Monday, January 23, 2012

Recipe: Tomato Basil Parmesan Soup

Saturday was a snowy, icy, and cold day so therefore a perfect day to try out a soup recipe that I've been dying to make for myself. This recipe is from my new favorite cooking website 365 Days of Slow Cooking and it was absolutely delicious paired with freshly-made whole wheat bread from Harris Teeter.

Ingredients

2 (14 oz) cans diced tomatoes, with juice
1 cup finely diced celery
1 cup finely diced carrots
1 cup finely diced onions
1 tsp dried oregano or 1 T fresh oregano
1 T dried basil or 1/4 cup fresh basil
4 cups chicken broth
½ bay leaf
½ cup flour
1 cup Parmesan cheese
½ cup butter
2 cups half and half, warmed (I would go with only a cup and a half though)
1 tsp salt
¼ tsp black pepper

Directions

1. Add tomatoes, celery, carrots, chicken broth, onions, oregano, basil, and bay leaf to a large slow cooker.

2. Cover and cook on LOW for 5-7 hours, until flavors are blended and vegetables are soft.

3. About 30 minutes before serving prepare a roux. Melt butter over low heat in a skillet and add flour. Stir constantly with a whisk for 5-7 minutes. Slowly stir in 1 cup hot soup. Add another 3 cups and stir until smooth. Add all back into the slow cooker. Stir and add the Parmesan cheese, warmed half and half, salt and pepper. Add additional basil and oregano if needed (the slow cooker does a number on spices and they get bland over time, so don't be afraid to always season to taste at the end).

4. Cover and cook on LOW for another 30 minutes or so until ready to serve.

111 comments:

  1. This looks fantastic! Can't wait to try it. Thanks for sharing.

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  2. looks yummy - I wonder if it could be made and frozen before adding in the cheese and half/half mixture...we have a bumper crop of tomatoes this summer and it would be a good way to preserve for later in the year.

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  3. Wow...made this today for tonight's meal. Changed it a little, but yum, yum, yum!
    I didn't have any carrots, but plenty of broccoli so used that instead.
    Also added a bunch of fresh tomatoes (before they were more suitable for throwing at somebody)...thankfully, I have lots of fresh herbs & veggies in the garden that were utilized. I also used my blender to make the soup a little smoother...my stuff really didn't cook down on it's own. Then we grilled some cheese sandwiches to dunk in the soup...delish...used mozzarella & cheddar cheese for the sandwiches with a bit of garlic. Perfect together...only wish I would have tried adding a little wine to the soup...oh well, it was purty good in the glass alongside the soup! Thank you SO MUCH for the recipe! YUMMMMMMEEEEE!
    Polly Beth

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  4. This soup looks perfect and really delicious! Best meal for rainy days.

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  5. Anonymous: I'm not sure if it can be frozen but if you try it out...definitely let me know how it goes. Thanks for reading!

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    1. I made a big batch of it and when it cooled I put the rest in a gallon ziplock bag. I labeled it. When we were craving this soup again, I pulled it out and after about an hour it had unthawed enough to pour back into the crockpot. I reheated there and before serving whisked it to smooth out any lumps. Hubby and I agreed, still just as darn good that way as when I first made it.
      I'm also making 3 batches to split up and take to a dinner exchange. It's that darn good!!

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    2. This is delicious! I used fat-free 1/2 & 1/2 in place of the milk. Before I added the cheese I used an emersion blender and pureed most of the soup. Reheated very well. Thanks!

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    3. Did you freeze it with all the ingredients? I was thinking about making it and freezing it, then using it as a quick dinner or take out of the freezer and using it for lunches at work.

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  6. I read somewhere that creamed soups don't freeze well. I'd freeze the soup before adding cream step and add the rest after thawing.

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  7. Well this recipe appears to be something healthy, Am i right..:) Yeah..! Jumped here from pinterest...!

