Chowder

Creamy Chicken Chowder Is Cold-Weather Comfort at Its Best

It's the soup version of the coziest sweater you own.

February 25, 2019
Photo by Rocky Luten

We’ve all got that one sweater in the back of the closet that only comes out when it’s too frigid to function. It’s not particularly cute or trendy or even flattering, but it’s big and cozy and, most importantly, warm. And when the temperature drops to the lowest of the season, it’s the sweater you always reach for, the ultimate cold-weather companion.

Well, I like to think of this soup recipe as my cold-weather companion too.

This stick-to-your-ribs chicken chowder is meant for those days when the only thing that matters is defrosting. In my opinion, shaking off the chills and satisfying your soul with a hearty supper is just as revitalizing as a green juice or a face mask. (Those things can wait for spring or summer.)

And this chowder is comfort at its quickest. A more traditional chowder recipe tends to be a bit laborious. But I’ve saved a little time in this recipe by using store-bought rotisserie chicken rather than poaching one. It cuts the cooking time in half and gets dinner on the table in under an hour.

Whenever I have a chowder of any kind, I always top it off with two things: a handful of oyster crackers and a few dashes of Tabasco sauce. This chowder is no different. But instead of plain oyster crackers, and since we’re throwing caution to the very, very cold wind, I’ve decided to make them even more comforting by bathing them in garlic butter and tossing them with Parmesan. It’s basically like topping your chowder with warm, cheesy garlic bread.

What might be the greatest thing about this soup is that it makes plenty and freezes beautifully. I’d suggest putting a few containers aside in the freezer for a snowy day. I’m no weather forecaster, but I predict that there are still some days to come when you’ll need to eat this creamy chicken chowder—just as much as you'll need to wear that big, cozy sweater.

What's your ultimate cold-weather companion? Tell us in the comments!

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Grant Melton is an Emmy Award-Winning Producer of the Rachael Ray Show, food writer and recipe developer. He's a contributor to Food52, NYT Cooking and Rachael Ray Every Day Magazine. He loves cookies, cocktails and kindness.

1 Comment

Bella95 February 28, 2019
I love food too much to have a definite favourite but it would be a hard fought match between pasta e fagioli and eggplant parmesan. My favourite get-me-warm-now jumper is easy though, it's a possum merino 'jacket' l bought in a second hand shop when l was travelling and the weather was unexpectedly cold.