Potato Corn Chowder

This delicious potato corn chowder includes white beans, making it heartier than most! Serve this healthy chowder with muffins and a green salad.

Potato Corn Chowder | Heathy chowder

I have this recurring nightmare where I’m performing a piano recital, but I realize that I don’t know the music. So I’m on stage, with everyone watching, and I have to make it up as I go along, literally making up the music on the spot. It might not sound like a nightmare to you, but as a classically trained musician who practiced hours and hours for each performance, it’s truly horrible. The feeling of “faking it” in front of a live audience gives me a pit in my stomach even thinking about it. 

This is also how I felt in our early days of learning to cook. When dinner guests would show up and I was still trying to finish the meal, I’d feel like I was faking my way through the cooking process. Years later, I realize I was so uncomfortable because I had no experience under my belt. In some ways I was making it up as I went along. But after years and year of practice in the kitchen, today I can mix up a soup like this potato corn chowder and chat with my dinner guests without breaking into a sweat. Keep reading for the recipe!

How to make potato corn chowder

This healthy potato corn chowder was inspired by a $1 bag of end-of-season corn from the farmer’s market. We wanted to create our own vegetarian potato corn chowder recipe that was healthy, full of vegetables, and filling. Since many times vegetarian chowders are less filling than we’d like, we decided to add white beans to our potato corn chowder. The white beans blend in with the other vegetables, at the same time adding some plant based protein and making the soup more filling.

The main secret to this potato corn chowder is boiling the corn cobs in the broth while the soup cooks. This adds a fantastic richness and complexity of flavor. If you don’t have in season corn, you can still make this chowder with frozen corn and omitting the corn cobs. Just make sure to try it during corn season to experience the full effect! In our potato corn chowder, we’ve used milk instead of cream to keep it on the lighter side. The end result is a healthy chowder that’s bursting with flavor and not too heavy.

Potato Corn Chowder | Heathy chowder

Looking for more healthy dinner ideas?

This healthy potato corn chowder is one of our favorite healthy dinner ideas! Our some of our other top healthy dinner ideas on A Couple Cooks:

This potato corn chowder recipe is…

Vegetarian and gluten-free.

clock clock iconcutlery cutlery iconflag flag iconfolder folder iconinstagram instagram iconpinterest pinterest iconfacebook facebook iconprint print iconsquares squares iconheart heart iconheart solid heart solid icon

Potato Corn Chowder

1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (23 votes, average: 4.35 out of 5)

  • Author: a Couple Cooks
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 35 minutes
  • Total Time: 50 minutes
  • Yield: 4 1x


This delicious potato corn chowder includes white beans, making it heartier than most! Serve this healthy chowder with muffins and a green salad.


  • 1 yellow onion
  • ½ red bell pepper
  • 3 carrots
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 pound red skinned potatoes
  • 6 ears corn
  • 15-ounce can white beans
  • 3 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 6 cups milk
  • ¼ cup cornmeal or masa
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • Fresh ground pepper


  1. Dice the yellow onion and red pepper. Peel and dice the carrots. Mince the garlic. Dice the potatoes. Cut corn off of 6 cobs (if possible, use a bundt pan: place the corn cob in the center ring and cut the corn down into the pan). Reserve the cobs. Drain and rinse the white beans; set aside. Remove the leaves of thyme and set aside.
  2. In a large pot, melt 2 tablespoons butter. Saute the onion and bay leaf 4 minutes, until soft. Add the carrots, red pepper, and garlic, and saute for 4 minutes. Add corn kernels, corn cobs, potatoes, and milk. Bring to a boil. Then simmer, covered, for about 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  3. Remove the corn cobs and bay leaf. In a small bowl, mix the cornmeal or masa with ¼ cup water, then add to pot. Add the kosher salt, white beans, and fresh thyme. Heat through for about 5 to 10 minutes, until the vegetables are tender and the soup is thickened a bit (mash down lumps of cornmeal if any occur). Serve warm.
  • Category: Soup
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: American

Keywords: Potato Corn Chowder, Healthy Corn Chowder, Vegetarian Chowder, Healthy Dinner Ideas, Dinner Ideas, Vegetarian Recipe

Subscribe for free weekly recipes & more!

About the Authors

Sonja Overhiser

Cookbook Author and writer

Sonja Overhiser is author of Pretty Simple Cooking, named one of the best healthy cookbooks of 2018. She’s host of the food podcast Small Bites and founder of the food blog A Couple Cooks. Featured from the TODAY Show to Bon Appetit, Sonja seeks to inspire adventurous eating to make the world a better place one bite at a time.

