New England Clam Chowder is a classic, hardy soup that is perfect on cold winter days. Delicious clams, tender potatoes, and smoky bacon make this chowder the perfect comfort food!
If you’ve never made clam chowder before, you’ll find this recipe is super easy to make and it will become a new family favorite.
Two Types of Clam Chowder
There are two main types of clam chowder: New England clam chowder and Manhattan clam chowder.
New England clam chowder is a creamy soup that is made with cream or milk, while Manhattan clam chowder is a tomato-based soup that is made with vegetables. New England is by far my favorite clam chowder.
For this easy recipe, I use SNOW’S Clam Juice and SNOW’S Bumble Bee Wild Caught Chopped Clams in Clam Juice. Of course, if you’re fortunate enough to have access to fresh clams, you can definitely use fresh. However, this recipe using canned clams is amazing.
Frequently Asked Questions About New England Clam Chowder
1. What ingredients will I need to complete this recipe?
- All-purpose flour
- Clam juice (reserved from canned clams or store-bought clam juice)
- Bay leaf
- Dried thyme
- Heavy cream
- Chopped clams (canned)
- Salt and pepper to taste
You will need the following supplies:
- Large soup pot or Dutch oven
- Slotted spoon
- Soup ladle
How should I store my New England Clam Chowder?
Clam Chowder should be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator. It can be kept for up to 3-4 days. Reheat on the stovetop over low heat before serving.
What substitutions can I make?
If you prefer a lighter version, you can use half-and-half instead of heavy cream. Also, instead of canned clams, you can use fresh clams. Steam the clams until they open and then add them to the chowder. Discard any clams that don’t open.
Can I use vegetable broth instead of clam juice?
Yes, you can use vegetable broth as a substitute for clam juice in clam chowder. However, the flavor profile will change somewhat. The clam juice provides a distinct seafood flavor that is characteristic of clam chowder, so using vegetable broth will make the chowder taste less salty and less fishy. I highly recommend using the clam juice in this recipe.
What additions can I make?
Some optional additions to enhance the flavor include a splash of white wine or a sprinkle of Old Bay seasoning.
What can I serve with New England Clam Chowder?
Oyster Crackers or Saltine Crackers – Traditionally, clam chowder is served with oyster crackers on top. They add a nice crunch and soak up the chowder nicely.
Crusty Bread or Bread Rolls: These are perfect for dipping into the rich, creamy chowder. A nice sourdough or baguette would work particularly well. Serving Clam Chowder in bread bowls makes a lovely presentation.
Green Salad: A crisp, fresh salad with a light vinaigrette can balance the creaminess of the chowder. Consider a simple lettuce mix with cherry tomatoes, cucumbers, and a lemon vinaigrette.
Grilled Cheese Sandwich: This can be a more filling option. The toasty, melty cheese sandwich pairs wonderfully with the creamy soup.
Steamed or Roasted Vegetables: Lightly seasoned steamed or roasted vegetables can provide a nice contrast to the rich chowder.
Seafood or Chicken: If you’re looking to make the meal more substantial, consider serving the chowder alongside grilled shrimp or lightly seasoned chicken breast.
Simple Steps to Make Easy New England Clam Chowder – you can find the full printable recipe card at the end of this post.
Cook the diced bacon over medium heat until crispy. Remove the bacon, leaving the bacon fat in the pot.
Add the chopped onion and celery and sauté until tender.
Stir in the minced garlic and Worcestershire sauce and cook for an additional minute. Sprinkle the flour over the vegetables and stir to coat them evenly.
Slowly pour in the clam juice while stirring constantly to prevent lumps from forming. Add the diced potatoes, bay leaf, and dried thyme. Bring the mixture to a simmer and cook until the potatoes are tender about 15-20 minutes.
Reduce the heat to low and stir in the heavy cream and drained chopped clams. Simmer for an additional 5-10 minutes until heated through. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
Remove the bay leaf from the chowder, and mix in the cooked bacon. Add salt and pepper to taste.
Check Out More Of My Delicious Recipes!
- Slow Cooker Bacon-Topped Corn Chowder
- Delicious Sweet Potato Soup
- Homemade Chicken Pot Pie
- Easy Homemade Tomato Soup
- Amazing Potato Soup
- 4 slices bacon, diced
- 1 medium onion, finely chopped
- 2 celery stalks, finely chopped
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
- 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 4 cups clam juice (reserved from canned clams or store-bought)
- 2 cups peeled and diced potatoes
- 1 bay leaf
- 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1 cup heavy whipping cream
- 2 cans (6.5 ounces each) chopped clams, drained
- Salt and pepper to taste
- In a large soup pot or Dutch oven, cook the diced bacon over medium heat until crispy. Remove the bacon with a slotted spoon and set aside, leaving the bacon fat in the pot.
- Add the chopped onion and celery to the pot and sauté until they become tender, about 5 minutes. Stir in the minced garlic and Worcestershire sauce and cook for an additional minute.
- Sprinkle the flour over the vegetables and stir to coat them evenly. Continue cooking for a few additional minutes to remove any lingering raw flour taste.
- Slowly pour in the clam juice while stirring constantly to prevent lumps from forming. Add the diced potatoes, bay leaf, and dried thyme. Bring the mixture to a simmer and cook until the potatoes are tender about 15-20 minutes. Reduce the heat to low and stir in the heavy cream and drained chopped clams. Simmer for an additional 5-10 minutes until heated through.
- Season with salt and pepper to taste. Remove the bay leaf from the chowder, and mix in the cooked bacon. Add salt and pepper to taste.
I. use SNOW’S Clam Juice and SNOW’S Bumble Bee Wild Caught Chopped Clams in Clam Juice to make this chowder.
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Amount Per Serving Calories 442Total Fat 27gSaturated Fat 15gTrans Fat 1gUnsaturated Fat 9gCholesterol 114mgSodium 1364mgCarbohydrates 31gFiber 3gSugar 4gProtein 21g