Comforting Chowder: Smoked Haddock, Butter Bean & Leek

Comforting Chowder: Smoked Haddock, Butter Bean & Leek

Recipe by Nikki ParsonsDifficulty: Easy



Nikki has made this comforting fish chowder for years and says she does it slightly differently every time, but that it always tastes delicious. For example you can add small chunks of potatoes to bulk the soup out for heartier appetites. A squeeze of lemon juice is good at the end.


  • 600ml fish, chicken or vegetable stock (if you use bouillon, use 2 tsp)

  • Medium onion, finely chopped

  • 2 – 3 leeks, finely sliced

  • 2 tbspn virgin olive oil

  • 500g smoked haddock loin

  • Handful chopped parsley or coriander

  • Dollops of full fat yoghurt (optional)


  • Put 2 tspn bouillon in a jug and add 600ml boiling water.
  • Heat the oil in a medium size saucepan and cook the onion and leeks gently for 5 mins, stirring occasionally. Add the stock, bring to the boil, reduce the heat, cover and simmer for 5 mins.
  • Add the butter beans and their liquid to the pan.
  • Skin the haddock and dice the flesh, removing any bones. Add to the soup and then take the pan off the heat to infuse the flavour; then gently heat when required. This prevents overcooking the fish.
  • Season the soup to taste with black pepper. Sprinkle the chopped parsley/coriander over the soup and serve with, if liked, a spoonful of full fat creme fraiche in each bowl.

Cook’s Tip

  • I added a dollop of butter to the oil before cooking the onions and leeks. I couldn’t resist chucking in 2 tsp turmeric and half a finely diced red chilli, which added to the heat and the vibrant colour of this wonderful soup. Also finely cubed 2 medium size sweet potatoes and boiled them until softened, then added them to the chowder. Last but not least, I used smoked skinless basa fillets – half the price of haddock!