This southwest creamy corn soup recipe combines plenty of fresh corn, sweet potato, bell pepper and smoked paprika all in a rich, satisfying broth. Garnish with crispy bacon, jalapeno and cilantro for one belly satisfying meal you’re gonna love!
Got corn? This creamy corn soup recipe is a fabulous transition recipe from summer to fall.
It’s more of a soup than a chowder because of a looser consistency. However, it does channel corn chowder vibes because of the addition of cream. Kinda like a corn soup chowder recipe, maybe? Best of both worlds, if you ask me!
Ingredients for Creamy Corn Soup
- Plenty of fresh, sweet corn
- Chicken broth
- Sweet potato
- Bell pepper
- Aromatics, like garlic and onion
- Seasoning, like salt, pepper and smoked paprika
How to Make Corn Soup
Full details are in the recipe card below, but here are the basics:
- Remove kernels from ears of corn.
- Combine broth and cream in a pot and place the corn ears in there. Bring to a low simmer for about 15 minutes.
- Discard the corn ears. They’ve done their job!
- In a pot, crisp up some bacon and drain fat (reserve a little crispy bacon, if you like, for garnish).
- Cook onion in some oil, then cook garlic.
- Add remaining ingredients, like bell peppers, jalapeno, sweet potato and seasoning, stirring to combine.
- Add milk/cream mixture to veggies. Bring to a simmer and cook for a little until potatoes are tender.
- Remove about a cup of the corn soup and blend with an immersion blender.
- Pour blended soup back into the pot and stir in. Then it’s just a matter of portioning, garnishing (if you like) and digging in!
Can I Use Frozen Corn?
You sure can! If you really want this corn soup, but only have frozen, use that.
However, you won’t be able to infuse the soup base with the corn ears. Skip that part and just add the corn when you add the rest of the veggies.
Can I Use Another Dairy Besides Cream?
Yes, you can. Heavy cream works best, in my opinion, and what’s recommended here because it’s rich and it’s less likely to curdle (because of the higher fat content).
However, if you really want to use another dairy, there are some options. The soup base may not quite be as rich, but will still be delicious. Other options are:
- Whole milk
If you do use either of half-and-half or whole milk, there are some tips:
- In order to minimize curdling, I recommend simmering your corn ears in just broth.
- Gently heat half and half (or whole milk) in a separate small saucepan. Watch that it doesn’t boil.
- During the last couple of minutes of cook time of the corn soup, stir in cornstarch slurry (the cornstarch slurry gives a little body, but you could omit if you like), followed by the warmed half and half (or whole milk).
Whether you use half and half or whole milk, it’s important that you don’t bring things to a roaring boil, rather gently simmer, or your soup base my break/curdle
Can I Make Make This a Corn Chowder Instead of a Corn Soup?
If you want more of a corn chowder recipe, simply use less broth, about 3 to 3.5 cups of broth, instead of 5.
To further thicken, you can add a flour roux or cornstarch slurry during the last couple of minutes of cook time.
How to Make a Flour Roux
A flour roux is simply equal parts flour and fat. To make a flour roux, melt unsalted butter in a pan on medium heat. Once butter is melted, add all-purpose flour, stirring to form a paste. Cook for 3 to 4 minutes, then stir into the corn chowder. Start with about 2 tablespoons of each. Remember, you can always add more, if you want things super thick.
How to Make a Cornstarch Slurry
To make a cornstarch slurry, mix about 1 tablespoon of cornstarch with 1 tablespoon of cold water in a cup, stirring to combine (cornstarch is more potent than flour so that’s why you need less). Add to the pot of soup, stirring in, during the last couple of minutes of cook time to thicken.
Tips and Variations
- Smoked paprika was used here, but you can substitute with chipotle powder.
- Want to make this corn soup recipe vegetarian? Simply omit the bacon and use veggie broth instead of chicken broth.
- Don’t have sweet potato? You can totally use regular potato instead.
- Want to bulk things up even further? Add some black beans!
- Want to lighten things up? Considering using an alternative dairy instead of heavy cream.
More Easy Soup Recipes
- Creamy Roasted Cauliflower Leek Soup with Cheddar
- Easy Tomato Tortellini Soup
- Lemon Chicken Orzo Soup
If you make this homemade corn soup recipe, be sure to leave a comment below!
Southwest Creamy Corn Soup (with bacon)
Southwest Corn Chowder
- 4 ears corn, kernels removed from cob
- 5 cups low sodium chicken broth
- ¾ to 1 cup heavy cream, depending on how creamy you want the soup to be
- ⅓ pound bacon, cut into lardons (about 4 to 5 slices)
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 yellow onion, peeled and diced
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 bell peppers, small dice
- 1 jalapeno, minced (remove seeds and ribs if you want)
- 1 sweet potato, peeled and cut into about 1-inch cubes (about 2.5 cups)
- 1 tablespoon smoked paprika
- ¾ teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
Garnish Ideas (optional)
- Crispy bacon, chopped
- Green onion, chopped
- Sour cream
- Jalapeno pepper, sliced
- Cilantro, chopped
- Tomato, diced
Southwest Creamy Corn Soup
- Remove kernels from ears of corn and set aside.
- In a large pot, combine ears of corn, broth and cream. Bring to a light simmer and cook, uncovered, for 15 minutes. Remove ears of corn and discard.Note: Use ¾ cup of cream or up to 1 cup (for a richer consistency).
- Meanwhile, in another large pot or Dutch oven over medium heat, cook bacon, stirring often, until crisp, for about 10 to 12 minutes. Reserve some for garnish (if you like). Otherwise, leave all bacon in the pot. Remove bacon grease.
- Heat olive oil in the pot and cook onion, stirring often, until softened, about 5 minutes.
- Stir in garlic and cook 1 minute.
- Stir in reserved corn kernels, bell peppers, jalapeno pepper, sweet potato, smoked paprika, salt and black pepper.
- Pour in broth/cream mixture, stirring to combine.
- Bring to a low to medium simmer and cook, uncovered, 10 to 12 minutes or until sweet potato is tender.
- Optional: Remove about 1 cup of the soup and place in a heat-safe container and blend with an immersion blender. Pour back into soup, stirring to combine.
- To serve, divide the soup into bowls and garnish, if desired, with any of the garnish ideas. Enjoy!
Nutrition (ESTIMATE ONLY)
Nutrition estimate (if provided) is based on 1 Serving.
Nutrition information (if provided) is provided as a courtesy and should be considered an estimate only. Ingredients can vary and Girl Heart Food makes no guarantees to the accuracy of this information. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.
A note on times provided: appliances vary, any prep and/or cook times provided are guidelines only.