This sweet potato chowder is creamy comfort in a bowl! Packed with sweet potatoes and protein-rich chickpeas, this is a nourishing and balanced meal that will warm you up on a chilly evening.
When the days become colder, we tend to drift towards meals that warm both the heart and the belly.
This sweet potato chowder is a comforting blend of earthy sweet potatoes, aromatic spices, and lush coconut cream, perfect for those chilly evenings when all you want is something wholesome and satisfying.
I've taken the humble sweet potato and transformed it into a creamy, nourishing soup that's as easy to make as it is delicious.
The addition of Tuscan kale adds a beautiful pop of green and a slight bitterness that perfectly balances the sweetness of the potatoes.
And let’s not forget the chickpeas, which add a lovely texture and make this chowder a complete meal in itself.
What I love most about this recipe is its versatility. Feel free to play around with the spices or add your favorite protein. It's a fantastic way to use up any seasonal veggies you have on hand.
Why you’ll love this sweet potato chowder
- Rich and complex flavors — the mix of sweet, savory and spicy is balanced and super tasty
- Nutrient-rich with s great blend of vitamins, fiber, and protein
- Just perfect for chilly evenings!
Ingredients and substitutions
Olive oil — Use a light olive oil sautéing the onions and carrots, as it has a mild flavor that won't overpower the other ingredients.
Onion — A yellow diced onion will provide a sweet and aromatic base.
Carrots — These add sweetness and a lovely color to your chowder. Sautéing them with onions helps to soften them and bring out their natural sugars.
Aromatics — I used a mix of garlic, fresh sage, red chili flakes and dried oregano to add depth of flavor to this chowder. Sage pairs exceptionally well with sweet potatoes, so I recommend not skipping it. Add the sage along with the garlic so it can release its essential oils.
Sweet potatoes — They are the star of the dish, adding a creamy texture and sweet, earthy flavor. I used white sweet potatoes here, but the regular kind works just as well.
Chickpeas — The chickpeas add a lovely texture contrast and are a great source of protein, making the chowder more filling.
Vegetable stock — Opt for a low-sodium version to control the salt level of your dish. Homemade stock is fantastic if you have it.
Coconut cream — This will give your chowder a creamy consistency and a slightly tropical flavor, which pairs beautifully with sweet potatoes.
Tuscan black kale (Cavolo nero) — This kale variety is robust and slightly bitter, providing a nice balance to the sweetness of the chowder. If you’re not a fan, you can use baby spinach instead.
How to make vegan sweet potato chowder
In a large pot, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the diced onion and carrots and cook them for 5-6 minutes until they're soft and the onions are translucent.
Add the cubed sweet potatoes to the pot, followed by the chickpeas. Stir everything together to combine.
Pour in the vegetable stock and bring the mixture to a boil. Once boiling, reduce the heat to a simmer and let it cook until the sweet potatoes are tender, about 15-20 minutes.
Stir in the coconut cream and chopped Tuscan black kale. Continue to cook for another 5 minutes until the kale is wilted and everything is heated through.
Adjust the seasoning with salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste.
Serve the sweet potato chowder hot, paired with a crusty piece of bread for dipping if you like.
Leftovers and storage
- Cool the chowder completely and transfer it to an airtight container. Refrigerate for up to 3-4 days.
- Gently reheat the chowder on the stove over medium-low heat, stirring occasionally to prevent sticking. If it's too thick, add a little water or vegetable stock.
- This sweet potato chowder freezes well. Allow it to cool completely, then pour it into freezer-safe bags or containers.
Recipe notes and tips
- After the sweet potatoes are tender, use an immersion blender to partially blend the soup in the pot. This creates a creamy texture while leaving some chunks for a heartier feel. Alternatively, you can transfer a portion of the soup to a blender, blend until smooth, and then return it to the pot.
- Sprinkle some toasted sunflower seeds on the sweet potato chowder right before serving for extra crunchiness.
- I made this chowder with white-fleshed sweet potatoes, which are less sweet and more starchy compared to their orange counterparts, and they have a more crumbly texture when cooked.
- This recipe can be adapted for a slow cooker, adding all ingredients except kale and coconut cream initially and cooking on low for 6-8 hours.
If you liked this sweet potato chowder recipe, you might also like some of my other easy vegan recipes with sweet potatoes:
- Brown Lentil Sweet Potato Curry
- Sweet Potato Red Lentil Dahl
- Curried Sweet Potato Soup
- Satay Sweet Potato Curry
- Sweet Potato and Chickpea Curry