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Creamy and flavorful, this easy shrimp soup recipe is full of smoky bacon, sweet corn, tender potatoes and fresh herbs. Make it with fresh corn during the summer growing season, or use frozen corn when you need a cozy bowl of goodness on a chilly winter’s day. Serve the chowder with a side of crusty bread, flaky biscuits, or skillet cornbread for a hearty and delicious meal that you can enjoy year-round!

Overhead shot of two bowls of shrimp and corn soup

If you’ve feasted on fresh corn on the cob all summer long, this creamy shrimp soup with corn will be a welcome change and a fresh new way to take advantage of some of the season’s best produce. Pair it with a crisp green salad and a hunk of crusty bread for the most delicious and easy dinner! It’s a lovely transition from summer to fall when we all start craving those cozy comfort foods.

Creamy Shrimp Soup

There’s nothing fancy about this shrimp and corn soup. In fact, I’ve essentially taken my favorite corn chowder recipe, added plenty of tender, Old Bay-seasoned shrimp, and transformed the pot into a simple and flavorful shrimp and corn chowder! It’s an easy way to incorporate more seafood and vegetables into your diet — especially at a time of year when it might be harder to get outside to grill shrimp or to host a fish fry. Simmer a pot on the stovetop for an easy lunch or dinner option that’s cozy, hearty, and totally satisfying!

Ingredients

This is a quick overview of the ingredients that you’ll need for the shrimp and corn soup recipe. As always, specific measurements and complete cooking instructions are included in the printable recipe box at the bottom of the post.

  • Thick-cut bacon: adds a smoky flavor to the base of the soup.
  • Onion, garlic, bay leaf, thyme and parsley: for savory, earthy flavor.
  • All-purpose flour: thickens the broth.
  • Chicken broth: the base of the soup.
  • Celery, potato and corn: provide a hearty texture and even more flavor.
  • Cream-style corn: helps to thicken the chowder and also adds a good amount of flavor and sweetness. It’s a quick and easy alternative to the messier, more time-consuming extra step of squeezing the starchy milk from fresh corn cobs or pureeing fresh corn kernels to achieve that same thick, creamy, sweet texture.
  • Whole milk, cream or half-and-half: gives the broth its creamy texture and flavor. You’ll add just enough for that nice consistency, but not so much that the soup feels heavy, thick, or too rich.
  • Shrimp: I prefer medium shrimp (rather than large, extra large, or jumbo shrimp) because they’re the perfect size for scooping with your spoon — no chopping necessary!
  • Old Bay: a classic seafood seasoning that gives the shrimp a little bit of zesty kick. Use as much or as little as you like!
  • Salt and pepper: to enhance the other flavors in the soup. You might not need too much extra salt if you’re starting with a salted chicken broth, so taste and season as you go.
Side shot of a bowl of shrimp soup with corn

Can you put frozen shrimp in soup?

You can use frozen shrimp, but I recommend thawing the shrimp before adding it to the hot pot of soup. You can thaw shrimp in the refrigerator overnight, or quick-thaw in a colander under cold running water.

Can I add cooked shrimp to soup?

Yes! If you decide to use cooked shrimp, it will not need more than a minute or so to heat through in the pot. Be careful not to cook it for too long or the shrimp will become tough and rubbery.

How to Make Shrimp Soup

This Southern creamy shrimp soup is thickened with a roux and cream (or milk) for a rich, smooth texture. Use fresh or frozen corn — whatever you have available — and stir together a pot for dinner tonight!

