Behold: The creamiest, cheesiest, coziest homemade vegan tomato soup! It’s an easy and healthy dinner recipe that can be made from either fresh tomatoes or canned tomatoes. It’s freezer-friendly, perfect for meal prep, and has a rich creamy texture. You’ll be shocked it’s dairy-free!
I loooove a good creamy, cheesy tomato soup, and back in the vegetarian days of my early 20s, it was basically a food group to me.
When I went vegan in 2014, I realized all my favorite tomato soups had one thing in common: They were loaded with cream and parmesan (go figure!). So, I’ve always wanted to make the most kickass dairy-free version.
This is that recipe. And friends, it’s a good one.
It’s full of flavor with a rich texture and that notable tangy parmesan zip, brought to you by our favorite game-changing ingredient: miso paste!
This vegan tomato soup was created back in March of this year, at the start of the stay-at-home order here in Philadelphia. We made it with whatever was in our kitchen that week, and it was so good we made it about 50 times again after that!
I meant to post the recipe back then, but you know…2020 and all. So, when I saw this gem sitting in our drafts folder, I thought it would be great for tomato season.
In fact, I asked T if he thought this vegan tomato soup could be made with fresh tomatoes, and it turns out it totally can! So, we’ve included instructions for both below.
But it’s also pantry staple friendly which is everything heading into the fall/winter. Can you tell I’m over summer already?!
I have been dreaming about that cozy weather since the heat waves started in July. But until that gets here, this soup and a high blast of AC is just going to have to do!
Vegan Tomato Soup Ingredients
Use whatever brand of vegan butter you like. There are SO many awesome ones out there these days. Our favorite vegan butter right now is the Plant Butter sticks from Country Crock. They are EVERYWHERE too, so check your local grocery store!
Vegan Butter Substitutions:
I like to add some carrots to my vegan tomato soup to get the extra veggies, and it’s a great trick for those veggie-phobic kids or partners out there. It also adds a subtle sweetness to the soup that T and I really enjoy. You can also try this trick with red bell pepper!
Yellow onion preferably, but white would work. Red onion, on the other hand, would not!
To bring all the flavors together!
We used dried basil when we originally created this recipe, but feel free to replace it with fresh minced basil! That’s what we’re doing now that summer is here. When subbing fresh basil, I double the amount at least.
Ground Black Pepper:
There can never be enough ground black pepper in my soup! We add some directly to the soup and a healthy pinch to the bowl before serving.
Vegan Chicken Bouillon Powder:
We used our homemade bouillon powder which is a total game-changer when it comes to flavoring soups like this. If you have a store-bought bouillon you prefer to use, go for it. To substitute bouillon cubes, use 3 for this recipe. If you’re using bouillon paste, use 3 Tbsp.
We used canned diced tomatoes when we originally made this vegan tomato soup recipe, but if you have some fresh tomatoes you want to use up, you can! You will just need to remove the skins and seed your tomatoes first.
How to Make Vegan Tomato Soup with Fresh Tomatoes:
For best results, T suggests using deep red tomatoes like Roma, Redvine, Plum and the like, but ultimately, any tomato should work.
Use a small paring knife to remove the stem and slice an X in the bottom of each tomato. Add them to a pot of boiling water for just 1 minute.
Then, carefully remove each tomato with a slotted spoon and dip them in an ice bath. You only have to dip each tomato in the ice bath for a few seconds, and the skin will start to peel off like a charm.
From there, just scoop out the seeds, dice up your tomatoes and measure them out. We’ve found the 2 28-oz cans we use here can be replaced with 6 cups of diced tomatoes. And if you don’t have that many tomatoes but still want to try to use them up, try using ½ fresh tomatoes and ½ canned diced tomatoes.
Keep in mind though, if you’re using fresh tomatoes, you may need to add more liquid to your soup to thin it out. If you get to the end and notice your soup is a little on the thick side, that’s probably why.
I definitely recommend the canned version of this stuff! I tried to make homemade tomato paste once. It was weird.
Dairy-Free Heavy Cream:
Make sure the one you buy is both unsweetened and unflavored (leave the vanilla flavored coffee creamers out of this!). We LOVE the new dairy-free whipping cream from Silk or the non-dairy half n half by Califia.
Pantry Options for Vegan Heavy Cream:
If you’re looking for a pantry option for vegan cream, you can use canned full-fat coconut milk. The flavor will be a bit different though.
If you want something with more of a neutral flavor, try making your own dairy-free cream by blending ½ cup raw cashews with 1 cup of hot water in a Vitamix or other high-powered blender until smooth. If you can’t do cashews, sunflower seeds would work too!
White Miso Paste:
Miso paste is what adds that tangy aged parmesan taste to your tomato soup! This stuff is revolutionary when it comes to reaching optimal vegan cheesy-ness. It’s optional if you’re not after that taste.
Miso Paste Substitutions:
How to Make Vegan Tomato Soup
Step One: Prep
I like to be prepared with my veggies chopped ahead of time. (AKA – I ask T to chop them for me because I am admittedly awful at it.)
But if you’re like me and struggle with the knife skills, don’t worry. Your veggies don’t have to be perfectly chopped for this recipe because we’ll be blending the whole thing with an immersion blender!
