Tomato Dumpling Soup

This cozy tomato dumpling soup is filled with dumplings made of ricotta and Parmesan cheese and flavored with fresh basil.

Tomato dumpling soup

I first saw this soup recipe in a cookbook from my mother-in-law. The thought of a tomato dumpling soup sounded so intriguing that it stuck in my mind. Luckily, we have fresh local basil at the Indy Winter Farmer’s Market in the middle of winter, thanks to the wonders of hydroponic growing. Alex and I decided to use an upcoming dinner with dear friends as an excuse to pair local winter basil with a warming soup, and it was a huge hit. Keep reading for the tomato dumpling soup recipe!

Related: Tuscan Soup with White Beans

Tomato basil soup with dumplings

How to make tomato dumpling soup

What’s not to love about dumplings? They’re homey, comforting, and in the middle of savory tomato basil goodness, they’re like a deconstructed sort of pizza. The recipe is easy enough for a weeknight, but delicious enough to work for a special dinner. Even if you’re not able to find local basil at this season where you live, this one might even be worth a little splurge.

Making tomato dumpling soup is truly simple: just saute minced garlic, then add tomatoes, veggie broth, and chopped basil and simmer. The main event, though, is those dumplings. Man, these dumplings are SO GOOD. They’re made simply with flour, ricotta cheese, Parmesan cheese, and egg. If you’d like, you can sub in up to 1/3 of that flour with whole wheat flour for a heartier taste. After you mix together the dumpling dough, you plop them into the soup to cook. It’s so fun to watch them turn from blobs of dough into delicious doughy dumplings! If you’re looking for a cozy tomato soup, these dumplings seriously take it to a new level.

Related: Try using our Homemade Vegetable Broth for this recipe!

Tomato gnoochi soup
Another favorite: Tomato Basil Gnocchi Soup

All the cozy tomato soups

Once you’ve made one delicious tomato dumpling soup, it’s hard not to want to make another! We’ve got several delicious and cozy soup recipes here, so here are a few variations on the theme:

  • Tomato Basil Gnocchi Soup: this soup is a similar concept to this tomato basil soup, but it uses store-bought gnocchi, basically little pasta dough-balls!
  • Tomato Artichoke Soup: one of our fan favorite deliciously cozy tomato soup recipes, this one features artichokes to give it a slight tang, and homemade garlic croutons.
  • Creamy Vegan Tomato Soup Recipe: another fan favorite, this one is made creamy using cashews and no dairy. We garnished it with little star-shaped toasts, which are perfect for kids!

Looking for more fast and easy dinner recipes?

Outside of this tomato dumpling soup, here a few more of our favorite fast and easy dinner recipes:

This recipe is…

This tomato dumpling soup recipe is vegetarian.

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Tomato Dumpling Soup

1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (7 votes, average: 4.43 out of 5)

  • Author: a Couple Cooks
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 20 minutes
  • Total Time: 30 minutes
  • Yield: 4 1x


This cozy tomato dumpling soup is filled with dumplings made of ricotta and Parmesan cheese and flavored with fresh basil. 


  • 4 garlic cloves
  • ½ cup basil leaves, chopped, plus additional for serving
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 pinch red pepper flakes
  • 28-ounce can crushed tomatoes
  • 3 cups vegetable broth
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt, divided
  • 3/4 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper, divided
  • 1 cup ricotta cheese
  • 1 cup Parmesan cheese, plus additional for serving
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 ⅓ cup all purpose flour


  1. Mince the garlic. Chop the basil leaves.
  2. In a large pot, add the olive oil and heat over medium heat. Add garlic and red pepper flakes; sauté about 1 minute, until just starting to brown. Add canned tomatoes and their liquid, vegetable broth, chopped basil, 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt and 1/4 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer about 7 to 8 minutes.
  3. Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, combine the ricotta cheese, the Parmesan cheese, eggs, flour, 1 teaspoon kosher salt, and 1/2 teaspoon fresh ground pepper. Stir until a dough forms. Roll the dumplings into small balls (about 48). After the soup has simmered, place the dumplings in the soup and cook until solid, 5 to 10 minutes.
  4. Thinly slice (chiffonade) a few extra basil leaves, and grate some Parmesan cheese. Serve the soup warm garnished with basil and Parmesan.


