CTV Recipes

All Recipes
Clear all
Dietary Concerns
More Options

Search Recipes

Classic Maritime Fish Chowder

In my part of the world, chowder is a religion. Every cook in New Brunswick probably has their own version of chowder, and this is mine. The important thing to keep in mind is that a fish chowder is only as good as the fish you put in it, so you should use whatever super-fresh white fish is best where you live. I like cod and haddock, mild and flaky varieties that are abundant where I live, but you could make this with halibut or pollock, or add cooked lobster, crab meat, or shrimp to the base, or shucked clams or oysters. Once you’ve added the milk and cream to the chowder, don’t let it come to a boil, which can cause it to separate—a gentle simmer is hot enough to cook the fish. Low and slow, y’all. Serve the chowder with crusty bread for sopping up the flavorful brothy deliciousness.



  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 medium yellow onion, finely chopped
  • 1 cup diced celery
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme
  • Sea salt
  • 2 large Yukon Gold potatoes (about 8 to 10 ounces), peeled and diced
  • 2 cups fish stock
  • 1½ cups whole milk
  • 1½ cups heavy (35%) cream
  • ½ teaspoon smoked paprika
  • Zest of 1 lemon
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 pounds boneless, skinless white fish (cod or haddock work great ), cut into ½-inch pieces
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh dill
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped
  • fresh chives
  • 1 lemon, cut into wedges, for serving


In a large stockpot, melt the butter over medium heat. Add the garlic and cook, stirring, for 30 seconds, keeping a close watch so it doesn’t burn. Add the onion, celery, bay leaf, thyme, and a pinch of salt, and cook, stirring, until softened, about 8 to 10 minutes. Add the potatoes and fish stock, and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce the heat to medium, and simmer until the potatoes are almost fork-tender, about 6 to 8 minutes. Stir in the milk, heavy cream, paprika, and lemon zest, season with salt and pepper, and bring the chowder back to a gentle simmer, stirring often. Add the fish and simmer for about 5 minutes, until the fish is cooked through and flakes easily with a fork. Taste and adjust the seasoning as necessary. Ladle into warmed bowls. Garnish with dill and chives, and serve right away, with lemon wedges alongside.

Excerpted from Cook With Confidence by Dennis Prescott. Copyright © 2024 Dennis Prescott. Photographs by Dennis Prescott. Published by Penguin an imprint of Penguin Canada®, a division of Penguin Random House Canada Limited. Reproduced by arrangement with the Publisher. All rights reserved.