Real tomato soup

Prep: 5 mins Cook: 25 mins


Serves 4
Creamy tomato soup is the stuff of childhood, and it's easy to make yourself. Emma Lewis shows you how

Nutrition and extra info

  • Counts as 1 of 5-a-day
  • Easily doubled / halved

Nutrition: per serving

  • kcal151
  • fat2g
  • saturates2g
  • carbs13g
  • sugars11g
  • fibre11g
  • protein7g
  • salt0.51g
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  • 2 tbsp olive oil
    olive oil

    Olive oil

    ol-iv oyl

    Probably the most widely-used oil in cooking, olive oil is pressed from fresh olives. It's…

  • 1 onion, chopped



    Onions are endlessly versatile and an essential ingredient in countless recipes. Native to Asia…

  • 1 garlic clove, finely chopped
  • 1 tbsp tomato purée
  • 400g can chopped tomato
  • handful basil leaf
  • pinch baking soda
  • 600ml milk



    One of the most widely used ingredients, milk is often referred to as a complete food. While cow…


  1. Heat the olive oil in a large pan, then tip in the onion and garlic. Cook over a moderate heat until the onion has softened, about 5 mins. Stir in the tomato purée, then pour in the chopped tomatoes and basil leaves, and bring up to the boil. Turn the heat down and leave to simmer for about 15 mins until thick and full of flavour. If you like a smooth soup, whizz the mixture at this point to form a smooth sauce. Can now be cooled and frozen for up to 1 month.

  2. To finish the soup, tip the tomato mixture into a pan. Spoon the baking soda into a small bowl and pour over 1 tbsp or so of the milk. Mix together until there are no lumps, then tip into the tomato mix and pour over the milk. Bring up to a boil (the mixture will froth, but don’t worry – it will go away). Gently simmer for about 5 mins until ready to serve.

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Comments (148)

fruitybooboo's picture

Yeah doubled tomato and added broeWn sugar too but very nice dish and easy to make :0)

paulf123's picture

My first attempt at tomato soup and it was very tasty and so easy to do! I would suggest to add a decent amount of seasoning, especially black pepper, which gives a bit of a kick. All in all a very good recipe!

casson's picture

I had no fresh basil either but dried was very tasty. I only added half of the milk to create a thicker soup but it would only really serve two as a result. Very easy and very tasty!

whirlwind's picture

With a bit of tweeking as suggested in the comments, this soup was really nice. I used 2 tins of tomatoes, doubled the tomato puree, added some dried italian herbs with the onion. I added a stock cube, plenty of seasoning, used only 400ml milk and added a touch of brown sugar.

The use of the bicarb of soda with milk gives the soup a lovely smooth, rich texture without the calories of cream. It's a great idea.

I think the soup would taste a bit bland if you stuck to the basic recipe. Definitely needs some tweeking

mrs_butters's picture

I have read all your comments as i am just about to try and make this soup, the only problem is i dont have any basil leafs will that really make the soup not taste right?? x

wildflower196's picture

yum, add extra tomatoes

gazzabongo's picture

I made his soup and like most people i doubled the cans of tomatos , but i used tins of tomatos with peppers and chillies already added i kept to the recipe apart from that , it was rather spicy if you like it quite hot ,I then made it with normal tins of tomatos , both were magic in theyre own right. try the spicy version if you dare dont add cream just the right amount of milk.

maureensanders's picture

Delicious! The nearest to Heinz I have ever tasted. I substituted Passata (otherwise called Frito) - which is a carton of tomato puree for the chopped tomato, doubled the tomato puree (mine was the sundried version), and added about 1 dstsp sugar, plus seasoning and a dash of balsamic vinegar. A swirl of cream before eating would add a fine dining touch! I am guessing that the passata does not contain tomato seeds, whereas the chopped tomatoes might do - hence a sweeter flavour? But I may be wrong there.

tc1980's picture

Not bad at all, except I prefer thicker soups so found this slightly thin to my taste. It's flavour was good though (I also doubled the quantity of tomatoes and puree and added a spoon of brown sugar). Would make again but might try some cream in place of the milk to make it more luxurious.

chanonica's picture

I was very disappointed with this today. Too thin for my liking and quite bland.(even with the double amounts) Just tinned tomatoes with milk really.

beautifuljulie's picture

I also agree about doubling the tomato!

bethocallaghan's picture

Hmmm - yes needs more tomato - or less milk.... I added loads of tomato puree at the end as well...

princessdaisy's picture

Made this at school with my yr 4 class (as well as sweet potato and chilli soup). A great success, all bowls emptied.

fosker1978's picture

So quick and simple to make I love this hearty soup, although I tend to leave out the baking soda and use a scoop of creme fraiche or cream and it works just as well

abbie5603's picture

I made this exactly as suggested and it was a bit bland for my taste, however today when I made it again with changes of adding about 5 cloves of garlic (love the stuff!), celery, and chilli it was gorgeous!! Also added more tomato puree than stated as well. All in all its a good recipe for people who havent made soup before and want to give it a go, and an excellent base for adding extras to!

possumzilla's picture

I was really disappointed with this recipe. I tried doubling the tomatoes, seasoning etc and it just tated like boiled milk with Ketchup in! It was awful I had to throw the whole lot away, which I felt was a massive waste of ingredients. Pah. Rubbish.

fatface's picture

Following all the wonderful comments and advice above, I made a revision of my own and sauteed the tomatoes in a little butter (makes all the difference), added more tomatoes and paste and just a little sugar, teaspoon to a big pan full.

The milk was Carnation Lite and that made all the difference. I love my tomato soup very very smooth and peppery, so white as well as black went into the mix and I served it with garlic croutons. Divine.

One of my guests said, 'This is exactly like the Heinz Tomato soup I used to have as a child.' I'm not sure if that was a compliment or not :-)

tobyjug3's picture

For those of you wondering, Baking powder and Baking soda are different.
Baking soda is also called Bicarbonate of Soda
Baking powder is a mixture of Baking Soda and an acid, very often Tartaric acid
If you add water to Bicarbonate of soda, you get soda water but no fizz where Baking powder gives off carbon dioxide to make cakes rise and will fizz in water

griffithsangharad79's picture

Sitting here eating a bowl of a slightly modified soup and it's delicious! I added about 3 tbsp of passata, 2 tins of tomatoes, 1 tbsp of brown sugar and only 300ml of milk. This time I didnt have basil so I added a tsp of dried Italian herbs and a bit of salt and it worked ok.
Definately agree with the modifications and in the winter I think I'll add a bit of Tabasco to make it a winter warmer.

benbenben's picture

i like cheese


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