  1. Fry the bacon.
  2. Add garlic and onion.
  3. Stir in the flour and broth.
  4. Add veggies, season, and simmer until the potatoes are tender.
  5. Stir in corn and milk; cook for about 5 more minutes.
  6. Season shrimp with Old Bay, add to the pot, and cook for 4 more minutes (or until the shrimp are pink).
  7. Stir in parsley and season with salt and pepper, to taste.
  8. Ladle the soup into bowls and garnish with desired toppings.
Adding broth to a white Dutch oven
Process shot showing how to make shrimp soup
Pouring cream into a pot of shrimp soup
Raw shrimp on a plate with Old Bay seasoning
Ladle scooping up shrimp soup from a white pot

What to Serve with Shrimp and Corn Chowder

The shrimp and potato soup has a rich, creamy and mild taste, so it pairs beautifully with a crisp green salad or a Caesar salad. It also goes well with saltines or oyster crackers, homemade buttermilk biscuits, a loaf of crusty bread, 3-ingredient sour cream muffins, corn sticks, or a pan of cornbread for dipping.

Storage

Properly stored in an airtight container, the shrimp soup will last in the refrigerator for 1-2 days.

To Reheat: Place the chowder in a pot and warm over a low flame, just until heated through. Be careful not to let the soup boil.

Can you freeze shrimp and corn soup?

I do not recommend freezing this shrimp soup, as the milk or cream may “break” or separate when thawed.

How to Freeze Cream-Based Soups

If you’d like to prepare this soup in advance to store in the freezer, just follow the recipe, but omit the dairy and shrimp. Cool in freezer-safe containers, leaving an inch of headspace. When ready to thaw, place the soup in a pot over low heat. When liquefied and simmering, stir in the milk or cream. Then add the seasoned shrimp and cook through.

Close overhead shot of a bowl of shrimp and corn chowder

Recipe Variations

  • Add cooked, shredded chicken to the soup instead of the shrimp.
  • Try a shrimp and crab soup by swapping out the shrimp for an equal amount of crab. You might also like a combination of shrimp and crab for a creamy seafood chowder.
  • Add extra herbs, such as basil, oregano, chives or rosemary.
  • If using regular bacon instead of thick-cut bacon, increase the total number of strips to equal about 1 ounce.
  • For a Cajun shrimp soup, add plenty of zesty Cajun seasoning to the broth.
  • Double all of the ingredients to prepare a larger pot of soup.

Tips for the Best Shrimp Soup Recipe

  • Cook the shrimp just until pink and opaque, then remove the soup from the heat. Overcooked shrimp become tough and rubbery — not ideal!
  • Use whole milk, half-and-half or cream for a rich, smooth texture. I do not recommend substituting with lower-fat alternatives, which will not provide the same velvety mouthfeel.
  • This pot has a fairly thick, chowder-like consistency. If you prefer a thinner soup, increase the amount of broth or cream until it reaches your preferred texture.
  • Taste and season as you go. If you’re using unsalted or low-sodium broth, you will likely need more salt than if you’re starting with salted broth.
  • Add more or less Old Bay to suit your taste. Start with a small amount on the shrimp, and then add more to the broth, if necessary.
Overhead shot of hands holding a bowl of creamy shrimp soup with corn and bacon

More Shrimp Recipes to Try

Overhead shot of two bowls of shrimp and corn soup

Shrimp Soup with Corn and Bacon

5 from 2 votes
Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 45 minutes
Total: 55 minutes
Servings 4 – 6 people
Calories 274 kcal
Creamy and flavorful, this easy shrimp soup is full of smoky bacon, sweet corn, tender potatoes and fresh herbs!

Ingredients
  

  • 2 slices (about 1 ounce) thick-cut bacon, chopped
  • ½ of a large onion, finely diced
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1 ½ tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 3 cups chicken broth (or more to thin, if desired)
  • 1 celery rib, diced
  • 1 medium russet potato, peeled and diced into ½-inch pieces
  • 1 bay leaf
  • ½ teaspoon minced fresh thyme (or ⅛ teaspoon dried thyme)
  • 1 (8.25 ounce) can cream-style corn
  • 1 ½ cups fresh or frozen corn kernels
  • 1 cup whole milk, cream or half-and-half (or more to thin, if desired)
  • 1 lb. medium shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • Old Bay seasoning, to taste
  • 1 tablespoon minced fresh parsley
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • Optional garnish: additional cooked, chopped bacon; thyme or parsley; sliced green onion

