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One-Pot Summer Vegetable Chowder

One-pot summer vegetable chowder
Casey Barber
Cook Time:
30 mins
Prep Time:
20 mins

Chef notes

Summer cooking is all about ease, which is why one-pot and one-pan meals become go-tos in the warm-weather months. Less prep and less dishes means more time to enjoy your favorite summer activities. Plus, the fewer burners you have on, the easier it is to keep the house cool. While no-cook dishes are great, sometimes a craving for comfort bubbles up. That’s when a healthy, light soup that's creamy, but not too heavy is the answer. This one-pot recipe for vegetable chowder is packed with fresh veggies and uses only a touch of cream for texture.

Onions, zucchini and celery are first sautéed until soft. While it may be tempting to rush this process, it’s important to let the vegetables caramelize, which adds a lovely depth and touch of sweetness to the chowder. The veggies are then blended with broth — you can store-bought for ease, but homemade always adds the best flavor —  to form the chowder base. Boil the bell pepper and potatoes until tender, then add the corn and cream at the very end. Serve this vegetable chowder with crusty bread or dinner rolls to make it a complete meal.

Swap Option: Replace the zucchini with any summer squash that looks good at the market. You can also add bacon, pancetta or sausage to make it a richer chowder. Cook the meat first, then set aside and use the rendered fat to sauté the vegetables, making sure to scrape up any brown bits on the bottom of the pot.


  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 small sweet or yellow onion
  • 1-2 celery stalks
  • 1 zucchini
  • 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt, plus more to taste
  • 4 cups chicken or vegetable broth
  • 1 pound baby yellow or red potatoes
  • 1 red bell pepper
  • 2 cups fresh corn kernels
  • 1/4 cup heavy cream
  • fresh parsley leaves, chopped (for garnish)
  • crusty bread, for serving
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Heat the oil in a medium stockpot or Dutch oven over medium heat.


Add the onion, celery, zucchini and 1/2 teaspoon salt and stir to combine. Cook, stirring frequently, until the vegetables are very soft and translucent, 10 to 12 minutes.


Transfer the cooked vegetables to a blender and purée with the broth until smooth, or remove the pot from the heat, add the broth, and carefully purée in the pot with an immersion blender.


Return the purée to the pot and place over medium-high heat. Bring to a boil, add the potatoes and bell pepper, and cook until the potatoes are just tender, 10 to 12 minutes more.


Add the corn and cream (if using) and cook just until the corn is warmed through, 2 to 3 minutes for fresh corn and 4 to 5 minutes for frozen corn.


Taste and adjust seasoning as needed. Divide between 6 bowls; sprinkle with parsley and serve with crusty bread, if desired.