You are probably going to want double this!
In a large saucepan, cook bacon until just crisp, remove, crumble, and reserve. Pour off all but 3 tablespoons of the fat and saute onion and carrots in the remainder. Add a little butter if mixture becomes too dry or there is not enough bacon fat to amount to three tablespoons.
Add potatoes and water (and salt) and/or stock just to cover, bring to a boil, partially cover with a lid, then reduce heat to a simmer. Simmer until potatoes are just tender, about 15 to 20 minutes. Remove from heat, add milk or dairy of choice. If the soup needs to be warmed more, return to heat just to warm through but do not boil. Taste for salt & pepper. Add garlic powder if using.
Use a hand masher and roughly mash a bit of the potato until soup reaches the consistency you desire or for a thicker soup, remove some of the potatoes and liquid (or use milk if there’s not enough liquid) to a blender, then return to the soup. The soup will thicken slightly as it cools a bit.
Note if blending soup, you may wish to omit carrots from the recipe.
Garnish with the reserved bacon. Garnish additionally as you desire with cheese, chives or green onion, and/or sour cream.
Nutrition: Per Serving, with only bacon for garnish: 210 Calories; 6g Fat (27.1% calories from fat); 10g Protein; 29g Carbohydrate; 2g Dietary Fiber; 18mg Cholesterol; 554mg Sodium
Keywords: Bacon, cheddar, Cheese, chowder, milk, potato chowder, Potatoes, Soup, Sour cream