Creamy Cauliflower Chowder {Gluten-Free, Vegan Option}

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Creamy Cauliflower Chowder

To me, each season has their beauty and appeal.  Winter, it seems, is all about slow living.  Wearing slippers around the kitchen making big pots of soup and eating way too many brownies.  Snuggling under warm blankets with nothing on the agenda but a good movie.  Gazing out the window as snow gently falls.  Winter is an excuse to do nothing.  And eat said soup while doing nothing. 

This is the soup.  Honestly, it’s one of my favorite recipes that I’ve ever written.  It is perfectly creamy, sweet and salty, and has deep flavors of bay leaf and butter.  The vegetable to creamy ratio is just right.  And the mellow flavors are perfect for picky weeknight eaters or the troublesome mixed bag palates of hosting.

Creamy Cauliflower Chowder

Creamy Cauliflower Chowder

To make this soup dairy-free, please see the notes section of the recipe below.

Let’s Make Chowdah!

Creamy Cauliflower Chowder

Saute onion and butter for 7-8 minutes in a large pot on medium heat. Stir occasionally.

Creamy Cauliflower Chowder

As a time saver, prep your other vegetables while the onions are cooking.

Creamy Cauliflower Chowder

Add carrot and celery to onions and saute for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Your kitchen will be smelling delightful at this point.

Creamy Cauliflower Chowder

Add the cauliflower and bay leaf. Continue to saute for another 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Creamy Cauliflower Chowder

Sprinkle flour over the lovely vegetables and stir, cooking for 1-2 minutes. The flour is mixing with the butter to make a roux, which is the basis for most all white sauces, and will later thicken your soup.

Creamy Cauliflower Chowder

Add the stock, scraping the bottom of the pot. That’s where all the good flavors are hiding. Simmer with the lid on for 15-20 minutes, or until desired vegetable softness.

Creamy Cauliflower Chowder

When vegetables are softened to your liking, add the remaining ingredients.
Add one teaspoon of salt at a time and taste. Salt levels will vary depending on the type of stock you used.
Sprinkle a bit of parsley on top for a pretty presentation.

Creamy Cauliflower Chowder

Tip: When prepping vegetables like these, store the trimmings in a plastic bag in the freezer. When you save up a whole bag, add them to a large stockpot, cover with water and simmer for an hour. Voila! Free vegetable stock.

Creamy Cauliflower Chowder

Creamy Cauliflower Chowder {Vegan Option, Gluten-Free}
Serves 8
This soup is perfectly creamy, sweet and salty, and has deep flavors of bay leaf and butter. The vegetable to creamy ratio is just right. And the mellow flavors are perfect for picky weeknight eaters or the troublesome mixed bag palates of hosting.
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Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
45 min
Total Time
55 min
Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
45 min
Total Time
55 min
Ingredients
  1. 1 medium Onion, finely chopped
  2. 4 Tablespoons butter or vegan substitute
  3. 2 Carrots, finely chopped
  4. 2 Celery Stalks, finely chopped
  5. 1 head of Cauliflower, roughly chopped
  6. 1 Bay Leaf
  7. 1/4 cup All-Purpose Flour
  8. 1 qt. Low-Sodium Vegetable Stock or Broth
  9. 1 cup Half and Half or Canned Coconut Milk
  10. 1 Tablespoon fresh or dried minced Parsley
  11. 1/2 cup Sour Cream (omit if making recipe dairy-free)
  12. 1 to 3 teaspoons Salt, to taste
Instructions
  1. Saute onion and butter for 7-8 minutes in a large pot on medium heat. Stir occasionally.
  2. Add carrot and celery to onions and saute for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  3. Add the cauliflower and bay leaf. Continue to saute for another 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  4. Sprinkle flour over vegetables and stir, cooking for 1-2 minutes.
  5. Add the stock, scraping the bottom of the pot. Simmer with the lid on for 15-20 minutes, or until desired vegetable softness.
  6. When vegetables are softened to your liking, add the remaining ingredients.
  7. Add one teaspoon of salt at a time and taste. Salt levels will vary depending on the type of stock you used.
  8. Sprinkle a bit of parsley on top for presentation.
Notes
  1. Vegan Version: To make this recipe vegan, simply use a butter alternative, coconut milk, and omit the sour cream. You may want to pump up the flavors of the soup with some extra coconut milk, salt, spices, and maybe a splash of fresh lemon juice since you will be omitting the sour cream.
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