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This roasted red pepper and tomato soup recipe is made with homemade roasted red peppers and whole peeled tomatoes, made into the most delicious soup. This easy tomato soup recipe is garnished with a basil pistou and grilled cheese croutons. The ultimate comforting soup.
Prepping bell peppers
- Wash and dry your red bell peppers
- Cut the bell peppers in half
- Remove the seeds and the white membranes. They are bitter, a pairing knife works well to shave them off
- Once cleaned, repeat with second bell pepper
Roasting bell peppers
- Place prepped bell peppers open side down on a foil lined baking sheet. Roast at 450F for about 20 minutes until skin blisters black.
- Remove and cover. Allow the peppers to steam for 10 minutes. This will make it easier to peel the skin off the bell peppers.
- Peel all the skin off the tops of the bell peppers. For pesky spots that don’t peel easily, use a pairing knife to scrape the skin off.
- Discard the skins.
Pistou is a cold sauce from France, that is similar to pesto, but minus the pine nuts and classically without cheese (parmesan optional). Pistou is prepared in the same way as pesto, with either a mortar and pestle or you can use a food processor.
While the bell peppers roast, prepare the pistou:
- Add basil leaves, garlic, kosher salt, and optional parmesan
- While blending, utilize pour spout to pour in the olive oil
- Taste and adjust salt if necessary. The pistou is served cold, keep in the fridge in airtight container for up to 3-4 days or freeze.
Making roasted red pepper tomato soup
The fresh ingredients of the soup are: roasted red peppers, garlic, onion, and basil. In a pinch, you can used store bought roasted red peppers, but they are pricey and don’t have the same robust flavor as freshly roasted your own.
- Soften and cook onions until they are translucent.
- Add in the minced garlic, dried oregano, kosher salt, black pepper and optional red pepper flakes.
- I use whole peeled tomatoes when making tomato based sauces and soup. Allowing the tomatoes to cook down with the other aromatics gives the soup an extra depth of flavor and they are so versatile. San marzano tomatoes are less acidic and have a delicious sweet note, my favorite canned tomatoes by far.
- Add in your roasted red peppers, tomato paste, fresh basil, and optional ‘better than bouillon’ vegetable base for an extra punch of flavor.
- Add vegetable broth and stir to combine all the ingredients. Bring to a gentle boil, then lower the heat, cover, and allow to simmer for 15 minutes.
- After the soup has simmered, the tomatoes should be easily pierced. Add in coconut milk. Use full fat coconut milk for a creamy consistency.
- Stir the coconut milk into the soup and using an immersion blender, blend until the soup is smooth.
- Taste the roasted red pepper tomato soup and adjust salt if necessary.
Grilled cheese croutons
- For the grilled cheese croutons you need sandwich bread, cheese (I used cheddar, but feel free to use your favorite cheese), and mayo.
- I use mayo instead of butter on my grilled cheese because of it’s higher smoke point. It gives you a more even and crispy crust. Feel free to use butter if that is how you prefer to make grilled cheese.
- Place the mayo/buttered side down in a non-stick skillet over medium heat. To help the cheese melt, I cover my skillet with a lid. Before flipping, apply mayo/butter to the top slice.
- Continue to cook until cheese is melted and crust is browned to your preference.
Versatility of this recipe
This soup is very versatile. If you do not want to add the toppings, you can enjoy the roasted red pepper tomato soup on it’s own. The toppings just enhance the already delicious flavor of the soup.
For a low carb option, you can skip the grilled cheese croutons and just add the pistou on top of the soup. You can place the soup into a bowl and spoon the pistou directly into the roasted red pepper tomato soup then stir to combine. Or you can add the pistou into a bag, cut the corner, and squeeze it like above for presentation.
For the full soup experience: ladle roasted red pepper tomato soup into a bowl, add swirl of pistou, then add grilled cheese croutons. I cut the crust off the grilled cheese (and happily ate them haha), but you can also leave them on.
You can also serve the croutons on the side to dip into the soup as you eat or even just cut the grilled cheese sandwich in half and dip as you go. This recipe is so versatile in ways to eat it.
Storing the soup
Store the components separately in airtight containers. They will last in the fridge for 3-4 days, or you can freeze. To defrost, place in refrigerator, then reheat on stove or in microwave (cover because it will splatter). Grilled cheese croutons should be prepared fresh for best taste and texture.
