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Tomato Soup With Vermicelli Recipe – Şehriyeli Domates Corbası

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Anyone who knows Turkey will know that çorba (soup) is a staple of Turkish cuisine, and while there are some Turkish soups that might prove a challenge (I’ve never enjoyed a bowl of brain soup for example), others, such as red lentil soup (kırmızı mercimek çorbası), will be some of the best soups you have ever tasted.

Another favourite of ours is good old domates çorbası. Tomato soup was always a favourite while growing up, but that was out of a tin.

When we started to make our own tomato soup, that was when it got really good!

This is a simple soup recipe using fresh ingredients from Fethiye market. As we were having it for dinner, we decided to make it more filling by adding şehriye (vermicelli) at the end.

This is a common addition to Turkish soups and Turkish rice.

Turkish Recipe For Şehriyeli Domates Çorbası

A quick scan online will reveal many different versions of tomato soup recipes – but this is how we make ours.

This recipe makes four large servings, or six if eaten as a starter.

Chicken bones and herbs in a stock pan.
Many Turkish soups are made with chicken stock

First of all, you need a stock; anything from simple hot water to a stock cube to a homemade vegetable, chicken or beef stock.

  • Ours is a very simple stock of water, chicken bones, thyme, bay leaf, salt and pepper. Turn the heat high and bring to the boil, then reduce the heat to simmer.
  • Meanwhile, you can move onto your main ingredients.
A collage of the ingredients for Turkish Tomato Soup.
The tomato soup process

These quantities are not hard and fast.

The beauty of any soup recipe is that you can add as much or as little as you like of any ingredient and, as you may know from our previous Turkish recipes, we like strong flavours.

Our soup recipes, more often than not, contain chillies.

  • Finely chop a large onion and add to a large saucepan with a glug of oil.
  • Grate or crush 3 large cloves of garlic and add that to the pan.
  • At this point, we grate 3 large green or red chillies on the finest setting and add to the pan.
  • Sweat the mixture on a low heat for a few minutes and, meanwhile, grate 4 large tomatoes into a bowl. You don’t need to peel them as most of the skin will be left behind as you grate the flesh.
  • Into the pan, add 4 cubes of butter (about 1 centimetre cubed) and allow to melt before adding a tablespoon of flour.
  • Stir the mixture so you can see the butter and flour form a paste, and then add the grated tomatoes.
  • Now add 3-4 ladles of whichever stock you are using along with some salt and pepper. Stir, bring to the boil and then reduce to a simmer. Allow to cook for around 20 minutes and then add 2 tablespoons of tomato paste (domates salçası) and stir into the soup.

Taste your tomato soup and check the consistency. Add more salça if it’s too thin, more stock if it’s too thick.

A wooden spoon stirs the cooking red soup.
The tomato soup takes on a richness in colour once the salça has been absorbed

If you’re happy with it, remove from the heat, take out the blender and give your soup a good whizz until it’s smooth and creamy.

Some people add milk or cream to their soup at this point, but we find the butter and flour that was added earlier is enough richness for us. It’s up to you.

Vermicelli is added to the soup and there are four slices of thick crusty bread.
Vermicelli makes your tomato soup more filling and adds texture

Now, add a good handful of şehriye (vermicelli) to your soup, stir it in and place a lid over the top to keep it warm.

The şehriye will cook in around 5 minutes in the heat of the soup.

While you are waiting, cut some thick wedges of fresh, crusty bread.

The finished Tomato Soup in a large white bowl.
A serving of şehriyeli domates çorbası

Now you’re ready to enjoy your tomato soup. We ate ours last night for dinner and there was just one thing missing: freshly torn basil leaves.

Alas, the basil season is still to come, but we’ll definitely be making this şehriyeli domates çorbası again once those tasty, little, green leaves are available.

A steaming bowl of tomato soup with vermicelli
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Şehriyeli Domates Çorbası – Turkish Tomato Soup

This Turkish tomato soup is a real favourite. A big bowl of comfort made even more wholesome by the addition of vermicelli.
We make our tomato soup with chicken stock but if you are vegetarian or vegan, you can use vegetable stock or water.
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Course Starter / Appetizer
Cuisine Turkish
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Servings 4
Calories 340kcal
Author Turkey’s For Life


  • 1 Large saucepan
  • 1 Large bowl for your grated tomatoes
  • 1 Sharp knife
  • 1 Ladle


  • 4 large tomatoes or 2 x 400 grams tinned / canned tomatoes
  • 1 large onion peeled & finely chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic peeled & grated
  • 1 red chilli stem discarded & very finely chopped
  • 30 grams butter
  • 1 tablespoon plain flour
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 300 millilitres chicken stock or vegetable stock or hot water
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • salt & pepper to season


  • First of all, grate your tomatoes into a large bowl. You will be left with the skin in yoır hand and this can be discarded.
  • Now heat your oil in a large saucepan over a medium to low heat and add your onion. Stir for a few minutes until the onion starts to sweat and go translucent.
  • At this point, you can add your grated garlic and chopped chilli and continue to sweat for a few minutes.
  • Now add your butter and stir around until it is melted.
  • Add your flour and stir until it has formed paste with the butter, coating your onion mixture.
  • Now add your grated tomatoes and stir to mix everything together.
  • Add your salça (tomato paste) and paprika to the pan and stir until it has dissolved.
  • When your salça has dissolved, add your stock or water and your salt and pepper.
  • Simmer for 20 minutes to allow the flavours to infuse.
  • Remove from the heat and blend your tomato soup until smooth.
  • Now do a taste test. If you are happy with the consistency, you can continue to the next step. If not, add a little more more salça if your tomato soup is too thin. Add more stock if it is too thick and return to the heat to make sure the soup is nice and hot before once more removing from the heat.
  • Add your vermicelli to the soup. stir and cover with a lid. The vermicelli will cook in around 5 minutes in the hot soup.
  • Meanwhile, you can cut some wedges of fresh bread to dip into your tomato soup once it is served.


  • As always, calories are approximate and should be used as a guideline only.


Calories: 340kcal
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Afiyet Olsun!

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Turkey's For Life

Saturday 16th of February 2013

@ Lule Libelule: Glad you decided to try lots of different foods in Turkey. the country tends to have that effect on people. You probably tried Ezo Gelin soup, too. :)

Lule Libelule

Friday 15th of February 2013

i tried this soup in istanbul, i am very conservative concerning food and not always want to taste something new, but in turkey all my ideas changed )) i am inlove with this soup and spend a lot of time to find out what kind of soup is )) i've tried so many meals nobody remembered about what i was talking )))

Turkey's For Life

Tuesday 15th of May 2012

Hope you enjoy it when you do try it.

turkey and tomato soup recipe

Tuesday 15th of May 2012

The title of this post has definitely convinced me! I’ll have to try this soup this coming weekend.

Turkey's For Life

Wednesday 14th of March 2012

@ Barbara: Well, you know where we are. When you finally get here, we'll go on a big Turkish food trail so you don't miss out on anything! :)

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