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:
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