Smoked Salmon Chowder

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This creamy Smoked Salmon Chowder is filled with carrots, onions, celery, garlic, wine, and a hint of bacon.

Thyme and dill are added along with the smoked salmon to create a memorably rich and flavorful chowder. If you enjoy smoked salmon, you will love this chowder.

Smoked Salmon Chowder is a hearty winter favorite.

Not a fan of seafood? I recommend trying this Baked Potato Soup for a creamy rich soup that is guaranteed to make everyone smile.

Either one of these soups is a memorable first course or a full meal by itself depending on your mood.

With an abundance of salmon once again in my freezer, it is time to pull out our favorite seafood recipes and start working on some new ones once again.

Sean’s last trip to Alaska filled the freezer with several varieties of fish and we’ve been enjoying them greatly!

Smoked Salmon Chowder is a rich and creamy hearty winter meal.

We’ve eaten a whole lot of the smoked salmon on its own. And I’ve added smoked salmon to pastas, potatoes and eggs.

When I saw Larry share this recipe, (has it really been eight years ago already?!) I immediately printed it to try. It was a hit from the very first bite and we’ve made it numerous times over the years since then.

Rich and creamy Smoke Salmon Chowder

I’ve made Chipotle Salmon, Sweet and Spicy Salmon and Salmon with Mango, Black Bean and Corn Salsa. I’ve loved all of these dishes, but I’m always looking for more ideas.

Do you have a favorite salmon recipe? I’d love to try it if you want to email it to me. If I love it, I’ll probably share it here with my thanks to you!

Smoked Salmon Chowder with Bacon

Several years ago, my sisters and I met in Seattle for a getaway weekend. It was rainy and drizzling almost the entire time and we still had a fabulous three days.

The food I remember most clearly of all was the clam chowder that we ate after spending the morning at Pike Place Market.

This salmon chowder reminds me of that day and as a result, I find myself grinning every time I make it. It’s definitely time for another sister trip!

Smoked Salmon Chowder recipe inspired by a trip to Seattle

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Smoked Salmon Chowder is a rich and creamy hearty winter meal.

Smoked Salmon Chowder

4.77 from 17 votes
Recipe adapted from and with thanks to Boundary Bay Brewery via Big Dude’s Ramblings
Pin Print Review
Servings: 4 large or 8 small servings


  • 2 slices bacon chopped into 1/2″ pieces
  • 2 medium Yukon gold potatoes peeled and diced into 1/2″ pieces, about 2 cups worth
  • 1 small yellow onion diced small, about 1 cup
  • 1 1/2 cups carrots thinly sliced
  • 1/2 cup celery very thinly sliced
  • 8 large cloves garlic minced, about 2 tablespoons
  • 1 cup clam juice
  • 3/4 cup white wine
  • 1 cup water adjust as needed
  • 3/4 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour I used brown rice, but all-purpose will be fine as well
  • 2 1/2 cups milk
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt divided
  • 3/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper divided
  • 10-12 ounces hot smoked flake salmon, chopped bite size, about 1 ½ cups
  • 1 tablespoon fresh dill chopped or 1 teaspoon dried dill


  • In the bottom of a large pot, over medium-high heat, cook the bacon pieces. (Reserve a tablespoon or so of the cooked bacon to use as a topping, if you desire.) Add the onion, garlic, carrots and celery and toss to coat. Sprinkle with ½ teaspoon salt and ¼ teaspoon pepper and saute for 3-4 minutes, until the vegetables begin to soften. Add the thyme, potatoes, clam juice, wine and ½ cup water and bring to a boil.
  • Reduce the heat to medium and simmer until the potatoes are tender, about 15-20 minutes. If there isn’t enough liquid in the pot, add another ½ cup of water as needed. Whisk together ½ cup milk and the flour and then add it to the pot. Allow it to simmer and thicken the soup for about 1-2 minutes.
  • Add the rest of the milk and the cream and taste the soup. Add another teaspoon of salt and ½ teaspoon of pepper, adjusting according to your own tastes. Bring to a very low simmer and add the salmon and the dill. Taste and adjust all seasonings as needed. Cook just a few minutes to warm the salmon. Serve warm. Enjoy!
Tried this recipe?Mention @barefeetkitchen or tag #barefeetkitchen!

{recipe originally published 2/4/13 – recipe notes and photos updated 12/9/20}

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Mary Younkin

Mary Younkin

Hi, I’m Mary. I’m the author, cook, photographer, and travel lover behind the scenes here at Barefeet In The Kitchen. I'm also the author of three cookbooks dedicated to making cooking from scratch as simple as possible.

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  1. Tricia says

    Mary – this is absolutely beautiful. The photos (especially the one of you – so sweet!) are fantastic. You know I won't be able to quit thinking about this chowder until I have some. I love smoked salmon – so this is on my list!

    • Steve Gardner says

      Hi Mary, have yet to try the recipe (I have salmon eaters in our family, but not smoked….) but I would like to share a super simple, reliable and forgiving salmon recipe.

      Season any sized salmon filet as you wish, bake in oven at 200 degrees Fahrenheit for one hour. (If the filet is thin, reduce the time by 5 or 10 minutes.).

      I often cook salmon this way when preparing salmon salad.



  2. Sue/the view from great island says

    This looks luscious! I usually add a touch of tomato paste to salmon chowders, but yours has a beautiful pink tone without it. I have two sisters too, and you've reminded me that we need to get together as a group more often, sounds like a great time in Seattle 🙂

  3. Big Dude says

    Thanks for the mention Mary and yours looks excellent and glad you tried it. I went back and looked at my shot and yours is obviously heartier, which I like better so next time I'll use your version.

  4. Nicole Pearce says

    I saw your post on Google+ and had to come and check this out, it looks great. Could you tell me if this is the hot smoked (or sometimes called flake) salmon (looks like it), or the cold smoked salmon. Thanks so much.

  5. Anna {Hidden Ponies} says

    This looks wonderful! I love salmon and wish my freezer was always full of it 🙂 We love it grilled with some maple syrup, brown sugar, and blueberries, or just classic with butter, lemon, and a bit of garlic.

  6. Sophia says

    I am always up for trying of good smoked salmon recipes and this one certainly would be on my to-do list! Brown rice is a healthier alternative to the white one, which is high in starch and perhaps a tad tastier!

  7. Carrie's Experimental Kitchen says

    Good morning! I have featured this recipe on my blog for my weekly seafood round-up and have also linked this recipe to your original post so that my readers will be forwarded to your site. Thank you for allowing me to share and have a wonderful weekend.

  8. Aramis Hamer says

    I just made this recipe tonight, exactly as stated (without the bacon though) with a side of butter biscuits and it was absolutely incredible!!! My boyfriend loved it and even had THIRDS! We have some leftover and can't wait to eat it tomorrow. I'm sure it's going to be even better (if that's even possible) once the flavors have time to marry. Thanks so much for this amazing dish!!! 5 stars