Roasted Tomato Soup

Soup is one of those foods where you make it once (or twice) and then can’t stop. At least that’s how it is for me. I have discovered that soup is a lot like a smoothie. You can make them really nutrient dense without sacrificing flavor. All natural, real food ingredients that all work for your body. In the late summer and early fall when our produce is on overdrive, making soup is a wonderful way to use up all your vegetables with little to no waste. Most soups freeze well, and this roasted tomato soup is one of them. If you have friends or a local farmer complaining that tomatoes are coming out of their ears, grab an abundance of them to make and freeze this soup to have throughout the cold months.

Quite possibly the best part is that this soup is so flexible with other vegetables and herbs. I have added roasted banana peppers, carrots, parsnips, bell peppers, several different varieties of tomatoes and herb combinations including sage, thyme, basil and parsley. So far the flavors have always melded well together. I keep the tomato ratio higher than any other vegetable – always more tomatoes. This recipe does not need a lot of salt, only that which you sprinkle on the vegetables during the roasting process and maybe, just maybe, a sprinkle once you’ve let the soup simmer awhile. The salt in this recipe is going to come from your choice of broth. Many store bought prepared broths have plenty of sodium. If you are using your own homemade broth, you may need to add a little extra. I tend to make my bone broth less salty to allow for more flexibility in recipes later. You can also add white beans to tomato soup recipes to thicken them up and make them more hearty & filling. You would put the beans in once you have added everything else to the stock pot and puree. Another option to make the soup more creamy would be almond milk or a cashew cream.

You can double or triple this recipe. When doing so, my tip would be to keep extra broth handy so you can control the thickness of your soup, depending on how many vegetables you roast. The carrots and parsnips will add a sweeter flavor while the peppers can add a little zing.

Tomatoes are supremely good for you. Besides being high in vitamins A & C, you may also have heard about the high content of lycopene in tomatoes as well. What’s that? Lycopene is an antioxidant that has been shown to support bone and cardiovascular health. They also have high concentrations of important minerals such as biotin, potassium, copper and manganese. Tomatoes contain at least 6 categories of phytonutrients. Phytonutrients are plant nutrients found in fruits and vegetables and other plant based foods such as nuts and grains. Their importance is twofold: first these natural chemicals help protect the plants and vegetation themselves from germs, fungi and other pests and they also contribute to helping our own bodies prevent disease and keep the cells working properly. The phytonutrients also fall into the antioxidant category as well as anti-inflammatory and helping to reduce certain disease or cancers.

Let’s get cooking.

Ingredients & Tools

4 cups of fresh tomatoes – halved or quartered depending on how large the tomato is

2 small onions quartered

4 – 6 cloves of garlic, peeled

2 – 4 cups of additional veggies of your choice (this is optional)

1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil (or you can use Chosen Foods Spray Avocado Oil which is my preference)

3 – 4 cups of vegetable stock (or bone broth)

2 bay leaves

Handful of fresh basil or other herbs like sage, thyme or parsley (reserve some to use a garnish)

Fresh ground salt & pepper (Himalayan pink sea salt is my favorite and a little goes a long way)

Large roasting pans

Parchment paper (preferred over aluminum foil)

Cutting board & Knife

Large Stockpot

Immersion Blender

Method

Preheat the oven to 450 degrees.

Wash the tomatoes and veggies. Cut the tomatoes in halves or quarters. If you are roasting carrots, peel and roast whole. For peppers, halve and roast cut side down. See an example of my veggie mess below. Quarter the onions. Arrange all the veggies on baking sheets lined with parchment paper. Spray liberally with avocado oil or drizzle the olive oil and toss the veggies around a bit. Sprinkle salt and pepper over all the veggies. Roast for 30 – 35 minutes.

Remove all the vegetables from the oven and transfer to a large stockpot. I like to let my veggies cool for 5 or so minutes. I use a spatula to transfer them and then pour the juices from the roasting pan into the stockpot as well. Add your broth (start with 3 cups, add more if you like or need a thinner consistency based on how many vegetables you roasted), herbs and bay leaves. Bring to a slow boil and simmer for 15 – 20 minutes. Remove the bay leaves. Tip: you can add water if run a little short on broth. You may then need a little more salt, pepper and herbs.

Use an immersion blender to puree the soup until totally smooth. Season to taste with salt & pepper. Serve immediately or let cool completely before refrigerating or freezing. I like to freeze my soups in the Glad FreezerWare which you can reuse and are fairly cost effective. I also freeze my soups in glass pyrex bowls with a BPA free top. Be careful not to overfill when freezing in glass containers. You can also use Ball jars. The flavors really come alive as leftovers.

Garnish with a sprinkle of fresh herbs.

Here is a photo of my soup scene before hitting the oven. Enjoy!

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