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Vegan Corn Chowder

Hearty and healthy veggie-packed vegan corn chowder. Blended up corn, potato, and coconut milk make the chowder base for this super delicious meal!

This easy creamy, thick and amazing dairy-free chowder recipe can be made any time of year! Use canned corn on the off season, and fresh corn during corn season! 

 

Vegan Corn Chowder Recipe - gluten-free, dairy-free corn chowder with vegetables for a healthier take on the classic

 

Who doesn’t love a big steamy bowl of creamy, salty, sweet, chunky, cozy corn chowder?

Up until I started making homemade chowder a few years ago, me of all people!

Confession: I used to be the biggest of chowder naysayers that ever did live. When I was little, my siblings would go wild over the clam-chowder-in-a-bread-bowl situation, especially when we visited San Francisco. I couldn’t for the life of me figure out why the stuff turned my stomach in knots…until…

Flash forward a couple decades, and come to find out it was because the cream and gluten content of the soup made me feel like less than stellar. Too much cream and gluten for this girl = bellyache = bad mood juju. Even the slightest whisper of the word, “chowdah” wrecked havoc on my digestive tract.

A few years ago, one of my brothers started making his own clam chowder, complete with bacon and potatoes for hearty splendor. He goes with a thinner (not roux-based) consistency and less cream.

Not only could I enjoy his homemade clam chowder without feeling sick, but it inspired me to work my own magic in the substitutions department. Nothing like a big brother to draw you a map to the Eightfold Path of Chowder Enlightenment. 

I know, I know…it’s hard to believe something so seemingly fun-less could be so good, but you guys, it truly is.

Plus, it won’t make you curl up in a food coma and beg the chowder higher-ups for forgiveness.

Dairy-Free Corn Chowder - veggie-loaded corn chowder made vegan and vegetarian for a healthy meal

 

How to Make Gluten-Free Dairy-Free Chowder:

As it turns out, you don’t need cream, butter, and flour in order to make chowder. You can replace regular flour with a gluten-free all-purpose blend, use a vegan butter replacement, and/or substitute coconut milk for the cream.

As strange as it may seem in its cream-less, chicken-less, bacon-less glory, this veggie-packed dairy-free, gluten-free version of corn chowder is hands down the best batch corn chowder I’ve ever made.

Dairy-Free Vegan Corn Chowder with vegetables - thick creamy chowder recipe that requires no flour, butter, or milk

The key to making this chowder sweet, thick, and creamy is to cook one of the red potatoes and blend it with half of the cooked corn kernels and the coconut milk. This makes for a chowder-y consistency without having to tap into the butter and flour to make a roux.

The other red potato gets chopped up and cooked with the veggies in order to make the soup nice and chunky and hearty.

Similarly, the other half of the corn kernels go into the soup – I like keeping long strips of corn to make for the optimal big bite. I hope that all makes sense – holler at your girl if you need clarification on the prep method.

Note: If you don’t have access to fresh corn, you can use 3 cans of corn. You don’t even need to drain them before using!

Vegan Corn Chowder - thick, creamy corn chowder recipe made dairy-free and gluten-free

Ingredients for Vegan Corn Chowder:

Corn: The star of the show! I always recommend using fresh when possible, but during the off season, you can absolutely use canned corn! If you use canned corn, you can do as I do and not drain the corn before using it. The liquid adds natural sweetness and can be used in place of broth.

Red Potatoes: Potatoes serve two purposes in this recipe: 1.) one potato takes the place of cream and flour for the chowder (thick broth) mixture and gets blended in a blender with some coconut milk, corn, and broth. This ensures you get that silky-smooth, creamy, thick and satisfying chowder without all the dairy and gluten! 2.) one potato gets chopped and added to the soup for texture and that comforting appeal.

You can also use yukon gold potatoes! Some folks have used jewel yams to make this recipe instead of red potatoes and have reported it works marvelously.

Coconut Milk: All you need is a little canned coconut milk to help make the chowder nice and rich and creamy! I recommend sticking with full-fat canned coconut milk – don’t replace it with light coconut milk or use the coconut milk from a carton! The end result is the chowder is naturally sweet and rich, yet healthful!