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  8. I found this on pinterest and can't wait to make it. So happy to have found your blog and am now your newest follower. When you have a chance come by and check out my blog www.questfordelish.blogspot.com

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  9. made this today, found it on pinterest. omg! the best tomato soup I have made to date and I have tried quite a few recipes. very similar to Brio's tomato bisque soup. this recipe is a keeper~~! thank you~! ~Debbie

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  10. Could you use whole milk instead of the half and half?

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  11. Grated or shredded parmesan cheese?

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    1. I used grated and it worked just fine!

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  12. This looks fantastic but could you tell me please what you mean by half and half? Is it an ingredient, i'm from NZ and have never heard of it

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    1. It's a heavy cream...the same thing you'd put in coffee or tea.

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    2. No it isn't. It's half cream and half milk.

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    3. in the US, it's sold in the dairy case by the coffee creamers, It will say half & half on the carton(even if it is the store brand) Good luck -hope you can find it in NZ, here we use it both for cooking and coffee/tea.

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    4. Heavy (whipping) cream = 33% milk fat
      Coffee (table) cream = 18% milk fat
      Half & half = 10% milk fat
      Whole milk = 3.5% milk fat

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    5. I used carnation evaporated skim (fat free) milk to make it thicker without the fat.

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  13. Made this tonight. It was awesome! The whole family loved it! Thanks for the recipe! (didn't make any changes to it, either.)

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  14. Looks amazing! I don't have a slow cooker, is there an alternative?

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    1. I did it on the stove. Used a large pan but also cut the recipe in half. I wouldn't let it sit 5-7 hours; maybe 2-3. I did 1 hr because of a time crunch, and it still is delicious!

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  15. This is on for supper and looks and smells wonderful! Thank you for sharing :-)

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  16. I'm testing it in a pot on low heat, right now. Will have to share how it works out.

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  17. Oh, this looks yummy!

    One thing, I'm lactose-sensitive and so shouldn't have the half and half. Would skim or 2% milk work (maybe with a little butter), or soy or another milk?

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    Replies
    1. What about trying soy milk mixed with mashed potatoes? the potatoes might improve the consistency...

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    2. Stores like Trader Joe's sell soy cream, it's nice and thick. Or you could try using canned coconut milk. I'd probably put it in the fridge to separate it and only scoop the think part off of the top - that way you're adding less and not altering the flavor as much... I don't know how it will taste.

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    3. I used skim milk with a bit of whole milk and it was very tasty, didn't miss the cream at all! (In fact we still found it too rich with the butter and parmesan)

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  18. Seamyst: I think the cream in half and half is necessary to get the desired consistency of the soup. If you do try it with something else though, let me know how it works!

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  19. How many dies this recipe serve?

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  20. The original recipe says 8 servings.

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  21. For those of you asking about substituting skim milk, the author of 365 days of slow cooking said that you can but it will affect the consistency a bit (but not the taste).

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  22. can I use the high setting ? do you know how that would change the time?

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  23. I wanted to let you know that this recipe was delicious! I just started adding recipes to my blog and this was the first recipe to kick off this new theme! I have to say it was a great first recipe to share with my fellow bloggers! Thank you for sharing it! If you feel like it come check out my blog! =)

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  24. Mildly lactose in tolerant here (and vegetarian), so I tried this with veg broth and we used just one cup of So Delicious Creamer made with with coconut milk. Didn't work out quite as well. If going this route, I would also recommend adding one can of tomato sauce.

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  25. Made this tonight and it was loved by all, even 3 picky kids! I used evaperated milk because I didn't have cream, so I added some extra water too. It was perfect. I also pureed it. I will definitely be making this again! I think it would even be great as a pasta sauce.

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  26. Yum!! Rainy day today.. perfect day for soup! I will be making this for dinner tonight :)

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  27. Just realized this came from my absolutely favorite website :) Trying it out tomorrow!!!

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  28. If any recipe calls for half & half or cream and you are lactose intolerant use plain coffee mate, it's lactose free and has a similar consistency .

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  29. How many servings would you say this is?

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    1. The original recipe says 8 servings.

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  30. Can you taste the celery? Wondering if I could leave it out if it would affect the taste very much?