Instructions

  • Fry chopped bacon in a Dutch oven over medium-high heat, just until lightly browned and the fat has rendered. Add the onion and cook, stirring often, until softened (about 5 minutes). Stir in the garlic and cook until fragrant (about 30 seconds). Stir in the flour and cook for 1 minute. Slowly stir in the broth, scraping up any browned bits from the bottom of the pot.
  • Add celery, potatoes, bay leaf, thyme, and cream-style corn. Bring to a simmer and cook until potatoes are tender, stirring occasionally (about 15-20 minutes).
  • Stir in the corn kernels and milk (or cream). Simmer over low heat (do not boil) until the corn kernels are tender, but still slightly crunchy (about 5 minutes). Discard bay leaf.
  • Season shrimp with Old Bay. Stir in the shrimp and cook until opaque, about 4 minutes.
  • Stir in parsley; season with salt and pepper, to taste.
  • Serve in bowls and garnish with additional bacon, herbs, or sliced green onion.

Notes

  • Cook the shrimp just until pink and opaque, then remove the soup from the heat. Overcooked shrimp become tough and rubbery — not ideal!
  • Use whole milk, half-and-half or cream for a rich, smooth texture. I do not recommend substituting with lower-fat alternatives, which will not provide the same velvety mouthfeel.
  • This pot has a fairly thick, chowder-like consistency. If you prefer a thinner soup, increase the amount of broth or cream until it reaches your preferred texture.
  • Add more or less Old Bay to suit your taste. Start with a small amount on the shrimp, and then add more to the broth, if necessary.
  • Taste and season as you go. If you’re using unsalted or low-sodium broth, you will likely need more salt than if you’re starting with salted broth.
  • Add cooked, shredded chicken to the soup instead of the shrimp.
  • Try a shrimp and crab soup by swapping out the shrimp for an equal amount of crab. You might also like a combination of shrimp and crab for a creamy seafood chowder.
  • Add extra herbs, such as basil, oregano, chives or rosemary.
  • If using regular bacon instead of thick-cut bacon, increase the total number of strips to equal about 1 ounce.
  • For a Cajun shrimp soup, add plenty of zesty Cajun seasoning to the broth.
  • Double all of the ingredients to prepare a larger pot of soup.

Nutrition

Serving: 1/6 of the recipeCalories: 274kcalCarbohydrates: 29gProtein: 22gFat: 9gSaturated Fat: 3gPolyunsaturated Fat: 2gMonounsaturated Fat: 3gTrans Fat: 1gCholesterol: 204mgSodium: 1250mgPotassium: 596mgFiber: 2gSugar: 4gVitamin A: 191IUVitamin C: 20mgCalcium: 178mgIron: 3mg
Keyword: creamy shrimp soup, shrimp and corn chowder, shrimp soup
Course: Dinner, Lunch
Cuisine: American, Southern
Author: Blair Lonergan
blair

Hey, I’m Blair!

Welcome to my farmhouse kitchen in the foothills of Virginia’s Blue Ridge Mountains. Inspired by local traditions and seasonal fare, you’ll find plenty of easy, comforting recipes that bring your family together around the table. It’s down-home, country-style cooking!

Read More

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Comments

  1. 5 stars
    This soup was absolutely delicious! My family loved it and it will definitely be added into our dinner rotation. I actually read the complete directions (for once. lol) and did not add the shrimp until right before serving. I had to make some adjustments because I was winging it last minute and did not have the celery or bacon (but I did use saved bacon grease) and it was still delicious – I’m sure it would have been even better had I planned ahead and had both but we still loved it!

    1. That’s wonderful, Karen! I’m glad that you were able to make it work with the ingredients you had on hand, and I appreciate you taking the time to come back here and leave a note. 🙂

  2. 5 stars
    This was so good. I didn’t have any raw bacon so I added olive oil to pan and added some real bacon bits. This worked out fine for me. We will definitely keep this soup in our winter rotation!