Tomato Noodle Soup – The Ultimate Comfort Food

5 from 8 votes
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Tomato Noodle Soup - The Ultimate Comfort Food |

This simple dish is the one that gets me through every winter and makes me feel better when I am sick.

Tomato noodle soup is the ultimate comfort food for me and the rest of my family. I cook this whenever I feel under the weather or just want to be lazy. The beauty of the soup is that it is the most versatile dish – you can add nearly anything left in your pantry or fridge. And you can prep and cook a whole meal in less than 30 minutes. Plus, the meal contains carbs, vegetables, and protein.

The purpose of this recipe is to merely serve as a guide. I hope you can use the principles here to cook a wonderful noodle soup with whatever ingredients you have on hand.

Tomato Noodle Soup - The Ultimate Comfort Food |

Tips & Tricks

Let’s look at the tips and options below to create the best comfort dish for you.

  1. The highlight of the soup is the tomato base, which is similar to the idea of using a tomato sauce on pizza or pasta. You use some herb infused oil to cook the tomato into a paste, then use it in the soup broth. Here, I really love to add a handful of green onion to the tomato. It adds a delightful flavor that goes perfect with noodles.
  2. Using pork or chicken stock can make the soup very rich. But you can skip this if you don’t have any stock at home. Adding 1 teaspoon chicken bouillon will enhance the flavor, too.
  3. The pork ribs can be replaced with any leftover stew or braised meat you have, or can be skipped. The idea is to infuse the noodle soup with a rich meaty flavor, so the soup will be hearty and fulfilling. Plus, for people who need to eat meat for every meal (like me), this is the perfect place to add it.
  4. Remember to add a spoonful of gravy from the stew. The tomato base goes well with almost any flavor of stew, no matter whether Asian or Western style. Remember to save the gravy next time you finish the meat in a stew. It can add tons of flavor here, and might even allow you to skip using stock in the soup.
  5. The udon noodles can be replaced by frozen wontons or dumplings. In this case, you really don’t need to add much meat to the dish, because wontons and dumplings can be quite filling.
  6. A great way to make a delicious vegetarian broth is to add shiitake mushrooms into the soup after the the tomato paste is added. They add a great flavor to the broth and I love their texture! Of course, you can also use vegetable broth to turn this soup into a vegetarian one. In this case, I recommend you use vegetarian wontons or dumplings instead of noodles, to make the dish more satisfying.
  7. The eggs are optional but a half cooked egg goes best with noodles. A yolky egg makes every dish taste better, doesn’t it?
  8. The baby bok choy is optional, and you can use spinach and gai lan (Chinese broccoli) as alternatives. In this case,you should blanch the vegetables beforehand, because these veggies take longer time to get cooked through.

Tomato Noodle Soup - The Ultimate Comfort Food |

If you’re feeling fancy, you might want to cook some handmade wontons. I used a different broth in that recipe, but these wontons go great with the tomato soup, too! My point here, is that the tomato based soup goes well with a lot of combinations, so feel free to use your imagination and create your own version of the ultimate comfort dish!

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Tomato Noodle Soup - The Ultimate Comfort Food

Tomato Noodle Soup - The Ultimate Comfort Food

5 from 8 votes
This simple dish is the one that gets me through every winter and makes me feel better when I am sick.

Author: Maggie Zhu
Course: Main
Cuisine: Chinese
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 25 minutes
Servings: 4


  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 2 tablespoons green onion , chopped
  • 3 tomatoes , chopped (or 2 16-ounce cans tomato)
  • 8 cups pork stock (or chicken stock or water)
  • 200 grams (7 ounces) udon noodles , dried (or frozen wontons)
  • 8 braised pork ribs (or beef or chicken stew leftover with gravy)
  • salt , to taste
  • 4 eggs (Optional)
  • 2 cups baby bok choy , for decoration (Optional)


  • Bring a pot of water to a boil in order to cook the noodles.
  • Heat oil in a large skillet over medium high heat until warm. Add green onion and stir a few times until fragrant. Add tomato and stir and chop until it almost becomes a paste, 3 to 5 minutes.
  • Transfer the tomato paste to a large pot. Add pork stock (or chicken stock or water) and bring to a boil over over medium high heat. Turn to low heat, cover, and let simmer.
  • While simmering the broth, cook the noodles according to the instructions.
  • Five minutes before noodles are done, add pork ribs (or whatever leftover meat you’re using) and a spoonful of gravy to the noodle soup. Stir a few times until the gravy is mixed well with the broth. Taste the broth and add more salt if necessary. The broth should taste slightly salty by itself. Add eggs. Cover and simmer for another 2 to 3 minutes, until the eggs are half cooked (or longer if you like them to be fully cooked).
  • Drain the noodles and divide them among 3 large bowls. Top the noodles with bok choy (optional). Pour the tomato broth over the bok choy so that the hot broth quickly cooks it (be careful not to break the egg yolks!). Transfer an egg and a couple of pork ribs to each bowl.
  • Serve immediately.


