In the cooler months, I often have a pot of soup, stew or chowder simmering on the stove or in the slow cooker. With the recent addition of an Instant Pot to my kitchen, I’ve been making even more soup since I can do it in just minutes. My current favorite: Potato Vegetable Chowder.
This makes a large batch of chowder, more than enough for a couple of meals and a couple more that you can freeze ahead. I focus on freezer meals a lot right now while I have the time to make them and will then enjoy them when the holidays are hectic, making cooking a comforting, healthy meal a bit more challenging.
You’ll need a 6-quart or larger Instant Pot to make this. If you prefer to use a slow cooker/Crockpot, I’ve included instructions on how to do that, too. If there is one thing I miss in using the Instant Pot more and my slow cooker less, it is the smell of food cooking all day. But I’ll gladly sacrifice that for a warm, creamy batch of potato vegetable chowder in under half an hour.
A note on potatoes: I prefer using russet potatoes when making a soup. I steer away from Yukon gold potatoes in soup as they hold their shape a bit better. If you prefer a potato soup with sizable chunks of potato in it, you might like using Yukon golds. I do not peel my potatoes, but again, that is up to you. I use organic potatoes and give them a good scrub with a veggie brush.
Alrighty! On to the recipe. I can’t wait for you to try this one…
Potato Vegetable Chowder in the Instant Pot or Slow Cooker (gluten-free, dairy-free, veg)
- 5 pounds russet potatoes , cut into cubes (doesn't have to be perfect)
- 1 cup diced celery
- 1 cup diced yellow onion
- 1/2 cup diced carrots
- 4 Tablespoons Earth Balance vegan butter substitute (or butter if you can have dairy)
- 3 cloves garlic , minced
- 2 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper (I used a smoked black pepper in a batch, lovely!)
- 4 cups vegetable broth/stock (be certain it is gluten-free)
- 2 to 3 cups non-dairy milk of your choice (or regular if you can have dairy
- shredded cheese or Daiya dairy-free cheese shreds
- sliced green onions
- coconut bacon (or regular if that's your style of eating, no judgment)
- In the inner liner of your 6-quart or larger Instant Pot/electric pressure cooker, place potatoes, then top with celery, onion, carrots, vegan butter, garlic and pepper. Pour vegetable broth/stock over the top. No need to stir.
- Secure the lid on your Instant Pot or electric pressure cooker. Set to 5 minutes on manual high pressure and walk away. (It took my Instant Pot 20 minutes to come to pressure, so ended up being 25 minutes total time.)
- Once the 5 minutes of high pressure cooking time has concluded, carefully release the pressure. (I use my left hand wrapped in a dishtowel and quickly turn the release valve counter-clockwise.) It will take a couple of minutes for all of the steam to release.
- Once the steam has released and the locking pin has dropped, carefully remove the lid. Inside you will have fork-tender potatoes and vegetables ready to turn into chowder!
- Using your choice of a potato masher (makes a chunkier soup) or an immersion blender (my preference), blend until the vegetables are the smoothness you desire in a chowder. Then stir in 2 cups of milk. If the chowder is the consistency you desire, stop here. If you want it a bit thinner, continue adding another cup of milk.
- Serve topped with shredded cheese/Daiya, green onions and coconut bacon (or oink-bacon).
- Leftovers may be stores in the refrigerator or frozen. When re-heating, you will need to add a bit more liquid, either vegetable broth/stock or milk. The starches in the potatoes continue to thicken, so you'll want to thin it down a bit. Enjoy!
FOR SLOW COOKER/CROCKPOT COOKING: This soup is best cooked on low for 6 hours. Add all ingredients except milk. Mash vegetables or use immersion blender once they are fork tender and then stir in milk.