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Tomato Soup vs. Tomato Sauce: Preparation, Usage, Nutrition & Health

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Article author photo Jack  Yacoubian by Jack Yacoubian | Last updated on July 13, 2023
Medically reviewed by Arpi Gasparyan Article author photo Arpi Gasparyan
Tomato soup
vs
Tomato sauce

Summary

Depending on the ingredients, their nutritional values change. However, the predominant macronutrient in both appears to be carbohydrates, with tomato soup being higher in total and net carbs and tomato sauce being higher in dietary fiber. 

Generally, tomato sauce has a richer vitamin and mineral profile than tomato soup.

Introduction

Tomato sauce is called any sauce made from tomatoes. However, tomato sauce differs from ketchup, as it has different ingredients and sugar contents and is served differently.

Tomato sauce originated in Naples, Italy, and was called the Napoli, Napoletana, or Neapolitan sauce. In the 16th century, the Spanish brought tomatoes to Europe from Central America, and the Italians started cultivating and using them in cooking.

Tomato soup is a soup with the main ingredient being fresh or pureed tomatoes. Tomato sauce can also be used to make tomato soup in some recipes. It has many ways of preparation and many varieties. 

Tomato soup's country of origin may be a topic of debate, as nearly all countries had tomato-based soups that were part of their gastronomic culture for centuries.

In this article, we will discuss the difference between tomato sauce and tomato soup according to their differences related to their varieties, nutritional content, weight loss and diets, and health impacts.

What are the actual differences?

Methods of Preparation

Tomato sauce is made with peeled tomatoes; usually, seeds are also removed for a better appearance and a smoother texture. Spices, garlic, and herbs are added to the mixture the enhance the flavor; then, it is brought to a simmer to remove the raw taste of tomatoes. Olive oil can be added; however, it is optional. Commercially prepared tomato sauce may also contain red wine, sausage, onions, and cheese.

Tomato soup is commonly made with fresh or pureed tomatoes; however, it may also be made with tomato sauce by adding water or chicken broth as it has a thicker consistency. The broth or water is also used to make tomato soup. Salt, sugar (if needed), peppers, basil, garlic, onion, chicken, vermicelli, pork, and vegetables can be added to improve the texture and flavor and make the soup more filling. All these factors also affect the nutritional content of the soup.

Usage

Tomato sauce has many usages, and it can be used as a dip for different types of munching foods or served with pasta dishes, Mexican salsas, meat, and vegetables. Tomato sauce, prepared based on the Napoletana style, can be used as a pizza sauce; or as a base for arrabbiata or bolognese sauce.

Tomato soup is classical, and it is a soup that has no different usages in the culinary world. It is often used as an appetizer rather than a main dish. However, depending on the serving size and ingredients, it may also be served as a main dish.

Interestingly, tomato sauce can be substituted with tomato soup.

Shelf Life

Tomato sauce has a longer shelf life than tomato soup. Tomato sauce is usually prepared during certain times each year and kept in the pantry for several months.

Nutrition

The nutritional values are presented for 100g of tomato soup and tomato sauce.

Both tomato soup and tomato sauce are 91% water and 9% nutrients. Depending on the ingredients, their nutritional values change. However, the predominant macronutrient in both appears to be carbohydrates.

Macronutrient Comparison

Macronutrient breakdown side-by-side comparison
Contains more Carbs +40.3%
Contains more Protein +69%
Contains more Fats +42.9%
Contains more Other +76.9%
Equal in Water - 91.28
7% 91%
Protein: 0.71 g
Fats: 0.21 g
Carbs: 7.45 g
Water: 90.55 g
Other: 1.08 g
5% 91% 2%
Protein: 1.2 g
Fats: 0.3 g
Carbs: 5.31 g
Water: 91.28 g
Other: 1.91 g
Contains more Carbs +40.3%
Contains more Protein +69%
Contains more Fats +42.9%
Contains more Other +76.9%
Equal in Water - 91.28
 

Calories

Tomato soup and tomato sauce are very low in calories. Per 100 servings, tomato soup provides 32 calories, and tomato sauce provides 24.

Carbs

Tomato soup is higher in total and net carbs, whereas tomato sauce appears to be higher in dietary fiber. 