Adapted from Quick Vegetarian Main Dishes by The Pampered Chef

  • Category: Main Dish
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: American

Keywords: Tomato basil soup, Vegetarian dumpling soup, Vegetarian soup, Tomato soup, Ricotta cheese, Parmesan cheese, Dumplings

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About the Authors

Sonja Overhiser

Cookbook Author and writer

Sonja Overhiser is author of Pretty Simple Cooking, named one of the best healthy cookbooks of 2018. She’s host of the food podcast Small Bites and founder of the food blog A Couple Cooks. Featured from the TODAY Show to Bon Appetit, Sonja seeks to inspire adventurous eating to make the world a better place one bite at a time.

Alex Overhiser

Cookbook Author and photographer

Alex Overhiser is an acclaimed food photographer and author based in Indianapolis. He’s host of the food podcast Small Bites and founder of the recipe website A Couple Cooks. Featured from the TODAY Show to Bon Appetit, Alex is author of Pretty Simple Cooking, named one of the best vegetarian cookbooks by Epicurious.


  • Reply
    Rochelle @
    February 17, 2013 at 4:11 pm

    Ooh, I volunteer to test with gluten free flour! Pinning this to try soon. Thanks!

    • Reply
      February 21, 2013 at 5:36 pm

      Please do! Let me know if you try it, and we’ll update the recipe!

  • Reply
    February 17, 2013 at 4:54 pm

    Ricotta dumplings??? Sign me up! Lovely light in that photo. Gorgeous!

  • Reply
    February 17, 2013 at 5:29 pm

    I’ve found a ton of soup recipes lately that feature summer ingredients yet still seem to feel like spring…with the dumplings, though, this is definitely cold weather appropriate! Delicious!

  • Reply
    February 17, 2013 at 6:15 pm

    MMMM, yum. Soft ricotta dumplings would be perfect in tomato soup. Like a kind of inverse gnocchi? Delish.

  • Reply
    Katrina @ Warm Vanilla Sugar
    February 17, 2013 at 9:41 pm

    This looks absolutely lovely! Awesome recipe!

  • Reply
    February 17, 2013 at 11:22 pm

    I definitely don’t eat enough dumplings! This soup sounds like the best lunch–full of rich tomato and punched up with cheesy bites. Hey, it’s almost a deconstructed grilled cheese!

    • Reply
      February 25, 2013 at 8:48 pm

      Haha, yes — deconstructed grilled cheese, pizza, gnocchi — whatever the case, we loved it!

  • Reply
    what katie's baking
    February 17, 2013 at 11:56 pm

    you guys have great recipes!!

  • Reply
    Heidi Medina
    February 19, 2013 at 5:35 pm

    This looks awesome! I’m always on the hunt for another way to eat tomato soup and ricotta dumplings sound wonderful. Looking forward to trying this before the warm weather gets here.

  • Reply
    February 19, 2013 at 10:34 pm

    Such a great lookin soup and I love the idea of ricotta dumplings.

  • Reply
    February 19, 2013 at 10:52 pm

    We have basil galore over here, but I definitely crave it in tomato soup this time of year. Looking forward to trying this – what is it about dumplings that make any soup seem so much more fun? (You will not be surprised to hear that things are not at all winter-like on this side of the world. ;) I was just in a province on the border of Cambodia yesterday and it was breathtaking – warm breeze and perfect blue skies.)

