Dreamy, Dairy-Free New England Clam Chowder
January 9th, 2020
If you love a bowl of warm, nourishing, and delicious soup, then you need to add this Dreamy, Dairy-Free New England Clam Chowder to your weeknight menu. Creamy and perfectly seasoned, this easy recipe can be made in the Instant Pot for a quick dinner the whole family will love. My Dreamy, Dairy-Free Clam Chowder is the healthy version of classic comfort food that can be enjoyed all year long. It’s the perfect alternative soup for Paleo and AIP diets. So pull out the Instant Pot, or your favorite soup pot, and get ready to cozy up with a bowl of this delicious clam chowder.
Can Clam Chowder Be Healthy?
With the right ingredients, New England clam chowder can be a great addition to any healthy diet. This dairy-free clam chowder made in the Instant Pot is full of nutrient-dense ingredients to make it a perfectly healthy meal. Let’s review some of the healthier ingredients I used in this version of New England clam chowder:
Similar to other popular seafood, clams contain an impressive array of nutrients. They offer B vitamins such as niacin, and minerals including magnesium as well as iron — over the daily recommended value. Clams also contain high levels of zinc and selenium, minerals that can be difficult to get in our diets. Additionally, clams are a great source of Omega-3 fatty acids without the risk of mercury poisoning.
Full Fat Coconut Milk
Coconut milk serves as the base to keep this easy clam chowder recipe dairy-free and create a rich, creamy broth. I recommend using a can of full-fat coconut milk and shaking it before use. Coconut milk is rich in healthy saturated fats to keep you full and satisfied, as well as medium-chain triglycerides promote optimal health.
Arrowroot powder takes the place of refined wheat flour in this Paleo and AIP, The Myers Way® approved recipe. This starchy powder thickens the soup and gives this Dreamy Dairy-Free Clam Chowder a thick creaminess without gluten or unnatural binding additives.
How to Make Dairy-Free Clam Chowder
You can make this Dairy-Free Clam Chowder on the stovetop or in the Instant Pot for a healthy, quick, and easy weeknight dinner.
First, drain the juice from the canned clams into a small bowl. Add this juice and chopped onion to your Instant Pot and use the ‘Saute’ function to cook for about 5 minutes. You can also saute on the stovetop. Add garlic and saute for an additional 2 minutes.
Add the rest of your vegetables and 1 1/2 cups of chicken broth, and cook until the vegetables are tender.
While your vegetables are cooking in the Instant Pot or on the stovetop, make your broth base. Combine arrowroot powder and olive oil in a saucepan over medium heat, whisking until smooth. Add coconut milk and remaining broth, stirring constantly until the mixture thickens.
Combine cooked vegetables and the remaining liquid to your broth mixture and stir to combine, being sure not to boil the mixture.
Before serving, add your clams and allow to heat through without cooking. Then add in your vinegar and salt, and garnish with bacon and chives.
Can this Clam Chowder be Frozen?
You can freeze this dairy-free clam chowder, but the consistency may change slightly after defrosting. If you choose to freeze or store leftovers, it’s best to leave out the clams until you’re ready to reheat the base and vegetables. Otherwise, you risk overcooking them when reheating the soup.
Freeze and/or store in airtight containers. Frozen chowder will keep for up to six months in the freezer. Leftovers in the refrigerator will last for no longer than 4-5 days.
How to Reheat Clam Chowder
If you’re reheating your clam chowder from refrigeration, simply add to a saucepan and allow to heat through over medium heat, stirring often. You may need to add a small amount of liquid, like chicken broth, to thin out the chowder. Add in new cans of clams (drained) at the end of reheating.
To reheat from frozen, first allow your chowder to thaw in the refrigerator. Then, follow the same reheating instructions above.
Dreamy, Dairy-Free New England Clam Chowder
- 3 (6.5 ounce) cans chopped clams undrained
- 2 1/2 cups chicken broth divided
- 1 cup white onion minced
- 2-3 cloves garlic minced
- 1 cup celery diced
- 1 cup carrots peeled and diced
- 2 cups white sweet potatoes cubed
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 3 Tbsp arrowroot powder
- 1 can full fat coconut milk
- 1 Tbls apple cider vinegar
- 1/2 tsp fine sea salt
- 8 slices cooked bacon sliced, for garnish (optional)
- fresh chives thinly sliced, for garnish (optional)