Serving: 739g, Calories: 423kcal, Carbohydrates: 40.6g, Protein: 27.7g, Fat: 17.7g, Saturated Fat: 5.1g, Cholesterol: 194mg, Sodium: 2005mg, Potassium: 529mg, Fiber: 4.3g, Sugar: 7.8g, Vitamin A: 2600IU, Vitamin C: 39.6mg, Calcium: 70mg, Iron: 3.1mg
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Reader Questions and Reviews

  1. Helen @ Scrummy Lane says:

    I do indeed like this idea, Maggie! I like that it could make use of leftover cooked meat, and that the whole thing comes together really quickly. I enjoyed a similar type of soup when I visited Bangkok and have been craving it ever since. Thanks for another really approachable recipe!

  2. Shinee says:

    This soup looks exceptionally hearty and delicious. Perfect for these cold days. Pinning for my dinner menu!

    • Maggie says:

      Thanks so much for stopping by Shinee! Have a great weekend 🙂

  3. Sarah says:

    Ah this is amazing! I ate this dish a lot growing up, I’m drooling just looking at it! I haven’t added pork ribs to the dish before, but looks like a great idea!

  4. K / Pure & Complex says:

    Oh my, oh my, oh my… I am in love with this dish. Thanks for posting this

  5. Monica says:

    Maggie, this looks so delicious! It is a snowy wet day here and I could do with this so badly! You are not lazy by any means making something this amazing. : )

  6. Kathleen | HapaNom says:

    5 stars
    Whoa! This looks like a serious bowl of comfort food! I love the flavors and colors of this dish – absolute gorgeous, Maggie!

  7. Marissa | Pinch and Swirl says:

    5 stars
    So many great tips here, Maggie! And this soup is mouthwatering – looks hearty and delicious.

  8. Rachel (Rachel's Kitchen NZ) says:

    Going to put this away for winter Maggie – we are heading for another hot day down under:)

  9. 5 stars
    Maggie, I never in a million years would have thought to put noodles in a tomato based broth. Is this found in China?? I know the flavour will be delicious, I just haven’t seen it ever before, seriously!!

    • Maggie says:

      Can’t say this is a typical Chinese dish (at least I didn’t see them in the local restaurants), but we do add tomato based sauce (not broth) to noodles. This one is a pure family thing. My mom invented the idea, and I think it’s just wonderful!

    • Ellie says:

      5 stars
      This is a real late reply, but I only just discovered this gem of a recipe – yes it is eaten in China, my friend’s family is from Shanghai and they always used to cook it for me growing up!

  10. Bam's Kitchen says:

    5 stars
    Delicious Maggie! Your soup base sounds like a delicious tomato based hot pot that I like so much. Happy cooking and take care!

  11. Chi Chi says:

    This noodle soup sounds delishhhh ! And thanks for the extra effort of calculating the nutrition !!

  12. Lyuda says:

    This sounds so good! I was wondering about the ribs. Do you braise them first in the oven or something and then add them to the soup? Thanks for clarifying I’m going to make this soup tomorrow!!

    • Maggie says:

      I used this braised pork ribs recipe in the soup =>
      For the noodle soup, the idea is that you can use any leftover braised meat (beef, chicken etc.). But if you don’t have braised meat at home, you should cook them first (in the oven or on stovetop), and then add them to the soup.
      The braised pork ribs recipe above is a family recipe. We use it all the time and it goes great with the noodle soup.
      Happy cooking and let me know how it goes! 🙂

  13. alice n says:

    Hi Maggie, this recipe looks wonderful! I was wondering, could you substitute tomato paste for actual tomatoes to make this soup?


    • Maggie says:

      Hi Alice, of course, you can use tomatoes to replace tomato paste. I actually used the tomatoes in this recipe, to make the tomato paste. I’m glad to hear you want to try this out! Happy cooking and let me know how the dish turns out 🙂 Happy Friday!

  14. J-Mom says:

    5 stars
    This was just what I was looking for: something warm and simple. I used some pot roast meat that was hanging out in the freezer. Thank you for the recipe!

    • Maggie says:

      Post roast meat works perfectly in this recipe! It’s such a simple dish isn’t it? My mom used to cook this for me every time when I caught a cold.
      Happy cooking and stay warm 🙂

  15. May says:

    what make this receipt so unhealthy? 85% sodium 65% cholesterol..

    • Maggie says:

      It is largely caused by my free nutrition calculator, which is very inaccurate. For example it was showing the nutrition of a ramen noodle bowl when I input noodle (by which I mean uncooked noodle), so it showed up scary sodium and cholesterol.
      I just found out this lately and I’m reworking on re-calculating the nutrition facts of all my old recipes now. I will update this one with more accurate info shortly.

  16. Deborah Jayne says:

    Hello, if using fresh noodles, what weight should I add for 4 people? Thank you!

  17. mariyah says:

    5 stars
    aah! my mouth is watering simply just thinking about this delightful food. thank you for sharing this <3!!

  18. Soumya says:

    This looks so good! I wanted to know whether you peel & deseed these tomatoes prior?

    • Maggie Zhu says:

      I usually don’t because the seeds and the skin do not bother me that much. You can peel and deseed the tomato for a better texture and sweeter flavor 🙂

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