Easy Three-Ingredient Tomato Soup

My favorite tomato soup recipe! You wouldn’t think that three ingredients — butter, onion, and tomato — can come together to make such a velvety and delicious tomato soup, but let me tell you. They can. Jump to the Tomato Soup Recipe or watch our quick recipe video showing how to make it.

Watch Us Make the Recipe

How To Make The Easiest Tomato Soup From Scratch

This simple homemade tomato soup is quick, easy, and insanely delicious.

The soup is inspired by one of the most famous recipes out there — Marcella Hazan’s Tomato Sauce. Butter, tomatoes, and onion are simmered until slightly thickened. Out comes the onion and the sauce is ready to be spooned over pasta.

It’s genius and absolutely delicious. We use the same three ingredients in this tomato soup, but add a little water and blend everything together just before serving.

Easy Three-Ingredient Tomato Soup Recipe

Making The Soup

Here’s how to the best (and easiest) tomato soup:

Combine butter, onion, and tomatoes. Grab a Dutch oven or pot, place it over medium heat and melt the butter. Add half an onion that’s been cut into large wedges and a large can of tomatoes.

Add water or broth and simmer. Bring everything to a low simmer, add some salt and leave it alone for about 40 minutes. See how creamy it gets? That’s thanks to the butter.

Blend. I find an immersion blender is useful, but a blender works, too. Adjust the soup for seasoning then grab a bowl…and maybe a grilled cheese sandwich? This soup is also amazing topped with homemade croutons or served next to this easy buttery garlic bread.

Tomato Soup Ingredients
Tomatoes (canned or fresh), onion, and butter.
Cooking tomato soup
What the tomato soup looks like after adding water (or broth) and simmering.

What Tomatoes Should I Use

This tomato soup is excellent with canned tomatoes. I love using whole peeled tomatoes or crushed tomatoes. By the way, we love San Marzano Tomatoes and are always pleased with tomatoes from Muir Glen. Neither are watery and both taste great.

You can also use fresh tomatoes. You will need 10 to 12 whole tomatoes (or about 2 pounds). It’s best to peel them, but we have made the soup with unpeeled tomatoes.

A Quick Recap

This is your new favorite weeknight meal. Promise.

  • This tomato soup has three ingredients (plus water and salt).
  • Everything is tossed into a pan — no browning, no hovering over a stove.
  • You can use canned tomatoes — and should.
  • Did I mention there are only three ingredients?

What Our Readers Are Saying

If you don’t believe that our recipe helps you achieve perfect tomato soup at home, take a look at what our readers are saying about the recipe! More reviews are in the comments section below.

“WOW!! What a delicious and easy tomato soup, my three and one-year old were as thrilled as my husband and I were.” – Ashley

“This is the best tomato soup, hands down!! Cannot say that emphatically enough. Did not change a thing from the recipe and it was perfect. Couldn’t be easier to make.” – John

“Made this exactly as written. Oh my gosh, this was amazing!!!” – Dayna

Easy Three-Ingredient Tomato Soup Recipe

More Easy Soup Recipes

Recipe updated, originally posted October 2015. Since posting this in 2015, we have tweaked the recipe to be more clear and added a quick recipe video. – Adam and Joanne

Easy Three-Ingredient Tomato Soup

  • PREP
  • COOK

You only need three main ingredients to make this velvety, rich tomato soup recipe. This, friends is your new favorite weeknight meal.

Makes 2 generous servings

You Will Need

4 tablespoons unsalted butter

1/2 large onion, cut into large wedges

1 (28-ounce) can tomatoes, we prefer to use whole peeled or crushed, see notes for fresh tomatoes

1 1/2 cups water, low sodium vegetable stock, or chicken stock

1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt, or more to taste


    Melt butter over medium heat in a Dutch oven or large saucepan.

    Add onion wedges, water, can of tomatoes with their juices, and 1/2 teaspoon of salt. Bring to a simmer. Cook, uncovered, for about 40 minutes. Stir occasionally and add additional salt as needed.

    Blend the soup, and then season to taste. The soup doesn’t need to be ultra-smooth, some texture is a nice touch. An immersion blender does make quick work of this, or you can use a blender. If you use a regular blender, it is best to blend in batches and not fill the blender as much as you usually would since the soup is so hot. We like to remove the center insert of the lid and cover it with a kitchen towel while blending — this helps to release some of the steam and prevents the blender lid from popping off (which can be a big, hot mess).

Adam and Joanne's Tips

  • Can I use fresh tomatoes? Yes. If you want to use fresh tomatoes, you will need 10 to 12 medium tomatoes (or about 2 pounds). You can peel them, but we skip this step since we will be blending the soup in the end anyway.
  • Can I make this vegan? Yes, olive oil is an option or coconut oil instead of butter. Coconut oil might sound odd but the light coconut flavor with onion/tomatoes is pretty delicious.
  • Can I add basil? This soup is delicious with and without basil. Adding a handful of fresh basil at the end before blending the soup is a fantastic idea.
  • Nutrition facts: The nutrition facts provided below are estimates. We have used the USDA Supertracker recipe calculator to calculate approximate values. We have omitted salt since you will need to add to your tastes.

