Makes 6 Servings
by the Meal Makeover MomsMMM kitchen Fish Chowder testing_09 10 07_1538-finalrecipe

When Kristin recently posted her family’s favorite recipe for Fish Chowder we thought it looked yummy, but as dietitians, we found the recipe’s 3 cups of cream and half a stick of butter a bit hard to swallow!  After reading Kristin’s post, we sent her an email and offered to give her chowder a Recipe Rescue.  To do that, we cut the amount of butter from 8 tablespoons down to 2, replaced some of it with olive oil, and created a faux cream sauce with lowfat milk and chicken broth which we then thickened with a roux.  The result is a soup that’s still hearty and delicious, and yes, healthy. Best of all, her family loves it.

1 ¼ pounds white fish such as cod, cut into 1-inch pieces
1 pound yellow or Yukon Gold potatoes, peeled and cut into 3/4-inch dice (that’s about 2 large potatoes / 3 cups diced)
1 small onion, finely diced
12 ounces carrots, peeled and cut into ½-inch dice (use 1 pound carrots if you like!), 2 to 2 ½ cups diced
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons sherry wine or ¼ cup white wine
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
1 bay leaf
½ teaspoon kosher salt
¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
¼ teaspoon dried dill
¼ teaspoon celery seed
1 ounce pancetta ham or 2 slices all-natural bacon, finely diced
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
2 cups 1% lowfat milk
1 cup all-natural chicken broth
¼ cup reduced-fat sour cream, optional
Oyster crackers, optional

1. Preheat the oven to 375°F.

2. Place the fish, potatoes, onion, carrots, olive oil, sherry wine, Worcestershire sauce, bay leaf, salt, pepper, dill, and celery seed in a Dutch oven, and gently stir to combine.

3. Cover and bake until the fish is cooked and the vegetables are tender, 1 hour.  Remove from oven and set aside.  About 15 minutes before the fish is done, prepare your “cream” sauce.

4. Sauté the pancetta in a medium saucepan over medium heat, stirring frequently, until crispy, about 5 minutes. Add the butter and heat until melted.  Add the flour and cook for 1 minute, whisking constantly (it may look lumpy at first, but keep whisking until smooth).

5. Whisk the milk and broth slowly into the flour mixture. Raise the heat and bring to a simmer, stirring constantly.  Reduce the heat and continue to simmer and stir gently until the mixture thickens, about 2 minutes.  Remove from the heat, and whisk in the sour cream as desired.  Add the sauce to the fish mixture and stir gently to combine. Remove the bay leaf.  Serve in individual bowls and top with oyster crackers as desired.

Tip: When cooking for a crowd (of if you want leftovers), double the recipe.

Nutrition Information per Serving (1 generous cup):  310 calories, 10g fat (4g saturated, 0.2g omega-3), 400mg sodium, 27g carbohydrate, 3g fiber, 23g protein, 180% vitamin A, 25% vitamin C, 15% calcium

The original recipe had 470 calories, 28g fat, and 18g saturated fat per 1 generous cup serving.

Janice Newell Bissex, MS, RD and Liz Weiss, MS, RD are The Meal Makeover Moms, and together, they’re on a mission to help busy families eat better. For more recipes, check out their blog, Meal Makeover Moms’ Kitchen or listen to their weekly podcast, Cooking with the Moms.


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4 Responses to Recipe of the Week: Skinny Fish Chowder

  1. Kristie says:

    Thank you so much for this recipe–I can’t wait to try it. My son loves Clam Chowder, and I was just talking to a friend today about how I could lighten it up! Thanks again.

  2. Lisa Stein says:

    Love fish chowder, listened to episode, can’t wait to try. Printing out now (will it ever get made, I don’t know..)

  3. Sandra Scolnik JALLU says:

    thanks so much for this episode..I have made this 6 or 7 times since the episode aired. we love it and it so easy, can be made the night before and reheated.

  4. I’ve used soft tofu as a substitute for cream in other recipes with great success! Give that a try.