Corn chowder gets a delicious flavor twist in this Instant Pot Southwest Chicken Corn Chowder. We're keeping the creamy, sweet corn chowder taste we all love and kickin' it up with southwest spices, beans, and a splash of lime, then topping it with all the extras we can possibly fit — this is a good one!
Does it make you crazy when people mess with a classic?
I'm more of a “I've eaten the classic more times than I count, so it's time to mix things up” kind of person.
We've enjoyed this TIDBITS favorite Chicken and Corn Chowder with Sweet Potatoes recipe more times than I can count, and while I still adore it with my whole heart (and have already made it twice this season), I thought, what the heck, let's see what else corn chowder can look like.
And oh my goodness, this might be my favorite soup of the entire month.
It's got the classic base of a regular corn chowder with a few extra unexpected veggies and spices that make it belly-warmingly delightful.
And don't even get me started on the toppings. If I can add corn chips to my soup, I'm already on board with whatever is goin' down. Trust me, you are going to want to make this one ASAP!
WHY YOU WILL LOVE INSTANT POT SOUTHWEST CHICKEN CORN CHOWDER
- EAT THE RAINBOW: We've got carrots, red bell peppers, jalapenos, corn, and more. If that ain't a bomb bowl of vitamins, I don't know what is!
- EASY CHOWDER: A quick sauté of mirepoix, then you're free to dump in the rest of the ingredients and hit start.
- THICK AND CREAMY WITHOUT THE CREAM: The only thing we're using to thicken this soup is a scoop of sour cream and veggies to create an incredibly creamy soup.
- SPICES: Loads of flavor, thanks to our handy spice cabinet. Through the power of pressure, this flavor gets infused into the chicken and broth, making sure we don't have a boring, bland soup.
- TOPPINGS: Anything you pile onto a chili works perfectly here too. Corn chips, cheese, avocado, etc., cuz I HEART TOPPINGS!
HOW TO MAKE CORN CHOWDER IN THE PRESSURE COOKER
- Give the mirepoix a quick sauté
- Add the spices, chicken, and broth and start the pressure cooker
- Set the chicken aside and blend a few scoops of soup
- Stir back into the pot
- Stir in the milk, lime juice, and beans
- Stir in the shredded chicken
SEE RECIPE CARD BELOW FOR DETAILED COOKING INSTRUCTIONS
TIPS FOR SUCCESS
- THE MIREPOIX: You could skip the sautéing of the veggies, but it really does give a little extra depth of flavor. To save time, grocery stores often sell pre-chopped mirepoix ingredients.
- CHICKEN THOUGHTS: I really am turning into a huge chicken tenderloin fan. They are so much more predictable than chicken breasts in delivering a tender, juicy result. However, I've also experimented with chicken breast cut into tenderloin shaped strips or pounded breasts thin, and both turned out great.
- KICK UP THE SPICE: This is a spice-y not spicy soup, meaning there's a lot of spice flavor without much heat. If you like spicy food like I do, leave the jalapeno seeds in the soup and add some cayenne pepper. Or you can add a few splashes of your favorite hot sauce to individual bowls.
- THE CORN: I've made this with corn on the cob from my backyard (amazing!) as well as canned and both taste delicious. You can use frozen corn as well.
HOW TO STORE, REHEAT, AND FREEZE
- STORE: Cool leftovers and store in a sealed container for up to 4 days.
- REHEAT: Leftovers can be reheated in the microwave or on the stovetop.
- FREEZE: Place cooled leftovers in a freezer safe bag or container and freeze for up to 3 months. When ready to eat, let thaw overnight in the fridge then reheat as directed above.
MAKE AHEAD TIPS
Chop up the onion, garlic, jalapeno, and red bell pepper up to 3 days in advance. If using fresh corn, you can cut it from the cob as well.
Shred cheese for topping in advance.
WHAT TO SERVE WITH CHICKEN CORN CHOWDER
This soup is all about the toppings for me, so these become my “side dish.”
- CRUNCHY: Tortilla chips of corn chips are my go-to.
- FRESH: Diced green onions, minced cilantro, avocado or guacamole, etc.
- CREAMY: Don't forget a swirl of sour cream or yogurt to bring it all home!
- VEGETARIAN CORN CHOWDER: Leave out the chicken and swap the chicken broth for vegetable broth.
- CORN CHOWDER WITH SWEET POTATO: Taking a cue from my old favorite, swap the Yukon potato for sweet potato (this is really good!)
