Tomato soup is truly the crème de la crème of comfort food. In fact, some would say that it is the culinary equivalent of a warm hug. It is seemingly easy to make and can be put together with the most basic ingredients we all have in our pantry. Although there are some variations – with many people adding other vegetables like carrots – all you need to make a hearty tomato soup at home is tomatoes, fat (olive oil or butter), and aromatics. But sometimes even the easiest and most simple recipes can seem difficult to nail: If you have ever attempted a tomato soup that wound up lumpy, watery, or a little too bland, it may be time to brush up your soup-making knowledge. Chances are, you could be making one or more of these common mistakes:
1. Not Adding The Fat And Aromatics In The Beginning
Although the tomatoes or our low-sodium tomato sauce is the star of a tomato soup recipe, the fat and aromatics are important, too. You should always start your recipe by cooking the aromatics like onions, garlic, and herbs in hot oil. This will bring out their flavors, which, in turn, will make your soup even more delicious. You can add the spices later.
2. Boiling The Soup Instead Of Simmering It
Read any tomato soup recipe and you will find that they call for you to simmer the soup. Never boil. Simmer. Boiling your soup is one of the biggest mistakes you can make that can not only result in a thick or overly mushy soup but also take away from the flavors of the dish. When you simmer the soup, it helps cook everything to perfection. You know your soup is simmering when a bubble or two rises to the surface every few seconds. Anything more and you will end up with overcooked mush.
3. Not Seasoning The Soup Correctly
Many people wait till the end of the cooking process to taste their soup and season it, but it is a mistake that you should avoid. Always taste the soup as you go and season as required. Adding the salt and spices early in the cooking process will help the flavors blend in. Keep this in mind even when you follow a recipe. You should trust your own tastebuds more than anything.
4. Only Using Broth
While broth does level up the flavors in tomato soup, you can sometimes replace it with water. So, if you don’t have any broth in your pantry, you can always use water because it will really help the ingredients shine. Make sure, however, that you season the soup properly when you use water to make up for the lack of flavor from the broth.
Here’s a pro tip: Using tomato sauce instead of fresh tomatoes is one of the best ways to make your soup more quickly.
If you want to make your homemade tomato soup richer and more flavorful, use our low-acid tomato sauce made from the finest vine-ripened tomatoes, pure Italian olive oil, chopped garlic, and spices.