It happened. The first morning when I stepped outside, then turned promptly right back around to grab my sweater. Fall has arrived and with it, the immediate need for Instant Pot Tomato Soup!
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This easy, healthy soup recipe uses pantry ingredients, so you can whip it up anytime you need a wholesome, satisfying meal.
It’s warm and comforting, but features vibrant flavors—the perfect soup to ease us into the changing seasons.
While I use my Instant Pot year-round (this is the 6-quart model I have had for years), I especially adore it for soups.
A pressure cooker like the Instant Pot imparts a slow-simmered flavor in a fraction of the time. It’s ideal for days when you don’t have time to wait around on the slow cooker (save those days for Crock Pot Tomato Soup or this Roasted Carrot Soup).
Better yet, this soup leaves you with just one pot to wash in the end.
A few ingredients give this easy tomato soup layers of complexity that make it taste like you spent hours preparing it, instead of minutes.
Your secret is safe with me. Spend that extra time making a grilled cheese (I heartily suggest one of the three stellar Grown-Up Grilled Cheeses from The Well Plated Cookbook) to go with your soup.
Canned vs. Fresh Tomatoes for Tomato Soup
The tomatoes in this soup taste robust, as if you’ve made Instant Pot tomato soup with fresh tomatoes, but really it’s an easy combination of canned tomatoes and sun-dried tomatoes.
Unless it is the height of summer and I’m making gazpacho, I prefer to use canned tomatoes in my tomato soup.
- Using canned tomatoes makes this soup accessible any time of year. Keep the ingredients on hand in your pantry for fresh, healthy meals on demand.
- Canned tomatoes are preserved at the height of freshness, so you can always count on their flavor being on-point.
- Canned tomatoes are already peeled and ready to use, making them incredibly EASY to incorporate into recipes.
Since tomatoes form the base of this soup, their quality is most important. My favorite are DeLallo San Marzano Style Crushed Tomatoes. They’re harvested in Italy, have a bright, pure flavor, and their texture is plump and meaty, not grainy or watery.
Although these tomatoes come from a can, they actually taste better than fresh tomatoes I can find most of the year here (and when I do find good fresh tomatoes, I save them for enjoying raw). I adore these San Marzanos for soups and sauces, when the flavor of the tomato is front and center.
Secrets to the Best Instant Pot Tomato Soup
In addition to using good-quality canned tomatoes, my other tips for making the best tomato soup ever are:
- Sun-Dried Tomatoes. With their intense flavor, this sneaky shortcut adds so much depth, you’ll think you are eating Instant Pot roasted tomato soup, but you get to skip the whole fuss of actually roasting the tomatoes. I prefer dry-packed versus oil-packed sun-dried tomatoes here (the soup doesn’t need the extra oil). The dried tomatoes rehydrate right in the Instant Pot while the soup cooks.
- Carrots. You can’t taste them, but they add body to the soup and help make it taste thick, like a creamy tomato soup but without the cream. Their natural sweetness helps balance the acidity of the tomatoes, and you’ll sneak in more veggies by adding carrots too.
- Honey. One tiny teaspoon of honey (or granulated sugar if you want to keep this Instant Pot tomato soup vegan) performs the all-important task of balancing the tomato acidity. Don’t skip it, or something about your soup will taste not quite right.
- Herbs. I toss a handful of thyme springs right into the Instant Pot with the other ingredients, a tip I picked up making this Instant Pot Lentil Soup. The leaves fall off during cooking, then it’s easy to remove the stems. Fresh herbs are nearly impossible to beat, but if you need to swap dried here, I have a suggested amount in the recipe below.
- Olive Oil. A finishing drizzle of olive oil gives the soup a final touch of vavoom. Use the good stuff here, since you’ll be able to taste and appreciate it.
How to Make Tomato Soup in an Instant Pot
- Saute the onion and carrots in oil in the Instant Pot. Add the garlic.
- Pour in the broth, and scrape the bottom of the pot. This helps prevent the dreaded “burn” warning.
