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Homemade Corn Chowder

It is hard to go wrong with this homemade recipe for corn chowder. This creamy soup is literally loaded with sweet corn, baby potatoes, savory bacon, bell pepper, and more. Filling, nutritious, and comforting, cuddle up with a big bowl of this warm chowder.

cropped pic of soup in a bowl with bacon and green onions on top

Corn Chowder is easy to make from scratch.

Are you a soup person? Soup is in regular meal rotation in my home. One, soups are pretty easy. They normally are affordable and cover a couple of meals (dinner and leftover lunches). Plus, nothing beats a warm bowl of homemade soup.

A chowder by definition is a rich soup. And this homemade corn chowder recipe is just that. Rich without being too heavy. Hearty without being too thick. Every bite is full of corn and vegetables in a creamy savory base.

Oh, and bacon. 🙂

fresh corn, bell pepper, onion, celery, and baby red potatoes

Ingredients Needed to Make Corn Chowder:

  • Corn on the cob – Fresh works best for this recipe. You can also use frozen, just thaw it before starting.
  • Bacon
  • Butter
  • Onion
  • Bell pepper – Any color works, but I like red for the color it adds to the recipe.
  • Celery
  • Garlic
  • All purpose flour
  • Vegetable broth and / or water
  • Baby potatoes
  • Salt + pepper
  • Paprika
  • Dried thyme and parsley
  • Half + half – You can also use whole milk or heavy cream if that is what you have.
  • Green onions – A totally optional but highly recommended garnish.

Corn, corn, and more corn. This is, after all, corn chowder. You could try to make this with canned corn, but the starches in the corn, corn pulp, and corn juice help bring this chowder together.

You can also use ham or smoked sausage instead of bacon. The flavor of the pork really goes a long way in balancing the taste of the recipe. You get the sweetness from the corn met with the bite of the fresh vegetables plus the salty-crisp bacon.

corn kernels in a bowl

How to Make Corn Chowder:

  1. First, carefully slice the corn kernels off of the cob into a bowl or container. Then, using the backside of a knife, scrape the pulp, corn bits, and juice. Set aside.
  2. In a large pot, cook the bacon over medium heat. Cook and stir until brown and crisp. Transfer the bacon to a paper towel lined dish and set aside. Reserve the bacon grease in the pot.
  3. Next, add the butter to the grease. Stir in the onions, bell pepper, celery, and garlic. Cook and stir frequently for about 7 minutes until the vegetables are tender. Watch your heat and do not burn the garlic.
  4. Gradually pour in the vegetable broth and water, whisking constantly as you go. Scrape all of the brown bits from the bottom of the pan.
  5. Then stir in the corn, potatoes, salt, pepper, paprika, thyme, and parsley. Bring the mixture to a low boil, stirring frequently.
  6. Reduce heat to low and let the chowder simmer for about 20 minutes until the potatoes are easily pierced. Using a handheld blender, pulse the soup several times until the desired consistency.
  7. Finally, stir in the half and half. Heat through. Remove from heat and serve with additional bacon and chopped green onions if desired.

You can make this thinner or thicker by changing the amount of water you add and how much you blend it. I like it kind of chunky, so I don’t get too carried away with the blender. My husband loves the big bites of potato, so I’m trying to win him over.

If you don’t have a hand held immersion blender, you can pour part of the chowder into a normal blender and carefully blend.

TIP: Taste and reseason to your preference. The salt level can vary based on how much is in the bacon and broth. Add more (or less) as you like.

pot of chowder

Love this Recipe? Here are more Soups and Stews to Try:

Stuffed Pepper Soup

Easy Broccoli Cheddar Soup

Southwestern Black Bean Soup

crisp cooked bacon crumbles

I like to add the bacon at the end so it doesn’t get all limp and soggy. You can make this a heartier meal by adding double the bacon.

We used baby red potatoes because I love the way they taste. Plus they add a nice thickness and cook quickly. You can use full sized potatoes if you’d like. Just chop into bite-sized pieces.

