Bahaman Style Conch Chowder Recipe

by Paula Jager | Affiliate linksComments: 43

As a fitness professional, I have found homemade bone broth to be a great source of protein elements not found in the typical consumption of primarily “muscle meats” sought by most exercise enthusiasts. Many people seek to eat only boneless, skinless (and tasteless) chicken breasts while ignoring the rest of the animal. 

Properly prepared stocks are extremely nutritious and beneficial to fitness goals as they contain copious minerals of bone, cartilage, marrow and vegetables as electrolytes, a form that is very easy for our body to assimilate.

We go to great lengths in our training efforts to perform intense weight lifting and metabolic conditioning. Logging our progress and tracking our successes is exciting, but when it comes to nutrition to maintain health for the long haul, many of us fall short.

We look to fulfill our nutritional needs with processed protein powders filled with chemicals and additives, packaged and processed foods or nutrients in a pill.

True nutrition is found in nature, not in a package. Why people keep trying to go against and defy this basic nutritional truth I have not figured out. There is no substitute for whole foods.

The wise fitness trainee uses gelatin-rich broth on a frequent basis to provide continuous protection from many health problems, better recuperative abilities and as an invaluable aid to the body in more fully utilizing the complete proteins taken in.

My mother made wonderful homemade chicken and beef soups which I enjoyed while growing up. I had gotten away from homemade stocks in my 20-40’s and started making them again about 5 years ago after finding the Weston A. Price Foundation and meeting Sarah.

The one stock I had never tried and some people seem to shy away from is fish stock. This has become one of my very favorites and my husband and I consume it almost on a weekly basis in many delicious chowders and sauces. The following excerpt is from Nourishing Traditions. . .

Another traditional belief is that fish head broth contributes to virility. Fish stock, made from the carcasses and heads of fish is especially rich in minerals including all-important iodine. Even more important, stock made from the heads and therefore the thyroid glands of the fish, supplies thyroid hormone and other substances that nourish the thyroid gland.

According to some researchers, al least 40% of all Americans suffer from a deficiency of the thyroid gland with its accompanying symptoms of fatigue, weight gain, frequent colds and flu’s, inability to concentrate, depression and a lot of more serious complications like heart disease and cancer. We would do well to imitate our brothers from the Mediterranean and Asian regions by including fish broth in the diet.”

I find consuming foods with fish stock very rejuvenating, giving me more energy and restoring mental abilities. I have noticed after having fish chowder in the evening I sleep incredibly well that night. Coincidence? I don’t think so.

One of the secrets is to start with quality ingredients. Anyone living in coastal areas should be fortunate enough to have a friend or relative that fishes. Simply have them save you the heads and carcasses of the fish they catch and freeze until you are ready to use. If not, your local fish market should be willing to do the same.

One of my favorite recipes using fish stock is conch chowder, which I’ve shared below. You may substitute milder tasting shrimp stock or lobster broth if desired.

Hope you enjoy it!

Bahamian Style Conch Chowder Recipe

Nutritious, classic recipe for conch chowder blended with spices that add an island flare. Perfect as an appetizer but hearty enough to serve as a main meal. Makes fabulous leftovers for the lunchbox.

Total Time 45 minutes
Servings 2 quarts
Author Paula Jager



  1. Heat the butter in a large saucepan over medium heat.  

  2. Saute the onion, celery, carrots, pepper, potato, thyme, red pepper, allspice and bay leaver for 5-7 minutes, until they begin to soften.

  3. Add the tomatoes and stock and bring to a boil; immediately lower to a simmer. 

  4. Blend in the conch and cook for 35 minutes, uncovered.  

  5. Add the vinegar, parsley, scallions, sea salt and cayenne and simmer for 5 more minutes.

Recipe Notes

If you find the conch too tough to pound with a meat mallet, then chop it up with a sharp knife instead. 

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