When blustery winds blow into Ypsilanti, Michigan, nothing warms Christine Schenher’s family like steaming bowls of her Mom’s Clam Chowder.
“It’s fantastic—especially on cold days,” Christine writes. “But with so many ingredients that are heavy in fat, I feel guilty cooking it very often. Can you help me lighten it up but still keep its awesome flavor and wonderful creaminess?”
Our makeover pros tackled the soup’s high butter content first, slashing it from 3/4 cup to just 1/4 cup…but that proved to be too little to dissolve the flour. This can be a common problem when lightening cream soups or white sauces that depend on a roux (a mixture of flour and fat used for thickening).
A simple solution—and the one our team used—is to combine the flour with milk, broth or water and stir into the cooked soup, bringing it to a boil for thickening at the very end. They kept the half-and-half but cut the amount, making up the volume with 2% milk instead of whole.
Finally, combining both reduced-sodium chicken broth and bouillon granules instead of regular chicken broth cut sodium from each serving by 22 percent. Makeover Mom’s Clam Chowder has less than half the fat, saturated fat and cholesterol…but all of the original’s wholesome flavor. And that should warm any mom’s heart!
Tasty Tip: Serve this luscious chowder with warm whole grain rolls, muffins or breadsticks. You’ll find dozens of easy recipes on our Recipe Finder.