TIP: When I made this the first time for my family, I served it as listed in the recipe the first night. The next night, I added smoked sausage to spruce up the leftovers.

overhead picture of a bowl of soup

More Tips + Ideas:

  • Be sure to scrape all that yummy corn magic from the cobs. The starches help thicken the chowder and make it nice and creamy.
  • Don’t toss those bacon drippings. That is flavor. Cook the vegetables and garlic in the bacon drippings along with rich butter.
  • I like to use a solid, thick-bottom cooking pot for this recipe. A dutch oven or other enamel coated cast iron pot works well.
  • When you add the liquid to the pot, scrape up the brown bits. Brown = yum.
  • You can make this chowder thicker by using less water / broth. Or, make it thinner by using a little more.
  • Change the consistency by using a blender.
  • Serve with your favorite garnishes. Green onions, chives, more bacon…even shredded cheese, sour cream, and chopped tomato would be great.
  • Fancy it up by serving with a side salad and bread sticks. (Cornbread or biscuits also make excellent sides.)
  • You can freeze this soup. The potatoes may be mushier during reheating, but the taste will be just as good.
a white bowl with chowder topped with green onions and bacon

My favorite thing about this recipe is it reminds me of eating creamed corn, only with fresh vegetables, tender potatoes, and savory bites of bacon.

This Homemade Corn Chowder Recipe makes plenty. Great for meal prep, lunches, and leftovers. Cook once, eat twice (or more).

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cropped pic of soup in a bowl with bacon and green onions on top
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5 from 1 vote

Homemade Corn Chowder

Rich, creamy, and delicious, this savory recipe features fresh corn, crisp bacon, baby potatoes, and more. Wholesome and filling!
Course Soup
Cuisine American
Keyword corn chowder
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 55 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 25 minutes
Servings 12
Calories 224kcal
Author Buy This Cook That

Ingredients

  • 8 ears corn on the cob husked + silked if not already
  • 8 slices bacon chopped into bite-sized pieces
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 onion peeled, diced
  • 1 bell pepper seeded, diced
  • 2 stalks celery chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic minced
  • 1/4 cup all purpose flour
  • 4 cups vegetable broth
  • 1 1/2 pounds baby red potatoes quartered or halved
  • 1 1/2 cups water more or less to desired thickness
  • 1 teaspoon salt to taste
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper to taste
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried parsley
  • 1 cup half + half
  • 1/2 cup green onions chopped, for serving

Instructions

  • First, carefully slice the corn kernels off of the cob into a bowl or container. Then, using the backside of a knife, scrape the pulp, corn bits, and juice. Set aside.
  • In a large pot, cook the bacon over medium heat. Cook and stir until brown and crisp. Transfer the bacon to a paper towel lined dish and set aside. Reserve the bacon grease in the pot.
  • Next, add the butter to the grease. Stir in the onions, bell pepper, celery, and garlic. Cook and stir frequently for about 7 minutes until the vegetables are tender. Watch your heat and do not burn the garlic.
  • Gradually pour in the vegetable broth and water, whisking constantly as you go. Scrape all of the brown bits from the bottom of the pan.
  • Then stir in the corn, potatoes, salt, pepper, paprika, thyme, and parsley. Bring the mixture to a low boil, stirring frequently.
  • Reduce heat to low and let the chowder simmer for about 20 minutes until the potatoes are easily pierced. Using a handheld blender, pulse the soup several times until the desired consistency.
  • Finally, stir in the half and half. Heat through. Remove from heat and serve with additional bacon and chopped green onions if desired.

Nutrition

Serving: 1g | Calories: 224kcal | Carbohydrates: 28g | Protein: 6g | Fat: 11g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Cholesterol: 22mg | Sodium: 650mg | Potassium: 527mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 6g | Vitamin A: 878IU | Vitamin C: 30mg | Calcium: 40mg | Iron: 1mg

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