Quick Cooking: Simple Tomato Soup
Need a meal that is quick cooking, good for you, and tastes amazing? While there are a number of different dishes that can be whipped up in minutes, the one I return to more often than others is a quick and simple soup recipe. I have a few recipes that I create over and over during the year, and this soup is one of them, particularly during the colder months when it’s gray and rainy out or when the snow is coming down. It’s a nice balance to the weather outside, but in reality, it’s a dish that I don’t have to devote much time to or feel bad about. It’s the perfect recipe when I just want to eat something healthy and super fast, which is why I come back to it multiple times a year.
Not only is this soup simple, but in a way, it sort of represents many folks’ idea of what comfort is. Of course, there are stews, casseroles, and hearty chilis. But none of those are really all that quick cooking and accessible on most week nights. Even if this is a simple soup, it’s out to prove something. It’s out there in the world to let us know that comfort doesn’t have to come with a big time commitment. That deliciousness can be found in your pantry and in about 20 minutes flat, anyone can savor something healthy and comforting.
Simple Tomato Soup
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Ingredients (Serves 4)
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1 onion
- 1 28-oz can crushed tomatoes or 2-15 oz cans diced tomatoes
- 2 cups chicken or vegetable stock
- 1/2 tsp dried basil
- Salt & Pepper
Chop the onion.
In a saucepan, heat the olive oil over medium high heat. Add the chopped onion and cook until softened and translucent.
Next, add the tomatoes, stock, dried basil, and a pinch each of salt and pepper.
Once the soup has reached a simmer, reduce the heat to low and simmer for ten minutes, allowing the flavors to combine.
Optionally, puree the soup with an immersion blender or in batches in a blender for a smooth texture.
Adjust the seasonings with additional salt and pepper to taste.
Serve with toast, crusty bread, or my favorite, a grilled cheese sandwich.
While I love this soup as is, it’s one of those unique recipes that can be morphed so many different ways with the addition of a few other ingredients. If you’re a fan of tomato soup, master this quick cooking recipe, then switch it up to make it new and exciting over and over. Here are twelve variations on this simple tomato soup, one for every month of the year:
12 Variations on Simple Tomato Soup
- Add a diced chipotle and some adobo sauce for a spicy and smoky kick.
- Add corn and black beans to make it Southwestern.
- Replace dried basil for fresh during the summer months when it’s bountiful and cheap. Cut into ribbons and add before simmering.
- Add a few cloves of roasted garlic for a rich and savory flavor.
- Add white beans and bacon for a filling stick-to-your-ribs meal.
- Add 1/4 cup short-cut pasta, like orzo or cut spaghetti for some additional texture (and a grown up version of Spaghetti-O’s).
- Add a few teaspoons of pesto and swirl into the soup.
- Stir in some cream or milk for a more decadent and silky texture.
- Add one tablespoon curry powder while cooking onions, then garnish with chopped cilantro.
- Add canned lentils for a boost in fiber and protein.
- Add roasted red peppers and garbanzo beans to the soup and top with feta cheese.
- Place slices of cheddar cheese on top of oven-safe bowls filled with soup and place under the broiler until the cheese is perfectly melted and bubbling.
Quick cooking meals are all about simplicity and their ability to morph into different dishes. I love recipes that allow me to enjoy them as is, as well as mix them up in new and exciting ways.
Need some tips for more quick-cooking meals? Find out The Secret to Quick Cooking Meals Plus Three 15-Minute Quick Recipes For Dinner