Last week, we made a gluten-free, dairy-free slow cooker clam chowder that knocked our socks off two days in a row. The secret to creamy clam chowder without the cream? Roast a head of cauliflower until soft, then blend/puree/Magic Bullet with veggie stock until soup-like. No roux needed. No heavy cream. Just a savory, hearty chowder with a perfectly roasted flavor.
If you’re not totally on board with the creamy-but-not-silky texture of the cauliflower soup base, add a little bit of soy milk until you’re happy with the consistency. We tried it both ways, they’re both delicious.
Other non-dairy, vegetable-based, creamy soup alternatives: [canned] white beans, turnips, or parsnips. All can be roasted or steamed then pureed with enough vegetable stock to make into the perfect, dairy-free creamy soup base.
Another replacement? Hominy instead of potatoes. I personally believe that potatoes in any other kind of soup except for baked potato soup or potato leek soup (where the potatoes are blended and not bite-sized) are a waste of space. Hominy was a slight step closer (for me) to “actual vegetable that counts,” but really, I replaced the potatoes with hominy because Chris asked me to try that.
What else went in the clam chowder (besides clams)? Celery, carrots, onions, corn (in mine), hominy (in Chris’), bacon, and seasonings like salt, pepper, and thyme. I’ll post the recipe and instructions in full later, but couldn’t resist showing this photo and sharing this little secret now.