Vegan Corn Chowder is luscious and creamy, even without the dairy! This 9-ingredient comfort food comes together in one pot and boasts BIG flavor.

close up on a bowl of vegan corn chowder.

Vegetarian potato corn chowder

This Vegan Corn Chowder recipe is creamy comfort food at its finest. Made with fresh or frozen corn, potatoes, and a handful of smoky seasonings and simple ingredients, you and your family won’t be able to get enough!

The recipe is practically effortless, too. The vegetable-packed base of the soup comes together in one pot while a blended cashew cream helps thicken the luscious finished meal in a pinch. Make the meal unforgettable by sprinkling crumbled vegan bacon on top and serving fresh artisan bread on the side.

The best part? Corn chowder is fitting for any time of year! Turn to it when you have more summer corn than you know what to do with (the rest can be thrown in vegan cornbread) or for a comforting, warming dinner during cold winter nights. Just freeze the leftovers and reheat them whenever you’re craving the sweet and smoky flavors.

a ladle scooping vegan corn chowder out of a pot of soup.

Ingredients needed (with substitutions)

  • Olive oil
  • Onion 
  • Red bell pepper – Or any other color of bell pepper. Feel free to add even more vegetables in addition to the peppers if you’d like!
  • Vegetable broth – A meatless “chicken” broth would also be delicious.
  • Smoked paprika – If you don’t have smoked paprika, swap it for regular paprika. The smoky flavor can be replaced with 2 or 3 drops of liquid smoke.
  • Corn – I prefer fresh corn but drained and rinsed canned corn and frozen corn will also work. 
  • Yukon gold potatoes – These are the best kind of potatoes for chowder because they help thicken the soup and give it a creamy texture. Russet potatoes are the next best option.
  • Cashews – The soaked raw cashews are blended into a rich and creamy soup thickener. Raw slivered almonds will also work here. You may also use a bit of coconut cream or milk to make the soup creamy.
  • Nutritional yeast – To help the soup taste cheesy even without the dairy. Try not to leave it out!
  • Salt

How to make vegan corn chowder

Find the complete instructions with measurements, temperatures, and cook times on the recipe card below.

Heat the oil in a large soup pot and add the onion. Saute until it’s aromatic and soft, then add the red bell pepper.

sautéing diced onion and red bell pepper in a large soup pot.

Add the vegetable broth, smoked paprika, corn, and potatoes. Bring the soup up to a boil and let it simmer until the potatoes are fork tender. 

cooking vegan corn chowder in a large soup pot.

To a blender, add the cashews, nutritional yeast, and 2 cups of the soup. Blend until smooth and creamy. Pour this mixture back into the soup pot, stir, and season with salt. Serve with any toppings you like and fresh bread on the side, then enjoy!

A creamy, yellow, blended mixture in a large blender.

Serving suggestions

Because it’s so rich and creamy, ​​potato corn chowder can easily be enjoyed on its own as a filling meal. However, if you’re looking to pair it with the perfect side dish, I recommend serving it with fresh dutch oven bread, asparagus, kale caesar salad, or vegan collard greens and plenty of toppings on each bowl.

Topping ideas

Serving a crowd? Impress your guests by topping each bowl of chowder with simple, yet extravagant-looking garnishes, such as:

3 bowls of vegan corn chowder next to each other.

Frequently asked questions

  1. What makes a chowder a chowder? Chowder is a thick and creamy soup that’s typically made with a base of pork or bacon and vegetables. This vegan chowder recipe, as well as my vegan clam chowder, omits the meat but keeps the rest of the recipe as traditional as possible thanks to the inclusion of onions, potatoes, and a creamy soup base.
  2. Can vegan corn chowder be made nut free? You can make this easy corn chowder nut free by omitting the blended cashews and pureeing the soup with an immersion blender. The potatoes will make the soup quite creamy by themselves. Or add a bit of coconut cream/milk.
  3. How do you store leftover corn chowder? Leftover corn chowder can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 4 days or in the freezer for up to 3 months. Let the soup thaw completely overnight before reheating it on the stove or in the microwave.
close up on a spoon full of vegan corn chowder with a bowl of soup in the background.

Want more comforting vegan soups?

close up on a bowl of vegan corn chowder.

Vegan Corn Chowder

Vegan Corn Chowder is luscious and creamy, even without the dairy! This 9-ingredient comfort food comes together in one pot and boasts BIG flavor.
4.92 stars (45 ratings)

Ingredients 

  • 1-2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 1 medium red bell pepper, chopped small
  • 5 cups vegetable broth
  • 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 4 cups corn, fresh or frozen
  • 2 pounds yukon gold potatoes, peeled and chopped, | about 4 medium potatoes
  • 1 cup raw cashews
  • 1/2 cup nutritional yeast
  • 1/2-1 teaspoon salt, or to taste

Instructions

  • In a large soup pot, saute the onion in the olive oil for 3-4 minutes over medium heat, stirring frequently. Add the red bell pepper and cook for 1 more minute.
  • Now pour in the vegetable broth, smoked paprika, corn and potatoes. Stir. Bring to a boil, then simmer for about 10 minutes until the potatoes are fork tender.
  • To a blender, add the cashews, nutritional yeast and 2 cups of the soup. Blend until very smooth, then add back to the pot and stir. Add salt to taste. Serve and enjoy!

Notes

  1. Consider serving corn chowder with a sprinkling of crumbled tempeh bacon and vegan sour cream.
  2. Allergic to cashews? Try raw slivered almonds, or just leave them out completely. The soup will still be quite creamy from the potatoes, and you can use an immersion blender directly in the pot, or blend a few cups of the soup and add it back to the pot. Or stir in 1/2-3/4 cup coconut cream or milk.
  3. There is no need to soak the cashews, because the soup will be so hot it will help them blend. 

Nutrition

Serving: 1serving, Calories: 363kcal, Carbohydrates: 54g, Protein: 14g, Fat: 14g, Saturated Fat: 2g, Sodium: 510mg, Potassium: 1132mg, Fiber: 9g, Sugar: 9g, Vitamin A: 1390IU, Vitamin C: 50mg, Calcium: 61mg, Iron: 7mg

*This recipe was originally published April 2019 and has been republished with new photos and writing. The recipe is unchanged.

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