Tomato soup contains 7g of net carbs and 0.5g of dietary fiber, and tomato sauce contains 3.8g of net carbs and 1.5g of dietary fiber.

For additional fiber in the soup, you can add vegetables to it.

Protein & Fat

Tomato soup and tomato sauce have negligible amounts of proteins and fats.

Mineral profile

Tomato sauce has a richer mineral profile compared to tomato soup. Tomato sauce is relativity high in copper and iron and richer in them than tomato soup. Both contain nearly equal amounts of potassium.

Generally, tomato soup contains more calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, zinc, and manganese, whereas tomato sauce has more selenium.

The sodium content varies depending on whether the product has added sodium; thus, the sodium content should be read on the packaging.

Mineral Comparison

Mineral comparison score is based on the number of minerals by which one or the other food is richer. The "coverage" charts below show how much of the daily needs can be covered by 300 grams of the food.
Contains more Selenium +150%
Contains more Calcium +75%
Contains more Iron +231%
Contains more Magnesium +114.3%
Contains more Phosphorus +80%
Contains less Sodium -94.1%
Contains more Zinc +144.4%
Contains more Copper +296.6%
Contains more Manganese +68.7%
Equal in Potassium - 297
Calcium Iron Magnesium Phosphorus Potassium Sodium Zinc Copper Manganese Selenium 3% 11% 5% 7% 25% 25% 3% 10% 9% 9%
Calcium Iron Magnesium Phosphorus Potassium Sodium Zinc Copper Manganese Selenium 5% 36% 11% 12% 27% 2% 6% 39% 15% 4%
Contains more Selenium +150%
Contains more Calcium +75%
Contains more Iron +231%
Contains more Magnesium +114.3%
Contains more Phosphorus +80%
Contains less Sodium -94.1%
Contains more Zinc +144.4%
Contains more Copper +296.6%
Contains more Manganese +68.7%
Equal in Potassium - 297

Vitamin profile

The vitamin profile of tomato sauce is much richer and versatile than that of tomato soup. Tomato sauce is richer in vitamins B complex vitamins, and vitamins C, A, E, and K.

Vitamin Comparison

Vitamin comparison score is based on the number of vitamins by which one or the other food is richer. The "coverage" charts below show how much of the daily needs can be covered by 300 grams of the food.
:
Contains more Vitamin A +126.6%
Contains more Vitamin E +747.1%
Contains more Vitamin C +11.1%
Contains more Vitamin B1 +20%
Contains more Vitamin B2 +828.6%
Contains more Vitamin B3 +136%
Contains more Vitamin B6 +133.3%
Contains more Folate +∞%
Contains more Vitamin K +86.7%
Vitamin A Vitamin E Vitamin D Vitamin C Vitamin B1 Vitamin B2 Vitamin B3 Vitamin B5 Vitamin B6 Folate Vitamin B12 Vitamin K 12% 4% 0% 21% 5% 2% 8% 0% 10% 0% 0% 4%
Vitamin A Vitamin E Vitamin D Vitamin C Vitamin B1 Vitamin B2 Vitamin B3 Vitamin B5 Vitamin B6 Folate Vitamin B12 Vitamin K 27% 29% 0% 24% 6% 15% 19% 19% 23% 7% 0% 7%
Contains more Vitamin A +126.6%
Contains more Vitamin E +747.1%
Contains more Vitamin C +11.1%
Contains more Vitamin B1 +20%
Contains more Vitamin B2 +828.6%
Contains more Vitamin B3 +136%
Contains more Vitamin B6 +133.3%
Contains more Folate +∞%
Contains more Vitamin K +86.7%

Tomato soup has a lower and poorer macronutrient and micronutrient profile due to the dilution effect with water. It is important to note that, as additional elements are added to tomato soup, like beef, chicken, pork, vegetables, rice, or vermicelli, all the macro- and micronutrient profiles can change.

Glycemic Index

Both tomato soup and tomato sauce are low in sugars; thus, they are classified as low glycemic index foods.

You can visit our "Glycemic index chart - Complete (600+) list from all sources" page to find out about the glycemic index values of the ingredients you want to add to the soup.

