We all have our go-to recipes, the ones where we know we’re likely to have pretty much everything we need already in the house, and a tasty meal can almost be made on autopilot. This is one of those soups. Don’t be fooled by the name: it’s very, very tasty!

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A bowl of simple soup served with two slices of garlic bread. Chunks of potato, carrot and green pepper can be seen against a tomatoey liquid base.
Yield: 4

Simple soup

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 40 minutes
Total Time: 50 minutes

A simple soup recipe with a hint of sunshine from the fresh basil, this will feed 4 people for lunch, or 6 as a starter.


  • 4tbsp olive oil
  • 2 onions, chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 4 potatoes, diced
  • 2 carrots, chopped
  • 1 green pepper, cored, deseeded and chopped
  • 400g tin of chopped tomatoes
  • 1 tbsp tomato puree
  • 1 litre vegetable stock
  • 80g mushrooms, chopped
  • 4tbsp fresh basil, chopped (or 1tbsp dried)
  • Salt and pepper to taste


  1. Heat the olive oil in a large saucepan and cook the chopped onions and crushed garlic until soft.
  2. Add the potatoes, carrots, green pepper and the tin of tomatoes to the pan, and cook for a few minutes, stirring regularly. If you're using dried basil instead of fresh, add this at the same time as the potatoes and carrots.
  3. Add the tomato purée and stock. Bring to the boil then simmer until all veg are cooked - 25-30 minutes depending on how finely you've diced the vegetables.
  4. Remove from the cooker and whizz with hand blender for a very short time to leave the veg with some definition. If you prefer your soups more chunky, you can skip this step.
  5. Return the pan to the heat and add the chopped mushrooms and fresh basil. Heat gently for a few minutes until the mushrooms are cooked, stirring occasionally.
  6. Serve with a sprinkling of grated cheese. It's also delicious with garlic bread.


While packing plenty of flavour, this soup really is very simple to make. If you want to dress it up as a starter, cook it in a casserole you can pop under the grill. When you're ready to serve, place slices of garlic bread on top, sprinkle with cheese - a mix of mozzarella and cheddar is perfect - and grill until the cheese is bubbling and starting to colour before bringing to the table.

Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:


Amount Per Serving: Calories: 361Total Fat: 14gSaturated Fat: 2gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 12gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 818mgCarbohydrates: 54gFiber: 7gSugar: 11gProtein: 8g

Nutritional data provided is a guideline and will vary according to precise ingredients used and how large your home-made portions are.