Step Two: Sauté The Veggies
You’ll start by melting the vegan butter in a large soup pot on medium high heat.
Add the chopped carrots, onion, and garlic and stir everything until it’s nice and coated. Then, sprinkle in the salt, dried basil, and ground black pepper and stir again. Sauté for 5-7 minutes or until the onions and garlic are slightly browned and fragrant.
Step Three: Boil + Blend
From here, you’ll add the water, bouillon, diced tomatoes, and tomato paste. Stir, cover the pot, and bring the whole mixture to a boil.
Once it’s boiling, turn your heat to low and keep it covered while you let everything simmer for about 10 minutes. During these 10 minutes, you want to be sure you’re stopping to stir the soup often. And be sure to scrape the bottom really well when you stir; that’s super important!
Finally, you’ll remove the soup from heat and use an immersion blender to puree everything.
If you don’t have an immersion blender (They’re actually SUPER handy; we use our immersion blender almost every day!), you can also puree this soup in batches in your blender. BE CAREFUL if you are new to blending hot liquids though. Use small batches depending on the size of your blender, and blend on low.
Step Four: Let the flavors mingle.
To finish the soup, you’ll stir in the dairy-free cream and the optional miso paste. Cover and let it sit for 5-10 minutes for the flavors to mingle.
That step is KEY to get the most flavor out of your soup, my friends. But, it is always the hardest part! And understandably so, especially because this soup (and by proxy, your entire house) is going to smell mouth-wateringly AWESOME.
How to Serve Vegan Tomato Soup
Serve this vegan tomato soup hot with vegan grilled cheese! We like using Violife cheddar slices for the best classic vegan grilled cheese.
Or, for an even easier option that can bake while the soup cooks, serve this vegan tomato soup over or alongside a big baked potato!
Store your vegan tomato soup leftovers in an air-tight container in the fridge for up to a week or the freezer for up to 6 weeks. This soup freezes SO well, making it perfect for meal prep!
More Vegan Soup Recipes:
When you make this recipe, let us know! Rate the recipe and leave a comment below or tag us in your cozy soup photos on Instagram. If you’re not already following along, we’re @theplantpowercouple with the “the”.
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We hope you enjoy this soup recipe as much as we enjoyed creating it. And we REALLY hope it helps to bring you some warmth and cozy comfort no matter what season it is. Until next time!
Behold: The creamiest, cheesiest, coziest homemade vegan tomato soup! It's an easy and healthy dinner recipe that can be made from either fresh tomatoes or canned tomatoes. It’s freezer-friendly, perfect for meal prep, and has a rich creamy texture. You'll be shocked it’s dairy-free!
40 minTotal Time:
- 2 Tbsp vegan butter or olive oil (see notes for oil-free)
- 4 large carrots, diced
- 1 small onion, diced
- 5 large cloves garlic, minced
- 1 tsp sea salt
- 1 tsp dried basil
- 1/2 tsp ground black pepper
- 4 cups water
- 1/4 cup vegan chicken bouillon powder
- 2 28-oz cans diced tomatoes (see notes for how to use fresh tomatoes)
- 1 6-oz can tomato paste
- 1 cup dairy-free heavy cream (unsweetened, see notes for brand and substitute suggestions)
- 2 - 3 Tbsp white miso paste (optional)
- Melt the butter in a large pot on medium high heat. Add the carrots, onion, and garlic and stir to coat. Sprinkle in the salt, basil, and black pepper and stir again. Saute for 5-7 minutes or until the onions and garlic are slightly browned and fragrant.
- Add the water, bouillon, diced tomatoes, and tomato paste. Stir, cover, and bring the mixture to a boil. Once boiling, turn to low and cook - covered - for 10 minutes, stopping to stir and scrape the bottom often.
- Remove the soup from heat and use an immersion blender to puree. Stir in the dairy-free cream and miso paste. Cover and let it sit for 5-10 minutes for the flavors to mingle.
- Serve hot with vegan grilled cheese or a big baked potato! Leftovers will keep in the fridge for a week or the freezer for up to 6 weeks. Enjoy!
FOR OIL-FREE: To keep this oil-free, saute the veg in some vegetable broth rather than the vegan butter or olive oil.
FOR FRESH TOMATOES: For best results, T suggests using deep red tomatoes like Roma, Redvine, Plum and the like, but ultimately, any tomato should work. You will need to peel and seed your tomatoes first: (1) Remove the stems and slice Xs in the bottom of each tomato and add them to a large pot of boiling water for just 1 minute. (2) Carefully remove each tomato with a slotted spoon and dip them in an ice bath for a second or two. The skin should then peel right off. (3) Use a spoon to scoop out the seeds, dice them, and measure them out. The two 28-oz cans we use in this recipe can be replaced with 6 cups of diced fresh tomatoes. You can also use 3 cups of diced fresh tomatoes and one 28-oz can of tomatoes. Keep in mind though, if you’re using fresh tomatoes, you may need to add more liquid to your soup to thin it out at the end.
FOR THE VEGAN HEAVY CREAM: We LOVE the new dairy-free whipping cream from Silk brand or the non-dairy half n half by Califia brand. You can also use full-fat canned coconut milk OR blend ½ cup raw cashews or sunflower seeds with 1 cup hot water until smooth.