Weight Loss & Diets

Tomato sauce can be considered both good and bad for weight loss, depending on the soup's ingredients. Tomato sauce, with added sugars, has a higher content of carbs and calories, making it not diet-friendly. However, if it's a traditionally prepared or homemade tomato sauce, it should not be of concern.

Tomato soup, on the other hand, similar to the statement above, depends on the ingredients. The soup can be prepared in a way to stay low in calories, carbs, and fats. Or the soup can be prepared with fatty meat cuts or butter. Though preparing it in its traditional way is considered weight loss friendly.

Vegan

Tomato sauce and tomato soup can be vegan and can be part of a vegan diet. Commercially prepared tomato sauce is more commonly vegan; however, one should check the label on the packaging.

Keto

Tomato sauce and tomato soup are keto-friendly due to their low glycemic indices and low carbs.

Health impacts

Cardiovascular health

Section reviewed by cardiologist Astghik Grigoryan Article author photo Astghik Grigoryan

When it comes to cardiovascular disease (CVD), the difference between tomato soup and tomato sauce lies mainly in their composition and how they're prepared.

Generally, tomato soup is prepared by blending tomatoes with other ingredients like broth, vegetables, and sometimes cream. Depending on the recipe, it can be low or high in sodium. Excessive sodium intake can contribute to high blood pressure, which is a risk factor for CVD.

Tomato soup can be a good source of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants, particularly lycopene, which has hypolipidemic effects and may help to reduce cardiovascular risk (1).

Tomato sauce, on the other hand, is typically prepared by cooking tomatoes with various herbs, spices, and sometimes added sugars.

The concern with some commercially available tomato sauces is their added sugars and high sodium content, which can be detrimental to heart health. However, homemade tomato sauce can be a healthier option, especially when it's made with fresh tomatoes and minimal added salt and sugar.

In summary, both tomato soup and tomato sauce can be part of a heart-healthy diet depending on their ingredients and preparation methods. Opting for lower-sodium options and minimizing added sugars can make them more heart-friendly choices. Additionally, including a variety of fruits and vegetables in the diet, including tomatoes in any form, can contribute to overall cardiovascular health (2).

Diabetes

Lycopene is associated with protective effects against type 2 diabetes complications, mostly nephropathy. It may help improve metabolism in diabetic patients and reduce the risk of disease complications (3, 4). 

Oxidative Stress & Cancer

Lycopene is directly associated with decreased levels of oxidative stress and free radicals. Thus, it may help prevent inflammation and decrease the risks of various chronic diseases or their activity (3).

Tomato consumption is associated with a decreased risk of prostate cancer (5, 6).

Overall, tomato consumption has been shown to protect against DNA damage, one of the reasons for cancer development, thus, decreasing overall cancer risks. However, research pinpoints the protective roles of tomatoes against prostate cancer (7).

Article author photo Jack  Yacoubian
Education: Haigazian Medical University
Last updated: July 13, 2023
Medically reviewed by Arpi Gasparyan

Infographic

Tomato soup vs Tomato sauce infographic
Infographic link

Fat Type Comparison

Fat type breakdown side-by-side comparison
Contains more Monounsaturated Fat +52.3%
Contains less Saturated Fat -26.8%
Contains more Polyunsaturated fat +57.1%
28% 34% 39%
Saturated Fat: 0.056 g
Monounsaturated Fat: 0.067 g
Polyunsaturated fat: 0.077 g
20% 21% 59%
Saturated Fat: 0.041 g
Monounsaturated Fat: 0.044 g
Polyunsaturated fat: 0.121 g
Contains more Monounsaturated Fat +52.3%
Contains less Saturated Fat -26.8%
Contains more Polyunsaturated fat +57.1%

Comparison summary table

Pay attention to the rightmost column. It displays the amounts side by side, giving a clearer understanding of the difference.
Tomato soup Tomato sauce
Lower in Sugar ok
Lower in Sodium ok
Lower in Saturated Fat ok
Lower in Glycemic Index ok
Rich in minerals ok
Rich in vitamins ok
Lower in Cholesterol Equal
Lower in price Equal

