Original 4B’s Homemade Tomato Soup

Original 4B’s homemade tomato soup will keep you from preparing anything in a can once you make this recipe just once. I am a born and raised Montana – and this is the original recipe from the Man himself – Mr. Hainline, who my family knew well…Enjoy!

4B's tomato Soup

Original 4B’s Homemade Tomato Soup

4B's tomato Soup Original 4B's Homemade Tomato Soup

  • Author:
  • Recipe Type: Copycat Restaurant Recipes, CopyKat Recipes, Soup Recipes
  • Prep time: 10 minutes
  • Cook time: 1 hour
  • Serves: 4
4B's tomato Soup Original 4B's Homemade Tomato Soup

You can make tomato soup that tastes like the famous 4B's.


  • 1 (29 ounce) can diced tomatoes

  • 1 (10.5 ounce) can condensed chicken broth, undiluted

  • 2 tablespoons margarine

  • 2 tablespoons sugar

  • 1 tablespoons chopped onion
1/4 teaspoon baking soda

  • 2 cups of heavy cream (I have substituted Half and Half, and it was just as good…)


In a large stockpot mix tomatoes, chicken broth, margarine, onion, and baking soda. Simmer for 1 hour. In a separate pot, heat cream over a low heat until hot, watching carefully so that the cream does not scorch! Once heated through add to tomato soup and serve. Thanks to Sly1 for sharing this recipe.

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  • Evenstar

    Wow, I’m speechless. I actually walked into the restaurant two years ago and asked if I could HAVE the recipe. They handed me a card with it printed up, all decorative and fancy. The recipe they hand out had crushed and diced tomatoes in it as well as cream and dairy creamer (like the kind you put in coffee, but unflavored). I follow their recipe except as noted by previous posts, it can be a little sweet so I leave out the sugar.

  • marcusm
  • marcusm

    I always use powdered onion and regular butter with an extra little. Then I always add a some basil. I use half diced/half crushed tomatoes, it just gives it a litte variety. And if you feel the flavor is lacking add a package of seasoning from a chicken ramen noodle package.

  • Sherrie4222

    Hi Zootownmana! I tried to click on http://posk.tripod/recipe…. Which is all that I can read, (and being new to this site, probably doesn’t help matters) When I clicked on the site, 1st it brings up 404 ERROR!! Most of the comments are grayed out. Any help?? Please? and Thank you.

  • Spifynes

    I made this tonight and I followed the recipe exactly. A few things were wrong the baking soda has to be added with the cream or it curdles. I added a bit of salt but all in all it turned out pretty good. I’ve never had the original but this is the easiest recipe I’ve found that worked out perfectly.

  • http://www.facebook.com/ahoyt05 Andrew Hoyt

    I used to cook at the 4b’s in Havre and sorry to tell you there are no onions in the soup, or chicken broth, and you use 1 part puree to 2 parts diced, use chicken BASE and mix that with the cream, and no baking soda. I suppose you could put in onions or onion powder.

  • Arielski

    Wow! I moved from Missoula many years and was devastated to hear the 4Bs on E. Broadway was closed. Thanks for the recipe!

  • Micah5five

    There is still a 4B’s located just outside of Missoula. All the ones in town closed but the one located at the Wye “Where I90 and I93 intersect to head up to Kalispell” There is one on the South side of the Highway.

  • Zootownmama

    As a server who worked for 4-b’s for several years…no, just no, this is not how it is made, you boil only the onions, butter and broth until the onions are clear, add to tomato stock (diced tom. AND crushed tom) next add soda and sugar and your cream (i suggest 8oz half/half, 8oz heavy whip.) In double boiler to prevent scorching and heat to at least 165 degrees

  • Lostheartinok

    I have not tried this recipe yet I will do so a little later. But if this is the true 4B’s recipes…WOW!
    I have tried for the last 25 years to find this recipe or try to match it. Originally from Oklahoma and move up there in the 80’s. the 4B’s restaruant was our favorite place to eat. I always had to have this soup “favorite” of mine. I hope that someday I will be able to come up that way to visit my friends and visit Polson to eat at my favorite restaruant. Thanks Christyb

  • A girl

    born and raised in Missoula Montana, and it was one of the saddest days of my life, if only for this soup. Can’t make it too often (2 cups of cream!) but it’s always amazing. Personally, i like it with a ton of black pepper, and a lot of saltines. :)

    • a girl

      that is, one of the saddest days of my life when they closed 4b’s!

  • A North Dakotan

    I LOVE LOVE LOVE 4B’s tomato soup! Thanks for the recipe. We alwyas made a point to stop at one of these restaurants on the way to see my daughter at college at Montana Tech! Thanks for the recipe!!!!!

    • A North Dakotan

      We also bought a few quarts to go for later enjoyment!!!!! YUMMY

  • Anonymous

    4Bs Just reopened in Polson, good job Miles City for staying open!!

  • Shane

    Great recipe, but I am trying to find the 4b’s clam chowder recipe. Any help would be greatly appreciated!

  • Buju

    There is still a 4B’s in Miles City, MT

  • Karen

    And what town would that be

  • A Montanan

    All of the 4B’s restuarants are not closed, there are still a few around Montana, including one in our town.

  • Jil

    Sadly all of the 4B’s are now closed. So having this recipe is an awesome find!! The Hainline’s created many memories for many generations of Montanan’s

  • Fellow Montanan

    I do love this recipe. I have made it for quite a few years since I don’t have a 4B’s close but love the soup. It is easy to make.