Every once in a while I crave Tomato Soup and this Simple Tomato Soup Instant Pot or Stovetop is a great one to whip up at the drop of a hat.
It doesn’t seem to matter, Spring, Summer, Fall or Winter, Tomato Soup (especially with some kind of grilled cheese) is a childhood comfort food for me. Thank Campbell’s for that, lol! But Simple Tomato Soup Instant Pot or Stovetop is so much better than Campbell’s, simple as it is.
About Simple Tomato Soup Instant Pot or Stovetop:
I’ve made quite a few tomato soups like this, based on canned tomatoes. Sometimes I’ve made them with the additional steps or roasting the tomatoes or fortifying with fresh, and my friend Suzanne has a great example on her blog, A Pug in the Kitchen. I’ve made it – it’s divine! But it was a little more work than I wanted to go through when I made this Tomato Soup the other day.
Simple Tomato Soup Instant Pot or Stovetop is drop-dead simple and I love it, too. The base is just plain old canned tomatoes, but a little onion and garlic add depth and the carrot (you’ll never know it is there) adds just a bit of sweetness to counteract any acidy from the tomatoes and helps to give the soup a beautiful, creamy body. Besides, anytime I can sneak a few extra veggies in anything, I’m going for it!
So many soups like this are flavored with Basil and/or Oregano, but this Tomato Soup leans toward the French side with a touch of tarragon and sometimes a drizzle of Sherry. So the Sherry really isn’t necessary and not in the actual recipe, but if you have some on hand, give it a try. Just a teaspoon or two will do the trick. What really takes this soup to the next level is the bit of cream drizzled in at the end. Simple Tomato Soup Instant Pot or Stovetop is great as a plain tomato soup but even better as a Cream of Tomato Soup.
Making Simple Tomato Soup Instant Pot or Stovetop:
I mentioned drop-dead simple, and this soup really is. Since it’s blended, there’s no need to peel the carrots or worry about a fine dice and the veg isn’t even sauteed until soft. I just heat up my pan or set my IP to saute, add oil or butter and start dumping the roughly chopped vegetables as I go while the pan heats. I do take a minute to heat the tomato paste through until it loses it’s bright color and starts to caramelize.
Simple Tomato Soup Instant Pot or Stovetop simmers away on the stove until the vegetables are tender or goes in the IP – there’s not a lot of time savings by using the Instant Pot, but there is the convenience of a total lack of babysitting. No checking, no stirring, no worries about scorching. Either way, though, this soup is marvelous.
Even though the carrots add a bit of sweetness, there is a touch of sugar in the recipe. If you taste this recipe and it tastes too acidic and sharp, add a bit of sugar. I’m not one to use much sugar (unless it’s dessert) but it tames the acid and transforms the soup. The amount depends on your taste and the brand of tomatoes you use.
I mentioned the tomatoes in the recipe notes. Some canned tomatoes have a lot of seeds, some a few, but I don’t care for them in the soup, even after it’s blended. I suppose the soup could be strained, but you’ll lose all the texture and who wants to deal with straining hot soup? Not me! I just work over a strainer in a bowl to catch the juices and open each tomato, dumping out the seeds. No need to be perfect but getting the majority out makes for a much smoother Tomato Soup. Just make sure to add those juices to the pot.
Saving Money on Simple Tomato Soup Instant Pot or Stovetop:
As far as the tomatoes, simple pantry items are always best bought when they’re on sale and used as needed as opposed to being bought when you need them. Anything that stores pretty much forever is a great item to buy using this strategy, maybe with coupons if you use them.
Carrots are almost always cheaper if bought in the larger bags. Think of recipes that use a lot of carrots when you have too many…can I just say Carrot Cake? Like this Wayside Inn Carrot Cake that my Stepmom Pat has been making forever? What a treasure that recipe is. Or maybe my Glazed Carrots, cole-slaw or carrot slaw. Then there are my Classic Marinated Carrots I posted just the other day. And of course, toss carrots in soups and stews.
Simple Tomato Soup Instant Pot or Stovetop is cheap to make but what you serve it with is going to make a big difference in the total cost of your meal. Grilled cheese, maybe crackers or croutons or go a little wild like I did here and serve your soup with Parmesan Crusted Crostini. That recipe is coming! Not the cheapest but so delish.
Simple Tomato Soup Instant Pot or Stovetop
- Total Time: about 40 minutes
- Yield: 6 to 8 servings 1x
- 2 tablespoons butter or oil
- 2 large carrots, 1″ chunks
- 1 medium onion, 1″ chunks
- 1 clove garlic, mashed
- 1 tablespoons tomato paste
- 2 28-ounce cans whole tomatoes with juice, crushed by hand (see note)
- 3 1/2 cups broth, chicken or vegetable if cooking stovetop, 3 cups if cooking Instant Pot
- 2 tablespoons minced tarragon (2 teaspoons dried)
- 3/4 cup heavy cream
- pinch to a tablespoon sugar, to taste
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
In a large pot, heat the butter over medium-high heat. Add the carrots, onion, and garlic. Make a well in the center and add the tomato paste and cook, stirring, about 2 to 3 minutes until tomato paste darkens.
Add the canned tomatoes, broth, and tarragon. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat, cover the pot and simmer for about 20 to 25 minutes until vegetables are softened. Use an immersion blender to puree the mixture or alternatively, process in a blender in batches. Use care with blender, filling halfway and loosening the cap, covering a lid with a towel. You’ll need to blend in about 4 batches. If using blender, return soup to pot.
Add the cream and sugar, salt and pepper, to taste and simmer for another 5 minutes.
Set Instant Pot to Saute. Add butter then the carrots, onion, and garlic. Make a well in the center and add the tomato paste and cook, stirring, about 2 to 3 minutes until tomato paste darkens.
Add the canned tomatoes, broth, and tarragon. Seal Instant Pot and set to High Pressure, 12 minutes. Use quick release and use an immersion blender to puree the mixture or alternatively, process in a blender in batches. Use care with blender, filling halfway and loosening the cap, covering a lid with a towel. You’ll need to blend in about 4 batches. If using blender, return soup to pot.
Add the cream and sugar, salt and pepper, to taste and simmer for another 5 minutes by setting the Instant Pot to Saute.
- Note that the vegetables aren’t sauteed for really any length of time since this is a quickie meal and the veg doesn’t need to pick up any additional flavor or color.
- The seeds in the tomatoes add quite a bit of texture, even when blended. If desired, working in a strainer over a bowl to catch the liquid, open the tomatoes and remove the majority of the seeds. Add the tomato juices along with the tomato to the soup. Discard seeds.
I will be sharing Classic Marinated Carrots at Fiesta Friday #229, hosted this week by Liz @ Spades, Spatulas & Spoons. Take a minute to stop by and visit Fiesta Friday and be sure to click over to Liz’s site and see what she’s doing with food and gardening!