Thick smoked haddock chowder

Enjoy a little luxury with this smoked haddock chowder that uses ingredients straight from your freezer and store cupboard – it’s ready in under 30 minutes, too!


  • 25g/1oz butter
  • 1 tbsp vegetable or sunflower oil
  • 100g/3½oz frozen chopped onion (or 1 medium onion, chopped)
  • 20g/¾oz plain flour
  • 400ml/14fl oz milk
  • 400ml/14fl oz just-boiled water
  • 2 medium potatoes (approximately 200g/7oz each), peeled, cut into roughly 2cm/¾in cubes
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • 100g/3½oz frozen sweetcorn kernels
  • 125g/4½oz frozen sliced leeks (or 1 medium leek, trimmed and finely sliced)
  • 4 x 90g/3¼oz frozen smoked haddock fillets
  • 4 large free-range eggs (optional)
  • handful roughly chopped fresh flatleaf parsley leaves, to garnish (optional)


  1. Heat the butter and oil in a large, non-stick frying pan over a medium heat. Add the onion and fry for 3 minutes, stirring regularly, until completely softened but not coloured. Sprinkle over the flour and stir the onions well.

  2. In a measuring jug, mix the milk and water. Gradually add 700ml/1¼ pints of the liquid to the onions, stirring after each addition.

  3. Add the potatoes and salt to the pan and season generously with freshly ground black pepper. Bring the mixture to the boil, then reduce the heat until the mixture is simmering. Simmer, stirring regularly, for 10-12 minutes, or until the potatoes are almost tender. Stir in the sweetcorn and leeks and return the mixture to a gentle simmer.

  4. Place the smoked haddock fillets on top of the chowder and continue to simmer for 10-15 minutes, or until the fish has thawed and the flesh flakes easily when prodded with a knife. (This will depend on the thickness of each fillet.) Turn the fish twice as the fillets simmer, without allowing them to break up if possible.

  5. Carefully remove the cooked smoked haddock fillets from the chowder using a slotted spoon and set aside in a warm place. (Remove the skin at this point if you prefer.) Stir the remaining milk and water into the pan and return to a simmer, stirring.

  6. If using the eggs, fill a wide saucepan half full with boiling water. Reduce the heat until the water is barely simmering. Carefully crack the eggs into the water one at a time, spacing them well apart. Poach very gently for 3-4 minutes, or until the whites have set but the yolks remain runny. Remove the poached eggs from the pan using a slotted spoon

  7. To serve, spoon the chowder into warm bowls, seasoning again with salt and pepper, if necessary. Top each serving with one of the haddock fillets and a poached egg, if using. Garnish with parsley, if using. Serve with slices of crusty bread.

Recipe Tips

Tip 1: This chowder is not suitable for freezing.

Tip 2: If you don’t have a wide-based pan, allow the fish to partly thaw, then cut in half and add to the pan. Reduce the cooking time slightly.

The nutritional information was calculated using semi-skimmed milk.

In March 2022 this recipe was costed at an average of £6.14 when checking prices at four UK supermarkets.

Comments (0)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.