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Delicious Mushroom And Bacon Chowder – Satisfying Appetite

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Savor the allure of Mushroom and Bacon Chowder. This exquisite blend melds hearty bacon’s savoriness with the earthy mushrooms’ delicate flavor. Imagine biting into succulent bacon pieces bathed in a velvety broth with mushrooms. A symphony of flavor and textures plays in your mouth, tantalizing your taste buds. 

Mushroom and Bacon Chowder

Each spoonful uncovers another layer of complexity, a satisfying surprise for the palate. This chowder embodies rustic charm with gourmet refinement enveloping you in a comforting warmth. Don’t just consume – relish in the sublime pleasure of every bite. 

Crafted with love, seasoned with skill, and served with culinary magic, this Mushroom and Bacon Chowder elevates the simplest ingredients to gastronomic greatness. Allow this humble yet sophisticated chowder to usher you into an unforgettable dining experience. 

Let this bowl of deliciousness nourish your body and delight your senses. This is more than a dish; it’s a flavorful journey waiting to be discovered. Experience the magic in the mundane – enjoy Mushroom and Bacon Chowder.

What Is Mushroom And Bacon Chowder?

Mushroom and Bacon Chowder is a rich, creamy soup. It stars smoky bacon and earthy mushrooms melded in a velvety, flavorful broth. It creates a hearty, comforting dish with traditional chowder ingredients like onions, celery, and potatoes. 

The result is an irresistible mix of savory tastes and luscious textures. With each spoonful, you uncover layers of complex, satisfying flavors. It’s not merely a soup, but a gourmet experience, delivering rustic charm with a touch of culinary refinement.

History Of Mushroom And Bacon Chowder

Mushroom and Bacon Chowder’s roots intertwined with the culinary histories of soup and chowder. While it lacks a specific origin story, it exemplifies the universal appeal of using local, accessible ingredients to create comforting, hearty meals. Chowders originated from the fishing villages of England and France. 

They were later adopted by North American settlers, who added their unique touches. Mushrooms and bacon, as earthy and smoky ingredients, have been kitchen staples for centuries. Combining these ingredients in a chowder reflects a marriage of culinary traditions, creating a dish celebrated for its homely comfort and gourmet flair.

Interesting Facts About Mushroom And Bacon Chowder

  • Mushroom and Bacon Chowder marries two distinct flavors – the earthy richness of mushrooms and the smoky saltiness of bacon, crafting a unique taste profile.
  • Chowders like this one typically have a base of milk or cream, providing a rich, creamy texture that’s a gastronomic delight.
  • The combination of mushroom and bacon isn’t just tasty; it’s also nutritious. Mushrooms contain nutrients like vitamins B and D, while bacon contributes protein and essential minerals.
  • The dish is adaptable – you can switch up the types of mushrooms or add other vegetables for a personalized twist.
  • Mushroom and Bacon Chowder uses “umami,” the fifth basic taste, producing a deeply satisfying, savory experience.

What Makes Mushroom And Bacon Chowder Special?

  • Unique Flavor Combination: The blend of earthy mushrooms and smoky bacon creates a unique and savory flavor profile that is hard to resist.
  • Nutrient-rich: Besides its taste, the chowder is packed with essential nutrients. Mushrooms are a great source of vitamins B and D, while bacon provides protein and essential minerals.
  • Versatility: This chowder is versatile and adaptable. You can switch up the types of mushrooms or add different vegetables, allowing for a personalized culinary experience.
  • Comforting and Satisfying: Mushroom and Bacon Chowder is a hearty, comforting dish, perfect for warming up on a cold day.
  • Gourmet Experience: Despite its rustic charm, the dish offers a gourmet experience, turning a simple meal into a refined dining adventure.
  • Umami Factor: The dish makes excellent use of the fifth basic taste, umami, resulting in a deeply satisfying and complex flavor.
Mushroom and Bacon Chowder

