Summer's Best Corn Chowder ♥ Recipe

Summer's Best Corn Chowder, another classic summer soup ♥, packed with summer vegetables, especially sweet corn. Fresh & Seasonal. Great for Meal Prep. Weight Watchers Friendly. Easily Vegetarian. Naturally Gluten Free. Low Fat.
A simple corn chowder recipe, packed with our favorite fresh summer vegetables like onion, carrot, red pepper, potato and sweet potato and of course, the soup's real star, kernels of sweet corn. As bright and colorful as crates of fresh vegetables lined up at the farmstand. Perfect for CSA members because the corn chowder recipe uses so many fresh vegetables, all at once.

Fresh & Seasonal. A Summer Classic. Great for Meal Prep. Weeknight Easy, Weekend Special. Weight Watchers Friendly. Easily Vegetarian. Naturally Gluten Free. Low Fat.

Summer Soups vs Winter Soups

In winter, big pots of simmering soup are a given, hearty bowls to warm us from the inside out. But what about summer soup, do you make summer soup? Summer soups are just different, aren't they? Lighter and livelier, more likely to be all about the fresh vegetables that are so alluring during these heady summer months.

For me, summer just isn't summer without at least two must-make summer soup recipes, Tomato Gazpacho, the chilled tomato summer soup that turned me into a seasonal eater, and this corn chowder recipe, bits of summer vegetables and sweet kernels of corn in a milky broth. It's takes a little chopping, we do love to cut vegetables, don't we? :-)

I like this corn chowder served warm, not hot, the better to really taste the individual vegetables, bite by bite. It's similar to Finnish Summer Soup, one of my very oldest recipes. Add shrimp and scallops and bits of fresh tomato for Summer Seafood Chowder, another summer chowder.

But Do Let It Rest, Let the Flavors Meld At Least a Few Hours

I learned a big lesson when first making corn chowder. Then, and I repeat now, that this soup might disappoint when it's first done. But let it rest a bit, even a couple of hours, and all of a sudden, the flavors just bloom and you just might find yourself (I won't tell) slurping spoonfuls right from the pot.

More Summer Soups

All fans of summer soup will definitely want to check out my collection of Favorite Summer Soup Recipes, some chilled, some warm, all filled with summer vegetables (and fruit too!) and summer color.


"It was super delicious!!! I will definitely make this again!!!" ~ AnnMarie
"A wonderful chowder..." ~ Anonymous

Just updated. First published in 2012!


Hands-on time: 50 minutes
Time to table: 60 minutes but best if let to rest for at least a couple of hours or overnight
Makes 12 cups

2 tablespoons bacon drippings (see TIPS)
1 large onion, diced (about 2 cups)
2 large carrots, cut into rounds or half-rounds (about 1 cup)
2 ribs celery, cut on the diagonal (about 1-1/2 cups)
1 red bell pepper, diced
1 zucchini, diced
Other summer vegetables - okra, green beans, tiny broccoli or cauliflower florets, etc.

3/4 pound new potatoes or Yukon gold potatoes, skins on and diced
3/4 pound sweet potato, peeled and diced (from 1 medium sweet potato)
6 cups chicken stock (I use Homemade Chicken Stock)
2 fresh whole sprigs of thyme or oregano
1 teaspoon kosher salt

1 teaspoon sugar
3 cups fresh sweet corn kernels, about 6 ears (How to Cut Corn Off the Cob, Keeping All Ten Fingers, Capturing Every Delicious Kernel and Every Drop of Sweet Corn "Milk")
1 1/2 cups whole milk (or for incredible richness, half & half or even cream)
Additional salt to taste, pepper to taste

In a very large pot or Dutch oven, heat the bacon drippings on MEDIUM HIGH until sizzling. Add onion, carrot, celery, bell pepper, zucchini and other summer vegetables as they're prepped, gently cooking just until beginning to soften. Stir in potatoes, sweet potato, chicken stock, fresh herb sprigs and salt. Bring to a boil, reduce to maintain a simmer, let simmer until potatoes and sweet potatoes are cooked.

Add the sugar, corn and milk and cook for about 10 minutes, just until the corn is cooked, it won't take long! Remove the fresh herb sprigs and season to taste.

Let rest off the heat for an hour or two before serving or cover and refrigerate overnight.

BACON If you don't have bacon drippings on hand, cook about 1/2 cup diced bacon (from about 5 slices) until crispy, lift out of the skillet. Remove all but 2 tablespoons of bacon drippings and continue.
SALT A good measure of salt is key here, especially if using unsalted homemade chicken stock.
VEGETARIAN CORN CHOWDER Just use olive oil instead of bacon drippings and vegetable stock instead of chicken stock. It's still glorious! This recipe is really all about the vegetables and the milky broth.

