Creamy Tomato Soup with Baked Mozzarella Balls

Here’s the recipe for my favorite Creamy Tomato Soup! This tasty tomato soup is topped with crispy, cheesy baked mozzarella balls that turn this foodie classic into a melty, cheesy, bowl of YUM! 

Creamy Tomato Soup Recipe

Waiter? There are balls in my soup!

Oh my gosh! I wasn’t originally planning on posting today but I just had to sneak this amazingness into your life as soon as possible!

We’re talking Creamy Tomato Soup with Baked Mozzarella Balls. For. Your. Face. It’s beyond glorious and I wouldn’t have it any other way!

So once you get past my childish sense of humor, mosey on into the kitchen so you can put some balls in your soup!

Creamy Tomato Soup with Cheese Croutons

Best Ever Creamy Tomato Soup

This recipe yields 2 medium bowls of soup.

I make this soup often; especially in the fall and winter!  It’s the best soup of my LIFE! You’ll want to swim in it!

Double, triple, quadruple the recipe if you’re feeling frisky – once the bowl is licked clean you’ll be dying for more. It tastes great the first day and simply awesome the next!

5 from 9 votes

Creamy Tomato Soup

Creamy tomato soup is topped with crispy, cheesy baked mozzarella balls that turn this foodie classic into a melty, cheesy, bowl of YUM! 

Course Soup
Cuisine American
Keyword Creamy Tomato Soup
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 35 minutes
Servings 4 servings
Calories 263 kcal
Author Jenn Laughlin – Peas and Crayons


  • 1 can (15 oz) tomato sauce (pureed tomatoes)
  • 1 can (15 oz) fire roasted tomatoes
  • 1 large yellow onion (approx. 2-2.5 cups diced)
  • 1 cup vegetable broth
  • 2 TBSP grape seed or olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, smashed and minced
  • 2 celery stalks (approx. 1/2 cup diced)
  • 10 baby carrots, chopped
  • 5-6 oz cream cheese (or 1/2-3/4 cup of milk or cream)
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 1-2 TBSP dried or fresh basil plus extra to garnish
  • 1/2 tsp salt or season to taste
  • 1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper


  1. Saute chopped onions, celery, and carrots in 2 TBSP oil until tender.

  2. Once the onions are translucent, add garlic and saute for about a minute or so to bring out the flavor.
  3. Season with salt and pepper.
  4. Next add tomatoes, tomato sauce, cream cheese and broth and let simmer for 25 minutes, until the vegetables are tender and the flavors have shacked up together.
  5. Taste for seasoning and add more salt, pepper, and the sugar, if needed.
  6. Next add your basil. If you’re using plain dried basil, start with 1/2 Tbsp and then slowly add more to taste.
  7. Next, puree using an immersion blender until fabulously smooth and bisque-like. You can also blend the soup, in two batches, in your blender or food processor.

  8. Serve piping hot topped with fresh basil and deliciously cheesy mozz balls. You'll have a grand old time dunking your balls in this soup. Enjoy!

Recipe Notes

For the step-by-step mozzarella ball recipe, see post below!

This sassy soup can also be served with garlic parmesan chickpeas, croutons, or grilled cheese for dunking!

For a creamy vibrant bisque (as pictured above) follow recipe as directed. For a redder, tomato-packed soup feel free to add extra pureed tomatoes to the mix.

Both are deeelish — I’ll let you decide which one is your fav! Ooh! and if you want a cream-free tomato-basil soup recipe to add to your collection click here.

Nutrition Facts below are estimated for this creamy tomato soup using an online recipe nutrition calculator. Adjust as needed if mozzarella balls are added and enjoy!

Nutrition Facts
Creamy Tomato Soup
Amount Per Serving
Calories 263 Calories from Fat 171
% Daily Value*
Fat 19g29%
Saturated Fat 8g50%
Cholesterol 39mg13%
Sodium 1383mg60%
Potassium 500mg14%
Carbohydrates 19g6%
Fiber 4g17%
Sugar 12g13%
Protein 5g10%
Vitamin A 4961IU99%
Vitamin C 13mg16%
Calcium 97mg10%
Iron 2mg11%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Creamy Tomato Soup

Creamy Tomato Soup with Baked Mozzarella Balls

-aka mozz ball soup-

-aka the best soup of my life-

for the mozzarella balls:

1 steaming hot bowl of tomato soup [scroll down for recipe!]
3-4 cubes of  mozzarella cheese
1 egg white, whisked
1/4 cup flour [or a little less]
approx 1/4 cup panko bread crumbs
1/2 teaspoon of Italian seasoning blend [like Mrs Dash]

cooking spray

advance prep:

The first order of business is to cube/ball your mozzarella into one-inch cubes. If you choose to make them little smaller that will work too!