Ingredients List

IngredientQuantity
Chicken Broth3 Cups
Heavy Cream1 Cup
Whipped Cream Cheese1 Cup
Cremini Mushrooms1 Cup
Bacon (chopped)8 Slices
Yellow Onion (chopped)1
Garlic (chopped)2 Cloves
Freshly Chopped Thyme1 Teaspoon
SaltTo Taste
Black PepperTo Taste

Ingredient Tips

  • Chicken Broth: Opt for a low-sodium version to control the chowder’s saltiness.
  • Heavy Cream: Ensure it’s fresh and well-refrigerated for the creamiest texture.
  • Whipped Cream Cheese: This lends a smooth, velvety texture to the chowder. You could substitute it with regular cream cheese, but ensure it’s at room temperature to ease blending.
  • Cremini Mushrooms: These impart a rich, earthy flavor. They could be replaced with shiitake or white button mushrooms for a different flavor profile.
  • Bacon: Choose thick-cut bacon for a meatier texture and more robust flavor.
  • Yellow Onion & Garlic: Fresh is best! They provide a vital aromatic base.
  • Freshly Chopped Thyme: The fresh variant offers a more vibrant flavor than dried. If unavailable, substitute with 1/3 the amount of dried thyme.
  • Salt & Black Pepper: Always season to taste. Add gradually – you can always add more but can’t take it out!

Can You Vary The Recipe With Other Ingredients?

  • Keto: The original recipe is already keto-friendly, thanks to its high-fat, low-carb ingredients like cream and bacon.
  • Paleo: Replace the heavy cream with full-fat coconut milk and the cream cheese with a paleo-friendly version.
  • Gluten-Free: This recipe is naturally gluten-free, as it excludes wheat-based ingredients.
  • Whole30: Substitute the heavy cream and cream cheese with Whole30-compliant alternatives like almond milk and cashew cheese. Make sure your bacon is sugar-free and compliant as well.
  • Vegetarian: Omit the bacon and use a smoky, vegetarian alternative. Replace chicken broth with vegetable broth.
  • Vegan: Follow the vegetarian modifications, and substitute dairy with vegan alternatives. Use coconut milk instead of heavy cream and vegan cream cheese. Ensure to check the products for compliance.
ingredients for the chowder

Recipe Directions 

  • Add chicken broth, cremini mushrooms, chopped bacon, yellow onion, garlic, thyme, salt, and black pepper to a slow cooker.
  • Cook on low for 4 hours.
  • Warm the heavy cream separately.
  • Whisk cream cheese into warmed cream until smooth.
  • Stir this mixture into the slow cooker.
  • Serve hot with optional garnishes like chopped chives or extra bacon bits.
cooking the dish

Variations, Add-Ons, And Toppings

Variations

  • Switch up your mushrooms. Try portobello, shiitake, or a wild mushroom mix. For a vegetarian twist, replace bacon with smoked tofu or tempeh. Add vegetables like corn, carrots, or leeks for a nutrient boost.

Add-ons

  • Spice it up with a dash of cayenne pepper or smoked paprika. Fresh herbs like rosemary or basil add an aromatic touch. Include potatoes or wild rice for a more substantial meal.

Toppings

  • Drizzle with truffle oil for a gourmet twist. Sprinkle it with crumbled bacon for extra crunch. Top with shredded cheddar or parmesan for a cheesy finish. A dollop of sour cream or Greek yogurt adds a tangy note. Freshly chopped chives or parsley provide a vibrant pop of color and flavor.

Scaling The Recipe 

Scale Up

  • Scale up the recipe, and increase each ingredient proportionally. For example, suppose you want to double the recipe. In that case, you’d use 6 cups of chicken broth, 2 cups of heavy cream, 2 cups of whipped cream cheese, 2 cups of cremini mushrooms, 16 slices of chopped bacon, 2 chopped yellow onions, 4 cloves of chopped garlic, and 2 teaspoons of freshly chopped thyme. Adjust salt and black pepper to taste.

