Salmon Chowder

Salmon Chowder-11

I honestly thought I knew what “real” winter was now that I live in Zurich. Boy was I wrong. I had no idea about winter weather until our recent trip to Finland. I am generally a cold person, which doesn’t help matters. I bought one of those blanket scarves this year, and even though my husband makes fun of how gigantic it is, I’m usually happy as a little clam when I’m wrapped up on an airplane or in a cold restaurant.

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Well, my blanket scarf didn’t suffice in Finland. Our first full day, we went dogsledding. My goodness it was so fun. I highly recommend it! Jon drove the dog sled and I sat in the sled, took in the view, and watched and laughed at the dogs doing their business while running. After an hour, my hands and toes couldn’t handle the cold anymore, so I took over the driving. Helping the dogs run up the hills was no easy feat! I was huffing and puffing and had no idea the work Jon had been doing the whole time. It was such an exciting experience and those doggies were fun, playful, and so darn cute.


The second day I came more prepared for the cold. I bought hand and toe warmers for our snowmobile tour. My hands were toasty, but my toe warmers were a bust and those toes turned into icicles. They needed some major defrosting afterwards. 

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I quickly adapted the Finnish way to defrost after a cold day: salmon chowder. We ate it every single day for lunch, and it hit the spot each and every day. It’s crazy how a hot soup and tea can just warm the whole body right back up. I loved the daily soup and decided I needed to eat more salmon when I got home…and that I needed to figure out how to make it. 

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So I got home and did just that. 

Salmon Chowder

I sautéed some leeks, onions, celery, carrots, and garlic. 

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I simmered it with some potatoes, spices, and broth. I pureed half of it, and left some in chunks. 

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And lastly, added in the salmon and some lemon juice. 

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So if you need some defrosting…

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…grab a bowl!

Salmon Chowder
Salmon chowder will warm you right up this winter!
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Prep Time
10 min
Total Time
35 min
Prep Time
10 min
Total Time
35 min
  1. 1 tablespoon olive oil
  2. 1 leek, stalks removed and finely chopped
  3. 1 medium yellow onion, finely chopped
  4. 1 large carrot, peeled and finely chopped
  5. 4 small yellow potatoes, cleaned and diced
  6. 2 stalks of celery, finely chopped
  7. 1 clove of garlic, minced
  8. 1 bunch of dill, finely chopped
  9. 4-5 cups // 1L+ chicken or vegetable broth
  10. ¾ lb. // 300 grams salmon, diced
  11. ½ teaspoon cayenne pepper
  12. 1 teaspoon salt
  13. ½ teaspoon black pepper
  14. Juice from ½ lemon
  1. In a large pot, sauté the onions, leeks, carrots, and celery until the onions are translucent, about 5-7 minutes. Add in the garlic and cook for 1 minute more. Add the potatoes, broth, half of the dill, salt, and peppers. Bring to a boil and reduce to a simmer, cooking for 10 more minutes, or until the potatoes are soft. With a ladle, spoon half of the mixture into a small bowl. Puree the remaining soup in the pot with an immersion blender (or use a regular blender). Pour the contents of the small bowl back into the pot along with the salmon and lemon juice. If you are using raw salmon, cook for about 5-10 minutes more. If using pre-cooked salmon, stir it in and serve immediately. Garnish with the remaining fresh dill and enjoy!
Caitlin Ball

4 Responses

  1. Thanks for the recipe. Just be careful which salmon you use – some farmed salmon are full of poisonous chemicals, especially from Norway! Saw a hair-raising report on TV the other day.

  2. Can’t wait to try this recipe! We eat salmon at least once a week but only have 2 go to recipes. Thrilled we now have a third to put in rotation.

    Plus, I’ve now pushed dog sledding to the top of our must do list.


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