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    1. I don't think it needs celery so I would assume that the taste wouldn't be affected but report back and let me know what you think!

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  31. Maybe I missed it...how much roux do you need to make? No measurements for the flour/oil.

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    1. This comment has been removed by the author.

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    2. Sorry, I made a mistake with my previous answer. 1/2 cup of flour and 1/2 of butter for the roux. Look at step number three for more instructions.

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  32. I'm confused..the above recipe says to make a roux. Debbie, are you saying to omit this step? Looks delish..hoping to try it this weekend.

    Thanks

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  33. Do I need to add flour? Can I add cornstarch instead?

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  34. Just made this soap, followed exact recipe (well the one with 1 1/2 cup half n half) and it is DELICIOUS!!! Thank you!!!

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  35. Great tasty recipe but not a healthy soup if you are counting calories or care about fat intake. Next time I make this I will leave out the roux and the half n half. My husband tried the soup before I added these ingredients, and loved it as it was, and said there was no reason to add the half n half. I added it anyhow:) Looking forward to making this again with these changes.

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    1. I agree. Its a tad too much butter.

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  36. It is, I used only 4 tbsp of flour and butter for the roux, still delicious. I may do even less if any at all next time. Maybe just a little cornstarch to thicken and no cream.

    Regardless, made it for dinner today (left it in the crockpot all day) and it is delicious!! I sauteed some fresh spinach artichoke, olives and peppers into a little spread - put some on some whole grain bread with a sprinking of feta and leftover asiago (oh yeah, added a little asiago with the parm!) and made a tasty grilled cheese to accompany the soup.

    Thanks for inspiring, Debbie!

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  37. made this a week ago and came back to refresh my memory on the receipe. I put in a blender to make extra smooth and then use french or garlic bread cubed up, tossed in olive oil and garlic powder to and bake for 15 minutes at 350 to make my own crutons....so good!

    S

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  38. Thanks for posting!

    Made it tonight with a few changes and it was SUPER good!!

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  39. Perfect soup for these cold days of fall!

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  40. so...have we come to consensus about the freezing thing???? does it freeze okay? i wanted to make it for meal exchange.
    thanks!

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  41. The parmesan, did you use the block from the store or the kind in a can?

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  42. I made this yesterday. I only changed the recipe in 2 ways: Used vegetable broth instead of chicken broth (i'm a vegetarian), and added hot pepper flakes. Other than that I followed it word for word. After about 4 hours on LOW, I tasted it. My vegetables weren't as soft as I was expecting so the next 2 hours I put it on HIGH. This turned out so good!!! I couldn't stop eating it. I have never made a roux, so I feel like I learned something new. I will make this again many many many times! Thanks!

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  43. I made this soup yesterday and I love it. It might be one of my favorite meals I've ever made. It's just starting to get cool for the Fall and I anticipate this will be a staple in our house in the winter months. Thanks for sharing. I have a blog and I'm writing a review of the recipe, please come by and check it out. fingerscrossedeveryday.blogspot.com

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  44. This is pintastic. Found it on pinterest. Now, I need to run to the store to get all the ingredients for this one.

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  45. This recipe looked great, and it tasted even better! I did use about 2/3 cup of sour cream in place of the half and half (never have that on hand!), and it was fantastic! Will be making this again!

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  46. Made this for a fall gathering at our neighbor's house--it was a HUGE hit!! There were over 30 soups and chilis there and this one got the most attention. I did have to triple the recipe to feed the crowd, but it fit in my 7 quart crockpot nicely. Thanks for sharing such a great recipe!

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  47. I doubled the recipe and let it sit on low all day. Near the end I put it on high for about 30 mins to get it really simmering and soften the veggies a bit more.
    Overall, it was very tasty, but a bit rich for both my husband and I (and I decreased the butter/flour a bit, and only used skim milk with a bit of whole milk). In the future I would use only 1/4-1/2 of the roux and add less parmesan. Definitely doesn't need cream, in my opinion. Or maybe if you want the creaminess, omit the roux and use whole milk or half and half? Otherwise it's a very rich, high-fat soup.

