Easy Tomato Soup & Grilled Cheese Croutons

Easy Tomato Soup & Grilled Cheese Croutons
Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
40 min
4 - 6 servings

Recipe from “Barefoot Contessa Foolproof: Recipes You Can Trust”. Copyright (c) 2012 by Ina Garten. By Arrangement with Clarkson Potter, a division of Random House, Inc. for Food Network Magazine.




Tbsp good olive oil
cups yellow onions, chopped (2 onions)
Tbsp minced garlic (3 cloves)
cups chicken stock, preferably homemade
(28-oz) can crushed tomatoes, preferably San Marzano
large pinch saffron threads
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
cup orzo
cup heavy cream
Grilled Cheese Croutons (recipe follows)

Grilled Cheese Croutons

4 (½-inch-thick)
slices country white bread
Tbsp unsalted butter, melted
oz Gruyère cheese, grated


Step 1

In a large pot or Dutch oven such as Le Creuset, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the onions and cook over medium-low heat for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally, until golden brown. Add the garlic and cook for 1 more minute. Stir in the chicken stock, tomatoes, saffron, 1 tablespoon salt, and 1 teaspoon pepper. Bring the soup to a boil, then lower the heat and simmer for 15 minutes.

Step 2

Meanwhile, fill a medium pot with water, add 2 teaspoons salt, and bring to a boil. Add the orzo and cook for 7 minutes. (It will finish cooking in the soup.) Drain the orzo and add it to the soup. Stir in the cream, return the soup to a simmer, and cook for 10 more minutes, stirring frequently.

Step 3

Serve hot with Grilled Cheese Croutons scattered on top.

Step 4

Heat a panini grill. Place the four slices of bread on a cutting board and brush lightly with the melted butter, being sure to butter the corners. Turn the slices over and pile Gruyere on two of the slices. Place the remaining two slices of bread on top of the Gruyere, buttered sides up.

Step 5

Grill the sandwiches on the panini grill for about 5 minutes, until nicely browned. Place on a cutting board, allow to rest for 1 minute, and cut into 1-inch cubes. Yield: 4 to 6 servings

Step 6

Note: The Grilled Cheese Crouton recipe was halved for the taping of this episode.

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