Scale Down

  • Scale down the recipe, and reduce each ingredient by the same proportion. If you’re halving the recipe, you will use 1.5 cups of chicken broth, 0.5 cups of heavy cream, 0.5 cups of whipped cream cheese, 0.5 cup of cremini mushrooms, 4 slices of chopped bacon, half a chopped yellow onion, 1 clove of chopped garlic, and 0.5 teaspoon of freshly chopped thyme. Again, adjust salt and black pepper to your preference.

What Is Used For Garnishing?

  • Chopped Herbs: Freshly chopped herbs like chives, parsley, or thyme add a vibrant pop of color and fresh flavor.
  • Bacon Bits: Extra crumbled bacon provides an additional crunchy and smoky element.
  • Cheese: A shredded cheddar or parmesan sprinkle adds a delightful cheesy note.
  • Croutons: Homemade or store-bought croutons offer a contrasting crunchy texture.
  • Drizzle of Cream: A swirl of heavy cream or dollop of sour cream gives a rich, tangy finish.
  • Freshly Ground Black Pepper: A sprinkle of freshly ground black pepper adds a touch of spice and visual appeal.
ingredient card

Can I Make Mushroom And Bacon Chowder In A Slow Cooker Or Instant Pot?

Slow Cooker

  • Slow cookers allow the flavors to meld together over time, enhancing the chowder’s taste. 
  • Cook the ingredients on low for about 4 hours. 
  • Add the cream and cream cheese mixture in the last half hour, stirring well to incorporate.

Instant Pot

  • First, use the ‘Sauté’ function for an Instant Pot to cook the bacon, onions, and garlic. 
  • Add the mushrooms and cook until tender. Add the rest of the ingredients (except for the cream and cream cheese) and seal the pot. 
  • Use the ‘Soup’ setting and cook for about 20-30 minutes. 
  • Release the pressure naturally. 
  • Finally, warm the cream, whisk in the cream cheese until smooth, and stir this into the chowder in the Instant Pot.

Can I Use Store Bought Broth, Or Should I Make My Own?

Store-Bought Broth

  • This convenient option can save time, especially when you want to whip up a quick chowder. Look for low-sodium varieties to control the salt content of your soup better.

Homemade Broth

  • Making your broth allows you to customize the flavor exactly to your liking. It’s often richer and more flavorful than store-bought versions and can be a great way to use leftover bones and vegetable scraps.

Can I Use Different Types Of Meat/Fish/Pasta/Vegetables For The Chowder?

  • Meat: You could replace bacon with diced ham, chicken, or turkey for a different flavor. Smoked meats can add a depth of flavor that compliments the earthy mushrooms.
  • Fish: For a seafood twist, try adding clams, crab, or firm white fish like cod or halibut.
  • Pasta: Adding pasta like small shells, elbow macaroni, or tortellini can make the chowder more filling. Cook the pasta separately and add it towards the end to prevent it from becoming too soft.
  • Vegetables: Feel free to add more vegetables to the chowder. Corn, carrots, peas, potatoes, or leeks could be excellent additions. Remember each vegetable’s cooking time and add them accordingly to avoid overcooking.
bacon and mushroom

Success Tips – Tips And Tricks For Making The Recipe 

Making a great chowder requires some understanding of the process and ingredients. Here are some handy tips and tricks:

Prepping Tips

  • Chop Consistently: Cut your ingredients into uniform sizes to ensure even cooking.
  • Mise en Place: Prep and measure out all your ingredients before starting. It helps the cooking process run smoothly.
  • Cookware: If not using a slow cooker or Instant Pot, choose a heavy-bottomed pot to cook your chowder. It will distribute heat evenly and prevent scorching.