In order to survive the baking process, they’ll need to be frozen. Place them on a plate, spaced, and pop them in the freezer. The key here is to prevent them from all sticking together from moisture… otherwise you’ll need to take a hammer to the frozen block of cheese. Once they’ve hardened, move them over to a freezer baggie and continue the freezing process. I usually keep them no less than 4-5 hours in the freezer – though overnight is always better. I make this so often that I keep a little container of frozen mozz balls in my freezer at all times.

Get Cooking!

[This post] has details and photos of the process if ya need em!  Preheat oven to 425F. Keep mozzarella cubes frozen until you have everything set up and ready to go!  *Ahem* Don’t let your balls thaw. Combine seasoning blend and panko in a shallow bowl, and egg white and flour into separate bowls as well. Next, line a baking sheet with aluminum foil and top with a wire cooling/baking rack.   Ready?  Grab your mozzarella from the freezer and prepare to be amazed at how easy this is. Dip the frozen cheese in the flour, then the egg, and finally roll around in panko to coat. Pop it on the wire rack and repeat for the remaining mozzarella cubes. Spray each ball with cooking spray and bake at 425 for approximately 10 minutes. When golden brown, remove from oven and serve atop a piping hot bowl of tomato soup. Grilled cheese is so 10 seconds ago!

Note: since our ovens march to the beat of their own drum, the balls could take anywhere from 8 minutes to 12 minutes. While they bake, get started on the soup!

These golden balls of cheesy goodness can easily be whipped up for a simple solo lunch or even a hungry crowd, without slaving over measurements!  I’ve learned to pre-slice a block/ball of mozzarella and keep the cheesy little cubes in my freezer at all times so I can have balls whenever I want.  They’re also really stinking good with pesto.

Baked Panko Mozzarella Balls with Creamy Tomato Soup

So once you get past my childish sense of humor, mosey on into the kitchen so you can put some balls in your soup!

This scrumptious soup is in heavy rotation in my home, and I hope it will be in yours too!


If you get a chance to try this Creamy Tomato Soup with Cheesy Baked Mozzarella Balls, let me know! You can leave me a comment here (LOVE checking those daily!) or tag @PEASandCRAYONS on Instagram so I can happy dance over your creations. I can’t wait to see what you whip up!

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Recipe Rating


  • Barbie

    Do I use the fresh Mozzarella pearls in the deli or the Mozzarella chunk that is in the dairy section? I’m making this tomorrow for Denver’s first snow this year.

    • Hi Barbie! So excited for you to make this recipe! So what I typically use is the mozzarella square in the dairy section. Either part-skim or whole milk mozzarella will work and you’ll cut it into little cubes. Hope this helps! xo

  • Julia

    Wonder if you could make the balls in an airfryer. Have you tried it?

    • Hi Julia! I don’t own an air fryer yet, but if you get a chance to experiment let me know! xoxo

  • Harry

    Absolutely AWESOME…. it is identical to Houlihans version…. I have tried to make this a couple of times before but it was never as GREAT as this soup is…

    I Thank You sooooo much for posting this…

    I had fun making, tasting, and finally enjoying this soup….

    You’re the best….

  • Hannah Bevel

    5 stars
    I am making this for the second time. This is THE BEST tomato soup ever. I HATE the canned stuff, so when my kids asked for tomato soup, I looked for something similar to Houlihan’s. This is it!!!! The first time I made this, I didn’t think about the fact that hot things in the blender tends to make the lid come off, so this time I sautéed the veggies, puréed with a little stock, and then added the tomatoes to purée before heating all up together. I hope it’s just as good since I’m making a double batch! Thanks for the excellent recipe!

  • Asia

    5 stars
    I hate tomato anything but I make this soup all winter long. THANK YOU FOR THIS! I have cut out dairy recently and was wondering if you have any ideas on a good substitute for the cream cheese?

