This New England Clam Chowder is the cozy bowl of seafood goodness you need in your life. The creamy, perfectly seasoned broth is loaded with clams and potatoes. Oh, and there’s bacon!
Once you make your own homemade clam chowder, you’ll never bother ordering it in restaurants, because yours is better!
Soup season is in full swing. We’ve been brining you a lot lately, from the 15 minute easy Wonton Soup, to low and slow simmered Hungarian Goulash, to the outrageously tasty Puerto Rican shrimp soup, Asopao de Camarones.
This time we’re bringing you something a little more close to home, something you’ve all had before in restaurants, or (gasp!) out of a can.
But if you’ve never tried making clam chowder at home, now is the time, because this recipe is the best!
Why We Love this Clam Chowder Recipe
- It’s an easy recipe that requires little hands on time.
- Since we’re using canned clams, it’s budget friendly while still being loaded with clams.
- It’s family friendly, even your picky eaters will love this cozy bowl.
- You can easily double the recipe to feed a big crowd.
What’s the Difference Between New England Clam Chowder and Manhattan Clam Chowder?
These two clam chowder variations are totally different. New England clam chowder, which we’re making today, is thick with a white, creamy broth.
Manhattan Clam chowder has a thinner broth that’s clear and tomato based. We’ll have to cook that up for you soon!
New England Clam Chowder Ingredients
- Bacon – What a great start!
- Aromatics – Onion, celery and garlic.
- Flour – To make a roux.
- Canned chopped clams – Along with their liquid.
- For soup base – Chicken broth, milk, half & half.
- Seasonings – Bay leaf, thyme, oregano, paprika, salt and pepper.
- Potatoes – Peeled and diced.
- Parsley – For garnish.
How to Make Clam Chowder
Making clam chowder is a pretty simple affair…
In a soup pot or dutch oven, fry the bacon till it is crisp. Remove it to a plate, and remove all but 2 tablespoons of the bacon grease.
Add your aromatics and cook till soft. Add in the flour and stir till there are no more clumps.
Then gradually add milk, cream, chicken stock, the liquid from the clams, and seasonings. Simmer 5-10 minutes. Add the potatoes and cook till they are soft. Taste and adjust for salt.
Finally, stir in the clams, garnish with crumbled bacon and parsley, and serve!
- Depending on the strength of the chicken broth, you may not need additional salt. We like to wait till the potatoes are cooked before tasting and adjusting.
- Don’t be shy with the herbs, they really add to this chowder.
- For a thicker chowder, simmer it longer before adding the potatoes. Using starchier potatoes, like russett, can also thicken it up.
What to Serve with New England Clam Chowder
New England clam chowder is traditionally served with oyster crackers, so have some of those handy, as well as a bottle of hot sauce for those who like a little kick.
We love some nice crusty bread with soups. Give our easy No Knead Bread a try, it goes perfect with this chowder.
Leftovers and Storage
Refrigerate leftover clam chowder in a covered container for up to 4 days. Reheat on the stovetop over medium heat, or in the microwave.
We don’t recommend freezing clam chowder, as the consistency will be off when reheated.
Cook up a big pot of this easy New England clam chowder. It’s the perfect winter warmer that you’ll want to make again and again.
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New England Clam Chowder, on our Gypsy Plate… enjoy!
- 6 slices bacon
- 1/2 small onion, diced
- 3 stalks celery, diced
- 3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
- 1/2 cup flour
- 4 6.5oz cans chopped clams, juices reserved
- 1 cup chicken broth
- 1 cup milk
- 1 cup half & half
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 tsp dried thyme
- 1 tsp dried oregano
- 1/8 tsp paprika
- 2 medium potatoes, peeled and diced into 1/2 to 3/4 inch cubes
- salt to taste
- pepper to taste
- parsley, for garnish
- In a soup pot or dutch oven, fry the bacon till it is crisp. Remove it to a plate, and remove all but 2 tablespoons of the bacon grease.
- Add onion, celery and garlic. Cook, stirring occasionally, until soft.
- Add flour. Stir till there are no more clumps.
- Gradually add clam juice, chicken broth, milk and half & half, stirring continuously. Add bay leaves, thyme, oregano and paprika. Simmer 5-10 minutes.
- Add potatoes and continue cooking until they are soft, about 15-25 minutes, depending on the size and type of potato.
- Add clams. Taste and adjust for salt and pepper.
- Garnish with crumbled bacon and chopped parsley. Serve immediately.
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