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Oven Cheese Chowder - Vegetarian Variation

Updated on July 17, 2014

Creamy Soups = Comfort Food on a Cold Day

One of my favorite things is a warm creamy soup on a wintery day... The snow falling outside. A fire in the fire place. And a delicious smelling soup filled with veggies in the oven (yup! That's right. I said oven - so you don't have to watch over it on the stove). Throw in a book and a blanket, and I'm in heaven.

On this page, I'll share one of my favorite creamy vegetarian soup recipes plus many more similarly creamy delights for you to try. In the recipe links, I indicate if the recipes are vegan or call for eggs or dairy. I also marked if the recipe requires that you subititute vegetable broth in place of the listed meat-based broth. I have found that vegetable broth tastes just as good in most dishes.

All photos on this page are my own.

The Soup-er Possibilities Are Endless

The Ultimate Soup Cookbook: Over 900 Family-Favorite Recipes
The Ultimate Soup Cookbook: Over 900 Family-Favorite Recipes

This is one of my favorite cookbooks with a ton of different recipes for a ton of different types of soup. It is not a vegetarian cookbook, but I have found that many of the recipes can be easily made vegetarian with a few substitutions. I also like how this book is organized with easy-to-recognize symbols for healthy, quick, crockpot, and easy recipes - telling me at a glance if it's a recipe I want to look at more closely. Even if you already own too many cookbooks (like me), you will want to add this cookbook to your collection!

 

Do you like creamy soups?

Do you like creamy soups?

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Oven Cheese Chowder

The original recipe, in The Ultimate Soup Cookbook (above), calls for chicken broth, a single garlic clove and one bay leaf. I make it vegetarian with the simple vegetable broth substitution. My household loves garlic and bay so we bumped up those ingredients. Go ahead and make this recipe your own with your adaptations too. The base ingredients are pretty flexible.

As a fully balanced meal in one bowl, this is one of my family's staple meals. We never get tired of it!

Prep time: 10 min
Cook time: 1 hour 20 min
Ready in: 1 hour 30 min
Yields: 10

Ingredients

  • 1/2 pound zucchini cut into 1-inch chunks
  • 2 chopped medium onions
  • 1 can (15 ounces) chickpeas drained and rinsed
  • 1 can (14.5 ounces) diced tomatoes undrained
  • 1 can (11 ounces) Mexican-style corn drained
  • 1 can (14.5 ounces) vegetable broth
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 4 minced garlic cloves
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • 4 -5 bay leaves
  • 1 cup (4 ounces) shredded Monterey Jack cheese
  • 1 cup grated Romano cheese
  • 1.5 cups half-and-half
  • Additional Monterey Jack cheese (optional)

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. In a 3-quart baking dish (I use my 9x13 inch lasagna pan) combine zucchini, onions, chickpeas, tomatoes, corn, broth, salt, pepper, garlic, basil, and bay leaves. Cover and bake 1 hour, stirring once.
  2. Stir in Jack and Romano cheese and half-and-half and bake, uncovered, 10 minutes. Remove bay leaves. Top with additional Jack cheese, if desired.
  3. Note: It is important to stir the cheeses in immediately while it's still bubbling hot. That way the cheeses melt quickly and don't break. Do not waste time trying to pull out the bay leaves early (like I did in an effort to get them out while they were easy to find).

The Perfect Tools for Preparing this Recipe

Anchor Hocking Bake-N-Take Dish with Snap On Cover
Anchor Hocking Bake-N-Take Dish with Snap On Cover

I use a simple glass pan like this for my Oven Cheese Chowder, and it's great for making lasagna, granola, breakfast egg bake, and tons more dishes.

 
MIU France Polished Stainless Steel Solid Cooking Spoon, 14-Inch
MIU France Polished Stainless Steel Solid Cooking Spoon, 14-Inch

Nothing holds up or cleans up better than stainless steel.

 
Pyrex Simply Store 2-Cup Round Glass Food Storage Dish
Pyrex Simply Store 2-Cup Round Glass Food Storage Dish

This container is the perfect serving size for soup leftovers. It travels well, cleans up easily and lasts forever.

 

Are creamy vegetable soups one of your comfort foods? - Let me know what you think.

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    • profile image

      yourlocalpt 4 years ago

      thanks for sharing this recipe

    • Stazjia profile image

      Carol Fisher 5 years ago from Warminster, Wiltshire, UK

      Nowadays I eat very little meat, I've just gone off the taste and texture, so I'm always looking for good vegetarian recipes. They all sound lovely. I'm definitely going to try the Oven Cheese Chowder and probably the Beer Cheese and Vegetable Soup. I'm still considering the Stinging Nettle Soup - it's the thought of my dogs peeing on them that puts me off!

    • takkhisa profile image

      Takkhis 5 years ago

      I do like creamy soup and thanks for sharing vegetarian soups recipes.

    • rockingretro2 profile image

      rockingretro2 5 years ago

      I actually got my husband to eat cauliflower in a creamy soup, even though he dislikes it! Soup is always a comfort food.

    • lbrummer profile image

      Loraine Brummer 5 years ago from Hartington, Nebraska

      So appropriate for these super cold days!!

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