Cooking Tips

  • Sauté: Sautéing the vegetables, especially onions, and garlic, before adding them to the chowder can enhance their flavors.
  • Low and Slow: Chowder benefits from a slow, gentle simmer to allow flavors to meld. Rapid boiling can make it curdle or turn grainy.
  • Seasoning: Season in layers as you add ingredients, and adjust seasoning as needed. Remember, you can always add more salt but can’t remove it!
  • Cream Addition: Warm your cream before adding it to the soup to prevent curdling. Add it towards the end of the cooking process, as boiling can cause the cream to separate.
  • Thickness: If your chowder is too thin, you can make a slurry with cornstarch and water and stir it in. If it’s too thick, add some additional broth or cream.
Mushroom and Bacon Chowder

Nutritional Values 

Mushroom and Bacon Chowder offers an impressive array of nutritional benefits. The soup’s star ingredients – mushrooms and bacon – contribute vital nutrients like protein, vitamin D, and B.

What Are The Total Calories In The Chowder?

The total calories in a dish like Mushroom and Bacon Chowder can vary based on the exact ingredients and their quantities used. However, as a general estimate, a serving of this chowder could contain about 400-500 calories.

Dietary Restrictions Of The Mushroom And Bacon Chowder

  • Dairy: The heavy cream and cream cheese used in this recipe make it unsuitable for lactose intolerant or following a dairy-free diet.
  • Gluten: While the base recipe doesn’t contain gluten, commercial broths sometimes do, so those with celiac disease or gluten intolerance must ensure they use a gluten-free broth.
  • Meat: Bacon is a core ingredient, making the chowder unsuitable for vegetarians and vegans.
  • Kosher/Halal: Bacon is also unsuitable for those following kosher or halal dietary laws.
  • Low-Calorie/Low-Fat Diets: With heavy cream, cream cheese, and bacon, the chowder may not fit into low-calorie or low-fat diets.

 Health Benefits Of The Mushroom And Bacon Chowder

  • Protein: Bacon provides a good amount of protein, essential for muscle growth and repair.
  • Nutrient-Rich Vegetables: Mushrooms and onions offer a variety of nutrients. For example, mushrooms are rich in B vitamins and selenium, which support the immune system and prevent damage to cells and tissues.
  • Dairy: Heavy cream and cream cheese contribute to your daily calcium intake, vital for bone health.
  • Garlic: Garlic contains compounds with potent medicinal properties, including benefits to the immune system.
  • Chicken Broth: Broth is hydrating and can be a good source of minerals.

Nutrition Table

nutrition chart

How Can I Make Mushroom And Bacon Chowder Lower In Sodium? 

  • Broth: Use a low-sodium or no-sodium-added chicken broth. This is one of the primary sources of sodium in the recipe.
  • Bacon: Look for low-sodium bacon in the store. Also, consider using less bacon, which contributes to the overall sodium content.
  • Seasoning: Be mindful of the amount of added salt. The bacon and broth will contribute a salty flavor, so you may not need to add much, if any, extra salt.
  • Cheese: Opt for a lower-sodium cheese, or reduce the amount used.
  • Fresh Ingredients: Use more fresh ingredients. Fresh mushrooms, onions, and garlic add flavor without contributing additional sodium.
  • Herbs and Spices: Increase the use of herbs and spices, like thyme, black pepper, or garlic, to add flavor without the extra sodium.

How Can I Make Mushroom And Bacon Chowder Lower In Sugar?

  • Broth: Some commercial broths might contain added sugars. Always check the label and opt for a broth with no added sugars.
  • Dairy: While dairy products like heavy cream and cream cheese have a small amount of natural sugar (lactose), it’s generally insignificant. However, make sure you’re using unsweetened versions.
  • Vegetables: Onions and garlic have small amounts of natural sugars, but these should not be a concern unless you’re on a strict low-sugar diet.
  • Bacon: Some brands of bacon use a curing process that includes sugar. Check labels and choose a brand with no added sugar to minimize sugar content.
Mushroom and Bacon Chowder

How To Serve Mushroom And Bacon Chowder At its Best?

