Quick and easy Vegan Corn Chowder. It's creamy, comforting, has only a handful of ingredients and can be ready in under 30 minutes!
When fresh corn is in season, Vegan Corn Chowder is a MUST and this one is quick and easy to make with just a handful of ingredients.
It's simple, creamy, comforting, naturally gluten-free, and just like my Tomato Basil Soup, just perfect for when you're craving a cozy dinner but still want something summery. We all know there's nothing quite like fresh corn or tomatoes to make a meal shine!
The ingredient list is pretty simple. Here's what you will be needing:
- Sweet corn - Fresh corn is recommended for the very best tasting chowder, but you can also use frozen corn. I don't recommend canned corn.
- Plant milk - Any creamy unsweetened and unflavoured plant milk can be used to make this dairy-free corn chowder. Always check the label because many plant milks contain added sugar and vanilla and are not good for savoury dishes. My preference for this recipe is canned light coconut milk because it adds a delicious creamy richness, without a noticeable coconut flavour. Cashew milk is also a great choice.
How To Make Vegan Corn Chowder
This is a really easy vegan corn chowder recipe that can be ready in less than half and hour. Here's a quick summary of how it's done:
- Saute the onions and garlic in a large soup pot, then add the potatoes and corn cobs (not the kernels), cover with stock and simmer until the potatoes are cooked.
- Remove the corn cobs, add the kernels, plant milk and seasonings and allow to heat through.
- To thicken corn chowder, partially blend it with an immersion blender or scoop out a couple of cups, blend, then add them back in. By doing this, the starchy corn and potatoes make the chowder extra thick and creamy without the need for any flour or cashew cream.
Success tip - Tossing the corn cobs into the soup while it simmers adds lots of extra corn flavour so don't skip this step!
This delicious chowder is great as it is but feel free to switch things up to make it your own. Here are some ideas:
- Add some chopped zucchini in the last 10 minutes of cooking time
- Add a bit of heat with some chili flakes, chipotle peppers or a jalapeno
- Make it cheesy with some nutritional yeast or melty vegan cheese
Vegan Corn Chowder is creamy, thick and comforting. It's chunky and filling enough to eat on its own but is also wonderful with some corn bread, sweet potato biscuits, healthy oil-free biscuits, or crusty bread:
Fill your bowl then top with your favourite toppings:
- Grilled corn and raw red bell pepper
- Crunchy vegan croutons or tortilla strips
- A drizzle of infused olive oil or hot sauce
- Green onions
- Shredded vegan cheese or some salty vegan feta crumbles
- Fresh herbs
- Vegan bacon sprinkles or a sprinkle of smoked paprika
To grill corn as a topping - Completely remove the husks and silks from the ears, and place them straight on a hot grill for about 10 minutes, turning occasionally until nice char marks appear. This is good for visual appeal and smoky, sweet-char taste! Let them cool enough to handle then cut the corn off in chunky pieces with a sharp knife.
You can! It will have a much better flavour when made with fresh corn but is still good with frozen. The amount to use is given in the recipe below.
I don't recommend using canned corn. The corn is what provides most of the flavour in this soup and canned corn isn't flavourful enough.
I like to use Yukon Gold potatoes in soups and stews. Red potatoes or russets will work well too.
This chowder is thickened by the starchy potatoes and corn which are partially blended. To make it thicker just blend a little more until it's the right thick and chunky consistency for you.
If you try this recipe, let me know how you like it by leaving a comment and rating below! And be sure to join my mailing list for more deliciousness!
Creamy Vegan Corn ChowderAuthor:
- 5 ears fresh corn , (or 3¾ to 4 cups of frozen kernels)
- 1 tablespoon olive oil , or vegan butter (use water to saute for oil-free)
- 1 medium onion , diced
- 3 cloves garlic minced
- 4 large potatoes , peeled and diced (about 5½ cups or 1¾ lb / 793g)
- 4 cups (960 mls) vegetable stock
- 1½ cups (360 ml) creamy plant milk , it MUST be unsweetened and unflavoured (light canned coconut milk is my preference)
- 1½ teaspoons sea salt
- 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1 teaspoon thyme , or rosemary (fresh or dried)
- Remove the husks and silks from the ears of corn and then cut the kernels off. To do this lay the ears down on your cutting board and cut straight down along one side with a long sharp knife. Rotate the ear of corn, and repeat the cut until all the kernels have been removed. Set aside for now and keep the cobs because you'll be using them in just a minute.
- Warm a large soup pan over medium heat, add the oil and sauté the onion until translucent.
- Add the garlic to the onions and sauté for another minute then add the potato, stock, and the corn cobs (the middle bit you usually dispose of) NOT the kernels. If using frozen corn you won't have the cobs so skip that part.
- Cover with a lid and simmer until the potato is tender (about 10 minutes). Adding the cobs adds lots of extra flavour to your broth!
- Once the potato is tender, using tongs, carefully remove the corn cobs and discard/compost.
- Add the corn kernels, milk, salt, pepper, and herbs to the pot then bring to a gentle simmer. At this point don't leave it simmering for too long. Just enough for the chowder to be heated through. This ensures the corn keeps its colour and fresh flavour.
- Either use a hand-held immersion blender to partially blend and thicken the chowder in the pan, or remove about 3 cups, blend then return to the pan. The blended starchy potato and corn are what thickens the chowder and make it nice and creamy. Don't blend too much though. It should still be pretty chunky.
- Serve immediately.
Originally published September 27th 2016. Updated and republished on August 23rd 2022.
This chowder was unbelievable! It does help that California's corn is so sweet right now! Another excellent and easy recipe.
Melanie McDonald says
So pleased you enjoyed it Chris! You really can't beat fresh, local corn!
My favorite corn chowder recipe!
My husband decided he would make tea tonight so asked what I fancied. Great to come home to a clean kitchen . Hubby had no problem following the recipe and even noted the need for the light coconut milk. The flavour was awesome. Thank you Mel.
This is an absolutely delicious soup. I have made it several times, but this afternoon I could not find the recipe and forgot where I had seen it. I made another soup from the internet and it wasn't nearly as good. I now have printed it out so it will be on hand. Keep up the great creations.
A Virtual Vegan says
Thank you so much Janette and I am glad you found the recipe again in the end!
I love this corn chowder, it's AMAZING!
Janette Allen says
I have made this chowder 3 times now over 2 weeks. It is delicious, easy and a hit with my guests. 29 year old son loves it.
I added one home grown chili to the sauted onions, as I like a little spice. Probably could have cut back on the black pepper. Used frozen corn. Will be a favorite for a quick, delicious meal.
Loving this chowder. My little boy loves it too.
This is so delicious, Mel! I can't get enough of this soup right now!
The perfect supper with some crusty bread to dip. We all really enjoyed it.