    Yummy, but I wouldn't have a second bowl in one day. :)

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  48. This soup is amazing! Love it! My 4 year old even likes it!

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  49. Thanks for the recipe! It was amazing!!

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  50. I've got this cooking in the crock pot right now! Thanks for sharing the recipe! I'll be posting about it on my blog elisebakes.wordpress.com later tonight!

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  51. Made this yesterday following the recipe exactly, but I used my dutch oven on low for several hours instead of the crockpot. I though the flavor was good, but it seemed to be missing something in my opinion. I added some cayanne pepper and a splash of orange juice for brightness, and the end result was fantastic. Thank you for sharing this recipe!

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    1. try garlic! Mine went from pretty good to perfection just by adding garlic.

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  52. making this soup for 2nd time. I do the onion, celery and carrot in food processor to get it really diced fine. Then I sauté for a minute to soften everything up. Didn't use tomatoes, finely diced up red peppers instead. I also saute up some spicy italian sausage (since my hubby doesnt think you can dinner w/out a protein). Do all that in crock pot and then follow recipe as usual. Super yummy. My husband asked me to make it again;)

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  53. I won first place with this recipe in a soup and chili cook-off! This soup is so amazingly good!!! Thank you so much for sharing! I too used only a cup and a half of the half and half and it was plenty. I also pureed the whole thing to make it nice and smooth. I just couldn't get over seeing carrots and celery in my tomato soup!!! IT WAS SO GOOD!!!!! THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU!!!!!

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  54. I made this soup for the first time tonight, and it was very good. My hubby even said this was a keeper recipe. Only thing I did different, well not so much different, is I used brown rice flour as I am wheat intolerent and tasted great.

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  55. I made this last night, and I found my husband scraping out the crock pot to get the last bit! Best tomato soup recipe yet, thanks!

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  56. I made this as a back-up to our Christmas bird and IT WAS A HIT! I made it straight as the recipe says, minus the roux (gluten-free). How nice to have a recipe like this in my little bag of tricks. Thank you!

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  57. This was wonderful!! Thanks for sharing the recipe :)

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  58. Made this for dinner tonight and it was a hit! I followed the recipe exactly! I added a touch of salt after I put it in the bowl and some fresh shaved Parmesan on top. A little French bread on the side and it was perfect mean for a cold winter night!! And my 12 year old daughter couldn't get enough of it!! It was a hit and a keeper!

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  59. I've never actually seen something on the Internet and jumped up and made it! immediately.
    The soup is crock potting as I write. Looks wonderful. We are veggies not vegans but try to eat a little healthy so we used milk over cream. I didn't have any nice Parmesan so added 1/2 cup of the grated kind with 1/2 cup very old cheddar.
    I love The Little Prince! New Years Resolution to (try and) live in the day, I can't do the moment.
    This recipe will become a staple I think. Thank you.

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  60. I have to say this soup is fantastic! I have made it at least five times now and its in the crock pot now. I like to add a bit of cayenne pepper for a little spice and color!

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  61. Pinned this about a month ago but was hesitant to try it because I didn't think my family would like it much because the don't care much for tomato soup. Boy was I wrong! Delicious as I expected! Not a drop left. And the son-in-law says its probably the best soup he's ever eaten :) Thanks so much for posting this!!!

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  62. I just made this soup today and give it an enthusiastic two thumbs up. I linked to the recipe on your blog from my page in case any of my readers want to try it out for themselves.

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  63. I made this today & it was so delicious. I put the soup in the blender to smooth it out. My family loved it!! Thanks for sharing

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  64. Made this last night. I don't have a slow cooker so I left it simmering for 90 minutes. I loved it, my family loved it. Definitely keeping this recipe. Thank you!

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  65. Made this last night and just warmed it up for leftovers - its even better the second day! My two year old just finished a huge bowl and said "More soup, mommy!"

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  66. I made this in the pressure cooker - only 10 minutes! I also whipped it up in the Vitamix before serving. Yumm-O! Thanks for sharing!

