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Tuscan Tomato & Basil Soup

We have a favorite soup that comes from the Safeway deli...a zippy tomato and basil bisque.  Here's my version of that I make in fall when the tomatoes are plentiful.  I'm sure it could also be made with canned tomatoes...but fresh is always better.  It also freezes be enjoyed later. 
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 red bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 medium sized butternut squash, peeled and cubed
  • 4 cups peeled and diced fresh tomatoes (or 4 cups canned diced tomatoes)
  • 2 cups chicken broth
  • 2 Tablespoons fresh basil, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon thyme or oregano
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 cup cream (or 1/2 cup milk and  1/2 cup sour cream)

  1. Heat olive oil in large pot, over medium heat.
  2. Add garlic, onion and bell pepper.  Cook and stir for about 10 minutes, or until soft.  
  3. Add broth, squash, tomatoes, basil and thyme (or oregano).
  4. Cover and simmer for about 35 minutes, or until very tender. 
  5. Purée soup in a blender (in small batches).
  6. Return pot to stove and re-heat on medium-low heat.
  7. Add seasonings and cream and heat until steaming, stirring as necessary.


  1. That is one soup I'll definitely try.

  2. This looks very good! If you are planning to freeze some of the soup, should you leave out the cream? Well, I'm thinking divide it first, add cream to some, freeze the rest.

    1. I freeze it...cream and all. If it is frozen in meal-sized containers, it makes for a quick and tasty meal down the road!

  3. Oh that looks VERY good and sound absolutely delicious! This the time of year when I long for soups like this one - thanks for sharing the recipe!

  4. I have tons of tomatoes and soup is always welcome. I love the idea of freezing some for the winter

  5. Judy...I've no experience with butternut squash, but someone said it is very hard to peel! She recommended roasting the squash first, then peeling it after do you manage the squash? I have a butternut squash in the house, and will try your recipe - it sounds delicious! Thanks!

    1. Butternut squash requires a hefty knife to chop and a good peeler! I use a Y-shaped veggie peeler and that works well. I'm sure you could roast the squash first and then add to the simmering soup before blending. Let us know how it works out for you!

  6. I made this last night and stirred in buttermilk rather than cream, it gave the soup a nice tangy flavour. Thanks for the recipe, Judy.

  7. I hope its okay to give me honest opinion on a recipe,but I made this soup, but it lacked in taste and I was somewhat disappointed. I suppose the taste will be enhanced once the soup has sat in the fridge for a day or so. I have been using the other recipe from this site called "tomato basil tortellini soup" and substituting the tortellini with orzo and enjoying that one more. I do appreciate the nutritional value of this soup!

  8. Thanks for this recipe - that Safeway soup is my favorite too, and a special treat for me when I buy it. I would much rather be able to try making my own. :-)


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