If you make this recipe, snap a photo and hashtag it #inspiredtaste — We love to see your creations on Instagram and Facebook! Find us: @inspiredtaste

Nutrition Per Serving: Serving Size Half of the recipe / Calories 348 / Total Fat 24.9g / Saturated Fat 14.8g / Cholesterol 61mg / Sodium 1485.4mg / Carbohydrate 29.6g / Dietary Fiber 4.5g / Total Sugars 15.4g / Protein 7.8g
AUTHOR: Adam and Joanne Gallagher

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521 comments… Leave a Comment
  • Noel May 8, 2020, 7:57 pm

    Why cut the onion into large wedges instead of chopping them?

    • Joanne May 9, 2020, 11:30 am

      It’s a bit quicker. You can cut the onions into smaller pieces if you’d prefer.

  • Adi Loevsky May 7, 2020, 6:46 pm

    I have veganized this recipe by substituting vegan butter and I added fresh garlic, garlic and onion powder, and a handful of cashews to the pot.This soup has become a staple in my home for months now, it’s so delicious and easy!

  • Billie May 3, 2020, 2:06 pm

    DELISH! I tripled the recipe and added dried basil. I did use chicken broth because I have “Better than Bouillon” as a staple in my fridge. Thank you for the super simple recipe! It worked out well for my inpromptu grilled cheese and tomato soup dinner party with the neighbors! My kids asked for seconds, so I will definitly save this recipe for the future!

  • Trish May 2, 2020, 10:39 pm

    I made this today using fresh tomatoes and it was absolutely delicious!

  • Natalia April 29, 2020, 6:58 am

    Ok so just a question, is there any way this recipe can adapt to fresh tomatoes instead of canned?

    • Joanne April 29, 2020, 12:17 pm

      Hi there, We do provide instructions for using fresh tomatoes in the notes section of the recipe.

  • Wanda April 26, 2020, 1:40 pm

    This was my first time making soup, let alone tomato soup. Absolutely spectacular! Super delicious modifications I made: I cut back on the butter and instead added some white cheddar powder, garlic powder, sugar (I used fresh tomatoes but they were very tart).Super easy and enjoyable for the whole family!

  • Elly April 21, 2020, 7:15 pm

    I’ve made this soup many times – it’s so good and so so easy! I love that it’s made with pantry staples and requires minimal chopping. I usually add some garlic, parsley flakes and a bay leaf. I imagine it’s good without, that is just my preference 🙂

  • Nicole C. April 19, 2020, 9:07 pm

    My daughter and I LOVED this soup. I cannot believe how easy it was to make and how delicious it was alongside our grilled cheese sandwiches! Fantastic job keeping it to 3 ingredients I always have.

  • Priya April 16, 2020, 11:34 pm

    Delicious! I blended it with chili powder, crushed red pepper, and a basil leaf as well. Can’t believe how easy it was, and will definitely make this again!

  • Cindy April 13, 2020, 12:00 pm

    I made this recipe in my instant pot, didn’t change a thing, it was wonderful! I cut the recipe in half first time. Second time I made the full recipe, just as tasty. Instant pot away! Thank you for an awesome recipe!

  • Dojjan April 9, 2020, 9:45 am

    My 4 year old LOVED THIS! Definitely a keeper, we all loved it but too see him ask for more several times was extra satisfying. Might try to blend in some white beans with the water for a bit of fiber and protein but regardless this is a life saver!!!

  • Jessic April 7, 2020, 1:54 pm

    I only loosely followed this recipe but it was a great starting point. With covid 19 we are making the most of what we’ve got. My child wanted grilled cheese and tomato soup. I new I didn’t have premade tomato soup and didn’t have the ingredients for my usual recipe. So I googled and came across this. I wanted as quick and easy as possible so I dumped one can (14oz) of diced tomatoes into my vitamix. I added fresh basil from our plant, garlic powder and onion powder. I let it run on high while I made grilled cheese sandwiches. This made it nice and creamy and hot. Poured it right into some cups and had a yummy quick and easy lunch. Thank you for the inspiration.

  • Lorelei808 April 7, 2020, 12:23 am

    Fantastic soup! I’d made a loaf of no-knead bread for some rustic grilled cheese sammies and was jonesing to dunk it in some delicious tomato soup. This recipe fit the bill! I followed the recipe exactly – except I started by melting the butter in a pot, then I blended the tomatoes, chicken stock, salt and then added to the melted butter. Grace is not my middle name and I’d surely burn myself blending hot soup :-). This will definitely be my go to tomato soup and a solid base for many other soups to come. Thank you for a souper (pun intended) simple recipe!!

  • Mel April 5, 2020, 9:31 pm

    SO good. And so easy to make I’m really happy I tried this out. I used 1 14oz can of diced tomatoes (tomatoes came seasoned with oregano and basil in can) and 1 14 oz canned tomato sauce because it’s all I had but I don’t think it affected the recipe much. I also added some red pepper flakes for a kick. I didn’t want to use water but was out of veg stock so went with chicken broth instead. It made about 3 average bowls of soup for me and the fam. Paired it with some grilled cheeses 🙂

  • Cathy Ann March 31, 2020, 3:40 pm

    I can’t believe how good this is will only 3 ingredients. I used one can of tomatoes with garlic , green chilies and onions and the other can just regular tomatoes. It was great with grilled cheese sandwich.


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