Chicken corn chowder is the ultimate comfort food. This hearty, creamy soup is packed with chicken, corn, potatoes, and veggies, making it a complete meal in one bowl.
With bold flavors and a smooth, velvety texture, this chowder is sure to satisfy. Keep reading for tips on how to make the creamiest, most delicious chicken corn chowder!
Tips for the Best Chicken Corn Chowder
- Use boneless, skinless chicken thighs for maximum flavor and moisture. Breasts can dry out too easily.
- Cut the chicken and potatoes into similar bite-sized pieces so they cook at the same rate.
- When making your roux, don’t rush it. Cook the flour and butter for a couple minutes to remove the raw flour taste.
- For ultra-creamy chowder, use half-and-half or heavy cream. Milk alone won’t provide enough richness.
- Let the soup simmer until the potatoes are very tender. This will create a thick, creamy base.
- For convenience, use frozen corn kernels. Just thaw first and add toward the end.
- Garnish with fresh herbs! Chopped parsley adds brightness, while thyme and oregano provide earthiness.
- For spice, add a pinch of cayenne pepper or hot sauce to taste.
- Chicken corn chowder is even better the next day after the flavors meld together.
Leftovers and storage
Here are some notes about leftovers and storage for the chicken corn chowder:
Leftovers can be refrigerated for 3–4 days. Transfer the chowder to airtight containers and store in the fridge.
To freeze, let the chowder cool completely, then transfer it to freezer bags. Flatten to remove excess air. Frozen chowder will keep for 2–3 months.
Thaw frozen chowder overnight in the fridge before reheating. Add a splash of milk or broth when reheating if the chowder is too thick.
Bring the chowder to a gentle simmer on the stovetop or heat in the microwave until hot, stirring occasionally. Add any additional seasonings to taste.
For longer-term storage, canned chowder is a great option. Once the chowder has cooled, transfer it to sterilized glass jars and process according to canning instructions. Canned chowder can last for up to a year.
Refrigerate any leftover cooked chicken separately from the chowder and use it within 3–4 days. Frozen chicken keeps for six months.
Properly stored leftovers are safe to eat, but discard any chowder over 5 days old. For best quality and flavor, enjoy leftovers within 4 days.
Chowder can be reheated multiple times without losing flavor or texture, as long as it is brought to a food-safe temperature of 165°F when reheating.
Frequently Asked Questions
What kind of corn should I use?
You can use fresh or frozen corn kernels. If using frozen, just make sure to thaw them first. Canned corn can also work but may have an overly soft texture.
Can I use chicken breasts instead of thighs?
Chicken thighs are recommended for their rich flavor and moisture, but breasts can also work. Just watch the cooking time closely so they don’t overcook and dry out.
Is bacon necessary?
While bacon adds a nice smoky flavor, it is not essential. The chowder will still be delicious without it.
Can I substitute half-and-half for the heavy cream?
Absolutely. Half-and-half will still provide a nice creamy texture and rich flavor. For an even lighter option, you can also use milk. Just keep in mind that the chowder won’t be quite as creamy.
What kind of potatoes work best?
Russet or Yukon Gold potatoes are ideal varieties for chowder. They hold their shape well and get nice and tender when simmered.
How can I make it more filling as a meal?
Add some protein! Cooked shrimp, canned chickpeas, or diced ham are all tasty extras. You can also serve it with bread or a side salad.
Can I prep the chowder in advance?
You can prep all the ingredients ahead of time and store them in the fridge. Then, when ready, combine everything in the pot and simmer. Don’t cook the chowder fully until it’s ready to serve.
Can I freeze leftovers?
Absolutely! Let the chowder cool completely, then transfer it to airtight containers or zip-top bags. It will keep well in the freezer for 2–3 months.
Chicken Corn Chowder
- 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1 onion, diced
- 2 carrots, peeled and diced
- 2 celery stalks, diced
- 3 cloves of garlic, minced
- 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
- 4 cups of chicken broth
- 2 pounds of boneless, skinless chicken thighs, cut into 1-inch pieces
- 3 medium potatoes, peeled and diced
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
- 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 3 cups corn kernels, frozen or canned
- 1 cup of heavy cream
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Chopped fresh parsley for garnish
- In a large pot or Dutch oven, melt the butter over medium heat. Add the onion, carrots, and celery. Cook for 5-7 minutes, until vegetables are softened.
- Add the garlic and cook for 1 minute, until fragrant.
- Whisk in the flour and cook for 2 minutes, stirring constantly.
- Gradually whisk in the chicken broth, scraping up any browned bits from the bottom of the pan.
- Add the chicken thighs, potatoes, bay leaf, thyme, paprika, and cayenne. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
- Bring the soup to a boil. Then reduce heat to low, cover, and simmer for 20–25 minutes, until the chicken and potatoes are cooked through.
- Remove the bay leaf. Stir in the corn and heavy cream. Continue simmering for 5 more minutes, until the corn is tender.
- Adjust seasoning to taste. Garnish with chopped parsley.
- Serve warm with crusty bread!
- Feel free to use any combination of your favorite vegetables, like carrots, celery, onions, etc. The more, the better!
- Chicken thighs can be used instead of breasts for more flavor. Remove the skin before cooking.
- Fresh corn cut straight from the cob is best, but frozen or canned works too.
- Russet or red potatoes are ideal; peeled if you want a smoother texture. New potatoes can be used unpeeled.
- For convenience, rotisserie chicken can be used instead of cooking raw chicken.
- The chowder can be made 1-2 days in advance and reheated gently before serving.
- To make this soup vegetarian, use vegetable broth and sub extra veggies for the chicken.
- For thicker chowder, purée 1 cup of the soup and stir it back in after cooking.
- Garnish with oyster crackers, croutons, scallions, shredded cheese, or bacon bits.
- For spicy chowder, add diced jalapeño or hot sauce at the end.
- Make it even more creamy by using heavy cream or half-and-half instead of milk.
- Leftover chowder can be frozen for up to 3 months. Thaw before reheating.
- For deeper flavor, add parmesan rinds or simmer corn cobs in the broth.
- Serve with crusty bread, biscuits, or cornbread for a heartier meal.
Hi, I’m Julie, the passionate foodie and founder of Juliesfamilykitchen.com. I created this blog out of a drive to prove someone wrong, and then I realized how much I truly enjoy cooking and trying new recipes. In my free time, when I’m not running around after my kids or spending quality time with my partner, you can usually find me in the kitchen experimenting with new dishes.