  • Asia

    5 stars
    We HATE tomato soup in our family….but let me tell you what….we LOVE this soup! Every fall when the cold air starts to creep this Is my favorite soup to whip up. Thank you!

  • Meredith

    I couldn’t get the flour, egg whites or panko to stick to the frozen mozzarella. Did you use fresh mozzarella or the type you shred?

    • Oh no! The egg white didn’t stick after the mozz was floured? I always use the block mozzarella which is made for slicing and shredding and haven’t had any issues. Did you use fresh? I’m curious if maybe the fresh mozz’s water content is too high for this recipe?

      • Meredith

        I used fresh mozzarella.

        • I’m thinking that may be the factor then? I’m so sorry! I’ve made them many many times over the past few years and the flour always sticks to the cheese and then the egg white to the floured cheese. I do have to whisk the egg whites well before using them because I have noticed they tend to stay in a big tight glob otherwise.

  • Chuck D

    5 stars
    WOW! I made the Mozzarella Balls for a dinner party last weekend. I made them earlier that day and let them cool. I topped my own spicy hot tomato soup with them and they melted beautifully as served.

    Make these balls, your guests will have a ball!

  • “There are balls in my soup”..Lol I used to be a server and with all the things that get brought up from customers.. “that’s what she said” was constantly running through my inner monologue. Great title. Trying this soup tonight but with some gooey grilled cheese sammies. (:

  • This looks unreal. Oooooh man!

  • Angela

    5 stars
    I’m coming back 10 months after discovering this soup recipe to say that this is in my top five favorite foods of ever. I’ve probably made it 15 times over the last year, and my roommate and I are convinced it’s the food of the gods. Thank you for posting!

  • hahahaha I was eating cereal as I read the title and seriously just spit out my cereal laughing. So funny!!! This soup looks awesome!

  • Anonymous

    have you ever coated the cheese balls with the egg whites, flour and panko before freezing? I just wonder if this is possible.

    • I haven’t simply because I was worried about them getting soggy — I wonder if it actually would though or if I was just being paranoid? I have made them, baked them, and THEN froze the baked mozz balls and they reheated in the toaster oven quite nicely though some of them did melt down to bubbly cheese blobs in the process — which is perfect for the times I want to serve them on top of the tomato soup anyways! But mainly I just keep the mozzarella cubes frozen in my freezer and assemble/bake when the craving strikes. So if you want them entirely pre-prepped I’d probably say bake for at least a few minutes, freeze them spread out on a cookie tray or plate, then move them to a freezer safe container for safe keeping. Hope that helps!

  • Jennifer Kay

    This was uhhhh-mazinggggg! Loved it so much!! Thank you!

  • Oh my gosh, this looks amazing! I pinned it because I WILL be making this! BALLS!

  • Anonymous

    So I sent my husband to the store with the shopping list and he came home with the only fire roasted tomatoes that Kroger had…….after I got the soup all mixed up I thought it looked different….turns out he bought “salsa style” fire roasted tomatoes…..basically fire roasted tomatoes with jalapenos…it has a little wang to it now…not sure if it’s the tomatoes or because I quadrupled your recipe to feed the family and for leftovers…..where did you get your fire roasted tomatoes and were they only tomatoes?

  • Anonymous

    what size cubes for the mozz balls?

  • 5 stars
    I just made this for dinner and WOW. So good. The mozzarella balls didn’t get frozen enough so they sort of collapsed, but we scraped them up and they were still super good in the soup. Thank you so much.

    • Ahhh glad you liked it! Freezing overnight should help them stay together better next time + I’m so glad they still made their way into the delish soup! <3 Thanks Christy! =)

  • Jus saw this on Pinterest and WOW!!! I can not wait to try this. Beautiful photography as well.

  • Haha I’m sure they’ll appreciate an email about balls? I mean, who *doesn’t* want balls in their inbox? =)

  • Krista J.

    I’m sure the recipe is great (I just read it for the first time) but I’m forwarding it to all my girls just as much for the entertainment value. 😉

  • Yay!!! SO excited about your balls! haha! Ricotta should work! It it’s too chunky you can blend it in a food processor or blender first to make it a creamier texture =) I’ve even used greek yogurt in a pinch!