Vegetables: Onion, garlic, carrots, and bell pepper provide all sorts of flavor, hardiness, and color to this vibrant meal! I have also added celery in the past and I prefer the corn chowder without celery; however, if you’re a huge fan of it, add 2 or 3 stalks! If you want to get creative, consider adding other vegetables, like cauliflower.

Seasonings: This chowder is naturally sweet, rich and creamy all on its own, but you can add even more flavor by tossing in some Cajun seasoning, paprika, and/or cumin. This combination gives a tiny smoky flavor and the slightest heat to offset the sweet. I love the chowder both with or without these seasonings. Be sure you add sea salt to taste!

Liquid: For the broth/chowder mixture, we need some liquid. I typically use water, but you can also use vegetable broth (or chicken or beef broth if you aren’t vegan). You can also use more coconut milk for added richness. Options galore!

Two bowls of vegan corn chowder next to a pot of vegan corn chowder

How to Make Vegan Corn Chowder:

If you’re using fresh corn, remove the husks and boil them for 5 to 8 minutes, or until they turn puffy and are cooked but not over-done. Transfer the corn to a cutting board and allow them to cool while preparing the rest of the recipe.

Peel and chop both of the red potatoes in quarters and carefully place it into the same pot of boiling water you used to cook the corn. Allow potatoes to cook until soft, about 10 to 15 minutes. Transfer the cooked potatoes to a cutting board and chop one of them into smaller chunks. This one will be added to the chowder, and the other potato (larger chunks) will be blended into a broth with the corn.

Two potatoes boiling in a pot of water for corn chowder

Heat the avocado oil in a large stock pot (I use my Dutch oven) over medium-high heat. Add the chopped onion and sauté, stirring occasionally, until onion is beginning to turn brown, about 5 to 8 minutes. 

Stir in the chopped celery, bell pepper, carrots, seasonings (if adding) and sea salt. Cover the Dutch oven and cook, stirring occasionally, until vegetables have softened, about 5 to 8 minutes.

Saute the vegetables for corn chowder

By this time, the corn and potatoes should be finished cooking and cooling. Use a knife to remove the corn kernels from all of the ears of corn. Place half of the kernels in a blender, along with one cooked potato (save the other one to add to the chowder in chunks). Add the coconut milk and water (or broth) to the blender, and blend until completely smooth. This may take two or three rounds of blending.

Make corn chowder broth by blending coconut milk, corn, and potatoes in a blender

Transfer the chowder mixture to the stock pot along with the other chopped potato and bring to a full boil. Cook, stirring occasionally, until all vegetables have reached desired doneness, about 20 minutes. Taste for flavor and add sea salt to taste.

Add the rest of the corn and potatoes along with the chowder mixture to the pot

Vegan Corn Chowder - dairy-free, gluten-free corn chowder recipe that is easy to make and magically silky and delicious

While this recipe contains no heavy cream or butter, it tastes completely rich and decadent. Like a treat soup. Chowder with benefits. Dessert chow chow. I’ll stop.

To summarize: make this corn chowder while fresh corn is still in season to keep your belly warm and satisfied on the chilly evenings.

Can I Make Corn Chowder Using Canned Corn?:

Yes, absolutely. I make this recipe year-round. In the summer months, I use fresh corn, and when corn is not in season, I use 3 cans of corn. I don’t drain the cans of corn, I simply add everything and this results in an amazingly sweet chowder!

If you go this route, transfer two of the cans of corn to the blender with the potato, coconut milk, and water/broth for blending, and save one of the cans of corn for adding to the soup later so you have corn kernels in the soup.

Easy gluten-free dairy-free chowder recipe

More Vegan Soup Recipes:

My cookbook, Paleo Power Bowls, is now available! CLICK HERE to check it out. Thank you for your all your support!

CHOWDAAAAH!

