Comfort foods are different for everyone. For myself, I have to say it’s tomato soup. As a dietitian, I definitely prefer fresh tomato soup over canned.
Fresh Tomato Soup
Try this creamy roasted vegetable and tomato soup when you're craving childhood comfort food thats a bit healthier.
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 medium onion (chopped)
- 1 medium carrot (peeled and diced)
- 1 medium zucchini (diced)
- 5 medium Roma tomatoes (quartered )
- 1 teaspoon thyme
- 2 bottles tomato Passata (strained tomatoes; see note at bottom of page*)
- 1 can San Marzano tomatoes
- 4 cups vegetable stock (or chicken stock )
- 2 cups bechamel sauce (recipe below)
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/8 teaspoon pepper
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 2 cups milk (best if whole milk)
- 1 tablespoon Parmesan cheese (freshly grated)
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
- 1/8 teaspoon pepper
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F; line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
Place onion, carrot, zucchini and Roma tomatoes on baking sheet, season with olive oil and thyme; roast for 40 minutes.
Once vegetables are ready, transfer to large pot. Pour in Passata and can of San Marzano tomatoes. Bring to a boil, add vegetable or chicken stock. Stir to combine and bring to boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 45 minutes.
Meanwhile, prepare béchamel.
Place a small pot over medium heat to melt butter. Once butter has melted, whisk in butter to create a paste.
Allow flour to cook for 1 minute. Add milk, stirring vigorously to prevent lumps. Sprinkle in cheese and continue to stir until melted. Season with salt and pepper.
Puree soup with an immersion blender or a stand up blender, in batches. Once pureed, pour in béchamel sauce and stir to fully combine. Reheating may be necessary.
This soup is lighter way to enjoy a creamy fresh tomato soup. The béchamel sauce can be made with skim, 1% or 2% milk. It takes the place of heavy cream but still gives the soup a velvety smooth texture.
The variety of vegetables in this soup make it a healthy choice for lunch or dinner any day of the week. Although the roasting of the vegetables takes a bit of time and preparing the béchamel sauce seems like an extra step, there’s a lot of hands off time.
Using canned and jarred tomatoes make this soup a great source of the antioxidant lycopene with has been shown to fight against some types of cancer and other chronic diseases.
This soup is an easy way to get more veggies into your day.
*Passata can often be found in the same aisle as prepared tomato sauces, usually found in tall glass jars. It is made of only pureed tomato with a basil leaf added.