Grown Up Tomato Soup and Grilled Cheese

tomato soup and grilled cheese

As many of you, I ate my share of tomato soup and grilled cheese sandwiches growing up – one of my favorite meals as a child.

Campbell’s Tomato Soup was my soup of choice.  Except for that period of time when I was two years old and the ONLY food I would eat was Campbell’s Turkey Vegetable Soup, undiluted – yes, right out of the can.  To this day I don’t understand how my mother even discovered that it was the only food I would eat – desperation maybe, trying to find something her picky child would eat!  Mom??

She was reassured by the doctor that I would survive and as long as I was healthy not to worry – guess I turned out o.k.

With all those cold Wisconsin winters I endured as a kid tomato soup and grilled cheese was a frequent lunch and sometimes even dinner at our house.

Now that I am older and wiser and not quite as picky of an eater (o.k. I still do have some food issues!) I still love tomato soup and grilled cheese – just a more sophisticated version.

Remember all those tomatoes  I am being overrun with? This week, in addition to a few other tomato dishes that I’ll share next week,  I made tomato soup – Fresh Tomato and Herb Soup.  This is actually one of the very first recipes I shared when I began my blog a year ago.  Since it is one of my favorites I figured it was worthy of a repeat and the first time I posted it I didn’t include a photo.

To make the soup even a little bit more grown up I love to top it with Gorgonzola cheese and pine nuts

Tessa and I enjoyed the soup for dinner last night (Jim was out of town, but I saved him some leftovers).  I made our grown up version of grilled cheese too – no plastic wrapped squares of American cheese and white bread like when I was a kid.  I used cheddar, swiss and provolone and then used asiago cheese focaccia bread from Safeway for the 4th cheese and cooked them on the panini grill – aren’t I sophisticated!

A perfect combination!

tomato soup and herb soup - Page 161

Grown Up Tomato Soup and Grilled Cheese


  • 1/4 C olive oil
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1 shallots, minced
  • 4 C of vine-ripened tomatoes, diced
  • 1/4 C chopped fresh flat leaf parsley
  • 4 C tomato juice
  • 1/4 C chopped fresh basil
  • 1/2 C sliced green onions
  • 1/2 C cream
  • salt and pepper to taste


  • Heat the olive oil in a heavy pan over medium heat.
  • Stir in the garlic and shallots.
  • Cover and cook for about 8 minutes or until the shallots are tender and opaque.
  • Stir in the diced tomatoes, parsley and tomato juice.
  • Simmer the soup for about 20 minutes, stirring occasionally
  • Add the basil and green onions, and simmer for about 10 minutes.
  • Puree the soup in a food processor or blender (let it cool first to avoid an explosion!)
  • Pour the pureed soup back into the pan.
  • Add the heavy cream and season to taste with salt and pepper.
  • Garnish with Gorgonzola cheese and pine nuts


  1. Dawn says

    I also ate a ton of tomato soup and grilled cheese (toasted cheese as we called it) when I was a kid. It must have been popular at the time. Growing up on a farm, we grew and canned tomatoes every summer, so my mom made homemade while I secretly pined for Campbells.

  2. Tamara Reber says

    Thanks, Leigh Anne for these wonderful, nostalgic recipes. I too grew up on Campbell’s Soup. . . .This week a friend had me over for a light dinner. I was so pleased to see she had made grilled cheese sandwiches and tomato soup out of a can. YUM! YUM! Our Grandma Jane made the best homemade tomato soup…Oh, the memories. It would have been her BD this past week–what a super cook she was!

  3. Mary Anne Best says

    I didn’t just feed you cold soup. Did you forget the cold hotdogs you ate every morning for breakfast!!

  4. says

    Mary Anne Best »

    Mom – no I didn’t forget I just thought I wouldn’t reveal all our family secrets at one time – LOL!!! You have always been a wonderful cook mom but you just ended up with a crazy eater for a child, glad I grew out of that cold soup and cold hot dog phase so I could appreciate your good cooking.

  5. Sylvia says

    Too cute! I love the comments between you and your mom. I too was raised on toasted cheese sandwiches but no tomato soup of any kind. I did take coconut sandwiches or avocado sandwiches or cheese sandwiches to school on homemade brown (whole wheat)bread which had been baked in a large tomato juice can and which I tried to hide as I ate lunch every day in the cafeteria while other kids ate hot lunches or wonderful bean burritos (and which I longed for). I discovered your web page thru my daughter Missy (fairychild)and I will be making your recipes. Of course I always have to improvise. Thank you for sharing. Missy’s Mom, Sylvia


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