- ELOTE CORN CHOWDER: Make it feel like my favorite Mexican Corn Salad by topping it with a sprinkle of chili powder, lime juice, and cotija cheese.
Okay, now let me ask you again:
Are you okay with the classics being taken for a spin? Can we “mess with a good thing”?
I think one bite of this soup will have us on the same page, because if it can win over my mama, I know it will work for anyone.
Can't wait for you to try this one out!
MORE FAVORITE INSTANT POT SOUP RECIPES
- Veggie Lover's Tomato Soup
- Creamy Potato Soup
- Butternut Squash Soup with a Thai Twist
- Healthy Zuppa Toscana Soup
TOOLS/INGREDIENTS USED TO MAKE INSTANT POT SOUTHWEST CHICKEN CORN CHOWDER
This recipe was adapted from this incredible soup on Ambitious Kitchen. I swapped out a few ingredients, bumped up the spices, and made it Instant Pot friendly.Print
Instant Pot Southwest Chicken Corn Chowder
Chicken Corn Chowder with a Southwest twist. Enjoy it with a crush of tortilla chips and a dollop of sour cream.
- Prep Time: 20 minutes
- Cook Time: 5 minutes
- Total Time: 45 minutes
- Yield: 6 servings 1x
- Category: Soup
- Method: Pressure Cooker
- Cuisine: American
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 medium onion (sweet or yellow), diced
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 jalapeno, seeded and diced (leave seeds if you want it spicy)
- 1 red bell pepper, diced
- 2 medium Yukon potatoes, peeled and diced
- 5 cups corn (fresh, frozen, or canned)
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 ½ teaspoons cumin
- 1 ½ teaspoon ground coriander
- 1 teaspoon chili powder
- ½ teaspoon ground turmeric
- ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- ½ teaspoon oregano
- ½ teaspoon black pepper
- ¼ – ½ teaspoon cayenne (optional to make it spicy)
- 1 pound boneless skinless chicken tenderloins
- 2 cups low sodium chicken broth
- ⅓ cup sour cream
- 1 cup milk (I use 1% cows milk. I suspect almond and coconut milk will also work)
- Juice of 1 lime
- 1 (15 ounce) can white beans (navy or cannellini), rinsed and drained
- Shredded cheddar or pepper jack cheese, diced green onions, minced cilantro, diced avocado, crushed tortilla or corn chips, sour cream or yogurt
- Select sauté on the pressure cooker and add oil. When hot, add onions, garlic, jalapeno, red bell pepper, potatoes, and corn. Sauté for 3-4 minutes, just until the vegetables start to soften.
- Add salt and spices; stir to distribute.
- Add chicken tenderloins and nestle them down into the veggies and spices (this will help flavor the chicken as it cooks). Add chicken broth.
- Secure the lid and turn pressure release knob to a sealed position. Cook at high pressure for 5 minutes.
- When cooking is complete, let the pressure release naturally for 5-10 minutes, then release any remaining pressure.
- Remove chicken to a plate.
- Scoop 3-4 ladles of soup into a blender (more or less depending on how chunky/smooth you want the soup). Add sour cream to the blender and blend until smooth. Note: the soup will be very hot, so start on low, then gradually increase the blender to high to prevent splatters. I like to put a hand towel over the lid, just in case. Stir pureed soup back into the pot.
- Add milk, lime juice, and beans; stir.
- Shred or chop chicken into bite-size pieces; stir into soup.
- Taste and season with extra salt if needed (I typically add another teaspoon).
- Serve hot with a garnish of cheese, green onions, cilantro, avocado, crushed chips, and a dollop of sour cream or yogurt.
- If you’re in a hurry, you can skip sautéing the veggies in the first step. This adds a bit of a deeper flavor to the soup, but I find it delicious both ways.
- Use chicken tenderloins if possible. They cook up so well in this soup. If you can’t find them, use chicken breast and cut them into tenderloin-sized strips.
- As written, the soup is not spicy. If you want it spicy, leave in the jalapeno seeds and add cayenne pepper. A few splashes of hot sauce to individual bowls is also really good.
Keywords: Instant Pot Corn Chowder, Healthy Corn Chowder, Healthy Soup
Welcome! I’m Marci, wife to my motorcycle dream man and mother of 3. I have a passion for creating and cooking delicious masterpieces in my kitchen and am ecstatic to share my discoveries on TIDBITS! I like my food tasty, wholesome, memorable, and always, ALWAYS followed by dark, salty chocolate.