Creamy Cordon Bleu Chowder

24 October, 2020

We love Chicken Cordon Bleu, a breaded chicken cutlet stuffed with ham and cheese. It’s decadent and kid-friendly, but it also takes a lot of steps to finish!

I thought, “What if it was made into a light cream soup, topped with cheese and croutons, instead?” BINGO!

Chopped spinach adds extra heft and flavor, as well as more nutrition. You can also add frozen spinach instead of chopped baby spinach.

This soup freezes like a rockstar, too. If you want to skip the and keep this strictly vegetarian, swap out the chicken for diced root vegetables like carrots and sweet potatoes. 

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Creamy Cordon Bleu Chowder

  • Author: Ruthy Kirwan

Scale

Ingredients

1 yellow onion, diced

2 pounds boneless,skinless chicken thighs

8 ounces diced ham

8 ounces fresh baby spinach, chopped

6 cups chicken broth

4 cloves garlic, minced

1 teaspoon dried thyme

⅓ cup half-and-half

For serving:

2 cups croutons

6 ounces grated swiss cheese


Instructions

Instant Pot Instructions:

  1. Add all soup ingredients except for half-and-half, croutons, and swiss cheese, to Instant Pot and secure the lid. 
  2. Cook on High Pressure for 20 minutes with a Quick Pressure Release. 
  3. Use 2 forks to shred the chicken. 
  4. Stir in the half-and-half.
  5. Serve hot, topped with croutons and grated swiss cheese.

Slow Cooker Instructions: 

  1. Add all ingredients except for half-and-half, croutons, and swiss cheese, to the slow cooker and secure the lid. 
  2. Cook on low for 6 hours, high for 3.
  3. Once the vegetables are soft and the chicken is falling apart tender, use 2 forks to shred the chicken.
  4. Stir in the half-and-half.
  5. Serve hot, topped with croutons and grated swiss cheese.

Stovetop Instructions: 

  1. Heat 2 tablespoons vegetable oil in a large pot over medium heat until shimmering. 
  2. Add the chopped onion and cook until soft, about 3 minutes. 
  3. Add remaining ingredients except for half-and-half, croutons, and grated swiss cheese. Bring to a boil and then lower to a simmer, uncovered. 
  4. Let cook, uncovered, for 40-50 minutes or until the chicken is falling apart tender. 
  5. Use 2 forks to shred the chicken.
  6. Stir in the half-and-half.
  7. Serve hot, topped with croutons and grated swiss cheese.

Notes

Prep it for later: 

  1. Chop onion, ham, spinach, and garlic, and transfer to a large resealable bag or container.
  2. Add to the bag the chicken, dried thyme, and chicken broth (or use stock cubes or condensed chicken base- make sure to label how much water to add on cooking day!)
  3. Bag croutons and grated swiss separately, if desired. (They’ll freeze great!)

You’ll need: 

  1. 1 bag all prepared soup ingredients except for half-and-half
  2. 1 bag croutons
  3. 1 bag grated swiss cheese

Prepare from prepped:

Instant Pot Instructions:

  1. Add all soup ingredients except for half-and-half, croutons, and swiss cheese, to Instant Pot and secure the lid. 
  2. If using frozen ingredients: Cook on High Pressure for 40 minutes with a Quick Pressure Release.
  3. If using thawed ingredients: Cook on High Pressure for 20 minutes, with a Quick PRessure Release. 
  4. Use 2 forks to shred the chicken. 
  5. Stir in the half-and-half.
  6. Serve hot, topped with croutons and grated swiss cheese.

Slow Cooker Instructions: Thaw in fridge overnight before cooking

  1. Add all ingredients except for half-and-half, croutons, and swiss cheese, to the slow cooker and secure the lid. 
  2. Cook on low for 6 hours, high for 3.
  3. Once the vegetables are soft and the chicken is falling apart tender, use 2 forks to shred the chicken.
  4. Stir in the half-and-half.
  5. Serve hot, topped with croutons and grated swiss cheese.

Stovetop Instructions: Thaw overnight before cooking

  1. Add all ingredients, except for half-and-half, croutons, and grated swiss cheese, to a large pot.
  2. Bring to a boil, covered, over high heat.
  3. Remove the lid and turn down to a simmer. 
  4. Cook, uncovered, stirring occasionally, for 1-2 hours or until the chicken is falling apart tender. 
  5. Use 2 forks to shred in the soup.
  6. Stir in the half-and-half.
  7. Serve hot, topped with croutons and grated swiss cheese.

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