Looking for more soup recipes?
- Chicken and dumpling soup
- Caldo verde (Portuguese soup)
- Butternut squash soup
- Mushroom soup
- Vegetable orzo soup
- Chicken noodle soup
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Roasted Red Pepper Tomato soup
- 2 red bell peppers (cut in half, stem and seeds removed (see note #1))
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1/3 cup diced yellow onion
- 3 cloves garlic (peeled and chopped)
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
- 28 ounces whole peeled San Marzano tomatoes
- 6 ounces tomato paste
- 1 tablespoon chopped fresh basil leaves
- 1 teaspoon Better Than Bouillon vegetable base
- 1 cup vegetable broth
- 14 ounces full fat coconut milk (see note #2)
- 1/2 teaspoon Kosher salt
- 1/4 tsp ground black pepper
- 2 cups fresh basil leaves
- 3 cloves garlic (peeled)
- 1/4 cup freshly grated parmesan
- 1/3 cup olive oil
- 1/4 teaspoon Kosher salt
Grilled Cheese Croutons
- 4 slices bread
- 4 slices American cheese (or cheese of choice)
- 1 tablespoon mayo or butter (see note #3)
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Roasting bell peppers
- Preheat oven to 450F. Line a baking sheet with foil, place halved/seeded bell peppers open side down. Roast in the oven for 20 minutes until skin blisters and is charred.
- Remove from the oven and cover, allow to steam for 10 minutes to help loosen the skin.
- Peel the skin off the tops of the bell peppers and discard. For tougher spots of skin, use a pairing knife to scrape the skin. Set aside roasted bell peppers
- While the peppers roast, prepare the pistou. In a food processor add the basil leaves, garlic cloves, parmesan, and kosher salt. As it is blending, utilize the pour spout to pour in the olive oil. You may have to use a rubber spatula to scrape the sides if leaves are stuck. Taste and adjust seasoning if necessary. Place in fridge, covered, until used later.
- In a dutch oven or soup pot, over medium heat, add 2 tbsp olive oil. Add the onions and sauté for 4 minutes until they soften and become translucent. Add in the chopped garlic, dried oregano, red pepper flakes, kosher salt, and ground black pepper. Sauté for 1 minute until fragrant.
- Add in the whole peeled tomatoes, prepared roasted red peppers, tomato paste, chopped fresh basil leaves, bouillon base and tomato paste. Stir to combine. Pour in the vegetable broth and bring to a gentle boil. Once boiling, cover and lower the heat. Simmer for 15 minutes.
- After soup has simmered, add in the coconut milk. Using an immersion blender, blend the soup smooth. Taste and adjust salt if needed.
Grilled Cheese Croutons
- While the soup simmers, make the grilled cheese croutons. Assemble two sandwiches with 2 slices of cheese in between bread slices. Mayo or butter one side. In a non-stick skillet over medium heat, place mayo/buttered side down. Cover with lid and allow to cook for 3-4 minutes until golden. Before flipping, mayo or butter the top slice, then flip. Cover and cook 3-4 minutes until golden and cheese melted.
- Remove from skillet and cut each sandwich into square pieces (you can remove crust or keep).
- Ladle roasted red pepper tomato soup into a bowl. Spoon pistou over the top (or you can add to a bag, cut the corner, and squeeze over the soup into a swirl), place grilled cheese croutons on top, and serve!
- Roasted bell peppers: You can use store bought roasted red bell peppers, but they are expensive and taste a bit watered down. I highly recommend roasting your own, but in a pinch or time constraint, you can substitute store bought). When prepping, make sure to remove white membranes inside with a pairing knife, they can be bitter.
- Coconut milk: Use full fat coconut milk to get thick creamy soup consistency.
- Mayo: I use mayo instead of butter on my grilled cheese because of it’s higher smoke point. It gives you a more even and crispy golden crust. Feel free to use butter if that is how you prefer to make grilled cheese.
- This soup is very versatile. If you do not want to add the toppings, you can enjoy the roasted red pepper tomato soup on it’s own. The toppings just enhance the already delicious flavor of the soup.
- Storing soup: Store the components separately in airtight containers. They will last in the fridge for 3-4 days, or you can freeze. To defrost, place in refrigerator, then reheat on stove or in microwave (cover because it will splatter). Grilled cheese croutons should be prepared fresh for best taste and texture.