Pappa Al Pomodoro

Pappa Al Pomodoro (Gluten-free)

This recipe for pappa al pomodoro is a great dinner idea to keep in mind during the chilly, activity-packed months ahead. Relying primarily on pantry and fridge staples — canned tomatoes, chicken stock (or vegetable for a vegetarian version) , carrots, onions, garlic, etc. — and store bought gluten-free bread, this hearty soup comes together quickly with little advance planning and has the added benefit of being chockfull of veggies! For a subtle variation, feel free to use garlic confit-infused oil wherever olive oil is called for — it’s an especially nice touch when used for the basil croutons.

Pappa Al Pomodoro

(adapted from Barefoot Contessa Back to Basics)

Preparation Time: 15 minutes

Cooking Time (Soup): 1 hour

Baking Time (Croutons): 15 minutes

Serves: 2 as a main course, 4 as a starter

This soup can easily be doubled — make sure to increase the pot size as well (8- or 12-quart). Leftovers are tasty cold or reheated the next day, though the soup tends to get thicker, more stew-like the longer it sits (keep croutons separate in a zip top bag at room temp)!



  • 2 tablespoons (28 grams) olive oil
  • 1 1/2 cups (170 grams, about 1 medium) finely chopped yellow onion
  • 3/4 cup (85 grams, about 1/2 bulb) finely chopped fennel
  • 3/4 cup (85 grams, about 2 medium) finely chopped, peeled carrots
  • 1 packed tablespoon (14 grams) minced garlic
  • 1 Udi’s gluten-free hamburger bun (preferably whole grain), cut into 3/4″ – 1″ cubes
  • 1/4 cup (57 grams) dry red wine
  • 2 cups (454 grams) chicken stock or vegetable stock
  • 28 ounce can whole peeled plum tomatoes, using hands, crush tomatoes into very small pieces
  • 1 teaspoon Kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes (optional)
  • 1/2 cup lightly packed fresh basil leaves, chiffonade
  • 1/4 cup (28 grams) grated Parmesan, plus more for serving

Basil Croutons:

  • 1 Udi’s gluten-free hamburger bun (preferably whole grain), cut into 3/4″ cubes
  • 2 tablespoons (28 grams) olive oil
  • 12 large (about 1/2 cup lightly packed) fresh basil leaves


Make Soup:

In a 4-quart saucepan over medium heat, warm 2 tablespoons olive oil just until it begins to smoke. Stir in onion, fennel, carrots and garlic; cook, stirring occasionally, until vegetables are softened (about 5 minutes). Stir in bread cubes and cook for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Reduce heat to low, deglaze pan with wine. Stir in hand-crushed tomatoes through chiffonade basil leaves. Increase heat to medium and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to a low and cook uncovered, stirring occasionally, for 45 minutes.

Prepare Croutons:

While soup cooks, prepare croutons. Preheat oven to 350°F and line a large sheet pan with parchment paper. In a small bowl, toss bread cubes with oil until evenly coated; toss in basil leaves to coat. Arrange cubes in a single layer on prepared sheet pan, place basil leaves over top. Place in preheated oven and bake for 10 minutes, toss (don’t worry about rearranging basil leaves), and bake 5 minutes more or until cubes are golden brown and basil is crisp. Cool on pan until ready to use.


Once soup has cooked, remove from heat and stir in 1/4 cup Parmesan. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Serve soup in bowls topped with basil croutons and additional Parmesan.

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