Creamy coconut corn chowder

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Creamy coconut corn chowder - slightly sweet, slightly spicy, completely delicious! (and vegan too!)

What’s the difference between a soup and a chowder? I always thought a chowder was just a chunky soup, but there are some chunky soups that I would never call a chowder (I’ve never heard of minestrone chowder), so… who knows. I’m definitely going to call this a chowder though, since it means I can sing ‘chowdaaaaah’ while I’m prancing round the kitchen.

(and now the word ‘chowder’ has lost all meaning)

Creamy coconut corn chowder - slightly sweet, slightly spicy, completely delicious! (and vegan too!)

Corn chowder is one of my favourite soups – I go a bit mad for sweetcorn (there was a time when I probably had it in about 80% of my meals, it’s great mixed in to just about anything), and you can’t beat a thick, comforting soup. After a surprisingly lovely summer, the weather is starting to cool off here, so my mind is beginning to stray away from cold salads and fresh summer vegetables, and towards warming soups – and corn chowder is top of my list.

Corn chowder is often packed with dairy to give the beautiful creaminess, but I decided to make a vegan corn chowder by using coconut milk instead. It adds a very slight hint of sweetness, and together with the very slight hint of spice, it makes for a wonderful combination of flavours.

The creaminess is also added to by partially blending the corn – just enough for it to break down and make the soup nice and thick. I also left some of the vegetables whole though, since I think it adds a more interesting texture. It’s up to you – if you prefer a smooth soup then blend the whole lot! But you might need to call it coconut corn soup instead of coconut corn chowder (…did we decide that was the difference? I have no idea).

Creamy coconut corn chowder - slightly sweet, slightly spicy, completely delicious! (and vegan too!)

By the way, yes that is naan bread – not the usual accompaniment to corn chowder, but it worked really well! Gotta love using up random leftovers in successful ways!

Creamy coconut corn chowder

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5 from 2 votes
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Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes
Servings: 2
Author: Becca Heyes


  • 1 tbsp oil
  • 1/2 onion finely diced
  • 3 cloves garlic minced
  • 1 stick celery finely diced
  • 1 mild red chilli finely diced
  • 1/4 tsp chilli powder
  • 300 g corn kernels I used tinned
  • 250 ml vegetable stock
  • 100 ml coconut milk
  • 4 tbsp fresh parsley chopped


  • Heat the oil in a large saucepan, and add the onion, garlic, celery and red chilli. Cook over a medium-low heat for 5-10 minutes, until soft.
  • Add the chilli powder and corn, and cook for a further minute or two before pouring in the vegetable stock.
  • Use an immersion blender to roughly blend the soup – it’s best if you leave some parts chunky. Add the coconut milk, and bring to a gentle simmer. When the soup is piping hot, serve it with plenty of fresh parsley.

Nutritional information is approximate, and will depend on your exact ingredients. Please calculate your own nutritional values if you require accuracy for health reasons.

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Creamy coconut corn chowder - slightly sweet, slightly spicy, completely delicious! (and vegan too!)

Prefer to make your soups in the slow cooker? Try my slow cooker loaded baked potato soup!

Slow cooker loaded baked potato soup

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  1. About to make this for the third time since you posted it. Using up the last 3/4 of a fairly hot “mild” green chilli I have stashed in the freezer this time though. Because I like green chilli with sweetcorn, and prefer to emphasise the corn sweetness rather than add a lot of heat. We shall see…but yeah, I do like this one.

  2. Your soup looks GORGEOUS, Becca! The coconut milk makes it so different to the American corn soups I grew up with. I have a corn soup to post too but am waiting for better weather to take some piccies ;-)

  3. I believe what makes a chowder a chowder is 1. potato chunks and 2. a cream element of some kind. Unless you’re making the weirdo tomato-based Manhattan clam chowder, that is! Whether or not this is technically a chowder, it sounds excellent. Coconut and corn for the win!

  4. The weather is cooling off in my neck of the woods as well. This will be a nice addition to my dishes for next week. There’s only one thing though: I don’t like celery. What vegetable would you recommend as a substitute? I was thinking maybe leek but the texture isn’t the same.

    1. I actually really don’t like celery either, but you can’t really taste it when it’s cooked down into the soup, so I’d leave it in if you can bear it ;) if not, I think you could just skip it without losing out on too much!