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Spicy Corn Chowder

This spicy corn chowder recipe with fresh corn, bacon, potatoes, and jalapenos includes a vegetarian option. It keeps well in the refrigerator, and leftovers are delicious the next day!

Make it Spicy

Jalapenos help make this a spicy chowder, giving it just the right touch of heat to make it different from many other corn chowder recipes. You can also add fewer jalapenos if you prefer a little less heat.

Spicy Corn Chowder

Use Fresh Corn in Spicy Corn Chowder

Use fresh, sweet corn to take advantage of the plentiful supply of summer corn. This chowder is most flavorful when you use fresh corn, but it can be made with frozen corn. Just be sure to cook it long enough to thaw the corn fully. Also, use sweet frozen corn for the best flavor.

Spicy Corn Chowder

Steps to Make Spicy Corn Chowder

Follow these easy steps to make corn chowder.

Serve with Crispy Bacon and Fresh Jalapenos

Sprinkle crispy bacon and minced fresh jalapenos on top of the chowder to garnish it. If fresh jalapenos are too spicy, substitute chopped green onions or fresh parsley.

Make Vegetarian Spicy Corn Chowder

It is easy to make vegetarian chowder without the bacon. Just substitute olive oil in place of bacon grease. The recipe notes list how much to use. This is a delicious chowder with or without bacon!

Spicy Corn Chowder

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Spicy Corn Chowder

Spicy Corn Chowder

A spicy chowder with fresh corn, bacon, and jalapenos. The recipe includes a vegetarian option.
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 35 minutes
Course Soup
Cuisine American
Servings 6


  • 2 large white or yellow potatoes, cubed
  • 4 slices bacon, chopped
  • 2 stalks celery, chopped
  • 1 cup onions, chopped
  • 2 large jalapenos, minced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 4 cups fresh corn,
  • teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 pinch cayenne powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper
  • 2 tablespoon butter
  • 5 cups half and half (half whole milk and half cream)
  • ½ cup instant mashed potatoes
  • extra jalapeno peppers, minced for garnish (optional)


  • Peel the potatoes and add them to cool salted water. Bring to a boil and cook 15-20 minutes or until tender. Drain, saving 1 1/2 cups of potato water.
  • Cook the bacon in a large skillet or Dutch oven until crispy. Set aside the bacon, leaving the drippings in the pan.
  • Add the celery and cook until almost tender. Add the onions and jalapenos and saute until the onions are transluscent. Add the garlic and corn and cook until the corn is tender. Stir in the onion powder, cayenne, salt, black pepper, and butter. Add the half and half and bring to a low simmer.
  • Add the cooked potatoes and sprinkle in the mashed potatoes. Stir to mix. Remove from the heat and add a lid. Let sit for 10 minutes to let the potatoes dissolve. If the chowder gets too thick, add the saved potato water, 1/2 cup at a time, until it is the desired consistency. If too thin, add extra instant potatoes, 1 tablespoon at a time and let sit for 5 minutes between each tablespoon to thicken.
  • Serve hot and refrigerate leftovers. Garnish with crispy bacon and fresh jalapeno peppers. Salt and pepper to taste.


Make a Vegetarian Chowder

Make vegetarian corn chowder by omitting the bacon and replacing its grease with 3 tablespoons of olive oil.
Keyword Corn Chowder, Soup, Soup Recipe, Vegetable Chowder
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