    • Reply
      February 25, 2013 at 8:49 pm

      I agree – dumplings make anything more fun! I am so jealous of your weather, fresh basil — and your location :)

  • Reply
    February 19, 2013 at 11:34 pm

    It’s been snowing here so your tomato basil soup is looking so cozy and comforting! I love your idea of ricotta dumplings to add a real treat to the soup! Delicious, I tell ya!

  • Reply
    February 20, 2013 at 5:52 am

    Looks yummy!!

  • Reply
    Laura F
    February 25, 2013 at 1:58 pm

    I made this soup along with some easy soft pretzels for dinner during the Oscars last night. So great! I don’t love ricotta cheese, it lacks flavor for me, but the parmesan was a great touch for added flavor. Definitely will be putting this recipe in the winter weekday meal rotation because it was very quick to come together, as well.

    • Reply
      February 25, 2013 at 8:50 pm

      Oh, wonderful — I’m so glad to hear it was a hit! I agree – I’m not a huge ricotta fan either, but these have great flavor. If you like them, you might also like our ricotta dumplings with pesto as well!

  • Reply
    Courtney Jones
    February 25, 2013 at 7:09 pm

    I have a feeling this is going to be my new favourite dish. Wow. I love everything about it. I’m a sucker for a really good tomato soup. The ricotta dumplings sound perfect! I cannot wait to give it a shot.

  • Reply
    February 26, 2013 at 10:08 pm

    I made this tonight – not only was it super easy and quick to put together, it was delicious. Those dumplings!! I stuck to the recipe but added some fresh thyme and oregano along with the basil. A great go-to recipe that I will be making again (along with those pesto little gems). Thanks, Sonja!

    • Reply
      March 3, 2013 at 10:14 pm

      So glad it worked out and was tasty too :) I can’t wait to make it again — dumplings make everything better! Thanks for writing.

  • Reply
    March 14, 2013 at 6:51 pm

    We just had this for dinner. Very delicious!

    • Reply
      March 24, 2013 at 8:10 pm

      Great – so glad you enjoyed it! This is one of our recent favorites :)

  • Reply
    July 13, 2013 at 6:19 pm

    I’m breaking the rules and making this is July. No alternative use for the basil I just trimmed sounds nearly as appetizing!

    • Reply
      July 14, 2013 at 7:11 pm

      Do it! This soup is wonderful no matter the season :) Hope you enjoy!

  • Reply
    February 12, 2014 at 7:50 pm

    Yum. Made these tonight and I will definitely be recommending them! Anything that helps kids eat their veggies is great to me.

    Jennifer A. Gardner, MD, FAAP, Founder, Healthy Kids Company

  • Reply
    September 8, 2014 at 8:22 am

    I adore this soup! I’ve made it quite a few times and just love it! Thanks so much for posting this fabulous recipe!

  • Reply
    October 22, 2015 at 11:24 am

    hi did we ever hear back from Rochelle about the success with gluten free flour..
    I wanted to make this tonight and I have to use gluten free as well..

  • Reply
    Marcia Larson
    November 18, 2018 at 2:19 pm

    I can’t say enough good things about this soup-delicious, satisfyingly, and goes together quickly and easily. I sprinkled flour over dumplings after making them which mak soup a bit thicker, Delcious!

  • Reply
    December 22, 2018 at 8:36 pm

    I used to make this recipe all the time before I knew I was GF & was really missing it. I tried it once before with a GF flour (don’t remember what) & it failed miserably with the dumplings just falling apart into mush bits. I tried it again tonight with 1 cup bobs red mill general purpose GF flour & 1/3 c a GF bisquick mix, & I boiled the dumplings in water (cook them until they float, 5 mins or so) & then added them to the soup to serve. It turned out perfectly! Next time I may try cooking the dumplings in the soup again, but I wonder if the rolling boil of the water is what helped hold them together. Anyways it’s perfect & delicious & GF!

    • Reply
      December 22, 2018 at 8:48 pm

      Oh we are SO glad to hear this! This is a fabulous tip for people who are GF and want to make this recipe. Thank you for sharing this!

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