Any Kinda Chowda: A Guest Post

Hi Friends!

Today’s guest post comes to you from a fellow Columbus blogger, Rachel @ Hounds in the Kitchen. Although I haven’t actually met Rachel in person yet, I have high hopes that we will connect soon! I love reading her blog because she blogs about things and places that I’m familiar with!

This lady and her family are incredible. They’ve turned their home into an urban homestead. They raise chickens, they cure their own meats and they plant a HUGE garden every year so they can can and preserve tons of homegrown food to eat throughout the year. Be sure to check out her blog for tons of great gardening tips, recipes and so much more.

Rachel teaches cooking classes at Franklin Park Conservatory, speaks regularly at conferences and events and I absolutely LOVE how she involves her daughter in everything she does. (Side note: Lil is soooooo adorable!)

Many thanks to Rachel for helping me through Week 5 of this quarter!! Enjoy :)


Making chowder at home can be an eye opening experience. Using fresh ingredients and a simple recipe, you can highlight seasonal tastes in a hearty soup. You are in control of how sweet or spicy and how thick or thin the final product becomes.

clams for chowdermelting butter over vegetables for chowderchowder cooking on stovetop

Chowder starts like many other soups with a sauteing of vegetables. Cook spices, fat, and flour together to form a roux.

Pour in stock slowly to allow the roux to thicken the stock. Homemade stock is always preferred to canned. A quick stock, as described in the clam chowder recipe can easily be made in the time it takes you to cook the meat or chop vegetables.

Finally, add protein and adjust seasonings. Your house chowder is born!

I like to write and use recipes in the manner promoted by Cleveland food writer Michael Ruhlman in his book Ratio. Ratio recipes are simple to follow, allow for adjustment by the cook, and can be scaled up to any size.

homemade clam chowderChowder Ratio

4 parts chopped vegetables : 1/3 part butter : 1/3 part flour : 2 parts protein (or additional vegetable if meatless) : 6 parts stock

If you don’t have experience making a chowder, start with one of the recipes below. Then use the ratio to adjust to your personal tastes and seasonal ingredients available.

New England Clam Chowder

serves four

2 dozen quahog, cherrystone, or littleneck clams, hand foraged or bought alive in shells
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 large onion, diced
3 large carrots, diced
2 sticks celery, diced
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 large russet potatoes, peeled and cut into one inch cubes
1 teaspoon Old Bay seasoning
3 tablespoons butter
3 tablespoons flour
1/2-1 cup milk or cream
salt and pepper to taste

1. Scrub clamshells to remove any dirt or sand. Start 3-4 quarts of water boiling with a teaspoon each of salt and Old Bay seasoning.

2. When water is at a boil, add clams. Boil just until they open, 5-10 minutes. Remove clams, reserving stock.

3. In a large pot over medium heat, saute onions, carrots, celery, and garlic in olive oil. Cook until onions are translucent, approximately 10 minutes.

4. Add potatoes and increase heat. Cook, stirring often, to caramelize the outside of the potatoes.

5. Add butter, flour, and Old Bay, reducing heat to medium. Cook until flour turns light brown, about five minutes.

6. Slowly pour in reserved clam stock, two cups at a time. Allow to simmer and thicken, adding stock until you reach desired thickness.

7. Continue to cook until potatoes are cooked through, about ten minutes.

8. Stir in clams and milk/cream to warm with heat on low, about two minutes. Add salt and pepper to taste. Serve warm.

Corn Chowder

serves four

2 tablespoons olive oil
1 large onion, diced
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 green bell pepper, diced
2 large russet potatoes, peeled and cut into one inch cubes
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 bay leaf
2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons flour
4 cups high quality stock (chicken or vegetable suggested)
1 16 ounce bag frozen corn
1 4 ounce can diced green chili pepper’s
1/4 cup fresh cilantro or 1 tablespoon dried
salt and pepper to taste

For garnish, optional:
sour cream
bacon bits
grated cheddar cheese
additional fresh cilantro

1. Heat olive oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add onions, garlic, and green pepper and sweat until translucent.

2. Add potatoes and increase heat. Cook for five minutes, stirring often, to caramelize the outside of the potatoes.

3. Add cumin and bay leaf. Toast for one to two minutes.

4. Add butter and melt. Stir in flour until vegetables are coated. Cook, stirring often, until flour is cooked, about five minutes.

5. Slowly pour in stock. Reduce heat to medium and allow to simmer.

6. Stir in corn, chili peppers and cilantro. Add some salt and pepper.

7. Continue to cook until potatoes are cooked through and broth is thick, about ten minutes. Taste and adjust seasonings. Remove bay leaf.

8. Serve warm with optional garnishes.


That’s it for today, my friends! I don’t know about you, but now I’m craving chowder….



About Lindsay

Lindsay Livingston is a Registered Dietitian and new mom from Columbus, Ohio. On her blog, she shares simple, healthy recipes, nutrition tips, workouts and snapshots of her life. Follow her on Twitter @LeanGrnBeanBlog and Instagram @TheLeanGreenBean and be sure to subscribe via RSS or email so you never miss a post!


  1. Thanks for the great intro and for having me!
    Rachel (Hounds in the Kitchen) recently posted..May Events- Plant Sales- Pecha Kucha- and More

  2. rachel sounds pretty awesome! my family raised chickens when we were growing up and had huge vegetable gardens. my mom always canned food for us to eat during the winter. i love that kind of stuff – too bad i haven’t learned my mom’s techniques!
    sarah (sarah learns) recently posted..i feel the love

  3. can you believe I’ve never even had chowder?

  4. Rachel is really making me jealous. :) I had chowder just recently at Central Market and I have been dying to make my own! This came just in time.
    Susan (Oliepants) recently posted..A Biscotti By Any Other Name…Would Be Cake Rusk

  5. Wow! Rachel sounds like a cool chick! We are working on growing our garden, so I may need to head over to her blog for some tips :) I really want to try that corn chowder- yum!

  6. Corn chowder… yum. I usually forgo the pepper and cilantro and add ham instead.


  1. […] I shared a guest blog post, Any Kinda Chowda, at The Lean Green Bean today. Hop over for two recipes and a ratio for […]

  2. […] we cooked them into a tasty and quick clam chowder on the first night of our visit. I shared my chowder ratio recipe on the Lean Green Bean blog […]

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