Creamy Butternut Chowder with crispy gnocchi and bacon bits. This Paleo chowder is completely dairy free and made with coconut milk and collagen-packed bone broth.
There isn’t anything quite like New England Chowder. I’ll never forget eating clam chowder out of a bread bowl in Quincy Market, all bundled up in winter clothes for a December day in Boston. I can still taste it, even 10-12+ years later. I think we all have a certain fondness for the food we grew up close to–the food that represent home. Thankfully I’m from a place that knows how to cook it’s seafood, harvest it’s maple syrup, and make it’s blueberry jam, which means my Paleo self can still somewhat participate. Granted, we have to make a few modifications.
New England is also known for some food items that I never care to see again. For example, Tim Horton’s donut holes, Autocrat Coffee Syrup, Boston Baked Beans, Fenway Franks, and Hoodsie Cups. Del’s Lemonade is on the fence. Like, maybe I’d have a spoonful. Then I’d remember how over-sweet it is and give the rest to my mom. Besides that, I’ll pass on the rest of what New England is serving.
Chowder is kinda that one thing that New England does that I’m not ready to let go of. Thankfully we’ve been graced with full-fat coconut milk and Simple Mill’s crackers that make it easy to enjoy a healthy version without really noticing a difference. Until after, of course, when your stomach isn’t swearing at you. You definitely feel the difference then. Now you can have your chowder and your sanity, too. What a time to be alive.
I decided to try cooking some cauliflower gnocchi to add to the chowder, and I’m really glad I did. I can’t say I’m the biggest fan of gnocchi in general, but it’s nice to have something crispy and chewy in the bowl to make it a little more decadent and comforting. And then obviously there’s the bacon component, which is always a good idea. Is there anything that bacon can’t make better? I have yet to come up with anything. It’s just unfathomable.
My favorite part about this is how easy it is to make. Easy is the gold standard for food for me, especially during this time of year when all of the things need to get done and I’m still not done Christmas shopping! I can’t even start thinking about that right now or I’ll go stress eat a bunch of sweet potatoes and almond butter. (psycho Paleo people — am I right?) Let’s not go there.
So ready for some wicked good Paleo Chowder to distract from the holiday madness? Me too.
Butternut Gnocchi Chowder with Bacon and Sun Dried Tomato
- 1 medium sized butternut squash
- 2 cups full fat coconut milk
- 2 cups bone broth broth
- 1/4 cup sun-dried tomatoes
- 1 bag of Trader Joe’s cauliflower gnocchi
- 1 tbsp coconut oil
- 1/3 lb bacon
Preheat oven to 425 F.
Cut squash in half lengthwise and place cut down on a baking sheet. Roast for 25 minutes, or until soft. Let cool for 10 minutes.
While the squash cooks, place a pot over medium heat. Cook the bacon in the pot for 3-4 minutes on each side, or until crispy. Remove from the pot and set aside, and crumble into bits when cool enough to handle. Clean the pot, reserving 2-3 tablespoons of the bacon grease.
Empty the bag of gnocchi onto a plate and microwave for 2 minutes, until no longer frozen. Place the bacon grease, coconut oil, and gnocchi in the pot and cook for 12-15 minutes, until crispy, turning to brown evenly. Remove and set aside.
Scoop out the insides of the squash and place in a blender with the coconut milk, broth, and paprika. Puree until smooth, and then pour the the pot. Bring to a boil and then reduce to simmer on low. Add in sun-dried tomato and gnocchi and stir to combine. Serve topped with bacon bits!