“Soup is good food”
Name that show! Or don’t it’s fine. Regardless of whether you know its origin* or not, I think we can all agree that the sentiment is one we can get behind, right? Soup IS good, nay GREAT, food! And today I’m very excited. One because it’s Friday (duh), and two because I get to share this super quick, easy, and most of all insanely delicious bowl of soup with you, dear reader.
My journey to soup
Real talk – I always ate soup from a can when I was a kid. And to be blatantly honest, I really enjoyed it! My childhood centered around the canon of Campbell’s condensed soups with which I’m sure a lot of people my age are all too familiar. Vegetable beef, Chicken with Noodles (or if I was lucky – stars), Cream of this, that or the other, and of course, TOMATO.
Tomato soup was and is a staple in so many households, and for good reason. It’s simple, creamy, comforting, and when it comes from a can – incredibly easy to get on the table. My weekend lunches growing up were consistently built around a bowl of the stuff. And when I’m feeling under the weather or just annoyed at the world I still reach for the stuff – it’s one of my most beloved comfort foods, second only to cream of chicken. But being an adult woman I realize that soup is probably healthier and tastier if it comes from real, live ingredients, so…
Quick Tomato Rice Soup (not from a can)
This is a new favorite recipe of mine. I stumbled upon it nearly by accident. It had been a particularly cold, drizzly, stressful, suck-fest of a day and I hadn’t really planned anything for dinner. Rather than turning to Grubhub though I decided to scan the kitchen for inspiration. We had some leftover rice, a little bit of cream cheese, canned tomatoes, and like a thousand baby carrots. Carrots were ignored (as their expiration date looked long gone) but the rest piqued my interest. One pot and about a standard sitcom episode later and we had soup!
This tomato rice soup is lighter and healthier than its creamy and glossy consistency belies. It also comes together in about 30 minutes and that’s assuming you don’t have any leftover rice hanging around. So if you are the lucky duck who recently had way too much Chinese food, well then you just saved ten whole minutes my friend!
But how do you make a flavorful soup without a lot of time?
A great thing about this recipe is that it doesn’t sacrifice flavor for speed. No, not all soups can be made in just under 30 minutes and still be unctuous, satisfying, and go-back-for-thirds delicious. But those other soups tend to be brothy, relying heavily on a long cooked stock for flavor. If you want to make a truly mouthwatering soup in the fraction of the time you either need a pressure cooker (another topic for another day) or you’ve gotta embrace the veggies and figure out just what they need to really sing.
In this case I knew I wanted to tame the natural acidity of the tomato, so I added just a touch of sugar and some dairy (in the form of cream cheese) which smoothed out the rougher edges and brought the texture to just this side of creamy. The rice added some nice bulk and body and a bit of basil and drizzle of olive oil at the end freshened up the whole situation. And that’s how I arrived here, in front of this beautifully balanced bowl of tomatoey goodness, without so much as breaking a sweat!
So although I harbor no ill will towards a good old can of soup, I do think this is almost as easy and far more delicious. I hope you’ll agree!
And if you need some other quick and tasty soups
I’ve got you covered with three others that you can make in 30 minutes or less
If you try any of these, please hop on over to the recipe and give it a rating. And as always thank you so much for reading my quirky little blog full of rambly thoughts and Campbell’s soup confessions. You’re the best.
*Also this is from Gilmore Girls. It’s not the first time I’ve referenced it and I’m betting it won’t be the last.
Quick Tomato Rice Soup
Hearty, healthy, and little bit luxurious – this creamy tomato rice soup is on the table in 30 minutes or less. It’s also a great way to use up leftover, cooked rice!
- Prep Time: 10 Minutes
- Cook Time: 20 Minutes
- Total Time: 30 minutes
- Yield: 6-8 Servings
- Category: Soup
- Cuisine: American
1/3 C long grain white rice (or 1 C cooked)
2 T extra virgin olive oil (plus more for garnish)
1 small yellow onion
1 garlic clove
1 T tomato paste
1 tsp kosher salt
1/2 tsp ground black pepper
1 28 ounce can crushed tomatoes
2 C water
2 tsp sugar
2 tsp red wine vinegar
3 ounces cream cheese, cut into 1 inch cubes
Fresh basil to garnish
Fill a medium sized pot with water and bring it to a boil. Add uncooked rice, lower heat to medium and simmer for ten minutes or until tender. Drain rice in a colander and set aside.
In the same pot heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil over medium-low heat. Grate onion on the largest holes of a box grater, and garlic on the smallest. Add onion and garlic to the oil along with kosher salt and black pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally for 2-3 minutes, or until onions have softened, but not taken on any color.
Add tomato paste and stir to incorporate into the onions. Cook for 2 more minutes.
Pour in crushed tomatoes, water, and sugar. Stir to combine. Simmer for 10 minutes.
Whisk in cream cheese and red wine vinegar, until cheese has fully melted. Stir in reserved rice and season to taste with salt and pepper. Serve, garnished with chopped basil and a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil.
If you already have cooked rice in the fridge this is the perfect way to use it up. I boil my rice just like pasta, which means I can easily use just one pot for the entire recipe.
You can feel free to use a different vinegar here if you don’t have red wine vinegar on hand. I like red wine vinegar here though because of its very bright and tangy nature.
Keywords: vegetarian soup, vegetarian comfort food, quick and easy winter soup, cozy winter soup