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This Week, Elsewhere

~ Cold & Creamy Cantaloupe Soup ~
from Kitchen Parade

~ Joe's Famous White Chocolate Bread Pudding ~
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~ more St. Louis Restaurant Recipes ~
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Seasonal Eating: Oh, August! The Height of Summer Across the Years

Pasta with Zucchini Noodles, Ricotta & Basil Pesto Grape Tomato Salad with Balsamic Vinaigrette (< so many tomato recipes for August!) My Quick Panzanella Lentil Salad with Tomatoes, Dill & Basil Broccoli, Bacon & Raisin Salad with Cheddar Herbed Grape Tomatoes King Hill Farms Simple & Sublime Beets (< always, always, for the first roasted beet) Amaranth Greens More Matters: The New Fruits & Veggies Campaign Insalata Caprese Fresh Tomato Sauce Delicious Microwave Sweet Potato Tomato & Onion Salad Grilled Beets, Greens & Beans Stuffed Peppers Grilled Corn with Chipotle-Lime Browned Butter Stuffed Zucchini Boats (< this week's reader favorite!) Skillet Stewed Tomatoes & Okra Avocado Recipes – Alphabet of Vegetables Seasonal Soups & Salads – August

More Favorite Corn Recipes

~ Raw Corn Chowder ~
~ Cooler Corn - How to Cook Corn in a Beer Cooler ~
~ Grilled Sweet Corn (in the Husks) with Spiced Lime Butter ~
~ Warm Tomato, Corn & Okra Salad ~
~ more corn recipes ~
from A Veggie Venture

~ Favorite Summer Soup Recipes ~
~ Fresh Creamed Corn ~
~ Creamy Ricotta with Tomato-Cucumber-Corn Salad ~
~ Sweet-Corn Soup with Shrimp ~
~ more corn recipes ~
from Kitchen Parade

Looking for healthy new ways to cook vegetables? A Veggie Venture is home to hundreds of super-organized quick, easy and healthful vegetable recipes and the famous asparagus-to-zucchini Alphabet of Vegetables. Join "veggie evangelist" Alanna Kellogg to explore the exciting world of common and not-so-common vegetables, seasonal to staples, savory to sweet, salads to sides, soups to supper, simple to special.

© Copyright Kitchen Parade 2012, 2015 (repub) & 2019

Alanna Kellogg
Alanna Kellogg

A Veggie Venture is home of "veggie evangelist" Alanna Kellogg and the famous asparagus-to-zucchini Alphabet of Vegetables.


  1. Alanna I love corn chowder but have never made it from scratch since I'm the only one in my family that likes it. However, now that you've shared this recipe I may have to make it all for myself.

  2. I love soups! Super filling and an easy way to get all of your veggies in for the day! I love to make a huge batch and use as leftover dinners and sometimes pour over some lettuce as a salad. Great recipe for summer,I will have to try it out! Love and Shine CourtStar

  3. This is definitely the best summer corn chowder recipe. The bright colors gives a full blown summer feel.

  4. Alanna, I am new to yor blog and have loved all of your recipes ideas!! I made the corn chowder yesterday, with Fat Free chicken Broth and Fat Free Half and HAlf!! I used most of my CSa Veggies and It was super delicious!!! I will definitely make this again!!! Thanks!!!


  5. oh my gosh that looks INCREDIBLE! i love the serving dish too:) awesome!

  6. I have this on the stove as we speak! You are such an excellent resource for veggie-filled cooking. Question... at what point do you add the stock, salt and herbs? After the veggies soften but before the sugar/corn/milk?

  7. Yikes, I seem to have left out an entire paragraph, so sorry, will fix as soon as I am back to a computer. In the mean time, after the first veggies are cooked in the fat, add the stock, potatoes and herbs. Bring to a simmer, simmer til the potatoes are done. Then add the corn and milk and carry on ...

  8. A wonderful chowder..however the recipe directions neglect the step of adding the broth and the herbs. So I just winged it, but I'm quite experienced in soup making. I used fresh dill to wonderful results.

  9. I've never used sweet potato in corn chowder. Interesting......

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  14. I still miss Gourmet too! Such a shame....


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Thank you for taking a moment to write! I read each and every comment, for each and every recipe, whether a current recipe or a long-ago favorite. If you have a specific question, it's nearly always answered quick-quick. ~ Alanna