Fall has always been my favorite season. I love watching the leaves change colors, feeling a light crisp in the air, and finally being able to wear my beloved sweaters that have been banished to the back of my closet all summer long. Unfortunately, living in Los Angeles I haven’t been able to enjoy all these things quite yet. Southern California and the sun are BFFs, so they have a hard time saying goodbye to each other after summer. However, in anticipation of the weather changing, and it actually starting to feel like autumn, I’ve made this sweet, yet hearty fall chowder. It’s so creamy and filling that you’ll have a hard time believing it’s vegan. Shhhhh…don’t tell anyone! No one will ever know, including your taste buds, but your heart and waist line will thank you.
This chowder is the perfect weeknight dinner. It is relatively quick and easy to make, and by whipping up a large batch you’ll be able to enjoy healthy, effortless lunches/dinners for a few days. For someone who loves sweet potatoes, I knew I was going to like this soup, and you will too if you love sweet potatoes as much as I do! But, the real test of how good this chowder is, was going to be if my husband, Ryan, thought it tasted good. He’s not a huge fan of sweet potatoes, and is immediately suspicious of anything vegan. I never would have thought that he would like it, but to my surprise he actually loves it! Now, I don’t know how it’s possible for a man who refuses to eat whole sweet potatoes to love sweet potato soup, but I guess stranger things have happened. That, in and of itself is a testimony to just how good this sweet potato, spinach, and corn chowder really is.
Moreover, this chowder recipe is also a great one to make in order to prep your immune system for the fast approaching cold and holiday season. Since sweet potatoes are packed with nutrients and full of vitamin C and iron, this recipe will help strengthen the immune system, and may even help prevent that dreaded winter cold. Since they are high in potassium, they can also significantly lower blood pressure and offset the effects of stress. And everyone knows the holidays can be stressful with all the traveling, preparing for out of town guests, and not to mention surviving malls filled with tired and stressed holiday shoppers! Before all that craziness starts, sit down and enjoy a warm bowl of this healthy and tasty chowder.
- 3 medium sweet potatoes , peeled and cut into 1/2 in cubes (about 3 cups)
- 3 shallots, diced
- 6 cloves of garlic, sliced
- 6 springs of thyme
- 1/2 fuji apple, cored
- 1 tsp sea salt
- 2 Tbs olive oil
- 3 cups vegetable broth
- 2 cups frozen corn, thawed
- 1 cup spinach
- salt, pepper & paprika to taste
- Preheat over to 425 degrees F. Take frozen corn out to thaw.
- Put the sweet potatoes, shallots, garlic, thyme, apple, salt, and oil in a large bowl. With your hands, toss the ingredients and evenly coat them in oil. Tip the mixture on a parchment paper lined baking sheet, and roast in oven for about 20 minutes, or until you can smash the sweet potatoes easily with the back of a fork.
- Discard the thyme springs, pour mixture and 1/2 cup broth in blender, process until smooth.
- Transfer to a large sauce pan, add the remaining 2 1/2 cups of broth, corn, and spinach. Cook over gentle heat for 10-15 minutes. Season to taste.
- If you have left over vegetable stock, don’t just put it in the fridge where you’ll end up throwing it away in a week or so. Instead, pour the broth into ice cube trays, freeze, and store in a container. This way, you can use the left over broth the next time you make soup. To defrost the broth, place container in a warm water bath until it turns back into liquid.
- Clean up as you go. When the veggies are roasting, do the dishes. When the chowder is heating on the stove, clean the blender and wipe down counter tops. This way, when you’re done with dinner you don’t have to worry about cleaning up!
- Some vegetable broths are made with a yeast extract that contains wheat. If you have a gluten sensitivity, read the ingredients label to make sure it’s gluten-free.