Salsa Chowder

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Creamy-and-hearty-salsa-chowderIf anyone knows where last week went, could you email me? Because I honestly I have no clue – none whatsoever.

Although last week was MIA, the meals were not. But they definitely were on the simpler side – mostly roasted or grilled meat or fish, an easy vegetable and rice/grain/pasta. In short, nothing worth sharing here at the Table.

But then  there was this soup.

I was so happy with it that I thought it deserved a spot.  Like my Chocolate and Dulce de Leche Semifreddo, this soup resulted from my bi weekly refrigerator clean out which yielded a couple of potatoes and 1/2 container of fresh salsa. I’d been in the mood for soup and looking at the odds and ends from the fridge I definitely had the makings for a good pot.

Soup is one of my “go to” dishes when I need a relatively quick meal -especially on nights when I haven’t planned in advance!!!  With a few basics in the pantry and freezer/fridge it’s not hard to come up with something good and it’s a great way to use up those  vegetable odds and ends which I always seem to have in my house. I know that may seem weird –  when you think of soup, you generally think of a pot slowly simmering on the stove. While there are lots of soups that  do require a longer prep/simmer time, many soups (like this one) don’t and in fact, wouldn’t taste nearly as good if they were simmered too long so they are perfect for quick meals.


Although I’ve included the recipe, it really is more of a guide and as I made the soup, I thought of all kinds of things I could have added or substituted so there is a lot of room for improvisation and adaptation.

So do you have any favorite “refrigerator soups”? If so, I’d love to hear about them!!

Salsa Chowder
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
To increase the protein in this soup, you could easily add a can of rinsed and drained black beans or some roasted, shredded chicken. I used a relatively mild salsa but you could also use a hotter salsa if you like a spicier soup. I found this soup hearty enough that it only needed a salad. I served one with chopped romaine, slivered red onion and orange sections with a citrus dressing and it went really well with the soup, and of course fresh corn tortillas are always good with it too!
Serves: 4 -6 servings
  • 2 Tbsp. canola oil
  • 1 large onion, peeled and cut into ½ inch dice
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 tsp. cumin
  • 1 tsp. chile powder
  • 1 cup fresh or frozen corn kernels
  • 2 - 4 small potatoes - scrubbed and cut into ½ inch dice
  • 1 - 1½ cups fresh salsa
  • ¼ cup diced green chiles
  • 6 cups low sodium chicken or vegetable stock
  • ½ cup white wine
  • 1 Tbsp. white wine worcestershire
  • ½ tsp. hot sauce (optional)
  • ½ cup half and half or ¼ cup cream
  • ¼ cup minced fresh cilantro
  • ¼ cup chopped fresh tomatoes (for garnish)
  1. In a large soup pot, heat the 2 Tbsp. of canola oil over medium high heat. Add the onions and cook until the onions become soft and translucent - about 5 - 7 minutes. Add the garlic, cumin and chile powder and cook for another 1 - 2 minutes. Add the corn and cook for another 5 minutes, until the corn is slightly caramelized. Add the potatoes, salsa, green chiles, white wine and chicken/vegetable stock and white wine worcestershire. Bring soup to a boil and reduce to a simmer. Simmer for 15 - 20 minutes (covered) or until potatoes are soft but still firm to bite. Taste and adjust seasonings, adding hot sauce if desired. Ladle into bowls and garnish with fresh tomatoes and cilantro.


  1. says

    Perfect way to use those odds and ends that accumulate over the week in the fridge, Nancy! And what a lovely combination of flavors – the salsa, corn, chiles and cilantro are all particular favorites here. I’ll certainly have this recipe in mind on my next clean-out-the-fridge day.

  2. says

    Nancy, I am so excited about the idea of this soup as salsa is one of my all time favorite foods. Not sure where the time is going over here either 😉

  3. says

    This is such a great idea, Nancy! It looks so hearty and filling. I alreday eat good salsa’s with a spoon, so this is sort of like the new icing on the cake I need to try :)

    • says

      Hi Leah!!

      Oops!!! Sorry about that! I add the cream about 5 minutes before I am ready to serve the soup – just long enough to let the soup heat back up!

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