Healthy and Delicious Vegetarian Fish Chowder Recipe

Are you looking for a new and exciting recipe to add to your meal plan? Look no further than this vegetarian fish chowder recipe. Even if you don’t usually enjoy seafood chowders, I promise this one will not disappoint.

This recipe is perfect for those who are vegetarian or vegan, as it does not use any actual seafood. Instead, we’ll be using a combination of vegetables and other delicious ingredients to create that classic chowder taste.

I first came up with this recipe when I was craving a hearty soup that would warm me up on a cold night. After experimenting with different ingredients and flavor combinations, I finally settled on this recipe – and I haven’t looked back since.

Trust me when I say that this vegetarian fish chowder is the real deal. It’s creamy, flavorful, and just the right amount of filling. So why not give it a try and see for yourself? Your taste buds will thank you.

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

Vegetarian Fish Chowder
Vegetarian Fish Chowder

This fish chowder recipe is a game-changer. Even if you’re not a seafood lover, trust me, this dish will make you fall in love with the ocean’s flavors. It’s a healthy and nutritious option that combines chunky pieces of fish with the creamiest and richest broth you’ll ever taste.

But what really sets this recipe apart is its versatility. You can make it vegan, gluten-free or dairy-free by making simple substitutions. Whether you’re hosting a dinner party or cooking for your family, this fish chowder recipe will impress everyone with its remarkable texture and taste.

What makes this fish chowder standout above traditional chowders is that it offers an expansive variety of ingredients that make it worthy of being on any menu. Black olives, fennel, leeks and garlic add complexity of flavour while onions, celery and chopped tomatoes offer body that mingled harmoniously with the healthy fish chunks.

The secret behind this creamy fish stew is the generous amount of heavy cream used during cooking. However, if you want to keep things lighter or are counting calories, you can substitute heavy cream for coconut milk or vegetable broth without sacrificing flavor.

No matter how you customize this recipe to suit your needs and dietary requirements, one thing is certain – it will be undeniably delicious. And most importantly, leaving you feeling satisfied as it is both filling and nutrient-packed.

Try our fish chowder recipe today and feel the difference in your meal!

Ingredient List

 Dive into this creamy and comforting Vegetarian Fish Chowder!
Dive into this creamy and comforting Vegetarian Fish Chowder!

Get ready to dive in! Here’s what you’ll need to make this vegetarian fish chowder recipe a real catch.
Ingredients 1: For the Chowder

  • 2 tbsp of margarine or vegan butter
  • 2 tbsp of olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 2 medium celery stalks, chopped
  • 1 medium fennel, chopped
  • 1 medium-sized leek, sliced
  • 2 cloves of garlic, sliced
  • 1 tsp of paprika
  • 8 oz pack of healthy fish alternative, like shrimp, cod or haddock (vegetarian clam for authentic seafood taste)
  • 1 lb of potatoes (preferably red for the best texture), cut into small chunks
  • 4 cups of vegetable stock or fish stock (if you’re not vegetarian, feel free to use chicken broth or clam juice)
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Ingredients 2: For the Creamy New England Clam Chowder

  • 2 tbsp of olive oil
  • 1 large onion, chopped finely
  • 2 celery stalks, chopped finely
  • 2 medium carrots, peeled and diced
  • 4 cups of vegetable or fish stock (you can even try corn chowder or gluten-free options)
  • A can of coconut milk for dairy-free creaminess
  • Chunky fish chowder: add your choice of chunky mushrooms, black olives and diced tomatoes.

The Recipe How-To

 This chowder is swimming with flavor.
This chowder is swimming with flavor.

Now it’s time to dive into the recipe itself. This vegetarian Fish Chowder Recipe is hearty and delicious, and it’s perfect for a cozy night in or for serving to guests. Here’s what you need to do to make this dish come to life.

Gather Your Ingredients

To start off, gather all of your ingredients. You’ll need vegan butter, olive oil, onions, leeks, celery, fennel, garlic, chopped tomatoes, and vegetable stock. You’ll also need some spices such as paprika and pepper, as well as some heavy cream or coconut milk if you’re going dairy-free.

Prepare the Vegetables

Begin by heating up a large soup pot over medium heat with oil. Once warm, add in your chopped onions, diced celery stalks, and sliced leeks. Stir them all together until they start to soften and become fragrant. Then add in your fennel and garlic and cook for a few more minutes.

Add the Potatoes

Next, add in the chopped tomatoes and vegetable stock. Give everything a good stir before adding in your diced potatoes. Let everything simmer together until the potatoes are cooked through.

