How to Make that Salmon Chowder Recipe from The Food Network

If you have spent any time at all watching The Food Network, there are a few recipes that you are probably already familiar with. For us, the salmon chowder recipe is certainly at the top of the list. We first saw the chowder during an episode of Throwdown with Bobby Flay. Before Flay got his hands on the recipe, it was devised by Chester ‘Chet’ Gerl and Dan Bugge.

Gerl and Bugge made a name for themselves in the Pacific Northwest, getting customers in the region hooked after purchasing Matt’s In The Market. From there, they set about the task of redefining the menu and providing a more gourmet flair. It was not long before they got the locals hooked on this salmon chowder.

Flay came calling and he even attempted to put his own spin on the dish, as is his way. We enjoyed watching Flay whip up his own version and it inspired us to make our own. Without further ado, let’s take a closer look at how to make the famous salmon chowder recipe from the Food Network. Rest assured, it is a very, very easy dish to prepare.

You do not need to be an expert chef to handle this one, that is for sure. To learn more, please be sure to read on…

Prep Time and Difficulty

Before we proceed, it is important to mention just how easy it is for the at home chef to prepare their own batch of this delicious chowder. Yes, you can now dine on that salmon chowder recipe from the Food Network and it will not take much time or effort at all. The process is considered to be very simple and you will be able to complete the recipe within an hour and 35 minutes.

The prep process takes all of 20 minutes and the cooking process will take an hour and 15 minutes. If you follow the recipe that we are about to provide, the final result should serve six adults with ease. Now, let’s take a closer look at all of the ingredients that we are going to need when it is time to get started.


Shell Stock

  • Canola oil (1 tablespoon)
  • Prawn shells (20)
  • Onion (1/2, diced)
  • Fresh thyme (1/4 bunch)
  • Bay leaves (at least 2)
  • Black peppercorns (1 tablespoon)
  • Lemon (1, peeled)
  • Roma tomato (1, diced and seeded)
  • White wine (1/2 cup)
  • Water (4 1/2 cups)


  • Canola oil (2 tablespoons)
  • Large sweet onions (2, cut up into large dice)
  • Bacon (1/2 pound, cooked and sliced into 1/4 inch cubes)
  • Stalk celery (1/2, cut up into large dice)
  • Yukon gold potatoes (4, cut up into large dice)
  • Fresh thyme (1 teaspoon, minced)
  • Heavy cream (1 cup)
  • Wild king salmon (2 pounds, sliced into 3/4 inch cubes)
  • Black pepper and salt (freshly ground, season to taste)
  • Lemon juice (2 tablespoons)
  • Fresh tarragon (1 teaspoon, minced)
  • Fresh chives (1 teaspoon, minced)

Cooking Directions

Shell Stock

Step 1:

Grab a large saucepan and set the stove on low heat before you get started. From there, you will be adding the oil and sweating the prawn shells. Use the onion, thyme, bay leaves, peppercorns, lemon, and tomato to sweat the prawn shells. The entirety of the process should take anywhere between 2 to 3 minutes. From there, add the water and the white wine. Give the mixture a chance to simmer for 45 minutes. Once this step is complete, you can strain it and keep it in the reserves for when the chowder is finished.


Step 1:

Repeat the first step from the shell stock, grabbing a large saucepan and setting the stove on low heat. The oil is added and this is when you will sweat the onions. Use the bacon and celery to sweat them and wait 5 to 6 minutes before moving onto the final steps. Grab the potatoes and sweat the onions for another 5 minutes. At this time, the thyme, shell stock, and cream should be added. Bring the mixture to a simmer for at least 15 to 20 minutes. Add the salmon now. Use the lemon juice, salt and pepper for seasoning purposes. Once it is time to serve, garnish with chives and tarragon.

Additional Tips and Pointers For Salmon Chowder

When it comes time to make any form of seafood chowder, there are no shortage of tips and pointers that need to be followed. This salmon chowder recipe from the Food Network is certainly no different. There are some very simple decisions that can be made that will significantly impact the quality of the dish for the better.

Add Plenty of Fish

This should be the most obvious tip of all but there are lots of at home chefs out there who do not realize the importance of adding plenty of fish to the mix. After all, you are looking to enjoy some salmon chowder. In the words of one wise fisherman, any decent chowder should contain at least two pounds of fish. The last thing that we want is a chowder that tastes like a fish merely swam through. While some may not be able to strictly adhere to this idea, it is something that you are surely going to want to bear in mind.

Make Sure Your Bacon Is Flavorful

The best salmon chowder will always have the most flavorful start possible. With this particular recipe, it all starts with the bacon that you are preparing. The bacon should be nice and crispy, for starters. This allows for the meat to be more seamlessly integrated into the chowder. Otherwise, it becomes little more than a garnish.

Fresh Thyme Is Crucial

The thyme that use when crafting this recipe is going to play a much bigger role in the final result than you may have realized. That’s why we are here to discuss the everlasting importance of fresh thyme when preparing your salmon chowder. For best results, the stems can be tied together with twine and looped around the chowder pot during the cooking process. The heat causes the leaves to fall right off, allowing you to pull the string and remove the stems with ease.

So Are The Finishing Touches!

Don’t make the mistake of swapping out the heavy cream for milk. When this heavy cream is placed in the chowder towards the end of your cooking process, it is the perfect finishing touch, even if you do not notice that it is there. As for potential sides, pasta salad, country bread, honey glazed carrots, garlic potato wedges and roasted Parmesan potatoes are all great options.

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