I love creamy chowdery soups. From yummy clam chowder to bacon and potato chowder, if it has the word chowder in the name, then I’m pretty sure I’ll love it (and probably even ask for seconds). Unfortunately, traditional chowders are usually cream-based and thickened with a roux made from flour and butter. Occasionally, no problem. But my chowder love runs deep, so today, I’m sharing a healthier version of chowder. One I can make and eat anytime, minus the guilt. Inspired by summer corn and garden-fresh zucchini, this corn and zucchini chowder is so good and so easy to make. I even snuck some shredded chicken in there for extra protein.
First, brown the bacon in a large soup pot until it just starts to brown. You may remove the bacon or leave it in the pot (up to you – personal preference) as you soften the onions, celery, carrots, and garlic over medium heat. Stir in the dried thyme.
After the veggies have softened (about 5-8 minutes), add the chopped potatoes, cauliflower, water, and bay leaf. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to medium-low. Cover and simmer for 10-15 minutes. The potatoes and cauliflower should be fork-tender.
Stir the zucchini and corn into the pot of soup. Cover and continue to simmer for an additional 10-15 minutes, or until all of the vegetables have softened. Remove the bay leaf before carefully pureeing approximately 3 cups of soup in a high-speed blender or food processor.
Meanwhile, return the pureed soup back to the pot. Stir in the cooked and shredded chicken and season with salt and black pepper, to taste. Stir in the half-and-half and cook until everything is just heated through.