Make It Creamy

Once the potatoes are fork-tender, remove about 2 cups of chowder from the pot and blend it until smooth. Pour it back into the main pot and mix it in with the rest of the chowder. This will help create that signature creamy texture of a fish chowder.

Season and Serve

At this point, give your chowder a good seasoning with paprika, salt, and pepper to taste. Finally, add in your cooked black olives or any other desired toppings.

Serve hot with some crusty bread on the side!

Substitutions and Variations

 Add some splash to your mealtime routine with this hearty chowder.
Add some splash to your mealtime routine with this hearty chowder.

If you’re looking to switch things up a bit, I’ve got some ideas for you to consider. First off, you can try using vegan clam strips instead of traditional seafood in this recipe. These plant-based alternatives offer a similar texture and flavor profile and are a great option for those following a vegan or vegetarian diet.

You can also adjust the level of creaminess in this dish by substituting half of the cream with vegetable broth or coconut milk. This will still result in a rich and satisfying chowder, but with a lighter touch. Additionally, if you’re looking to make a gluten-free version, use cornstarch or potato starch instead of flour to thicken the soup.

For those who love their chowders with a savory crunch, you can add crumbled vegan bacon on top for an extra layer of flavor and texture. You can find these at most stores now and they add that smoked umami flavor we all love.

Finally, if you want to add more vegetables to your diet, try adding carrots or sweet potatoes to the base along with the onions, celery, and fennel. This will give your chowder added nutrition and comforting flavors. The possibilities are endless when it comes to substitutions and variations in this fish chowder; have fun experimenting!

Serving and Pairing

 Even non-veggie lovers will be hooked on this delicious chowder.
Even non-veggie lovers will be hooked on this delicious chowder.

When it comes to serving and pairing this vegetarian fish chowder recipe, there are a few options you can consider. This dish is hearty enough to be served on its own; however, you can also pair it with some sides or garnishes to make the meal even more exciting.

To start with, I would recommend serving this chowder in bowls and garnishing with some black olives or a sprinkle of paprika for a pop of color and flavor. If you’re looking for some crunch, you might want to serve it with a side of grits or crusty bread to dip into the creamy broth.

If you’re looking for a lighter option, you could also consider pairing this chowder with a side salad. A simple green salad with cherry tomatoes and sliced cucumbers dressed in balsamic vinaigrette would work well. Alternatively, you could opt for a roasted vegetable medley, such as carrots or Brussels sprouts.

For drinks, you could choose a crisp white wine like Pinot Grigio or Sauvignon Blanc, which would complement the flavors of the dish without overpowering them. Alternatively, if you’re in the mood for something non-alcoholic, sparkling water infused with lemon or lime would be refreshing.

Overall, this vegetarian fish chowder recipe is versatile enough to pair with many different side dishes and drinks. Feel free to experiment and find what works best for your tastes!

Make-Ahead, Storing and Reheating

 This bowl is perfect for cozying up on a rainy day.
This bowl is perfect for cozying up on a rainy day.

Making this vegetarian fish chowder recipe ahead of time is a great way to save time and minimize prep work. You can make the soup up to two days ahead and store it in the refrigerator until you’re ready to use it. The flavor of the soup only gets better with time.

When storing the soup in the fridge, be sure to put it in an airtight container to prevent any odors from seeping in. Mason jars or Tupperware containers work well for this. You can also freeze the soup for up to three months by storing it in a freezer-safe container.

To reheat the soup, you can either heat it on the stove top or use a microwave. If you’re using a microwave, be sure to heat it in short intervals and stir it in between to ensure even heating.

When reheating on the stove, put the soup in a pot and heat it over medium-low heat until it’s warmed through. Be sure to stir occasionally so that it doesn’t stick or burn.

If you find that your soup has become too thick over time, you can thin it out by adding more broth or water. Additionally, if you want to add some extra creaminess and richness, you can also add a splash of heavy cream while reheating.

In summary, making this vegetarian fish chowder recipe ahead of time is a great way to save yourself some time on busy weekdays. It freezes nicely, reheats easily, and tastes just as delicious as when freshly made.

Tips for Perfect Results

 You won't believe there's no fish in this chowder - the flavor is just that good.
You won’t believe there’s no fish in this chowder – the flavor is just that good.

If you’re looking for a few secret ingredients to make your Vegetarian Fish Chowder taste even better, here are some tips for perfect results.

