's cooking, you can prepare your cheesy side and have a quality, real food meal on the table for any weeknight.
No cans needed.
Homemade Tomato Soup Recipe
- 3 tablespoons butter
- 1 onion chopped
- 2 carrots peeled and chopped
- 1 clove garlic minced
- 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme optional
- 1 teaspoon dried basil or 1 TB. chopped fresh in season
- salt and pepper to taste
- 4 cups chopped tomatoes or 3 14-ounce cans
- 4 cups chicken or vegetable stock
- Melt the butter in a 4-quart saucepan over medium heat. Add the onions and carrots and cook for 5 minutes until softened. Add the garlic and cook another minute.
- Add all the remaining ingredients and bring to a boil over medium-high heat, then reduce heat and simmer for 15 to 20 minutes.
- Blend with an immersion blender (or in batches in a blender) until smooth.
- When serving, garnish with sliced green onions, parsley, or fresh basil.
Other easy soups you may like:
Slow Cooker Sausage-Bean Soup with Tomatoes and Spinach
Bone Broth Chicken and Vegetable Soup
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This homemade tomato soup is wonderful! Served it with Grilled Pepper Jack on Sourdough sandwiches. Perfect meal for a Saturday night.
Mmm, sounds SO good, Stephanie!
Thanks so much for the review!
I found the carrot flavour was prominent but maybe my tomatoes weren’t ripe enough. Otherwise delicious.
I've never thought about that, but it seems like that may happen with winter tomatoes?
Hi. I froze many whole tomatoes in the fall and was wondering if I could use them in your homemade soup? Any tips would be helpful. Thanks!
Yes, you can! But I'd let them thaw a bit and pour off any of the clear juices. I'd make the soup without the broth first to see how thick it is and then add as much broth as you'd need to get the consistency you like.
Diane K says
Just made this, it is so fresh and delicious. Will be making another batch so I have plenty in the freezer for this winter. I sautéed the onion, carrots and garlic with two ribs of chopped celery in olive oil and used veggie stock to keep it vegan. This is a keeper.
Oh, sounds delicious, Diane! Thanks so much for the review.
Is this recipe safe to preserve in a hot bath? If not, what do you suggest I add to make it safe? It looks delicious and I’m looking for a new tomato soup recipe to can.
No, it would not be safe, as the ratios aren't meant for canning. I'd find a recipe specific for canning.
You can always freeze it, though.
P.S...add the carrots it makes it even better!!!!😉
JUST wanted you to know I made your tomato soup this evening(9-8-20) with garden tomatoes. It is so delicious, my hubby can't stop telling me how delicious it is. Its 37 degrees here in Colorado today so the soup is perfect. Thanks again for the recipe 🍅😊
Thank you for letting me know this - I'm so glad!
And how crazy is your weather there in CO right now??
Fabulous recipe. No complaints at all from my picky family. Will definitely make again.
Love this! Thank you so much for the review!
will be trying the addition of carrots. We also like using one can of Rotel and 2 cans of tomatoes. Adds a nice bit of zip. Probably not a good idea for a family with young children though unless they are already experiencing salsas and or other Mexican foods.
Oh, yes, I've added Rotel to ours, too, when I wanted a spicier flavor - good idea. 🙂
I've been making homemade tomato soup for awhile, but your recipe intrigued me because it had carrots . Add to that the mention of orange juice and you had me hooked! I made it for lunch today and used chicken broth, dried basil, no thyme and 1 scant tablespoon of frozen orange juice concentrate. It was SO GOOD! Simple to make and used ingredients on hand. How can you beat that? Served with a slice of extra sharp white cheddar on Mestebaucher rye toast and I had a happy husband. Your recipes are always so good, Jami
I'm glad you tried that option, Pam - the orange juice really does add a nice flavor that you don't expect.
And you can't beat it. 🙂 It sounds delicious with your cheese toast!
Can this soup be frozen?
Yep! It's wonderful to have on hand in the freezer.
I stumbled on this site by accident made this Tomato soup once and you are right never will I ever go back to canned soup. I tell everyone I know about it, because I try to add other veggies to it for nutrition so sometimes it gets celery, red or green peppers and I'm always happy. Freezes well....Thank you
I'm so glad to hear this, Cathy! It is versatile, too, like you say and always turns out lovely.
Elizabeth Franklin says
Wouldn't you have enough juice from the tomtoes that you don't need so much stock in it?
I've never found that to be true, but you can always add less if you'd like!
Sarah E Stupak says
Is this recipe safe for pressure canning?
It hasn't been tested for canning, Sarah. I'd look at a tested recipe and use that.
Just wondering. What is your recipe? Any quantities? My mom owned a cafe for 30 years. She had a recipe for tomato soup that would knock your socks off. What is yours????
CLICK on the arrows at the top or the bottom of the page to go to the full recipe!
We have all been sick here for over three weeks and can't seem to get rid of whatever we've got. So I'm making this in hopes that a vitamin C overload will help a little. thanks for the recipe - it sounds like something the doctor would order. LOL!!
I hope so, too, Kris! I do know it will be comforting for sure. 🙂
Jami, this was my first time making soup. I had a few more romas leftover and some fresh basil. I sooo enjoyed the recipe and I will definitely make again. I halved the recipe based on the ingredients I had and it turned out wonderfully as well.
Wonderful, Julia - I'm so glad you like this!
Hi, do you peel the tomatoes if fresh? Thanks!
Here's my easier way to peel tomatoes, Kelly: How to Peel Tomatoes the Easy Way
This recipe was absolutely delicious and simple to follow. We grow our own tomatoes and have been looking for a way to use them up and this is by far the best tomatoe soup I have ever had and the best part is that it is home grown and home made!! Thanks for a great recipe!
Wow, I am so glad you enjoyed this recipe as much as we do! You know it's a good one when you kids ask for tomato soup for dinner. 😉
home made tomato soup AHHH carrots WOW - Yum this is a great recipe - I had fresh thyme, a very special Tie Sage, Basel and fresh grown garlic. The carrots were bought but not from a package- salt and pepper - so Good
(I had a tiny bit of rosemary - I do not recommend putting that in- not because of the taste but unless it is really cukt or powdered the pieces stay hard.