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Nova Scotia seafood chowder is a rich, creamy, soup that's so easy to make from scratch! This version is loaded with seafood, with bacon and fresh dill added for extra flavor.


  • ▢12 large scallops, fresh or thawed frozen, see notes

  • ▢6 strips bacon, or 3 thick cut strips, cut into bits

  • ▢4 cups water

  • ▢2 large potatoes, washed, unpeeled, chopped into ½ inch (1-½ cm) pieces

  • ▢2 large carrots, washed, unpeeled, sliced into ¼-inch (6-mm) coins

  • ▢1 teaspoon salt, divided

  • ▢3 cups 35% whipping cream

  • ▢1 cup haddock, fresh or thawed frozen, cut into bite-sized pieces

  • ▢1 cup lobster, cooked, chopped

  • ▢18 large shrimp, fresh or thawed frozen, tails removed, deveined, chopped or whole

  • ▢2 tablespoons chives, fresh, chopped

  • ▢2 tablespoons dill, fresh, finely chopped

  • ▢¼ teaspoon black pepper, ground


  • Sandwich the scallops gently between sheets of paper towel to dry the tops and bottoms. The drier the surface of the scallops, the better they will sear. Set aside.

  • Cook the bacon in a large heavy bottomed pot over medium-high heat until it's almost crisp. Use a slotted spoon to transfer the bacon to a paper towel-lined plate and set aside.

  • Keep the bacon grease hot over medium-high heat. Use tongs to gently place the scallops in the pot. Cook until golden, about 2 to 3 minutes per side. Remove the scallops from the pot and set aside.

  • Add the water, potatoes, carrots, and half of the salt to the pot. Use a wooden spoon to scrape up any stuck on bits from the bottom of the pot. Bring the water to a boil, then reduce the heat and simmer until the vegetables are tender, about 12 to 15 minutes.

  • Pour the cream into the pot. Bring the chowder back to a simmer and continue to cook for 10 minutes.

  • Add the haddock, lobster, and shrimp to the pot. Simmer for 5 minutes.

  • Add the cooked bacon bits, chives, dill, pepper, and remaining salt to the pot. Stir well and adjust the seasoning to suit your taste. Ladle the chowder into bowls making sure each serving gets a fair share of seafood! Top each serving with pan-seared scallops, and a sprinkle of fresh dill. Serve hot with fresh rolls or biscuits.

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