Red Pepper + Tomato Meatball Soup
Happy soup season, everyone! While I certainly eat soup all year long, there is something extra special about a big bowl of comforting soup on a chilly autumn day. Plus, I work from home so having 3+ servings of soups in my refrigerator at the beginning of the week means I’m having a quick, easy, and super delicious lunch break most days that whole week. It’s magic.
And this red pepper and tomato meatball soup certainly checks a lot of boxes for me. First off, I’ll pretty much try any soup with the word tomato in it. Just me? This is also a super filling soup that’s pretty darn low in carbs, in case you’re trying Keto or something. ? As many of you know, I am not a big meat eater. I just don’t really eat a lot of meat and when I do it’s usually fish/seafood. That being said, I must admit that I do love meatballs. Ha. And the meatballs I make for this soup are really good. But if you don’t want or don’t eat meat, you could absolutely replace them with these vegetarian meatballs and still get basically the same red pepper and tomato meatball soup out of the deal.
You can find all the recipe details in the recipe card at the end of this post (it’s printer-friendly too), but I also want to mention a few things that I do that although not necessary do make the meal prep of this soup even easier. First off, you could absolutely make your own roasted red peppers and even stewed tomatoes, but I just use the can/jar versions from the store. Second, I make the meatballs the night before I plan to make this soup. Or I do it on a Sunday if I’m meal prepping multiple things for the week.
You could also assemble the meatballs (not baked yet) on a baking sheet, cover well, and refrigerate for up to a day before baking.
You could also make these meatballs (full cook them, not just assemble) and freeze. Then you could use them whenever.
Also here’s my process for pretty much any soup or chili I’m making. I make a large batch (sometimes doubling a recipe, but for this red pepper and tomato meatball soup it’s big enough for us as is) and have that for dinner with my husband one night. Then I save the remaining servings, which is often 3-4, in these glass bowls and keep them in the refrigerator. That becomes quick lunches or dinners for me the rest of the week. Boom!
If you have a larger family than me, you may want to adjust this plan as it works for you. But I love making a meal that is actually making like 3-5 meals all at once. It’s seriously some timesaving magic. It also encourages me to eat a bit healthier all week (which is a big part of meal prepping, so no duh, I guess).
I seriously love this red pepper and tomato meatball soup—it’s like eating spaghetti and meatballs but way less carbs. Yum! But here are a few other soups you should try: Creamy Cauliflower and Leek soup, Spicy Peanut and Wild Rice soup, White Bean, Dill and Vegetable soup, and Gnocchi and Vegetable soup. I’m also really excited to make this chili and pair it with Fritos. Ha. It’s like literally written on my autumn bucket list. ?
What are your favorite soups or chilis to make this season? xo. Emma
Red Pepper + Tomato Meatball Soup
- 16 ounces ground turkey
- 3/4 cup almond flour
- 1/2 cup milk
- 1 egg
- 5-6 cloves of garlic (minced)
- 3-4 tablespoons chopped onion
- 2 tablespoons fresh herbs (chopped)
- 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese (the powder kind)
- salt and pepper
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 16 ounces roasted red peppers (drained if from jar)
- 28 ounces whole peeled tomatoes (from can, do not drain)
- 2 cups chicken or vegetable stock
- 1/4 cup chopped onion
- 5-6 cloves of garlic (chopped)
- 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- salt and pepper
- fresh basil and more Parmesan for serving
- First, make the meatballs. If your meat is frozen, be sure to thoroughly and safely thaw it first. In a medium-sized bowl, combine the almond flour and milk. In a large mixing bowl, combine the egg, garlic, onion, herbs, and Parmesan cheese, stir until just combined. To this large bowl, add the ground meat as well as the almond flour mixture (which by now should be quite soggy). Mix well. I actually think this is best and mostly quickly done by using your (clean) hands to mix everything together. Season well with salt and pepper.
- Form the meatballs. You want meatballs that roughly fit in your palm, but large enough that you couldn’t quite close your hand completely around them. Think just a bit bigger than cookies, around 3 tablespoons each. Set the meatballs on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
- Bake at 400°F for 18-22 minutes. The meatballs should be at or higher than 165°F if you use an instant read thermometer (which I really like using when I cook meat as it takes away the guessing of if it’s been cooked enough to safely eat). Remove from the oven once done and allow to rest for at least 5-8 minutes. They will appear super juicy just out of the oven and some of these juices (fat) will solidify a bit more as they rest. Toward the end of the baking time (before resting), you can start the soup. Or you can store the meatballs after resting if using later.
- In a large pot, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the onion and cook for a minute or two until it begins to soften. Then add the garlic and season well with salt and pepper, and also the cayenne. Then add the tomatoes and red peppers along with one cup of stock. Reduce the heat to low, add the lid and allow to simmer for 8-10 minutes. Then use either an immersion blender or you can do this in batches in a blender, blending everything well. Stir in the remaining cup of stock and also add your cooked meatballs. Once everything is nice and hot, serve with some chopped basil and sprinkle on the Parmesan cheese!
Notes: For the herbs in the meatballs, you can use any combination of fresh herbs you like, or whatever you might have on hand. I like cilantro, parsley, thyme, and rosemary best. I would probably avoid mint but … never tried it so I guess I shouldn’t knock it. Just doesn’t sound that appetizing to me. Also you can replace the 3/4 cup almond flour with 1/2 cup bread crumbs if you’re not concerned about carbs. This is just how I make meatballs when I’m watching my carbs (like doing Keto), but it’s not necessary if that doesn’t matter to you.
Credits // Author and Photography: Emma Chapman. Photos edited with A Color Story Desktop.