Sweet Potato, Chorizo, Roasted Poblano & Kale Chowder

It’s winter, and winter calls for a chowder. Which is awesome, because I love chowder. With miso soup, chowder is tied at the absolute top of my favorite soup list.

Sweet Potato, Chorizo, Roasted Poblano & Kale Chowder
A light but savory chowder of sweet potato, chorizo, roasted poblano chile and kale for a dash diet dinner on a chilly winter night. A small amount of chorizo gives the chowder a surprisingly big flavor, while the sweet potato fills you up with wintry goodness.

Sunday evening, after spending a few hours wandering around on a windswept beach with beautiful golden grass and elegant sand dunes, I needed something warm and hearty but not too heavy. The temperature was in the upper 40s at the beach, but fog was rolling in. The dampness cut through, and I needed to warm up. Chowder to the rescue! I had Ecuadorian chorizo and a couple of poblano chiles on hand, so I decided to make a vaguely Latin American chowder using those. Instead of regular potatoes, I used sweet potatoes. It was a choice based entirely on convenience, but added an interesting bit of sweetness to the hearty, otherwise savory chowder.

I roasted the poblano chiles in the toaster oven. This extra step does add a smoky, roasty flavor to the chowder, but it isn’t absolutely necessary. Unless you can roast the poblano chiles on a charcoal grill, that is–if you have access to that luxury (an envy of all NYC apartment dwellers, let me tell you :P), definitely roast the chiles. They’ll take on the flame-grilled awesomeness and add another dimension to the chowder.

Poblano chiles can be a Russian roulette. I roasted three chiles, and tasted each before adding them to the pot. One was super-duper spicy, way too hot to put the entire thing in the chowder. The other two were completely mild. I set the spicy one aside for another use and used the two milder ones in the chowder. You might want to taste yours and decide how much to put in, depending on how spicy you like your chowder to be.

Print Recipe
Sweet Potato, Chorizo, Roasted Poblano & Kale Chowder
DASH diet considerations: The sweet potato, chorizo, roasted poblano and kale chowder is a hearty winter soup with zesty Latin American flavors. A tiny bit of chorizo per serving (about one DASH diet serving of meat) is enough to give the soup a savory, faintly spicy backbone. Both sweet potatoes and kale are a good source of potassium; overall, it’s a veggie-filled soup of 3 vegetable servings.

As is the case with many soups, it can be on the high side for sodium. I used Better Than Bouillon for chicken stock, and with that option, this chowder has about 460 mg of sodium (from the soup base, salt and chorizo). For a complete DASH diet meal, pair it with a crusty whole wheat bread.

DASH servings:
3 vegetables & fruits
½ dairy
1 meats & fish
¼ fat & oil
460 mg sodium
Sweet Potato, Chorizo, Roasted Poblano & Kale Chowder
Sweet Potato, Chorizo, Roasted Poblano & Kale Chowder
  1. Roast the poblano peppers at 450 for 25 minutes.
  2. While the peppers roast, heat olive oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add the garlic and onion. Cook, stirring occasionally, for 2-3 minutes until the onions are slightly translucent and soft.
  3. Add the chorizo and break it up into small chunks with a spoon or a spatula. Cook, stirring frequently, until the chorizo pieces start to brown, for about 3 minutes.
    Sweet Potato, Chorizo, Roasted Poblano & Kale Chowder - Cooking #1
  4. Add the sweet potatoes and cook briefly, stirring to coat everything in the oil. Season with salt and pepper.
  5. Add the chicken stock to the pot. Cover and bring it to a boil. Once boiling, turn the heat down to a simmer. Cook for 12-15 minutes, or until the sweet potatoes are cooked through.
  6. Remove the poblano chiles from the oven. Once cool enough to handle, remove the stem and seeds, then dice. Set aside. (You might want to check the spiciness level of the chiles here and adjust how much of the diced poblano chiles you add to the soup.)
  7. When the sweet potatoes can be pierced easily through, add the kale and cook for an additional 2-3 minutes, until the kale is wilted.
  8. Add the milk, sour cream and roasted poblano chilies. Cook for 3-4 minutes, until everything is heated and the flavors are melded together.
    Sweet Potato, Chorizo, Roasted Poblano & Kale Chowder - Cooking #2
  9. Season with salt and pepper if needed.

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