This easy homemade tomato soup is rich and creamy, and super simple to make in just 30 minutes. Served with a hot and gooey grilled cheese sandwich, it's the perfect comfort food for a rainy day.
Why This Recipe Works
Most of us probably had the classic condensed tomato soup from a can growing up. And soup from a can is hard to beat for the convenience factor, but it's lacking in flavor.
For this tomato soup recipe, there are only three ingredients to chop and about 10 minutes of active time. But that little bit of extra time and effort goes a long way to build flavor. And it makes this homemade tomato soup soooo much better than the canned stuff!
- Onion and carrots - These savory vegetables will help balance out the bright, acidic flavors of the tomatoes and also add some body to the soup.
- Canned tomatoes - Fresh tomatoes are great, but typically when it's soup weather tomatoes are out of season, so I go with canned tomatoes for this recipe. I like to use San Marzano tomatoes which are usually sweeter and a little less acidic than the generic whole tomatoes.
- Broth - You can use chicken or vegetable broth in this soup. It's best to get low or reduced sodium so you can control the salt level. If you use a full sodium variety, you can probably skip the added salt at the end.
You can make some optional additions to change the flavor as well. I like to add a little cream to mine, which adds richness and balances out the acidity, but it's totally optional. And chopped fresh basil is also a great addition for a fresh herb flavor.
- In a large pot or dutch oven heat oil and butter over medium-high heat until butter is melted and foaming. Add onions and carrots and cook until softened, around 5-6 minutes. Next, add a clove or two of minced garlic and cook until fragrant. Make sure to stir frequently so it doesn't burn.
- Add two tablespoons of tomato paste and stir frequently until it begins to darken. Cooking the tomato paste will help reduce the acidity.
- Now add in the canned tomatoes with their juices. Then add in your broth, sugar, and thyme. Bring the mixture to a simmer and reduce the heat to medium-low. Cook for around 10 minutes. Stir the soup occasionally as it cooks and adjust the heat as needed to maintain a gentle simmer.
- After cooking, let the soup cool slightly and then transfer to a blender and blend until smooth. You may need to work in batches depending on the size of your blender. Be sure to remove the plug in the lid to allow the steam to escape so it doesn't blow the lid off! If you have an immersion blender, that will work well too.
- After blending, stir in the cream if desired and season with salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste. You can also add in some fresh basil at this time if you want tomato basil soup. And, of course, don't forget to serve the soup with a grilled cheese sandwich!
Frequently Asked Questions
If you prefer a thicker soup you can make a roux after cooking the garlic and tomato paste. Add 2 tablespoons of butter and 2 tablespoons of flour and stir for around 2 minutes until browned. Then proceed with adding the tomatoes and broth.
If you want to use fresh tomatoes I recommend peeling and roasting them first for around 30 minutes. This will help cook off the extra moisture and give a deeper flavor.
If your homemade tomato soup is too acidic you can add a ¼ teaspoon of baking soda. The alkalinity will help to balance out the acid.
More Soup Recipes
Easy Homemade Tomato Soup
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1 tbsp butter
- 1 medium yellow onion, chopped
- 2 large carrots, peeled and chopped
- 1-2 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 tbsp tomato paste
- 1 28 oz. can whole peeled tomatoes, with liquid
- 3 cups chicken broth, preferably low sodium
- 1 tsp sugar
- ½ tsp dried thyme
- ½ cup heavy cream, optional
- salt and pepper to taste
- In a large pot or dutch oven heat oil and butter over medium-high heat until butter is melted and foaming.
- Add onions and carrots and cook until softened, around 5-6 minutes.
- Add the garlic and stir frequently until fragrant, around 30 seconds.
- Add the tomato paste and cook for 1-2 minutes until it begins to darken.
- Add canned tomatoes with their juices along with the chicken broth, sugar, and thyme and stir to combine then bring to a simmer and reduce heat to medium-low.
- Simmer for around 10 minutes, stirring occasionally and adjusting the heat as needed to maintain a low simmer.
- Let soup cool slightly then transfer to a blender in batches and puree until smooth. Alternatively you can use an immersion blender.
- Stir in cream if desired, then season with salt and pepper to taste.
* All nutrition information we provide are estimates based on third party calculators. We encourage you to calculate these on your own for accurate results.