Seafood Chowder Recipe: Best Thick & Hearty (less than 15 min prep)

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Thick and Hearty Seafood Chowder is full of savory flavor! Seasoned fish, tender potatoes, and a creamy broth make this the best seafood chowder ever!

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Thick and Hearty Seafood Chowder

This delectable Creamy Seafood Chowder recipe is hands down, my favorite chowder recipe, and that includes seafood chowders I have had in some top seaside restaurants! The creamy broth is seasoned perfectly with garlic, onions, hot sauce, thyme and so many more flavors. Toss in tender red potatoes, savory hunks of cod, crab meat, lobster, scallops, or just about any kind of seafood you like. It’s a flavorful meal that is packed with protein, calcium, and nutrients that will wow any seafood lover. This recipe is pretty similar to our Clam Chowder recipe, except it is easier and a little more versatile. Serve with a side of biscuits, hot and cheesy garlic bread or this easy corn bread for a perfect seafood meal.

Ingredients in Seafood Chowder

  • Butter
  • Celery
  • Onions
  • Leeks
  • Minced garlic
  • Chicken broth
  • Clam juice
  • Red potatoes
  • Carrots
  • Salt and pepper
  • Thyme
  • Bay leaves
  • Tabasco sauce
  • Old Bay seasoning
  • Shrimp
  • Cod or halibut or haddock
  • Half & half
  • All-purpose flour
  • Milk

What Kind of Fish is Best for Chowder?

  • I love a firm, white cod for this seafood chowder, but you can use chunks of halibut or haddock too. However, any kind of good, white fish will work. But, if you’re unsure of what to use, you can ask for suggestions at your local meat counter.
  • Shrimp is also so delicious in this gorgeous soup. Look for shrimp that is raw but peeled and de-veined. Again, you can find it at the meat counter, or you can find bags of frozen shrimp in the grocery store.
  • This recipe is technically considered a fish chowder but you can add crab meat, too. That would be delicious!

Suggestions for the best Seafood Chowder Recipe

  • Sometimes, I sauté the fish and shrimp in some butter to get a little crust around each piece, then add it to the soup. This adds another step, but the buttery crust is so delicious!
  • You can add other favorite chowder ingredients like corn and bacon to this recipe as well.
  • I add extra Tabasco sauce when I’m making this chowder just for me and my husband because we like the extra heat. But, you can vary the hot sauce as you need to for your family.
  • Dice red potatoes into bite-sized pieces for even cooking. Also, try Yukon golds or any other waxy potato that will hold its shape during cooking.
  • I’m all about watching calories, but please do not leave out the half and half in this recipe! You’ll need it to make this chowder extra creamy and rich. Moderation in all things, right?

Frequently Asked Questions About Seafood Chowder

They are very similar, but instead of clams, this recipe’s main ingredients are shrimp and white fish.

There are many types of chowder, but these are the most common:
Bermuda fish chowder
Clam chowder
Corn chowder
Fish chowder
Smoked salmon chowder
Southern Illinois chowder
Seafood chowder
Spiced haddock chowder
Potato Chowder
Bacon Chowder

Chowder is a cream based soup that usually has a seafood and vegetables.

READ NEXT: Easy Crockpot Soup Recipes: Cozy Meals for Cold Days

More Hearty Soup Recipes

Like this seafood chowder? Then you’ll love these other hearty soup and chowder recipes:

  • Country Vegetable Chowder
  • Chicken Corn Chowder
  • Corn Chowder with Bacon
  • Ham and Bean Soup
  • Broccoli Cheese Soup

How to Make Seafood Chowder

Thick and Hearty Seafood Chowder



  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 1 cup celery finely diced
  • 1 cup onions finely diced
  • 1 cup leeks finely diced
  • 1 tablespoon garlic minced
  • 3 cups chicken broth
  • ¾ cup clam juice
  • 4 red potatoes diced (Yukon potatoes work great too)
  • 1 cup carrots finely diced
  • ¾ tablespoon ground black pepper
  • 1½ tablespoons Kosher salt
  • ¾ tablespoon thyme
  • 6 bay leaves
  • 2 teaspoons Tabasco sauce
  • Old Bay seasoning to taste
  • 1 pound shrimp uncooked, peeled, de-veined
  • 2 pounds cod or halibut or haddock, cut into 1/2-inch cubed
  • 2 quarts half & half
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 1 cup milk
  • salt & pepper to taste


  • In a large dutch oven or stock pot, melt butter and add celery, onions, leeks and garlic. When vegetables have softened, add chicken broth, clam juice, potatoes, carrots, black pepper, salt, thyme, bay leaves, and Tabasco sauce. Bring to a boil and reduce heat to medium-low to simmer. Cook for about 8-10 minutes or until potatoes are almost fork-tender.
  • Season shrimp and cod with Old Bay seasoning. Add shrimp and cod to the stock pot and simmer another 7-8 minutes or until fish flakes easily and shrimp turns pink.
  • Add half and half. Combine flour and milk until flour is dissolved and slowly stir into the chowder until you reach your desired thickness (you may not need all of it). Stir until thickened and season with salt and pepper to taste. Remove bay leaves and serve!


  • Don’t like the veggies or fish in this recipe? Swap them out for your favorites!
  • To prep ahead, wash and cut vegetables, cut and prepare fish, and remove shells and tails from shrimp.
  • To store, keep leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for up to a week, or in the freezer for up to one month.

Nutrition Information

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