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spiced tomato soup in bowls
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5 from 2 votes

Spiced Tomato Soup

This spiced tomato soup is made with warming Indian spices, canned tomatoes, and freshly grated Parmesan. Make this soup in the Instant Pot or on the stovetop!
Prep Time5 mins
Cook Time25 mins
Total Time30 mins
Course: Main Course, Soup
Cuisine: American, Indian
Diet: Vegetarian
Servings: 4 people
Calories: 164kcal

Ingredients

  • 2 TB olive oil
  • 1/2 tsp brown or black mustard seeds Use 1 tsp for a spicier soup
  • 2 shallots, thinly sliced Or use 1 onion
  • 2 tsp cumin
  • 1 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper (optional) Omit for less heat
  • 2 cups water
  • 28 oz can whole tomatoes (San Marzano prefered for a thicker soup) Or swap 28oz diced or crushed tomatoes
  • 2 oz Parmesan, freshly grated
  • 1 cup milk or cream (optional)

Instructions

Instant Pot Directions:

  • Add olive oil to the Instant Pot. Press the sauté button. Press the adjustable temperature setting until it reads more.
    Add the mustard seeds to the pot, and use a wooden spoon to push the seeds into the oil. (The oil will probably pool around the edges of the pot.)
    Heat Mustard Seeds Until They Pop
  • Add the shallots, cumin, salt, and cayenne.
    Sauté 2-3 minutes until shallots begin to brown.
    Cook Shallots with Spices
  • Slowly pour in the 2 cups of water. As you pour, scrape the bottom of the pot to scrape up any bits of food stuck to the pot (to prevent the burn warning).
    Bring to a simmer and cook 1-2 minutes.
    Add Water + Simmer
  • Add tomatoes.
    Press the cancel button.
    Set Instant Pot to pressure cook/manualhigh pressure. Set the cook time for 10 minutes. The Instant Pot will take about 6 minutes to come to pressure, depending on how hot the soup is, and then will start counting down the cook time.
    The Instant Pot will beep to let you know the cook time has finished. Carefully quick-release the remaining pressure by using the handle of a long spoon (I use a wooden spoon) to turn the steam valve to venting.
    Tip: Quick release can be messy– the vent will shoot some liquids out with the steam. Lay a kitchen towel over the top to keep your kitchen clean.
    Add Tomatoes
  • Use an immersion blender to blend the soup, or ladle into a blender basin (working in batches if needed), and blend until smooth.
    Tip: A blender will make a smoother soup than an immersion blender.
    Optionally, for the smoothest soup, strain the soup through a mesh sieve to remove the mustard seeds. If you used a high-powered blender to blend the soup, this step is unnecessary.
    Blend the Soup
  • Add the Parmesan to the soup, and stir to melt the cheese. Taste the soup, and add more salt if desired. If the soup is too spicy (or if you want a creamier soup), add milk or cream.
    Leftovers / Make Ahead:
    Store soup in the fridge for up to 3-4 days, and warm before serving.
    If no milk or cream is added, the soup can be frozen for up to 6 months. (Add milk or cream when reheating, if desired)
    Add Cheese to Tomato Soup + Stir

Stovetop Directions:

  • Heat oil in a large pot over medium-high heat.  Add mustard seeds, and heat until they begin to pop.
    Lower heat to medium, and add shallots, cumin, salt, and cayenne.  Sauté 2-3 minutes until shallots begin to brown, then add 2 cups water. Simmer 1-2 minutes.
    Add tomatoes and Parmesan. Bring back to a simmer, and then lower heat to medium.  Simmer until about 15 minutes. 
  • Ladle soup into a blender (or immersion blender cup), and blend until smooth.  Pour soup back into the pot.
    Tip: A blender will make a smoother soup than an immersion blender.
    Optionally, for the smoothest soup, strain the soup through a mesh sieve to remove the mustard seeds. If you used a high-powered blender to blend the soup, this step is unnecessary.
  • Taste the soup. Add extra salt (if desired). If the soup is too spicy (or if you want a creamier soup), add milk or cream.
    Serve warm.
    Leftovers / Make Ahead:
    Store soup in the fridge for up to 3-4 days, and warm before serving.
    If no milk or cream is added, the soup can be frozen for up to 6 months. (Add milk or cream when reheating, if desired)

Notes

Yields approximately 5 cups soup.
Nutrition information does not include optional milk or cream.
Variations:
Use broth instead of water.  Omit the salt, and then add salt to taste at the end of the cook time.
Use yellow mustard seeds instead of brown.  Double the mustard seeds.  (Yellow seeds aren't as flavorful.)

Nutrition

Calories: 164kcal | Carbohydrates: 11g | Protein: 7g | Fat: 11g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Cholesterol: 10mg | Sodium: 1392mg | Potassium: 446mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 6g | Vitamin A: 408IU | Vitamin C: 19mg | Calcium: 247mg | Iron: 3mg