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2 bowls of homemade creamy tomato soup with parmesan croutons in soup 1
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5 from 7 votes

Homemade Creamy Tomato Soup with Parmesan Croutons

Remember Campbell's tomato soup with saltine crackers for dunking? Well, we promise this homemade creamy tomato soup with Parmesan croutons is a way better version. Classic comfort food.
Prep Time8 mins
Cook Time15 mins
Total Time23 mins
Course: Soup
Cuisine: American
Servings (change as needed): 4
Author: Cheryl


For Cheese Croutons

  • 3-4 slices bread (I use multigrain)
  • 2 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1/4 teaspoon EACH, garlic powder, salt, pepper
  • 1/4 cup (22.5g) grated Parmesan cheese (or cheddar)

For Tomato Soup

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1 cup (52g) chopped onions (1 medium onion)
  • 2 teaspoon minced garlic (2 cloves)
  • 1 28-ounce can (825ml) whole tomatoes Note 1
  • 1 cup (235ml) broth, vegetable or chicken or water
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt (or more to taste)
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground pepper
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • Optional: 1 tsp herbs e.g. thyme, basil; chili flakes to taste
  • 1/2 cup (120ml) half and half cream (10%)


  • PREHEAT OVEN to 400F/204C. Line a pan with parchment or foil.
  • MAKE SOUP: Heat oil and butter in a medium saucepan on Medium heat. Add onions and garlic. Saute for 5 minutes until translucent (not brown). Add tomatoes and their juice (crush tomatoes in your hand as you add them to pot or break them up with a spoon in the pot). Add broth or water, salt, pepper and, if using, chili flakes and/or herbs. Bring to boil, then reduce heat to medium and cook for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  • MAKE PARMESAN CROUTON STICKS: While soup is simmering, cut bread slices into 1/2-3/4 inch wide sticks. Toss with oil, garlic powder, salt and pepper. Bake for 6 minutes. Remove from oven. Sprinkle on cheese and bake for another 4-minutes or until golden brown. Set aside or, if making ahead, store in sealed bag or container when cooled.
  • FINISH SOUP AND SERVE: Puree soup in pot with a handheld stick/immersion blender until smooth. Or, puree in two batches in a blender. Stir in cream Taste and adjust seasonings, adding salt, sugar or pepper as needed. Ladle into bowls and serve with cheese crouton sticks in soup or on the side for dipping.


  1. Best canned tomatoes: These are the best canned tomatoes according to a taste test by the Wirecutter and New York Times. They named 3 top brands, with Bianco DiNapoli coming out on top. My faves are San Marzano whole tomatoes.
  2. Tomato soups variations to try
    • You can leave out the cream, but I think it adds a wonderful creamy mellowness to the soup. Or, substitute with a dairy free cream.
    • Instead of cream, try coconut milk (also dairy-free) for an Asian flare
    • Puree part of the soup, leaving some chunks of tomato if you like.
    • When it comes to tomato soup, I’m a purist, but feel free to add some heat with chili flakes
    • Add herbs such as fresh thyme or basil.
    • Before adding the cream, stir in fresh, roughly chopped baby spinach until it wilts (1 minute) for added color and nutrients.
    • Garnishes: Add fresh thinly sliced basil leaves or additional grated Parmesan
  3. Parmesan Croutons variations to try
    • Cut the croutons into cubes if you prefer. I like using ‘sticks’ as they are easier for dunking.
    • Use any firmer-type bread like challah, pumpernickel, artisan, multigrain, baguette or white country bread.
    • Sprinkle with grated cheddar instead of Parmesan. 
  4. Make Ahead
    • Croutons can be made a couple of days ahead and stored in a sealed bag or container.
    • The soup can be up to a week ahead and kept in the fridge.
Nutrition values are estimates. The sodium is high because of the Parmesan cheese. 
Calories: 300kcal | Carbohydrates: 26g | Protein: 8g | Fat: 20g | Saturated Fat: 7g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 24mg | Sodium: 1199mg | Potassium: 526mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 9g | Vitamin A: 608IU | Vitamin C: 22mg | Calcium: 205mg | Iron: 3mg