I call this my “summer” dairy-free corn soup, because it has such light and fresh flavors. It really lets seasonal produce and herbs shine. The recipe was initially inspired by a Chicken Corn Chowder recipe from Eating Well magazine. I ended up going rogue, and used simpler plant-based ingredients that everyone can enjoy. And I relied on one of my favorite ingredients, good-quality coconut milk, for just a touch of creaminess. It also lends a slight sultry Thai influence, which perfectly complements a sprinkle of basil.
Dairy-Free Corn Soup to Highlight Fresh Summer Corn
I originally shared this dairy-free corn soup recipe about seven years ago, to highlight the culinary coconut milk by So Delicious. That product has since been discontinued, so I’m giving this post a big update! I’ve also added answers to some recipe FAQs below.
Do I Need to Peel the Potatoes?
I like to use creamy, thin-skinned potatoes, like Yukon gold or regular yellow potatoes. You don’t need to peel them. However, if you are using Russet potatoes, I would peel them first.
Do I Put the Whole Corn Ears in the Soup?
You do, but once all of the husk and corn is removed. You can either steam the corn or roast it in the husk. Either way, once the husk is removed and the corn is cooked and cooled, cut the corn kernels away from the cobs and set it aside. Put those stripped down cobs in your soup. The residual “milk” from the corn kernel bases infuses flavor and a light creaminess into the soup. You will add the corn kernels right after you remove the cobs from the soup.
Can You Taste the Coconut?
Sometimes I use coconut milk in recipes purely for its creaminess factor. I often use other ingredients to “mask” the coconut influence. But in this dairy-free corn soup, the coconut milk is allowed to be a component of the flavors. It doesn’t overwhelm in the least bit, but rather enhances the other fresh ingredients and gives it a little Thai flair. In fact, I think many coconut protesters might actually love this creamy dairy-free corn soup.
How Can I Make Coconut-Free Dairy-Free Corn Soup?
If you want a lighter soup, you can simply use your favorite unsweetened plain milk alternative for cooking. But if you want to maintain the richness, see my Coconut Substitute Guide. If you are okay with tree nuts, cashew cream is a great alternative for this dairy-free corn soup. You can use it 1:1 for the coconut milk.
Can I Leave this Soup Chunky?
You definitely can. In fact, the recipe that inspired this dairy-free corn soup was actually a chunky-style soup (see the app photo below). My version has quite a few changes, but it’s still pretty tasty if you don’t puree any of it.
Special Diet Notes: Creamy Corn Soup
By ingredients, this recipe is dairy-free / non-dairy, egg-free, gluten-free, grain-free, nut-free, peanut-free, soy-free, optionally vegan, plant-based, oil-free, and optionally vegetarian.
- 2 large ears cooked corn (see note below)
- 1 medium carrot, peeled and diced
- ½ pound yellow potatoes, diced
- 3 cups low-sodium broth or stock (chicken, no chicken, or vegetable)
- 2 sprigs fresh thyme
- ½ cup full-fat canned coconut milk
- 1 teaspoon salt, or to taste
- Fresh black pepper, white pepper or crushed red pepper, to taste (optional)
- Fresh sliced basil, diced red bell pepper, or snipped chives, for topping
- Cut the kernels away from the cooked corn ears. I get about 2 generous cups of kernels.
- Heat the broth in a medium pot over medium heat, until it comes to a boil. Add the potatoes, carrot, and thyme. Add the naked corn ears (I break them in half to fit). Reduce the heat to low, cover and simmer for 15 to 20 minutes, or until the potato and carrot pieces are tender.
- Remove the corn cobs and thyme sprigs from the soup (I use tongs) and stir in the corn.
- Add about 1½ cups of the vegetables from your soup and about ½ cup of the broth to your blender. Add the coconut milk and puree until smooth, about 1 to 2 minutes.
- Pour the blended mixture back into your soup and season to taste with salt and pepper, if desired. The amount of salt you need will depend on the broth or stock you use. Don't under-salt - it's soup!
- Serve topped with sliced basil, diced red bell pepper, chives, or your fresh toppings of choice.