Vegan Corn Chowder Recipe - gluten-free, dairy-free corn chowder with vegetables for a healthier take on the classic

Vegan Corn Chowder

Yield: 4 servings
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 40 minutes
Total Time: 55 minutes

Creamy dairy-free vegan corn chowder is a delicious meal perfect for those who enjoy a clean meal.

Ingredients

Instructions

  1. Place ears of corn into a large pot and fill with water. Cover the pot with a lid and place on the stove over high heat. Bring to a full boil and cook until corn is plump and juicy, about 5 to 8 minutes. Use tongs to remove corn from the boiling water and place on a cutting board. Note: If you're using canned corn, skip this step and transfer two of the cans of corn to a blender.
  2. Peel and chop both of the red potatoes in quarters and carefully place it into the same pot of boiling water you used to cook the corn. Allow potatoes to cook until soft, about 10 to 15 minutes.
  3. While the potato is cooking, sauté the rest of the vegetables. Heat the avocado oil in a large stock pot over medium-high heat. Add the chopped onion and sauté, stirring occasionally, until onion is beginning to turn brown, about 5 to 8 minutes. Stir in the chopped celery, bell pepper, carrots, seasonings, and sea salt. Cover the Dutch oven and cook, stirring occasionally, until vegetables have softened, about 5 to 8 minutes.
  4. Use a knife to remove the corn kernels from all of the ears of corn. Place half of the kernels in a blender, along with one of the cooked potatoes. Add the coconut milk and water (or broth) to the blender, and blend until completely smooth. This may take two or three rounds of blending.
  5. Chop the other potato into smaller chunks. Add the remaining corn kernels to the pot with the sautéed vegetables, and pour the blended corn/potato (chowder) mixture into the pot. Bring to a gentle boil and cook for 10 to 20 minutes, until all vegetables have reached desired done-ness and the chowder is nice and tasty.
  6. Remove from heat and taste chowder. Add sea salt to taste and enjoy!

Notes

*If you don't have access to fresh corn, use 2 cans of corn, drained

Nutrition Information:
Yield: 4 Serving Size: 1 of 4
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 360Total Fat: 20gSaturated Fat: 16gUnsaturated Fat: 3gCarbohydrates: 46gFiber: 5gSugar: 9gProtein: 6g

Dairy-Free Gluten-Free Vegan Corn Chowder Recipe - a thick, creamy, rich, delicious chowder recipe that will blow your mind!

 

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Renee

Thursday 14th of January 2021

Delicious 🤤 creamy yummy vegan corn soup. I added thyme, sage, bay leaf & rosemary spices. I used vegetable broth. The coconut 🥥 milk 🥛 is the secret star ⭐️ ingredient. I used a 10oz bag of frozen corn split for half blender & half into chopped veggie soup pot. Thank you so much for this recipe.

Julia

Thursday 14th of January 2021

Love it! Thanks, Renee!!

Emily

Sunday 27th of December 2020

This was pretty good. I like the creamy broth base like this so much better than with a non dairy almond or soy. This doesn't have the weird artificial flavor those sometimes have. Thanks for sharing!

Julia

Sunday 27th of December 2020

My pleasure! Happy you like it, Emily. xoxox

Alex @ BayevsKitchen

Wednesday 2nd of December 2020

This recipe is SO GOOD!! Pin it to cook later.

Maria Kawulych

Wednesday 2nd of September 2020

I made this vegan corn chowder for dinner. What a hit! My husband could not get enough. I found I needed to add more of the spices, however, my spices are a bit old so they may have lost a bit of potency. It makes a nice amount so we have 2 days of meals for our family. Thanks for creating this great chunky soup. I will definitely be making it again. I've shared the recipe with my family because it's so good.

Julia

Thursday 3rd of September 2020

I'm so happy you and your husband like it, Maria! Thrilled you'll be making it again! xoxo

Vanessa

Wednesday 18th of March 2020

Thanks for sharing! Does it freeze well?

Julia

Wednesday 18th of March 2020

Hi Vanessa!

It does! I like to store mine in glass jars, but if you're concerned about them breaking, you can use tupperware containers or use freezer zip lock bags :D xo

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