  • Bread: Serve the chowder with a crusty baguette or warm, fluffy dinner rolls. The bread can be used to scoop up and savor every bit of the chowder.
  • Garnish: Sprinkle some fresh chopped parsley, chives, or green onions on top of the chowder just before serving. It not only adds color but also enhances the flavor.
  • Bacon and Mushrooms: Set aside a few cooked bacon bits and sautéed mushrooms before adding them to the soup. Use these as toppings for added texture and a more appealing presentation.
  • Serve Hot: Always serve chowder hot. If you’re making it ahead, gently reheat it on the stove before serving, but be careful not to let it boil to avoid curdling the cream.
  • Bowl Selection: Choose a deep bowl to serve your chowder. The depth keeps the chowder warm and allows for easy eating.
  • Accompaniments: A fresh, light salad could be a great side to balance the rich creaminess of the chowder.

Perfect Side Dishes To Complement Mushroom And Bacon Chowder

  • Crusty Bread or Rolls: Simple, crusty bread or warm dinner rolls are perfect for dipping into the chowder and soaking up all its flavors.
  • Fresh Green Salad: A light, fresh salad with a vinaigrette dressing can balance the rich creaminess of the chowder. You could include mixed greens, cherry tomatoes, cucumber, and crunchy croutons.
  • Grilled or Roasted Veggies: Seasonal vegetables, grilled or roasted, can add color and variety to the meal. Consider options like asparagus, bell peppers, zucchini, or eggplant.
  • Cheese Board: If you’re serving the chowder as a starter, a cheese board with a selection of cheeses, fruit, and crackers can make a great follow-up dish.
  • Cornbread: A slice of warm, slightly sweet cornbread can complement the savory chowder nicely.
  • Quinoa or Rice Pilaf: If you want to make the meal more filling, a side of quinoa or rice pilaf can work well with the chowder.
Mushroom and Bacon Chowder

How Long Can We Store The Chowder?

Mushroom and Bacon Chowder can be stored in the refrigerator for 3-4 days. Here are some steps to keep it safe:

  • Cool Down: Allow the chowder to cool completely before storing. Please do not leave it at room temperature for more than two hours, as it can lead to bacteria growth.
  • Container: Transfer the chowder to an airtight container. A clear container helps identify the contents and quickly remember how old it is.
  • Refrigeration: Store the container in the refrigerator. Keep it at or below 40°F (4°C).
  • Reheat: When ready to eat, reheat the chowder over medium heat on the stove until it’s hot (at least 165°F or 74°C).

Can I Make The Chowder In Advance?

Yes, you can make Mushroom and Bacon Chowder in advance! This soup benefits from being made ahead, as the flavors have more time to meld together.

Once the chowder is cooked, allow it to cool, then transfer to an airtight container and refrigerate. When you’re ready to serve, reheat the chowder gently on the stove. Avoid boiling, as this could cause the dairy to separate.

What Can We Do With Leftovers?

  • Pasta Sauce: Reduce the chowder on the stove until it thickens, and use it as a rich, creamy sauce for pasta.
  • Pot Pie Filling: Use the chowder as a base for a pot pie. Fill a pie crust with the chowder, top with another crust, and bake until golden.
  • Baked Potato Topping: Ladle warm chowder over a baked potato. Add some shredded cheese and green onions for a decadent treat.
  • Risotto: Incorporate the chowder into a basic risotto recipe to give it a creamy, umami flavor.
  • Chowder Bread Bowls: Hollow a bread loaf and fill it with warm chowder. The bread will absorb the soup, making for a delicious, hearty meal.
Mushroom and Bacon Chowder

Special Tools/Equipment Needed 

  • Large Pot: A good-sized pot or Dutch oven is necessary for sautéing the ingredients and simmering the chowder.
  • Sharp Knife: A sharp knife is vital for chopping mushrooms, bacon, onion, and garlic.
  • Cutting Board: A sturdy cutting board is needed to aid in chopping your ingredients.
  • Whisk: This tool will help to combine the heavy cream and cream cheese smoothly.
  • Ladle: For serving the chowder from the pot to the bowls.
  • Slow Cooker/Instant Pot: If you plan to make this chowder in a slow cooker or Instant Pot, you’ll need one of these appliances.

Frequently Asked Questions 

Can I Make Mushroom And Bacon Chowder Dairy-Free?

