Comfort food is king at our house right now. After 6 weeks (!!!!) of the whole family being sick, we are finally done with coughs and runny noses and upset stomachs. I think I speak for all of us (including our 18-month old) when I say that we are so OVER being sick. Hallelujah!
There three things that have gotten us through these last weeks: bone broth (for when we couldn’t stand to eat anything), cups and cups and cups of warm lemon-honey water with ginger (for settling our stomachs), and this Creamy Dairy-Free Cauliflower Chowder. It’s all kinds of comfort food goodness. Just what the doctor ordered.
This chowder has been on repeat around here for so many reasons:
It’s QUICK (about 30-minutes start to finish), DAIRY-FREE (dairy = more mucus = bad), TODDLER-FRIENDLY (our little guy loves the simple flavors and creamy texture of this soup), and NOURISHING (loaded with veggies and good fats, it is filling and satiating.)
I often use a bit of bacon or pancetta to start chowders but I wanted to keep this one vegan so I left it out. Frankly, I didn’t miss it at all. Instead, I made some seasoned pepitas to sprinkle on top. These little guys add a bit of smokey flavor and are seriously addictive. You may want to make a double batch of these because your next salad, soup or grain bowl would be benefit from a sprinkle or two.
So if it’s raining or snowing where you are, I hope you’ll make a pot of this soup. It will warm you right up and give you all the cozy feels. And if the sickness is moving through your house, I wish you a speedy recovery!!
- 2 tablespoons ghee or coconut oil
- 1 cup thinly sliced leeks (white part only), rinsed very well and pat dry
- ½ cup small diced celery
- 1 tablespoon picked fresh thyme leaves
- 3 cups peeled & diced yukon potatoes (aim for a 1-inch dice so the potatoes are a good spoon-able size and not so small they fall apart).
- 4 cups cauliflower florets, cut into roughly 1-inch pieces
- 1 cup coconut milk
- 4 cups water
- 1 tablespoon white miso
- 2 teaspoons kosher salt
- ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1 teaspoon avocado or olive oil
- ½ cups pepitas
- ½ teaspoon smoked paprika
- pinch cumin
- ½ teaspoon salt
- snipped chives, for serving
- Tabasco or similar hot sauce, for serving
- Cracked black pepper, for serving
- Heat a heavy-bottomed pot over medium-high heat.
- Add the ghee, leeks, celery, thyme and a pinch of salt.
- Cook for 5 minutes, stirring often, until vegetables begin to soften.
- Add the potatoes, cauliflower, coconut milk, water and miso.
- Increase heat to high. Once the soup is bubbling, reduce heat to low.
- Simmer for 10-15 minutes or until potatoes are fork tender.
- Remove from heat.
- Ladle half of the soup into a blender (try to get a fairly even mix of solids and liquid so the mixture blends to a thick consistency). Blend until smooth.
- Add the blended mixture back to the pot along with the salt and pepper.
- Stir and taste. Adjust salt as needed.
- Heat a small skillet over medium-high heat.
- Add the oil, pepitas, smoked paprika, cumin, and salt.
- Cook, stirring constantly, for 3-5 minutes until pepitas are lightly toasted and very fragrant.
- Scoop seeds out of the skillet onto a plate and allow to cool.
- Serve the soup topped with the smokey pepitas, snipped chives and a dash of hot sauce.
- I like starting this soup with a bit of ghee for some butter flavor, but it’s delicious with coconut oil, too. This recipe looks dead simple, and it is. Nothing fussy going on here. But the one place to pay close attention is in the cooking time. If you walk away from the stove and let this soup bubble away for too long, you will end up with a pureed soup and not a chowder. Ideally, you pull the pot off the heat once the potatoes are fork-tender and before they are falling apart.