First, I highly recommend using vegetable stock or fish stock for the base of the chowder. It gives it a rich, savory flavor that cannot be achieved with just water. Also, if you want to go for a creamier texture, use heavy cream instead of half-and-half or milk. This will make the soup much richer and more satisfying.

Another important tip is to use fresh ingredients when possible. The vegetables in this recipe add a lot of flavor and texture to the chowder, so be sure to chop them finely and cook them well. Additionally, fresh herbs can add a lot of depth to the dish. You can use parsley or thyme for this recipe but feel free to mix it up!

Lastly, don’t be afraid to get creative with your variations! You may use black olives, corn, bacon or even seafood alternatives such as vegan clam strips or shrimp as alternative options for the recipe! Every variation could bring new gustatory excitement so let your imagination flow!


Now, it’s time to address some of the frequently asked questions that readers have about this vegetarian fish chowder recipe. Cooking and meal preparation can be daunting, and having any concerns or questions addressed beforehand can really help with the confidence level in the kitchen. So, let’s dive into these FAQs and put any doubts aside to make sure you have an enjoyable culinary experience while making this scrumptiously creamy vegan chowder.

What can I use instead of heavy cream in seafood chowder?

Need to substitute heavy cream but don’t have any on hand? Don’t worry – there are plenty of options to choose from! Milk and butter make for a simple and reliable substitute. Other dairy-free options include a combination of soy milk and olive oil, milk with cornstarch, Greek yogurt with milk, silken tofu, or evaporated milk. If you prefer a creamier texture, try blending cottage cheese with milk. These substitutes can be used in most recipes that require heavy cream.

What is a thickening agent for seafood chowder?

To achieve a rich and smooth texture for your chowder, it’s recommended to use heavy cream. An alternative of light cream can also be used, but to ensure thickness it is suggested to incorporate 1 tablespoon of cornstarch into the lighter cream before adding it to the soup.

How do I thicken fish chowder?

One technique to thicken your soup without making it too creamy or heavy is to create a slurry. In a separate container, mix together cornstarch or arrowroot with water or broth. Then, add this mixture to the soup and whisk it in. A good rule of thumb is to use one tablespoon of slurry for every four cups of soup.

Bottom Line

In conclusion, this vegetarian fish chowder recipe is a delicious way to enjoy the flavors of the sea without harming our aquatic friends. With its creamy texture, robust flavor, and simple ingredient list, it’s a satisfying and nourishing meal that will leave your taste buds dancing.

Whether you’re a seasoned vegan or simply looking to expand your dietary horizons, this recipe is worth trying out. With its wide range of potential substitutions and variations, you can easily tailor it to your own preferences and experiment with different flavor combinations.

So put on your apron, grab your soup pot, and get ready to whip up a batch of this hearty and wholesome vegetarian fish chowder. Your stomach (and the planet) will thank you for it.

Vegetarian Fish Chowder

Vegetarian Fish Chowder Recipe

This could be the base for a crab or shrimp chowder, but it tastes very good and has an excellent mouth feel without any fish in it. Prep time will be less if you use a food processor.
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Prep Time 2 hrs
Cook Time 2 hrs
Course Main Course
Cuisine Vegetarian
Calories 128.8 kcal


  • 2 cups chopped celery
  • 2 cups chopped fennel
  • 2 cups chopped leeks
  • 2 cups chopped onions
  • 2 quarts vegetable stock (or fish stock)
  • 28 ounces chopped tomatoes
  • 4 tablespoons Old Bay Seasoning
  • 2 tablespoons chopped garlic
  • 2 tablespoons paprika
  • 1/4 cup margarine or 1/4 cup butter
  • 2 cups grits
  • 15 ounces black olives


  • Put margarine in Dutch oven atop stove and heat up.
  • Add onions and fry until translucent.
  • Add garlic and paprika.
  • Add celery, fennel, and leeks.
  • When vegetables are starting to wilt, add 2 quarts stock.
  • Add can of tomatoes.
  • When boiling, taste and add in the Old Bay.
  • Slowly add 2 cups of grits to simmering stew.
  • Stir for about 5 minutes so grits do not clump.
  • Add olives and liquid from can after grits are cooked through.

Add Your Own Notes


Serving: 124gCalories: 128.8kcalCarbohydrates: 19.6gProtein: 2.4gFat: 5.1gSaturated Fat: 0.9gSodium: 200.5mgFiber: 3gSugar: 2.4g
Keyword < 4 Hours, For Large Groups, Southwestern, Vegetable
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