I play around with ingredients in my pantry instead of running to the store when I don’t know what’s for dinner. Here's a happy experiment. Cut some fat by leaving out the bacon. It's still tasty. —Barbara Banski, Fenton, Michigan
This recipe is one of my family's favorites. The chowder is chock-full of potatoes, ham and carrots. I like to make this comforting soup at least once or twice a month during the fall and winter. —Jennifer Trenhaile, Emerson, Nebraska
I like to make this smooth, creamy soup when company comes to visit. Its zippy flavor is full of Southwestern flair. My family enjoys dipping slices of homemade bread in this chowder to soak up every bite! —Susan Garoutte, Georgetown, Texas
This creamy soup brings my family to the table in a hurry. I love the warming zip of cayenne, but it also tastes terrific without it if you like milder flavor. With a few simple side dishes, this soup is a full meal.
I entered the recipe for this hearty soup in a contest sponsored by my hometown newspaper. I won first place and contributed the prize money to the area shelter for women and children.—Beth Jenkins-Horsley, Belmont, North Carolina
I've lived on a farm in the Yakima Valley all my life. I have a big garden, and by the end of fall, my cellar shelves are full of canned fruits and vegetables. This recipe uses some of the root vegetables I grow…along with the delicious salmon that is so plentiful here. —Josephine Parton, Granger, Washington
I like to serve this hearty chowder with garlic bread and a salad. It's a wonderful dish to prepare when company drops in. The rich, mild flavor and tender chicken and vegetables appeal even to children and picky eaters.
—Hazel Fritchie, Palestine, Illinois
As a student attending college full-time, I find my time in the kitchen is limited. This recipe helps me have a hot meal on the table when my husband gets home. He's a real meat-and-potatoes man, but he absolutely loves this thick, creamy chowder with tortilla strips that puff up like homemade noodles.
Years ago, when my husband and I put in our first garden, a neighbor suggested zucchini since it's easy to grow. Our kids were reluctant to try new things, so I used our squash in this cheesy chowder—it met with solid approval from all of us! —Nanette Jordan, Flint, Michigan
I only made this soup occasionally because the original recipe was quite high in fat. I doctored it up a bit, using healthier ingredients, and now we eat this rich flavorful chowder more often.
—Ellie Rausch of Goodsoil, Saskatchewan