tomato basil soup with orzo

5 from 9 votes
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes
Servings: 6


  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 2 carrots chopped (about ½ cup)
  • 2 stalks celery chopped (about ½ cup)
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon flour
  • 2 cups low-sodium chicken broth
  • 2 (28 oz.) cans San Marzano tomatoes
  • ½ cup pesto
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon granulated sugar (optional)
  • 1 cup orzo
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • kosher salt and cracked black pepper
  • grated Parmesan cheese, for garnish
  • torn fresh basil, for garnish


  • In a large pot over medium-high heat, melt 4 tablespoons butter. Add 1 chopped onion, ½ cup chopped carrots, ½ cup chopped celery, and 3 cloves minced garlic. Sauté until veggies become soft and fragrant. Sprinkle in 1 tablespoon flour and cook for 1 more minute.
  • Whisk in 2 cups broth followed by 2 (28 oz.) cans tomatoes; bring to a boil. Stir in ½ cup pesto, 1 teaspoon oregano, and 1 teaspoon sugar; reduce heat to a simmer for 20 minutes.
  • In the meantime, cook 1 cup orzo according to package directions. Drain and set aside.
  • Remove soup from heat. Working carefully, blend soup until smooth using an immersion blender. Or working in batches, blend the soup in a blender until smooth.
  • Return soup to pot and whisk in 1 cup heavy cream and season with salt and pepper to taste.
  • Garnish with grated Parmesan and fresh basil. Finish with a few spoonfuls of the cooked orzo on top of each bowl to be stirred into the soup.


  • Serve with grilled cheese sandwiches and a crisp green side salad to complete this meal.


  • Protein: Add crisped and crumbled bacon as garnish. Start by crisping bacon in pot first, remove bacon with a slotted spoon to a paper towel lined plate. If necessary, drain excess fat before adding butter and mirepoix.
  • Vegetarian: Replace chicken stock with vegetable stock.
  • Gluten-Free: Use gluten-free orzo or top with cooked rice or quinoa. Replace flour with gluten-free flour such as Cup 4 Cup.
  • Onion, carrot, celery: Use the Trader Joe’s mirepoix mix.


  • Chop mirepoix up to 3 days in advance; store in an airtight container in the refrigerator.
  • Soup can be made in advance, cooled completely, and frozen in a freezer bag or an airtight container for up to 3 weeks.


Calories: 67kcal | Carbohydrates: 0.01g | Protein: 0.1g | Fat: 8g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.3g | Monounsaturated Fat: 2g | Trans Fat: 0.3g | Cholesterol: 20mg | Sodium: 1mg | Potassium: 2mg | Sugar: 0.01g | Vitamin A: 233IU | Calcium: 2mg | Iron: 0.002mg