All nutrients comparison - raw data values

Nutrient Tomato soup Tomato sauce Opinion
Net carbs 6.95g 3.81g Tomato soup
Protein 0.71g 1.2g Tomato sauce
Fats 0.21g 0.3g Tomato sauce
Carbs 7.45g 5.31g Tomato soup
Calories 32kcal 24kcal Tomato soup
Fructose 1.67g Tomato sauce
Sugar 4.03g 3.56g Tomato sauce
Fiber 0.5g 1.5g Tomato sauce
Calcium 8mg 14mg Tomato sauce
Iron 0.29mg 0.96mg Tomato sauce
Magnesium 7mg 15mg Tomato sauce
Phosphorus 15mg 27mg Tomato sauce
Potassium 275mg 297mg Tomato sauce
Sodium 186mg 11mg Tomato sauce
Zinc 0.09mg 0.22mg Tomato sauce
Copper 0.029mg 0.115mg Tomato sauce
Manganese 0.067mg 0.113mg Tomato sauce
Selenium 1.5µg 0.6µg Tomato soup
Vitamin A 192IU 435IU Tomato sauce
Vitamin A RAE 10µg 22µg Tomato sauce
Vitamin E 0.17mg 1.44mg Tomato sauce
Vitamin C 6.3mg 7mg Tomato sauce
Vitamin B1 0.02mg 0.024mg Tomato sauce
Vitamin B2 0.007mg 0.065mg Tomato sauce
Vitamin B3 0.42mg 0.991mg Tomato sauce
Vitamin B5 0.309mg Tomato sauce
Vitamin B6 0.042mg 0.098mg Tomato sauce
Folate 0µg 9µg Tomato sauce
Vitamin K 1.5µg 2.8µg Tomato sauce
Tryptophan 0.009mg Tomato sauce
Threonine 0.037mg Tomato sauce
Isoleucine 0.025mg Tomato sauce
Leucine 0.034mg Tomato sauce
Lysine 0.037mg Tomato sauce
Methionine 0.008mg Tomato sauce
Phenylalanine 0.036mg Tomato sauce
Valine 0.025mg Tomato sauce
Histidine 0.02mg Tomato sauce
Saturated Fat 0.056g 0.041g Tomato sauce
Monounsaturated Fat 0.067g 0.044g Tomato soup
Polyunsaturated fat 0.077g 0.121g Tomato sauce

Which food is preferable for your diet?

ok
ok
is better in case of low diet
Tomato soup Tomato sauce
Low Fats diet ok
Low Carbs diet ok
Low Calories diet ok
Low Glycemic Index diet ok

People also compare

Vitamins & Minerals Daily Need Coverage Score

The summary scores indicate the extent to which this food can fulfill your daily vitamin and mineral requirements if you consume 3 servings, consisting of 100 grams of each (an approximation of 3 serving sizes).
Vitamins Daily Need Coverage Score
5%
Tomato soup
14%
Tomato sauce
Minerals Daily Need Coverage Score
10%
Tomato soup
15%
Tomato sauce

Comparison summary

Which food is lower in Sugar?
Tomato sauce
Tomato sauce is lower in Sugar (difference - 0.47g)
Which food contains less Sodium?
Tomato sauce
Tomato sauce contains less Sodium (difference - 175mg)
Which food is lower in Saturated Fat?
Tomato sauce
Tomato sauce is lower in Saturated Fat (difference - 0.015g)
Which food is lower in glycemic index?
Tomato sauce
Tomato sauce is lower in glycemic index (difference - 7)
Which food is richer in minerals?
Tomato sauce
Tomato sauce is relatively richer in minerals
Which food is richer in vitamins?
Tomato sauce
Tomato sauce is relatively richer in vitamins
Which food contains less Cholesterol?
?
The foods are relatively equal in Cholesterol (0 mg)
Which food is cheaper?
?
The foods are relatively equal in price ($)

References

All the values for which the sources are not specified explicitly are taken from FDA’s Food Central. The exact link to the food presented on this page can be found below.

  1. Tomato soup - https://fdc.nal.usda.gov/fdc-app.html#/food-details/171176/nutrients
  2. Tomato sauce - https://fdc.nal.usda.gov/fdc-app.html#/food-details/169074/nutrients

All the Daily Values are presented for males aged 31-50, for 2000-calorie diets.

Data provided by FoodStruct.com should be considered and used as information only. Please consult your physician before beginning any diet.