With minimal hands-on time, this classic tomato soup gets extra flavor from basil, smoked paprika, and bacon.
As the wintery weather begins, I find myself always wanting for soups. There’s an Italian sandwich shop near our house that sells this delicious tomato soup with garlic bread. It’s nothing fancy – classic tomato soup, but tastes really good. It’s not too sour and the consistency is just right for me. But of course I had to make my own.
My version comes with paprika. Smoked paprika is made from pimiento peppers that have been dried and smoked, then ground into a fine powder. I always use paprika in tomato-based stews for deeper flavor so I’ve thought of adding it in my tomato soup too.
The crumbled crispy bacon is for texture. The crunch and the saltiness of bacon is a good contrast with the smooth, velvety texture of the soup and the sour taste of tomatoes.
When making this recipe, it’s important to taste the soup as you add the seasonings. That’s because our ingredients may not be exactly the same (e.g. my broth is saltier, your tomatoes are sweeter). This tomato soup is generally easy to personalize to your own taste so don’t be afraid to adjust the amount of ingredients.
Serve these bowls of warm tomato soup with grilled cheese or cheesy pesto bread (recipe to be posted soon).
Easy Tomato Soup
- 6 slices bacon
- 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
- 1 piece medium onion, chopped
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 can (28 oz/ 875 grams) crushed or whole San Marzano tomatoes
- 1/2-1 cup chicken broth
- 6 tablespoons heavy cream
- 1 1/2 teaspoons smoked paprika
- 1 teaspoon dried basil
- 2 teaspoons white granulated sugar
- salt and pepper to taste
- In a medium saucepan fry the bacon over medium heat until crispy. Transfer to a plate lined with paper towel. Let cool then crumble. Set aside.
- In the same saucepan with the bacon oil, add butter and saute the onions and garlic until soft. Add the tomatoes and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to low and simmer for 20 minutes.
- Remove the saucepan from heat. Puree the soup using an immersion blender or a blender (in batches, if necessary).
- Return the saucepan back to the stove. Add 1/2 cup of the broth and add more if the consistency is too thick. Add the cream, paprika, basil, sugar, salt, and pepper. Taste and adjust the seasoning.
- Top with the crumbled bacon and serve hot.