- Stir in the remaining ingredients. Seal the Instant Pot, then cook on HIGH for 15 minutes, then let naturally release for 10 minutes. Open the lid, and remove the thyme stems.
- Puree the soup until smooth. Serve with fresh herbs, olive oil, and croutons. ENJOY!
What to Serve with Instant Pot Tomato Soup
- Sandwich. Nothing says comfort quite like a grilled cheese and tomato soup combo. This Eggplant and Ricotta Grilled Cheese would be delicious with the soup.
- Salad. Pair this soup with a light and fresh salad like this easy Arugula Salad or Caesar Shaved Brussels Sprouts Salad with Crispy Chickpea Croutons.
- Bread. Rosemary Olive Oil Bread and Caramelized Onion and Olive Focaccia are begging to be dunked into a bowl of tomato soup.
- To Store. Refrigerate leftovers in an airtight storage container for up to 5 days.
- To Reheat. Rewarm soup in a Dutch oven on the stovetop over medium-low heat, stirring occasionally until hot. Or, rewarm gently in the microwave.
- To Freeze. Freeze tomato soup in an airtight freezer-safe storage container for up to 3 months. Let thaw overnight in the refrigerator before reheating.
More Healthy Soup Recipes
- Crockpot Tortellini Soup
- Broccoli Cauliflower Soup
- Instant Pot Potato Soup
- Vegan Pumpkin Soup
- Instant Pot French Onion Soup
May this delicious, easy, and ultimately cozy twice-the-tomato soup be the start of many warm bowls of comfort to come. If you try this recipe, I’d love to hear what you think. Please take a moment to leave a comment below. It makes my day and is so helpful to others too!
Instant Pot Tomato Soup
- 2 tablespoons good quality extra-virgin olive oil plus additional for serving
- 1 large yellow onion chopped
- 2 carrots scrubbed and diced
- 3 cloves minced garlic about 1 tablespoon
- 1 cup low sodium vegetable broth or chicken broth
- 1 28-ounce can crushed tomatoes
- ¼ cup dry-packed sun-dried tomatoes
- 1 teaspoon honey
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
- 4 springs fresh thyme or ½ teaspoon dried thyme leaves
- Chopped fresh basil or parsley
- Set your Instant Pot to SAUTE. Add the oil, onion, and carrot. Saute until the onion is tender and beginning to turn translucent, about 3 minutes.
- Add the garlic and cook 30 additional seconds, just until fragrant.
- Splash in the vegetable broth. With a wooden spoon or rubber spatula, scrape along the bottom of the pot to remove any stuck on bits of food.
- Stir in the crushed tomatoes, sun-dried tomatoes, honey, salt, and pepper. Place the thyme on top (if using dried, stir it in).
- Close and seal the Instant Pot. Set to cook on HIGH pressure (Manual/Pressure Cook) for 15 minutes. (The pot will take about 10 minutes to come to pressure, then the timer will start). Once the 15 minutes timer has elapsed, let the pressure release naturally for 10 minutes. Carefully vent to release any remaining pressure and open the lid. Remove the thyme stems.
- With an immersion blender, puree the soup until smooth and creamy. You also can carefully transfer the soup to a blender or food processor in batches, and blend it that way. Be careful not to overfill your blender, as hot soup can easily splatter.
- Return any pureed soup to the Instant Pot (if needed). Stir to recombine and adjust the seasonings to taste.
- Ladle into serving bowls and sprinkle with fresh basil. Serve hot with a light drizzle of olive oil and crotons on top.
- TO STORE: Refrigerate leftovers in an airtight storage container for up to 5 days.
- TO REHEAT: Rewarm soup in a Dutch oven on the stovetop over medium-low heat, stirring occasionally until hot. Or, rewarm gently in the microwave.
- TO FREEZE: Freeze tomato soup in an airtight freezer-safe storage container for up to 3 months. Let thaw overnight in the refrigerator before reheating.
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