Your mouth will sing the praises of this Shrimp & Corn Chowder all day! On the table in less than 30 minutes, this dairy-free chowder is full of perfectly cooked shrimp, sweet corn, and a creamy base packed full of easy flavor. Simple to make, easy ingredients, and a no-nonsense healthy comfort food recipe.
What makes a chowder a chowder?
A chowder, unlike a bisque, is usually made from milk or cream and thick and chunky with bits of potato, veggies, and meat (in our chowder the texture comes from corn and shrimp, the milk from coconut milk). A bisque, on the other hand, is smooth and creamy with little to no chunks.
Cooking the shrimp and corn and then removing them from the pan while you finish the soup helps create perfectly cooked shrimp, sweet and firm corn, and a creamy chowder base.
What shrimp is best for shrimp chowder?
Uncooked frozen shrimp (that you have thawed and rinsed) is best for this. Be sure it is deveined and the tail is removed (ewww, otherwise!). I like to use a medium size when making this for my family but a small size when making this for a group.
YES, you can use pre-cooked shrimp. If you do, add it into the pot at the very end of the recipe and skip putting it into the oil in the beginning of this recipe or you will get gummy shrimp.
Most soups with only a few spices benefit from having the spices toasted for a minute or so to deepen their flavor. The best part is the bits that stick to the pan and then come off in the broth, later.
Tip: if you don't have cajun seasoning, Old Bay seasoning will work great!
Speaking of toasting spices in dishes, have you tried my Chicken Tikki Masala? SOO flavorful, easy, and fast! You'll love it!
Diced potatoes, frozen sweet corn, and veggie broth create a beautiful base for this chowder. The potatoes and corn bring a starch to the broth that eliminates the need for any flour or thickener. Great for gluten-free diets!
Tip: use sweet potatoes instead of white potatoes for even more nutrition. However, it WILL sweeten this chowder, a bit.
Use your immersion blender to blend your chowder base together or, if you don't have an immersion blender, use your food processor or blender.
Note: if you don't have ANY form of a blender take a potato masher to the potatoes and corn and do your best to develop a thicker consistency by smashing and mashing by hand. Messy, and you won't end up with a perfectly smooth texture, but still tasty and delicious!
Just before serving, add back in your shrimp and corn and a handful of fresh parsley. Taking the shrimp and corn out while you finish the recipe will keep your shrimp and corn from getting mushy and over-cooked. Sooo good!
Serve this chowder up with fresh parsley and a good sprinkle of paprika.
This recipe makes enough for 4 people. To stretch it, use small shrimp instead of the medium size. This will allow you to double up on the base while making sure everyone gets shrimp in their bowl.
Try these add-ins:
- Diced tomatoes
- bacon (remove with the shrimp and back in)
- carrots and celery
- green chilis
- scallops, lobster, or crab meat
Shrimp and Corn Chowder
- immersion blender
- 2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
- 1 pound shrimp, peeled & deveined (I use medium sized but any size will work)
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon pepper
- 2 cups frozen sweet corn, divided
- 1 onion, diced
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 teaspoons cajun seasoning
- 2 cups low sodium veggie broth
- 1 large russet potato, peeled & diced
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 14 oz can coconut milk
- 1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
- 1 tablespoon sherry wine or alternative acid
- On medium-high heat, heat 1 tablespoon of the olive oil in a large dutch oven or soup pot. Add the shrimp, salt, and pepper. (about 3 minutes, depending on the size of the shrimp)
- Cook the shrimp just until pink, add 1 cup of the frozen corn, stir to coat, and then remove from heat and set aside.
- Add the additional 1 tablespoon of olive oil into the pan and heat the oil.
- Add the onion and cook until transparent, about 3 minute.
- Add the minced garlic and cajun seasoning and saute until fragrant, about 1 minute.
- Add the broth, additional 1 cup of corn, diced potato, and bay leaf. Bring to a low boil and simmer for 12-15 minutes. Stir the bottom of the pan to pull up the yummy drippings.
- Remove the bay leaf from the pot and add the can of coconut milk.
- Bring it back up to a low boil, remove from heat, and puree the soup using a immersion blender. (note, it isn't necessary to puree the soup for flavor but texture. If you don't have an immersion blender go ahead and try it without blending)
- Add back in the shrimp & corn, the fresh chopped parsley, and 1 tablespoon of sherry wine (or another acid like lemon juice, vinegar, or white wine).
- Serve immediately with additional fresh chopped parsley