Thermos 3-Tier Bento #41

Garlic toast, mixed fruit (nectarine slices, blueberries, and fresh cherries), and homemade corn chowder I veganized from the Joy of Cooking (1997, recipe below).

Fresh corn is here! All pretty and delightful and sweet! It's great straight off the cob, but when I found it at the store (for a beautiful 19 cents per ear) I also wanted to see if I could veganize my go-to recipe for corn chowder from my omnivore days. I am happy to report that it was successful beyond my wildest imaginings. My co-workers came into the break room wanting to know what smelled so good when I was having my leftovers for lunch.

This soup is the kind of thing you might feed a picky child fearful of odd-looking additions. If you don't garnish it with parsley (as per above) it is a consistent, gentle yellow, and either way it is flavorful and slightly sweet, but mostly tastes of its star ingredient: fresh corn. It's not spicy or complex, but it's good.

What is distinctive about the Joy of Cooking recipe was that it was the only one I'd ever seen that used the actual corn cobs to flavor the soup in addition to the kernels, and that makes a significant difference.

So here we go. I scaled this down a bit, which meant I got about 3 bowls out of it, but you could easily double it.

Veganized Fresh Corn Chowder
Serves: About 3

1/2 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 small onion, chopped
1 celery stalk, diced
2 slices tempeh bacon or other veggie bacon of choice, chopped
3 small ears of corn, husks and silk removed
2 1/4 cups soy milk
1 medium potato, peeled and diced
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground black or white pepper
1/2 tablespoon vegan butter

Heat olive oil in a pot. Add onions and celery and cook, stirring frequently, over medium-low heat until softened and browned slightly, about 15 minutes. Stir in tempeh bacon.

Meanwhile, remove the kernels from the corn cobs and put the kernels aside.

Add corn cobs, soy milk, and potato to the onions-celery-bacon mixture and bring to a boil. Do your best to submerge the corn cobs in the soup. Turn the heat down to a gentle simmer, cover, and cook, turning the corn cobs and stirring occasionally, for 10-15 minutes or until the potatoes are cooked.

Remove and discard the corn cobs. Add reserved corn kernels, salt, and pepper and continue to simmer, covered, stirring occasionally until the corn is tender, which should take about 5 minutes.

Transfer 3/4 cup of the soup to a blender (I used an immersion blender and cup) using a slotted spoon (you want the solids, not the liquid, here). Puree veggies until smooth.

Return the pureed veggies to the pot and mix well. Add butter. Remove from heat and cover. When the butter is melted, stir. Serve.


  1. Thank you so much for the corn chowder recipe! I love all things corn, especially now that it is corn season and so freaking fresh and delicious. I've always wanted to make chowder but was overwhelmed by all of the recipes but yours looks delicious. Just one quick question. Do you take the kernels off the cob and just add the cobs in for flavor then add the kernels later? That's what I am guessing but just wanted to make sure! I seriously can't wait to make this, maybe I'll pick up the ingredients from Aldi this weekend.

    1. Yes, I was trying to write it out that way--reserve the corn kernels while the cobs simmer, then discard the cobs and add the kernels.

    2. Perfect, thanks! I can't wait to try!

  2. That sounds so good! I love corn soup. Using the corn cobs to flavour the stock is such a good idea.

  3. Looks like an amazing lunch, and definitely a clever way to use the corn cobs!


Post a Comment

Popular Posts