tomato basil soup with orzo

5 from 7 votes
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 35 minutes
Total Time: 45 minutes
Servings: 6


  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 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 cans San Marzano stewed tomatoes 28 ounces each
  • ½ cup pesto
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon granulated sugar optional
  • 1 cup orzo for topping
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • parmesan cheese for garnish
  • fresh basil torn, for garnish


  • In a large pot, melt 4 tablespoons butter over medium-high heat. Add 1 chopped onion, ½ cup chopped carrots, ½ cup chopped celery, and 3 cloves garlic and sauté until veggies become soft and fragrant. Sprinkle in the flour and cook for 1 more minute.
  • Whisk in 2 cups chicken broth followed by 2 (28 oz.) cans San Marzano tomatoes and bring to a boil. Stir in ½ cup pesto, 1 teaspoon oregano, and 1 teaspoon sugar and reduce heat to a simmer; simmer soup 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 cheese, 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.


  • Protein: Add crisped and crumbled bacon to the top.
  • Onion, carrot, celery: Use the Trader Joe’s mirepoix mix.
  • Orzo: Swap for cooked pearled couscous.


  • Chop onion, carrots, and celery in advance and store in an airtight container for up to 3 days.
  • 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