  • Jennifer B.

    I cannot wait to make this tonight! I put my balls (LOL) in the freezer last night in anticipation. Quick question: can I substitute ricotta for the cream cheese?

  • AHHHH thank you Sasha!!!!! <3 Hope you’re having a great weekend!!!!

  • Yay!!!! Thanks Patty!!! Glad you enjoyed it!

  • Patty Mejia Burke

    5 stars
    I fixed this tonight and it was incredible! I loved it! I doubled the recipe and have the leftover soup in the freezer for another night. Thank you so much for sharing!

  • Sasha

    Holy cow. This soup is amazing. I’ve always wanted an actual recipe for amazing tomato soup and now I have it! Thank you so very much for posting this!

  • Ashley @ Wishes and Dishes

    This is my kind of meal!!!!

  • Fire roasted tomatoes are my FAVORITE! WHOO!!!! Glad it was a hit Mary!!!! <3

  • Mary

    5 stars
    Omg just made it was amazing !!!! I like a little spice so I used fire roasted tomatoes with green chiles!!! Yummy yummy!! The mozzarella balls were so delicious.

  • Maskedreporter

    Can you make it gluten free?  Please!!!!!

  • Dice the tomatoes and measure out approx 2 cups of chopped tomato for the soup =) I plan on making it from actual tomatoes once my garden picks up and yields more than one at a time! — Totally the healthiest option! <3
    Hope that helps! Thanks Loren!

  • Loren

    I cant wait to try this! How would I go about using fresh tomatoes as opposed to the canned ones? I try to avoid canned products but I really must try this soup!!

  • Krissychapman

    5 stars
    This was delicious! Thank you for sharing!

  • Yay! Glad you loved it! — Thanks Krissy!

  • Hey Donna! Yes!!! But squeeze out some of the water before freezing — and absolutely freeze them! If you use room temperature balls they will just turn into a bubbling puddle of cheese in the oven. Freezing helps them stand up to the heat while the panko crisps around them!

    Let me know if you have any other questions! =) xoxox

  • Yes! <3 It works. Just freeze it well!

  • Donna

    Can you use fresh mozzarella balls packed in water? And if you can, do you still need to freeze them?

  • Kim Burch

    Have you ever tried using string cheese (mozzarella)?  I want to make this tonight and can’t go to the store because the babe is asleep!

  • Oh wow I love the look of the melty gooey stringy cheese. I want some NOW! Ahh, calories

  • Ali


  • Hey Caroline! They have worked for my friends in family *but* I’m sure ovens vary in intensity [just as altitudes vary and such] so I would highly suggest trying them at 425F instead of 475 — I’m actually going to adjust the temp in the post as well just in case! Let me know if that helps? I’ve even made them at 385F once but had to keep them in muuuuch longer so I think 425F might be the best temp to shoot for. Thank you so much for the heads up! This is the first time I’ve heard of them falling so I want to make sure they work perfect for everyone! Hope your weekend is off to a great start! xoxo

  • Carolinelaning

    Okay, I am making these tonight with tomato soup and decided to do a TEST RUN on the cheese balls…I followed instructions EXACTLY (the cheese cubes have been in the freezer for 48 hours). I did 2 balls with pesto and 2 balls without to see which I liked best. After 9 minutes in the oven at 475′ the pesto balls had completely melted and cheese had fallen through the rack onto the foil lined baking sheet while the panko/pesto coating remained on top. The plain ones held up much better, but also fell quite a bit. Of course I ate them anyway and they were amazing. Tonight when I make these “for real” I will only be baking them for 8 minutes (checking with oven light after 6). I also will not be using the pesto, based on the experiment, although they tasted amazing. They are well worth making and hopefully these slight alterations will make them perfect. Thank you!!!

  • Oh my, this looks soooo good!! I’m going to try this one! 

  • Magnoliasy

     This looks amazing, I am sure it tastes amazing too.

  • Jenna Bustamante

    this looks delish.

    and what do ya know! i happen to speak crazy too! 😉

  • tweber

    I am looking forward to the tweaked version of your tomato soup… I have had a tough time finding a homemade tomato soup I love, and I can’t wait to try yours!

