Some time ago, I shared my recipe for making homemade tomato soup out of fresh tomatoes. Although it is quite easy to do, it is time-consuming. It is a great recipe for people who grow their own tomatoes or who can get a good deal on tomatoes at the store. The following recipe is for making soup out of tomato sauce and it is even easier but less time-consuming.
Store-bought tomato soup lacks flavor, people have no control over what goes into it, and it is over-priced, for what you get. Making tomato soup out of fresh tomatoes easily takes care of the flavor and the control over what is in the soup. However, if a person doesn’t grow tomatoes and can’t find cheap tomatoes, it can be expensive to make the soup out of fresh tomatoes and the savings over buying tomato soup in a can is minimal.
For example, in the middle of winter, locally, tomatoes can cost $3.29 per pound at the store. At that price, though the homemade tomato soup is healthier and tastes a lot better, there may be savings, compared to buying canned tomato soup, but the savings won’t amount to much. If you add to that the amount of time involved, you can actually lose money.
Making tomato soup from tomato sauce isn’t quite as good tasting as making it from fresh tomatoes unless the tomato sauce was home-canned. However, it doesn’t take much time, it still tastes better than commercially canned soup, and it is still better for you. It is also easy to vary according to taste. People who’ve never had homemade tomato soup are often surprised at how much more delicious it is than store-bought tomato soup.
Tomato soup ingredients:
2 15-ounce cans tomato sauce or 1-quart home-canned tomato sauce
1 15-ounce can diced stewed tomatoes (optional)
1/2 cup onion, finely diced
1 teaspoon garlic, minced or crushed
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 can chicken broth or 1-cup water
1 teaspoon dried basil or 1/4 cup chopped fresh basil
1 teaspoon dried parsley or 1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
Tomato soup instructions:
1. In a pot, pour in the olive oil and over medium heat, saute the onions and garlic for 5 minutes, until the onions are translucent.
2. Add the tomato sauce and broth/water. If you want thick, chunky home-style tomato soup, also add the diced stewed tomatoes with the juice. If you want smooth tomato soup, omit the stewed tomatoes. Stir the mixture well.
3. Lower the temperature to a simmer and cook the soup for about 15 minutes to allow the flavor of the onions and garlic to mix with the flavor of the tomatoes.
4. Add the basil and parsley, stir well, and simmer for an additional 5 minutes. Serve hot. Garnish with a sprig of parsley, if you wish.
Note: If you are on a sodium-restricted diet, use reduced-sodium tomato sauce in this recipe. Otherwise, you can salt and pepper the soup to taste.
If you prefer tomato milk soup, replace the broth/water with 1-cup of half and half. You can also add finely diced bell peppers to the onions and garlic during the saute step, or you can also use finely diced chili peppers if you want to have a little bit of a bite.
This recipe isn’t a great deal different than the recipe for making tomato soup out of fresh tomatoes, except that you eliminate the steps for thickening the tomatoes since you’re using tomato sauce already. Store-bought tomato sauce tends to be blander than fresh tomatoes or home-canned tomato sauce, but store-bought tomatoes also tend to be blander than garden-fresh tomatoes because shippers and stores persist in refrigerating tomatoes, which turns the natural sugars into starch.
Either way, this soup is healthier and far tastier than canned tomato soup from the store, particularly condensed tomato soup. Depending on the price of the tomato sauce, it can also be substantially cheaper. It can be made in under a half-hour, too.
With this soup, all you need are some grilled cheese sandwiches and you’ll have a pleasant and filling meal.