A savoury and hearty chowder which satisfies the cold weather hunger. Italian Sausage and Potato Chowder is flavourful and filling; you’re going to love this recipe!
A few weeks back, my favourite grocery store had a sale on Italian sausages. It was those big family-size packs and even though I’m the only meat-eater in our home, I couldn’t resist buying two packages. When I got home, my immediate thought was, “What the hell am I going to do with all of this sausage?” A chowder – a delicious, satisfying, hearty chowder – was the answer.
I’d like to take full credit for this recipe, but the idea wasn’t mine to claim. I spend countless hours scrolling through my Pinterest feed whenever I’m bored, and I remember seeing it there and when I thought about making the recipe, I couldn’t find it. That’ll teach me to pin a recipe to my board when I see it! Any way, because I love to make soup, and because I’ve been making soups long enough to know what works and what doesn’t, I was able to create this version of the original recipe I saw on Pinterest. And, I couldn’t be more satisfied with the result.
Again, back to that sausage – it was a lot of sausage for one person. So, as I normally do, I was able to package up enough soup to provide a meal or two to some of my favourite neighbours in our building. I took two portions upstairs to Jack and Shirley, and two portions down the hall for our favourite cat-aunties, Louise and Donna. The rest, I placed in the freezer and reheated it a week later. It was still just as delicious as the day it was made!
When you make this recipe, you have a choice when it comes to choosing the sausage that will work best for you. I choose a mild Italian Sausage, because even though I do like a little bit of spice, I really wanted the flavours of the sausage and the fresh herbs to be the stars of the chowder. If you prefer a spicier chowder, feel free to use the hot Italian Sausage. You also have the choice of peeling your potatoes or not. I left the peel on for my particular version. I felt that it added to the rustic appeal that is, in itself, the essence of a good chowder.
I also used the mini/baby potatoes. Again, that’s completely optional. You can use regular white or yellow flesh potatoes and just chop them in about one and a half inch chunks. Try to keep your potatoes all the same size so that they cook in the same amount of time.
Lastly, Dear Reader, in terms of this recipe, I beg of you to please use fresh herbs. It really does make a difference and because the other ingredients in this recipe are so inexpensive, you should splurge a little and go for the fresh thyme and fresh rosemary. You’ll thank me later!
When serving this chowder, add a little grated cheddar cheese – it’s simple, but adds to the richness of the dish. After all, potatoes and sausages love cheese! As for bread or crackers, which seems to be the norm with soups, stews, and chowders, it’s really not needed. This chowder has everything you need in one bowl to satisfy your hunger and fill your belly – enjoy!
Italian Sausage and Potato Chowder
- 8 whole Italian sausage links, casings removed
- 1 large onion, finely chopped
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 6 cups chicken stock
- 2 pounds baby potatoes, halved
- 1 cup heavy cream
- 1 sprig fresh rosemary
- 3 sprigs fresh thyme, plus more for garnish
In a large, heavy-bottomed stock pot, over medium heat, add the olive oil, the sausage, and the onion. Saute, stirring occasionally for 30 minutes. Remove the sausage from the pot and transfer to a paper-towel lined colander. You will want to drain the grease well.
Add the chicken stock, potatoes, rosemary, and thyme to the pot. Bring to a low boil. Boil until the potatoes are just done -about 25 minutes.
Remove the thyme and rosemary sprigs.
Add the sausage and onion mixture back to the pot. Add the heavy cream and stir well to combine.
Bring the soup back to a low boil. Once the soup begins to bubble slightly, turn off the heat and place a lid on the pot. Allow the soup to sit for 5 minutes.
Remove the lid. Stir about a teaspoon of fresh thyme leaves and serve immediately.
Grated cheddar cheese is a great topping for this soup!
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