Ham and Corn Chowder in the Instant Pot

Instant Pot Ham & Corn Chowder

We are about a month out of the end of year holidays. So, the “new Year new Me” mentality as kicked in. Which includes deep cleaning. Naturally I wanted to start with the smallest part of the trailer, so I focused on my freezer. A large portion of our perfect Instant Pot Candied Ham is frozen and just staring at me begging to be made into something amazing. We grabbed it out this week and this recipe for Ham and Corn Chowder in the Instant Pot was born!

Why use the Instant Pot for Ham and Corn Chowder?

The Instant Pot is well known for its ability to make some epic soups. We have used it for Zuppa Toscana Tortellini, our own version of Ramen, and TheWildWayne’s personal favorite — Italian Wedding Soup.

For this recipe specifically, Dave and I both believe it is the best option due to ease. It really is a “one pot” dump it and forget it solution. It also keeps little hands away from a hot stove (or hot plate in our situation). Our kids get involved in the cooking processes and the Instant Pot option provides them with the opportunity to help as needed AND keep them at a safe distance.

Additionally, the instant pot really helps infuse the soup with all of the flavors included. It just melts all those amazing flavors together ensuring that every bite is delicious.

Pin Now, Enjoy Later!

Ham and Corn Chowder in the Instant Pot

A savory corn chowder with 2 pounds of leftover spiral cut smoked ham or ham steaks, onions, carrots, celery, and potatoes pressure cooked into chowder heaven.
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Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
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Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Author: David Wayne (Instant Pot Dave)
Cost: $19


  • Pressure Cooker


  • 2 lbs Ham chopped into bite size pieces I used 2 pounds of our leftover Candied Ham or 2 ham steaks are a perfect alternative
  • 1 Yellow Onion chopped medium
  • 6 Large Garlic Cloves diced
  • 2 Large Golden Potatoes chopped medium
  • 2 15 oz cans Corn drained 2 cans of corn, 16 oz frozen corn, or 5-6 ears of corn cut off the cob – which is preferred
  • 2 Large Carrots chopped medium
  • 2 Celery Stalks chopped medium
  • 1 tsp Dried Thyme
  • 1 tsp Dried Oregano
  • 1 tsp Salt
  • 1/2 tsp Granulated Garlic or Garlic Powder
  • 1/2 tsp Onion Powder
  • 1/2 tsp Crushed Red Peppers
  • 1/2 tsp Black Pepper fresh cracked prefered
  • 2 Tbsp Butter sliced
  • 2 Tbsp Olive Oil
  • 3 cups Chicken Broth or 3 cups water and 3 tsp chicken bouillon
  • 1 cup Cream
  • 3 Tbsp Corn Starch
  • 1.5 cups Mild or Medium Cheddar Cheese shredded the milder cheddars adds a more buttery taste compared to sharp
  • 2-4 Green Onions sliced thin


  • Chop onions, carrots, celery, and potatoes into medium chunks and dice the garlic
  • Slice the butter into 5 slices to help it melt in the pot evenly
  • Press saute on your instant pot
  • When the pot is "Hot", add the butter slices stirring very often
  • When the butter is melted, stir in the olive oil and be careful not to burn the butter
  • Add the chopped onion, carrots, and celery
  • Saute for ~4 minutes stirring every minute to prevent burning
  • Stir in the diced garlic and cancel the saute function
  • Add chicken broth, thyme, oregano, salt, pepper, crushed red peppers, granulated garlic, and onion powder
  • Stir the seasoning into the broth scraping the bottom to make sure there is nothing burned on the bottom
  • Chop the leftover ham or ham steaks into medium chunks or slices and add the ham to the instant pot in an even layer over the broth and sauteed vegetables
  • Add the chopped potatoes into an even layer over the ham
  • Add the drained corn on top of the potatoes in another even layer
  • Remember not to stir the ingredients, it's very tempting
  • Put the instant pot lid on and seal the pressure release valve
  • Pressure cook for 10 minutes
  • When the ten minutes are finished, open the pressure release valve
  • When the pin has dropped, remove the lid
  • Mix 1 cup of cream with 3 Tbsp cornstarch until smooth and pour over the corn
  • Press Saute on your instant pot and stir the cornstarch and cream slurry into the corn chowder
  • Let the chowder develop a good simmer, about 3-4 minutes, and stir scraping the bottom as you go
  • Shred about 1 and 1/2 cups of mild or medium cheddar cheese
  • When the chowder has developed a good simmer again, cancel saute and add the shredded cheddar cheese
  • Stir the ingredients well
  • Thin slice 2-4 green onions
  • Fill your bowls with the ham and corn chowder using a ladle or large spoon and top with as much sliced green onion as you prefer
  • It will be as hot as lava so let it sit for about 8 minutes before you dig in


Notes from the Cook

As far as the corn you should add, I would say the best flavor is fresh corn cut off the cob. From there, canned corn works very well. We also have used frozen corn as well, but have found that out of the three options it is the least flavorful. Frozen corn will be the heartier corn (in our experience). If that helps you decide!

As stated above, the ham in this recipe is what we have left over from the holidays. Other good substitutes are:

  1. 1 pound ham steaks from the meat department
  2. 1-2 pounds of thick cut black forest ham from the deli
  3. 1-2 pounds of ham off the bone from the deli

This is a very delicious and hearty ham and corn chowder that will leave your family going back for seconds.  Enjoy your Chowder!   

One Comment on “Ham and Corn Chowder in the Instant Pot

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