Butternut Squash Chowder

To feel safe and warm on a cold wet night, all you really need is soup.~ Laurie Colwin

A flavorful chowder containing bacon, squash and kale.

It has been a cold rainy day here.  We may get two to four inches of snow tonight.  So, what could be better than soup made in the new slow cooker that needs to be christened?

As I have said before, I am a rabid collector of cookbooks.  My newest addition is Slow Cooker Revolution by the editors of  America’s Test Kitchen.  They spend hundreds of hours testing and retesting recipes; and since it has been years since I used a slow cooker, I decided to make a recipe that was sure to be good.

I had butternut squash on hand so, with the purchase of some Kale and bacon (who doesn’t love bacon), I could make Butternut Squash Chowder.

Butternut Squash Chowder


Chowder ingredients

My beloved husband was ready to take photographs so I got started. Since the new crock pot has an insert that can be used directly on the stove top, I diced my uncured bacon and dropped it in the pot heated over medium high heat.  As an aside, I always use uncured bacon since I try to reduce the amount of nitrates in my diet.  An informative article about the difference between cured and uncured bacons can be found at Livestrong.


Diced bacon

After cooking about 5 minutes, add the diced onion, garlic, thyme and nutmeg. Cook this mixture for 8 minutes.  Then, stir in flour and scrape up the brown bits on the bottom of the pot.  Stir in 2 cups of the chicken stock and mix together.  Note:  if you are browning is a separate pan, this is the point where you add the  mixture to your slow cooker.

Removing thyme from the sem

Sauteed vegetables

Stir in the remaining chicken stock, vegetable stock, half of the squash and the bay leaves.

In a separate bowl, toss the remaining diced squash with oil, salt and pepper.  Wrap in an aluminum foil packet.  Lay this packet on top of the ingredients. Cover and cook for 4 to 6 hours on low.

Separately wrapped squash in crockpot

After 4 to 6 hours, remove the foil packet.  Discard the bay leaves and stir in the kale.  Cook on high, until the kale is tender, 20 to 30 minutes.

Open the foil packet and stir the squash and juices into the soup in the crock pot.  Combine the cream, sage and brown sugar and add to the soup.  Heat through for about 5 minutes.

Stirring in cream

Serve with additional grated nutmeg, parmesan cheese and, my addition, a drizzle of pumpkin seed oil or olive oil.

Butternut Squash Chowder

Butternut Squash Chowder Recipe

Removing thyme from the sem

By Patricia Rio Published: February 26, 2013

  • Butternut Squash Chowder
    4 votes, 4.00 avg. rating (83% score)
  • Yield: 6-8 Servings
  • Prep: 60 mins
  • Cook: 5 hrs 0 min
  • Ready In: 6 hrs 0 min

From Slow Cooker Revolution by America's Test Kitchen. A rustic chowder with bacon, squash and kale



  1. Cook bacon in a skillet over medium high heat until crisp. Stir in onion, garlic, thyme and nutmeg. Cook until onion is slightly soft about 8 minutes. Stir in flour and cook for 1 minutes to remove the raw flour taste. Whisk in 2 cups of chicken stock scrapping up the brown bits from the bottom of the pot. Transfer this mixture to your slow cooker.
  2. Stir in the remaining 2 cups of chicken stock, vegetable broth, half of the diced squash, and bay leaves into the slow cooker. Mix the remaining diced butternut squash with oil and salt and pepper to taste. Wrap this mixture in a foil packet and lay on top of the soup in the slow cooker. Cover and cook for 4 to 6 hours on low.
  3. Remove the foil packet and discard the bay leaves. Stir in the kale, cover and cook on high for 20 to 30 minutes.
  4. Open the foil packet and stir the squash and accumulated juices into the soup mixture. Mix together the cream, sage and brown sugar. Add to the soup and heat through for 5 minutes.
  5. Serve with additional nutmeg to taste and parmesan cheese. I added a drizzle of pumpkin seed oil or olive oil,

Patricia Rio
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