We may think eating tomato soup is a no-brainer healthy choice, but surprisingly there can be hidden calories and fat. Of course, you are still getting all of the nutritional benefits of tomatoes, such as high concentrations of the antioxidants lycopene, beta-carotene, vitamin A and vitamin C. But you also may be treating your body to copious amounts of butter, sugar, and cream, which we all know means added calories and grams of fat.
This quick and easy, low-fat, low-calorie tomato and basil soup eliminates the fats and focusses on the stars of the show. It is a perfect soup for all seasons--in the summer you can substitute fresh chopped tomatoes for all or some of the canned (you may have to add some extra broth to make up for the lost liquid). And this is a great way to use the fragrant basil prevalent in the markets or your own garden. In the wintertime, this soup is warm and comforting, and an ideal companion to grilled cheese. For a vegetarian version, substitute vegetable broth.
- 2 tsp. olive oil
- 1 small onion, finely chopped
- 1 stalk celery, finely chopped
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 1/2 cup chopped fresh basil
- 1 tsp. fresh thyme leaves
- Two 14-oz. cans (or one 28-ounce can) diced tomatoes (including their juices)
- 2 cups nonfat, low-sodium chicken broth
- In a medium pot, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add onions, celery, and garlic and gently sauté until softened, about 5 minutes. Watch carefully to make sure garlic doesn't brown.
- Add basil, thyme, and tomatoes, followed by the chicken broth. Bring almost to a boil.
- Reduce heat and simmer for 10 minutes. Remove from heat and allow to cool a little.
- Use an immersion blender to puree the soup. Alternatively, you can puree in batches in a food processor or blender.
Makes 6 cups
Per cup: Calories 58, Calories from Fat 16, Total Fat 1.8g (Sat 0.2g), Cholesterol 0mg, Sodium 136mg, Carbohydrate 8.2g, Fiber 2.2g, Protein 2.3g