Tomato soup is comfort food, especially with a perfectly tanned grilled cheese sandwich on the side, unless you are ten years old and it is a snow day. But, soup-in-a-can often has too much sodium and the taste leaves something to be desired. As a better substitute, I present Roasted Tomato Basil Soup, the perfect combination of freshness and comfort.
This soup marries together slow roasted tomatoes, sweet onions, a touch of garlic, basil, and just a little hint of cheesiness that provides a nice rich texture. So, whether you are eating it alone or with that grilled cheese, it is a perfect soup for the upcoming cooler (dare I say winter yet?) months coming up.
This is a terrific recipe for those last plum tomatoes in the garden that turned red but are too soft to be desirable raw. And if you still have an overabundance, the recipe freezes well before the milk, cream, and cheese are added, as noted in the recipe. This recipe also works well with store-bought plum tomatoes, as they are nearly always in stock and ready for purchase. As we go into the colder months they are still on the shelves, even as the summer varieties fall off.
In this recipe I used dairy-free creamer and dairy-free milk, but you are free to mix it up with any variation you would like to try, just keep in mind that will alter the nutritional information a bit. I tried to keep the saturated fats down here, so I stuck to non dairy options there, and used up our saturated fat splurge on the cheese (because, cheese). The blended results were good for me, I look forward to your feedback and hearing how you experiment.
Will this recipe store?
It stored in the refrigerator well for three days. The flavors continued to develop, and it reheated nicely on the stove. I was pleased that the basil did not overpower the soup even after three full days, as you probably know sometimes basil can overwhelm and turn the soup into tomato marinara soup! That was not a problem with this one. I still enjoyed the same subtle roasted flavor days later as I did on day one.
I even canned some this year and will report back if that is a viable option as well. As I mentioned above, I noted in the recipe where to freeze if you are making a large batch.
Keep in mind, this recipe is easily scaled to whatever amount of tomatoes are at your fingertips, so you have that scaling function available to help out. Once you taste the results you may find yourself hunting for plum tomatoes or plum tomato sales everywhere. You will certainly think twice about canned soup versions in the future, especially with how this easy tomato soup recipe is!
In this recipe I use an olive oil mister instead of drizzling on the olive oil to reduce the amount used while coating the tomatoes evenly. I find it is a helpful gadget to have on hand and I use it often in these scenarios when I am roasting vegetables, misting a quick salad, or just trying to keep my oil low on any dish.
In this recipe I also featured two specialty spices: Penzeys Roasted Garlic and Penzeys Basil. You are free to substitute with regular brands, but I highly recommend these if you can grab them; you won’t be disappointed. I really enjoy cooking with their spices and spend a lot of time in their shop.
What to serve with it?
While the portion sizes are generous with this recipe to make it a meal you may want to add that delicious grilled cheese sandwich I mentioned above, and have not been able to stop thinking about to the side. Or you can go with a simple side salad of greens, a few vegetables, a mist from your new olive oil mister, and some lemon – or even a half sandwich. Or a simple light bread stick as in the picture and keep things light.
I hope you enjoy this recipe, it is going to keep me warm this winter, which I hope is mild. I want to hear about your experiences in the comments so please do let us know how you got on with this recipe in the comments below. Especially what you served it with, we are always looking for ideas of what to eat with our soups!
Roasted Tomato Basil Soup
- 3 pounds plum tomatoes cored, cut lengthwise
- 1 sweet onion small, peeled and quartered
- 1 teaspoon Penzeys roasted garlic
- 1 teaspoon olive oil extra-virgin
- 2 tablespoon tomato paste
- 1 tablespoon Penzeys basil dried
- 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes optional
- 1 cup unsweetened dairy-free creamer unflavored
- 1/2 cup dairy-free milk
- 1/2 cup grated Romano cheese or grated sharp cheddar
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- Fresh cracked pepper to taste
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
- Place cut side up, single layer, in a baking pan with the onion. Sprinkle with roasted garlic. Mist or drizzle lightly with olive oil.
- Roast for approximately 45 minutes, until the onion and tomato edges start to brown.
- Remove from oven. Cool for 5 minutes. [You can cool completely and freeze at this point or continue.]
- Put tomatoes and onion (with any juice) in the blender. Add basil and tomato paste. You may have to do this in batches. Do not fill more than halfway, remove the plug and put a towel over the lid. Add in red pepper flakes, if using. Blend until smooth. Do not over blend; the soup will become frothy with bubbles.
- Add mixture to a large pot and reheat, add salt and four grinds of pepper mill. Turn off heat.
- Add in creamer and milk to with tomatoes, along with Romano cheese (if using). Warm through, do not boil. Salt and pepper to taste.
- Serve immediately. If using cheddar cheese instead of Romano, top each serving with a liberal amount. Serve with your favorite side salad, light bread stick, sandwich - or eat alone.
- It will store well in the refrigerator for three days and continue to develop in flavor.
- You can substitute other brands of dried garlic and basil, but these are the recommendations from Samantha, she swears by them.