Italian-Style Rustic Tomato Stock

Here’s the problem with homemade stock: It’s so good that it doesn’t last long. What’s needed is something you can produce more or less on the spot.

Although water is a suitable proxy in small quantities, when it comes to making the bubbling, chest-warming soups that we rely on in winter, water needs some help. Fortunately, there are almost certainly flavorful ingredients sitting in your fridge or pantry that can transform water into a good stock in a matter of minutes.

This recipe is meant to be fast, so by ‘‘simmer,’’ I mean as little as five minutes and no more than 15. You can season these stocks at the end with salt and pepper to taste, or wait until you’re ready to turn them into full-fledged soups.


  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 2 teaspoons minced anchovies
  • Olive oil
  • 3 cups crushed canned tomatoes
  • 1 sprig thyme, rosemary or basil (or a combination)
  • Nutritional Information
    • Nutritional analysis per serving (2 servings)

      7 calories; 0 grams fat; 0 grams saturated fat; 0 grams monounsaturated fat; 0 grams polyunsaturated fat; 0 grams carbohydrates; 0 grams dietary fiber; 0 grams sugars; 0 grams protein; 0 milligrams cholesterol; 17 milligrams sodium

    • Note: Nutrient information is not available for all ingredients. Amount is based on available data.

About 6 cups of stock


  1. Sauté 1 tablespoon minced garlic and 2 teaspoons minced anchovies in olive oil until fragrant.
  2. Add 3 cups crushed canned tomatoes, 3 cups water and a sprig of thyme, rosemary or basil (or a combination) if you like.
  3. Bring to a boil, simmer, then fish out the herbs if you used them.
  • Mexican-style: Substitute 1 tablespoon minced chipotle in adobo for the anchovies, and add a small minced red or yellow onion to the sauté. Stir in the juice of a lime at the end.

15 minutes

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