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  67. Made this twice. It is sooo yummy! I changed one thing: I added garlic salt. Had it with and without and I really like with much more. Wondering what the carbs/fat/protein would be on this soup?

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  68. Made this and LOVED it! But did three cans of tomatoes instead and substituted half-and-half and 1 cup fat free half-and-half and a cup of greek yogurt for some protein. Yummy!!

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    1. ...substituted THE half-and-half WITH...

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  69. I just tried this tonight. I was trying to make it a lower calorie/fat fare. It came out yummy. I just added the parmesan cheese at the end and did not add cream. I used some cornstartch to thicken. Came out quite yummy. I will have to treat myself to the full version when I get down a few pounds. Thank you!

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  70. Really good. I accidentally bought salsa-style tomatoes. I couldn't figure out why the soup was so spicy. I finally dug the cans out of the trash. Oh well! I don't eat wheat so I added 1/2 teaspoon Xantham Gum (available at health food stores) instead of butter and flour. I also purred soup in blender. I don't think I would have liked it chunky. I think next time I will save a few of the tomatoes to add at the end as chunks.

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  71. We found it to be bland.

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  72. This was really good. My family enjoyed it immensely! Glad I found it!

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  73. GIving this a try tonight!! I'll report back with our results. I am sure its going to be awesome :)

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  74. I made this soup for dinner tonight and it was a hit!! I followed the recipe to a T and it turned out perfectly delicious. This new recipe has definitely made it into our meal rotation. :) Thanks for sharing!

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  75. OMG.
    This was completely delicious! Huge hit with the family, and we doubled the recipe for lots of leftovers!
    One alteration: half as much cheese. I LOVE cheese, but by cutting the amount in half really added to the overall flavour of the soup.
    Thanks for sharing!

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  76. I loved this soup. I'm making one major change the next time. I am not doing the roux at all. Instead I'm taking about 2-3 cups of soup and pureeing it and adding back into the pot. I double the recipe this past weekend and 2 sticks of butter and a cup of flour seemed like a lot of thicker for a large pot of soup and the flour really doesn't add any flavor so I think pureeing it will thicken in place of the flour.

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  77. Best recipe I have found! Definitely will be keeping this and making this soup for many years to come. :)

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  78. How many cups of soup does this make?

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    1. I honestly don't know. I know that this recipe produces 8 servings of soup but I don't know how that translates into cups. Anyone else who made this recipe recently know the answer?

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  79. I put the diced vegetables in my food processor so they would cook faster, and then simmered on the stove for 90 mins. Turned out fabulous! This is a new favorite!

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  80. It's 120 degrees here but I just couldn't resist making this recipe again! Every time I looked at my recipe board on Pinterest it kept yelling "Eat me!!" So I obeyed, cranked up the A/C in an effort to forget the scorching heat outside, and had a bowl of delicious soup! BTW, I am NOT a fan of any kind of tomato, let alone tomato soup so this may be a good recipe to try out on loved ones that are similarly picky.

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  81. Debbie!!! This recipe is fabulous. I love you and you are one hot little momma!! In the words of Tony Perkis Senior "the lighting fixture king".... i love you.

    Love,

    your bestest friend- Katie

    SO PROUD OF YOU!!!!!!!!! YOU ARE AMAZING<3

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  82. Does the recipe call for grated parmesan or fresh shredded parmesan?

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    1. I think grated would melt a little more easily, but I think that you can't do it with shredded parmesan too!

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  83. Anybody have any idea how much soup this makes? I have 12 people. Would I need to double the recipe? How many servings does it make?

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  84. This is a regular at our house now. I cannot bring myself to add all the extra fat with the butter though, so I make a slurry with the flour and add at the last hour of cooking time. We don't miss the butter at all.

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  85. I made this and the soup was looking good until I added the butter and parmesan. It came out super gross, no one in my apartment wants to eat it. Most soup recipes call for a tablespoon or two of butter (that is for 6-8 cups) but not a whole stick! Next time I would cut back on the butter and reserve the parmesan cheese as an optional ingredient.

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