  • corey melke

    your balls look amazing…i must say!  lol
    xoxo from Trinidad

  • cheese balls, matzo balls, even meatballs… soup is just a ball-magnet =)

  • YES! Get your ass int he kitchen

  • The way to your heart is through balls? =) note taken


  • bahahahahaha! i’m pretty sure if I ever do get pregnant my first post will now be titled “my eggo is preggo” =)

    go get your ball on! and good luck on your final! xoxo

  • Thanks Anna!!!! You’ll have to let me know what you think! I’m a little biased but they’re my favorite soup combo in the world right now! =)

  • Jenn these look AMAZINGGGGG. This is SO going into my May Blog Love post – and I am making this for dinner this week for sure!

  • Kristin Walker

    Whoa!!  This looks all types of amazing.  I adore tomato soup, but especially cheese 🙂

  • bahahaha! and the ORANGE soup right? =)


  • I want these balls in my face!!! BALLS!!!!!

  • Stephanie @ Eat. Drink. Love.

    Ohh, I love this idea! I could think of a number of recipes to use these with!

  • I need to make my own mozzerlla sticks/balls, I have never tried. Tomorrows rainy sunday may be the perfect day!

  • babykayramon

    The timing of this recipe is perfect!  I happen to be sitting here playing a little endocrinology jeopardy in a last minute study frenzy before tonight’s final exam.  Our topics?  “Ah Ballz” and “My Eggo is Preggo”.  and yes.  It is those balls we are studying so I’m thinking of taking a quick break to make some cheese balls to go with it.  🙂  Thanks for the idea!

  • Umm Jenn you have me drooling.  Tomato soup and grilled cheese is my comfort food and holy crap this looks amazing!  You know the way to my heart 😉

  • [email protected] Food and Beer

    I love this different take on Tomato Soup and Grilled Cheese! You can’t tease us with amazing pictures and no recipes :)!!! And my favorite “ball” recipe is a meatball soup I make. I haven’t made it in a while. It may be my new recipe for my blog! 

  • Slimsanity

    I need to eat those!!

  • Mary Baldwin

    OMG! That looks fantastic. Everything I love in one place!!

  • Amazing recipe! Can’t wait to try this!!

  • You’ve outdone yourself with this one.  This looks so crazy good.  Do you think it would work in the toaster oven??

  • Allen @ Cook! Bake! Share!

    What a clever and unique soup! I have never seen a recipe like it. Definitely going to make it soon!
    Thank you for sharing!  Allen.

  • Allison @ PickyEatingRD

    Normally there are balls in my soup but of the matzoh variety. I think I can make an exception for these they look fantastic!  

  • healthyfoodietravels

    Ooooh my god, I need this in my belly NOW. YUM!

  • RavieNomNoms

    These look awesome!! 

  • This looks so amazing! I love grilled cheese and tomato soup, and I can’t wait to try making this.   I bet it would be great with Swiss cheese too (my favorite).

    Here are some tofu falafel balls:

    And these sweet wine cookies are sort of ball shaped!

  • Anna @Crunchy Creamy Sweet

    OMG! This look out-of-this-world!

  • Samantha

    That looks amazing!!!!

  • Cat Tan

    I want to eat this as soon as I want to eat again.

  • Ana

    Tomato soup with cheese?! Count me in, friend!

  • That is some kind of comfort food craziness…but I like it! ~Deirdre

  • I do love some good balls in my soup… yikes haha. But seriously looks amazing!

  • Kadee Cramer

    Oh my goodness that looks so good. Tomato soup is my favorite <3 

  • Crystal @ A Lovin' Forkful

    Wow! I love this recipe. Can’t wait to try. Thanks. : )

  • Balls or no balls? Pshhh. There are always balls. always.

  • Excuse me but I need to go wipe the drool off my keyboard!

  • Again, I must say, BRILLIANT!!! Why didn’t I think of that?!? 

  • abso-freaking-lutely =)

  • Lauren

    I just died.  Is that an acceptable breakfast?

  • You my friend, are a genius with your recipes 🙂  Tomato soup + mozzarella is always a winner and this is such a tasty take on it!

  • That’s a happy soup!

  • *NOMZ* Tomato soup and mozzarella. Two of my favorite things in the world. Happy foodie is happy.

  • Sprint2theTable

    Hee hee… balls. 🙂

    Balls or no balls, this looks ah-mazing.

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