Catfish Chowder with Bacon and Tomatoes

Catfish Chowder
Photo: Diana Rattray
  • 55 mins
  • Prep: 20 mins,
  • Cook: 35 mins
  • Yield: 4 to 6 Servings

This catfish chowder recipe is similar in flavor to a Manhattan clam chowder, but it's made with catfish. The bacon adds flavor but feel free to use 1 tablespoon of vegetable oil if you're counting calories or cutting down on fat.

You can sprinkle crumbled bacon or purchased real bacon bits on individual servings, if desired.

What You'll Need

  • 4 strips bacon, diced
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 2 medium carrots, quartered lengthwise then thinly sliced, about 1 cup
  • 1/2 green pepper, diced, about 1/2 cup
  • 2 ribs celery, diced
  • 2 cans (14.5 ounces each) diced tomatoes with juice
  • 2 bottles (8 ounces each) clam juice
  • 1 1/2 cups vegetable broth
  • 3 medium red-skinned potatoes, cut into 1/2-inch chunks
  • 1 teaspoon Creole seasoning
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1 tablespoon fresh chopped parsley or 1 teaspoon dried parsley flakes
  • 1 pound catfish fillets, cut into 1-inch chunks
  • salt and pepper to taste

How to Make It

In a large saucepan, saute the bacon until crisp; remove to paper towels.

Drain off all but 1 tablespoon of the bacon drippings. Add diced onion, carrot, green pepper, and celery; saute until onion is tender and carrot has softened slightly.

Stir in the tomatoes, clam juice, and vegetable broth. Add potatoes, Creole seasoning, and thyme; bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low, cover, and simmer for about 20 to 25 minutes, or until vegetables are tender.

Add the parsley and catfish; continue simmering for about 5 minutes, or until fish is opaque and cooked through. Taste and add salt and pepper to taste. Sprinkle with the bacon just before serving.

Serves 4 to 6.


Use vegetable oil instead of bacon drippings to saute the vegetables and then sprinkle individual servings with purchased real bacon bits, if desired.

Use cod, haddock, or another white fish in the chowder.

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