Alex Overhiser

Cookbook Author and photographer

Alex Overhiser is an acclaimed food photographer and author based in Indianapolis. He’s host of the food podcast Small Bites and founder of the recipe website A Couple Cooks. Featured from the TODAY Show to Bon Appetit, Alex is author of Pretty Simple Cooking, named one of the best vegetarian cookbooks by Epicurious.


  • Reply
    September 29, 2013 at 10:21 pm

    What a pretty post. A thoughtful story, gorgeous photos and a delicious recipe!

  • Reply
    Chung-Ah | Damn Delicious
    September 30, 2013 at 3:11 am

    What a comforting bowl of soup! Love the addition of cornmeal!

  • Reply
    Katrina @ Warm Vanilla Sugar
    September 30, 2013 at 6:22 am

    I love a good chowder! It’s so perfect for winter, or any cool day, really. Yum!!

  • Reply
    Kelly @ hidden fruits and veggies
    September 30, 2013 at 7:40 am

    I’m a sucker for any kind of soup, especially a hearty chowder! This sounds great.

  • Reply
    September 30, 2013 at 8:51 am

    I am a classical musician and have the same nightmare! This soup looks delicious.

  • Reply
    Jocelyn (Grandbaby Cakes)
    September 30, 2013 at 12:20 pm

    This looks so gorgeous and so comforting. Perfect dinner as the weather gets cooler.

  • Reply
    Chelsea @ TableForOne
    September 30, 2013 at 3:07 pm

    I love your story. I felt the same way when I first began blogging and cooking for the blog. I still sometimes feel that way, so it is very relatable. Beautiful recipe and perfect for this transition into fall!

  • Reply
    September 30, 2013 at 3:23 pm

    Love the little thyme sprig in the final photo, what a beautiful bowl of soup!

  • Reply
    Kiran @ KiranTarun.com
    September 30, 2013 at 4:08 pm

    SO summery!! Love corn chowders :)

  • Reply
    Tina @ Tina's Chic Corner
    October 5, 2013 at 10:03 pm

    What an inspiration! I try to be brave to experiment and trust my kitchen instincts but’s not always easy.
    Loving the soup…looks delish. :)

  • Reply
    Katelyn Denning
    October 7, 2013 at 8:56 am

    As corn on the cob becomes harder to find, do you think this soup would be possible with frozen corn? I know we would miss out on the flavor added from having the cobs in the soup as it cooks. What do you think?

    • Reply
      October 7, 2013 at 9:03 am

      Hmm. It might not be quite as flavorful, but I would think it would still work. Probably about 3 cups of corn. Let us know if you try it and how it works out!

    • Reply
      October 9, 2013 at 11:37 pm

      Hi Katelyn! That is a great question. I think that you could make this with frozen corn, but as you expected, I do think you’d miss out on some of the flavor without the cobs. I haven’t tried it that way, but the broth was SO sweet and delicious that I think you’d be missing out a bit. However, I think it would still be tasty! It might need a bit more flavoring to compensate (maybe salt or a bit of spice).

  • Reply
    October 10, 2013 at 10:30 am

    This soup look fantastic, perfect for a cool Fall day.

  • Reply
    Divorced Kat
    September 18, 2017 at 7:42 am

    I made this vegan using Earth Balance butter and unsweetened almond milk. I added a bit of chopped up kale just because I had some around. I added extra kosher salt. The recipe says 4 servings but those would be huge, so I’d say more like 5-6. I’m hoping that this freezes ok!

  • Reply
    December 2, 2019 at 4:33 pm

    Have you or could you make this in an instant pot?!

    • Reply
      Alex Overhiser
      December 2, 2019 at 4:48 pm

      We haven’t — but we have an Instant Pot potato soup coming in a few weeks!

  • Reply
    May 23, 2020 at 12:04 pm

    This soup was delicious! I’m assuming cannot freeze due to milk based soup, how do leftovers fare?

    • Reply
      Alex Overhiser
      May 23, 2020 at 4:45 pm

      I wouldn’t freeze, but warming up leftovers on the stovetop works great!

  • Reply
    January 19, 2021 at 6:45 pm

    I thought this was just okay, but my mom loved it when I gave some to her, so it’s up to your preference I think. I fear at the heart of it, I just don’t like corn chowder that much (why I made it for myself all the while knowing that is entirely on me). I really liked that there was cornmeal in it, as well as red peppers. It added a nice color and thickness to the soup that I think corn chowder can be lacking in. Overall I think it’s probably a great potato corn chowder recipe – if you like that sort of thing! haha.

  • Leave a Reply

    This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.