Indeed, modifications can be made to accommodate dairy-free needs. Substitute heavy cream with full-fat coconut milk and use a dairy-free cream cheese alternative. Be aware that these substitutions may slightly alter the taste and consistency of the chowder.

How Do I Enhance The Depth Of Flavor In The Chowder?

Roasting the mushrooms before adding them to the chowder can elevate their umami flavor, enhancing the overall taste. Additionally, consider using homemade broth, which often has a richer flavor than store-bought.

The Chowder Appears Too Thin, What Can I Do?

If your chowder is too thin, create a slurry by mixing a tablespoon of cornstarch with two tablespoons of the soup liquid. Add this mixture to the pot, stir well, and simmer for a few minutes until the chowder thickens.

How Do I Ensure That The Cream Doesn’t Curdle When Added To The Chowder?

Warm the cream slightly before adding it to the pot to prevent curdling. Furthermore, add the cream slowly while stirring the chowder. This method, known as tempering, helps avoid the drastic temperature difference that can lead to curdling.

Can I Substitute Cremini Mushrooms With Other Varieties?

You can use other varieties like white buttons, portobello, or shiitake mushrooms. Each variety will impart a different flavor and texture to the chowder, so feel free to experiment with what you have on hand or prefer.

Delicious Mushroom And Bacon Chowder - Satisfying Appetite

Delicious Mushroom And Bacon Chowder – Satisfying Appetite

5 from 4 votes
Recipe by Hanna Barnes Course: Soup Recipes
Servings

4

servings
Prep time

10

minutes
Cooking time

4

hours 
Calories

400-500

kcal

Experience the comforting embrace of Mushroom and Bacon Chowder, a hearty blend of earthy cremini mushrooms, smoky bacon, and a rich, creamy broth. This sumptuous soup is a culinary delight, offering a symphony of flavors that soothe the soul and satisfy the appetite.

Ingredients

  • 3 Cups 3 Chicken Broth

  • 1 Cup 1 Heavy Cream

  • 1 Cup 1 Whipped Cream Cheese

  • 1 Cup 1 Cremini Mushrooms

  • 8 Slices 8 Bacon (chopped)

  • 1 1 Yellow Onion (chopped)

  • 2 Cloves 2 Garlic (chopped)

  • 1 Teaspoon 1 Freshly Chopped Thyme

  • Salt (To Taste)

  • Black Pepper (To Taste)

Step-By-Step Directions

  • Preparation Steps
  • Gather all your ingredients.
  • Clean and chop the cremini mushrooms.
  • Chop the bacon, yellow onion, and garlic.
  • Prepare your slow cooker.
  • Cooking
  • Combine the chicken broth, cremini mushrooms, chopped bacon, yellow onion, garlic, thyme, salt, and black pepper in the slow cooker.
  • Stir well to ensure everything is well mixed.
  • Cover the slow cooker and set it to low.
  • Allow the ingredients to cook for 4 hours.
  • Blending
  • When the slow cooker is almost done, warm the heavy cream in a small saucepan on low heat.
  • Once warm, whisk in the cream cheese. Keep whisking until the mixture is smooth and creamy.
  • Final Touches
  • Pour the cream mixture into the slow cooker.
  • Stir well to combine everything.
  • Serving
  • Ladle the hot chowder into serving bowls.
  • Add optional garnishes like chopped chives or extra bacon bits if you wish.

Recipe Video

Notes

  • Soup Consistency: Feel free to adjust the chowder’s thickness to your preference. You can thin it with more broth or thicken it with a cornstarch slurry.
  • Mushroom Variety: Experiment with different types of mushrooms for varying flavors and textures. Each type lends its unique character to the chowder.
  • Herb Selection: While thyme is the recommended herb, you could also use others, like rosemary or sage, for a different flavor profile.
  • Dairy Products: Full-fat dairy is recommended for a rich and creamy chowder. However, if you’re watching your calorie intake, consider low-fat versions.
  • Make it Vegetarian: For a vegetarian variant, omit the bacon and use vegetable broth instead of chicken broth.

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