This easy tomato soup is the perfect quick and easy lunch or dinner. To make it, you just need one can of tomatoes, a handful of pantry staples, and less than half an hour.
Friend, this is some really good, really easy tomato soup.
It’s sharp and tangy with just enough cream to take the edge off and add a really satisfying richness. It tastes like something whipped up in a charming bistro kitchen, but is so, so easy to make in yours.
You just need one can of tomatoes (crushed, cubed or whole all work fine), a few pantry staples, an immersion or countertop blender, and you’re 25-ish minutes away from some marvelous soup.
A Recipe for One or Two
The recipe makes a little over 1½ cups of soup, which is one very large serving or the perfect amount to split with someone when served alongside a grilled cheese sandwich or homemade panini.
I say go with option two, because there’s nothing like dipping toasty bread and cheese in homemade soup no matter what the weather is like outside.
- Butter: Salted or unsalted butter will work fine here
- Garlic and red pepper flakes: Garlic and red pepper flakes help spice up the soup. You can skip the red pepper flakes if you don’t have any (though are you sure you don’t have a packet leftover from pizza delivery floating around your kitchen somewhere?). The red pepper can create some real heat, so add as much or as little as you’d like.
- Canned tomatoes (whole, cubed, or crushed): This soup is designed to be made with any sort of canned tomatoes you have on hand. If using whole or diced tomatoes, you’ll just cook them slightly longer to help them break down.
- Chicken broth or water: Chicken broth or water helps to thin the soup out to your desired consistency since liquid will evaporate from the tomatoes as they cook.
- Heavy cream: Heavy cream is the secret hero of this dish. It adds a creamy richness to the soup and helps mellow out the intense tang of the tomatoes. If you don’t have heavy cream, sour cream can be substituted (just add to taste). This recipe won’t use up an entire carton of heavy cream so check out my post What to Do With Leftover Whipping Cream for ideas on what to do with the leftovers.
- Salt and pepper: Don’t skimp on the salt!! It makes such a difference. Canned tomatoes vary wildly in saltiness, so you may need quite a bit or very little depending on the brand and whether you use salted chicken broth or water.
How to Make Homemade Tomato Soup
1. Melt butter and cook onions until softened. You don’t want to brown the onions, so make sure you’re cooking them over a nice medium heat and turn the heat down if at any time they begin to darken instead of soften.
2. Add garlic and red pepper flakes and cook until golden and aromatic. This helps bring out the flavor of the garlic and pepper flakes before you add the rest of the ingredients.
3. Add tomatoes and broth/water, bring to a simmer, and cook for about 15 minutes.
4. Use an immersion blender or countertop blender to blend the soup until smooth. If using a countertop blender, be sure to cool the soup slightly before blending so it’s safe to handle.
5. Stir in heavy cream. If the soup is thicker than you’d like, stir in just a bit of chicken broth or water. Then add salt and pepper to taste.
Variations & Topping Ideas
- Basil tomato soup: Add 5 chopped fresh basil leaves to the soup before blending.
- Tortellini tomato soup: While your soup cooks, cook 1 cup of tortellini in a separate pot. Drain and add to tomato soup just before serving.
- Croutons: Top your soup with croutons, store-bought or homemade!
Immersion Blender Notes
I always use an immersion blender for this soup, it purees the tomatoes and onions but still leaves you with a bit of texture, which I like. If you prefer a perfectly smooth tomato soup, use a regular high-powered blender.
You may have to tilt the pot slightly to fully process all the soup. Be careful blending and always keep the blades completely submerged so you don’t splatter hot soup all over!
Can you freeze tomato soup?
Yes! Tomato soup freezes beautifully.
To freeze the soup, allow it to mostly cool and then transfer it to a freezer bag or airtight container. Freeze and store for up to 2 months.
To reheat the soup, defrost in the refrigerator or submerge bag with frozen soup in a bowl of warm water for about 10 minutes (make sure there are no holes in the bag first!!) and then reheat in the microwave or on the stove.
For more tips and tricks on freezing soup, check out my post How to Freeze Soup.
What to serve with tomato soup?
Can you make tomato soup without a blender?
You can make this soup without a blender if you’re using pureed tomatoes to start. It’s going to be a pretty chunky soup, but if you like your soup with plenty of texture, go for it. Just be sure to dice your onions small at the start.
Can I double this recipe?
Yes! I almost always double this recipe when cooking it so I can freeze the leftovers. To double the recipe ingredients, hover over the serving size or click if you’re on mobile, and slide the slider. No other cooking changes are needed.
More Easy Soup Recipes
- Ham and Potato Soup
- Chicken Carcass Soup
- Creamy Chicken Noodle Soup
- Cheesy Sausage Potato Soup
- Quick Chicken Tortellini Soup
Easy Tomato Soup Recipe
Tomato Soup for Two
- 1 tablespoon (14g) butter
- ½ cup diced onion
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- Pinch of red pepper flakes optional
- 1 14-ounce can tomatoes whole, cubed, or crushed
- ¾ cup chicken broth or water
- 3 tablespoons heavy cream
- Salt and pepper
- In a medium saucepan, melt butter over medium heat. Add onions and cook until softened, 5 to 7 minutes.
- Add garlic and red pepper and cook for 30 seconds.
- Add tomatoes. If using whole tomatoes, crush with a spoon and simmer for 10 minutes to soften. If using diced tomatoes, simmer for 5 minutes. If using crushed tomatoes, continue to next step.
- Add broth. Bring to a simmer, and cook for 15 minutes. Remove from heat.
- If using an immersion blender, blend soup until mostly smooth. You may need to tilt the pot for the blender to work effectively. If using a countertop blender, cool the soup for 10 minutes before transferring it to the blender and blend until smooth or mostly smooth. If soup is too thick, you can blend in a little more broth or water. Return to saucepan.
- Stir in cream and salt and pepper to taste. Reheat over medium heat if necessary and enjoy!
Recipe Adapted From Chow Hound
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