creamless tomato soup

Marin Mama dinner, lunch, meatless meals, Soups 20 Comments

creamless tomato soup
creamless tomato soup
Folks, I posted this recipe in the first couple of weeks of my blog, but I wanted to reintroduce it to you all because it’s literally my favorite go-to soup.  I call it my 30 minute soup as it really only takes 30 minutes to make.  As Barefoot would say, “how easy is that?”  This is not a barefoot recipe though, this recipe is from Cooks Illustrated.

I love this soup because it’s easy to make and you can get a few meals out of it.  I usually whip up a batch on the weekend when I know I am going to have a busy week and need that quick go-to meal.  It’s also a great pantry soup that you can whip up at the last minute because it only takes 30 minutes to cook and the ingredients are usually something you will already have on hand at home!This soup fills 2 large storage containers so I always put one in the freezer for those last minute meals or for a nice weekend lunch.

I have found it to be convenient to have my freezer and refrigerator stocked with healthy pre-cooked meals that I can take out when I am to lazy to cook or when we have a busy night and there is no time to cook.  Soups are also great for those nights when people are eating at different times because you can just have a big pot simmering on the stove and people can help themselves when they are ready to eat.

Another reason I love this soup is because it uses bread instead of cream to thicken it.  I know white bread isn’t the healthiest option either, but it tastes so good in this soup, and it is only 3 pieces.  You could also throw in some sourdough bread if you want to make it a bit healthier.  My kids love this soup and they are not soup kids, so I am sure your pickiest eaters will love this as well.

creamless tomato soup

Creamless Tomato Soup:

Recipe from Cooks Illustrated.

  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 medium yellow onion, chopped (about 1 cup)
  • 3 medium garlic cloves, minced or pressed through a garlic press (about 1 tablespoon)
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2 – 28 ounce cans whole tomatoes packed in juice
  • 1 tablespoon dark brown sugar
  • 3 large slices of good quality sandwich bread, crusts removed, torn into 1-inch pieces
  • 2 cups low-sodium chicken broth – if you want this to be a vegetarian soup, you can use vegetable broth

I love this brand of tomatoes below.

Pour 1/4 cup olive oil into a measuring cup.  Take 2 tablespoons of oil from this and heat it up in a Dutch oven (or whatever soup pan you normally use) over medium-high heat until shimmering.  Add onion, garlic and bay leaf.  Cook, stirring frequently, until onion is translucent, 3 to 5 minutes.  Stir in tomatoes and their juice.  Using potato masher, mash until no pieces bigger than 2 inches remain.

 This is what it should look like after the tomatoes are mashed.Stir in the brown sugar and bread; bring soup to a boil.  Reduce heat to medium and cook, stirring occasionally, until bread is completely saturated and starts to break down, about 5 minutes.  The bread will look like this.VERY IMPORTANT STEP HERE, Remove and discard bay leaf.  Please remember to take your bay leaf out before you puree your soup.  I forgot to once and I had to go through the soup and find all the tiny pieces and take them out.  It was a hassle and took some time, so I am very anal about remembering this step now!

Puree the soup using either a handheld immersion blender or a blender.  If using a blender, transfer half of soup to a blender.  Add 1 tablespoon oil and process until soup is smooth and creamy, 2 to 3 minutes.  Transfer to large bowl and repeat with the remaining soup and oil.  I always wipe down my pan when I’m pureeing the soup so that I don’t have leftover bits of onion or such in the pan.

If you’re using an immersion blender, then add all the remaining olive oil to the soup and blend away until your soup is creamy and smooth.

Once your soup has been pureed, stir in your chicken broth.  Return soup to a boil and season to taste with salt and pepper.

It’s that easy folks!

creamless tomato soupServe up the soup in individual bowls and add a crusty bread on the side or a yummy grilled cheese panini sandwich, that’s what we do in our house.

It’s a perfect winter or fall soup that the whole family can and will enjoy.
Do you have a favorite go-to soup?

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Comments 20

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  1. Anonymous

    This looks so delicious. I love me some creamy vegetable soup. Our go to soup is Cream of Butternut Squash and we alter it every time we make it so the first time it was just roasted squash, onion and garlic and now we add carrots and potatoes next time I might add some greens or apples who knows. Along with chicken stock, heavy cream and seasoning of choice we also sprinkle in some cayenne pepper and top each of our individual bowls off with sour cream :).

    I found a neat idea for freezing soup the other day. If you have silicone cupcake pans you can pour the soup into those, cover them up with plastic wrap and freeze them, that way you can pop out a cup or two later and reheat if you don’t want to use up all the soup at once.

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  4. Jacquelyn

    Yaaay! So glad you made it and liked it. It’s makes lots of leftovers so you will be able to enjoy it for days or freeze it for a later date! Thanks for stopping by Jenifer!

  5. Zoe

    This soup look so smooth and “creamy” even with no cream in it. I guess that the olive oil must have emulsified well in the soup while you were blending it. I’m a big fan of Cook Illustrated too but have not sign up their membership yet. All I can get now is from my Cook Illustrated phone app.

  6. Em (Wine and Butter)

    I love tomato soup!! This looks so so so good!!
    AND – the nutritionist in me speaking up! – I bet it would also taste great with a nice fresh sourdough loaf – making the white bread thing a lot healthier AND tasting amazing!! Using sourdough is meant to be much easier on the stomach than standard white bread.
    We have been getting really into jalapeno grilled cheese sandwiches lately – so yummy! xox

    1. Jacquelyn

      Hi Em! I was thinking of using sourdough next. Great tip! I’m making another batch this weekend and I will try it with sourdough. Zoe started lacrosse this week and I need some to have some easy dinners on hand for those late nights.

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