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Creamy Clam Chowder is full of hearty veggies, potatoes, and delicious clams, to give you the most thick and creamy chowder ever! It takes less than one hour to have this amazing soup on the table and ready to eat. You’re going to love this cold weather favorite!

A bowl of clam chowder.

We have been in love with clam chowder since we were kids. Clam chowder represents wonderful breezy days along the bay, eating delicious chowder in a bread bowl, with some of our favorite people. It is completely nostalgic, and absolutely delicious. Typically, we make this on some of the stormiest days in the winter. There’s nothing quite like a thick and creamy chowder to warm you to the bones. Go ahead and serve yourself an extra serving of this tonight, hopefully in an amazing sourdough bread bowl. You’re going to love this one!

Half and Half:

Store bought half and half is simply half heavy cream and half whole milk. If you cannot find half and half, you can simply use 1 cup whole milk and 1 cup heavy cream for this recipe. 

Clam Juice:

Yes, we know this seems strange to buy clam juice in a bottle, but that’s exactly what we’re doing. You can find clam juice in your local grocery store with the canned clams and tuna. 

New England, Manhattan, and Rhode Island Clam Chowder:

Phew, that’s a lot of chowders! Clam chowder originated in the northeast, and while there are many regional variations, the three most popular are the New England , Manhattan, and Rhode Island clam chowders. This recipe is a New England style clam chowder, because it is made with cream. 

Can I make Creamy Clam Chowder without bacon? 

Bacon is a traditional ingredient in clam chowder, and adds amazing flavor, but you can always leave it out. If you prefer to leave out the bacon, you will simply start by sautéing your veggies in butter.  

Toppings:

Clam chowder is fantastic as is, but we love to top it with shredded cheese, chives, or even crushed oyster crackers on top!

Overhead view of a bowl of clam chowder.

Storage and Reheating Instructions: 

Clam chowder is best served fresh. If you have leftovers, store them in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 4 days. Reheat in a saucepan on the stovetop over medium-low heat until warmed through. 

If you like this recipe, you may be interested in these other delicious soup recipes:

Watch the video below where Caytlin will walk you through every step of this recipe. Sometimes it helps to have a visual, and we’ve always got you covered with our cooking show. You can find the complete collection of recipes on YouTube, Facebook Watch, or our Facebook Page, or right here on our website with their corresponding recipes.

Overhead view of a bowl of clam chowder.
Creamy Clam Chowder is full of hearty veggies, potatoes, and delicious clams, to give you the most thick and creamy chowder ever! It takes less than one hour to have this amazing soup on the table and ready to eat. You’re going to love this cold weather favorite!
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes
Ingredients
  • 1/2 pound thick cut bacon , diced
  • 1 medium yellow onion , diced
  • 2 ribs celery , diced
  • 1 carrot finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons minced garlic
  • 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
  • 3 cups low sodium chicken broth
  • 2 cups half and half
  • 1 cup clam juice
  • 3 large russet potatoes , diced
  • 3 (6.5 ounce) cans clams in juices, chopped or minced
  • 1 teaspoon salt , or to taste
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese (optional)
  • 1 tablespoon minced chives (optional)
Instructions
  • Heat a large soup pot over medium heat. Add in diced bacon and cook until crispy, stirring occasionally. Use a slotted spoon to remove crispy bacon and transfer to a paper towel lined plate and set aside. Remove and set aside excess bacon grease from skillet, leaving just 1 tablespoon of grease in the pot.
  • Return pot to medium-high heat. Add in onion, chopped celery and carrots and saute 7 minutes, until soft and translucent. Add in 2 tablespoons of the bacon grease and garlic. Stir in flour and cook an additional 2-3 minutes.
  • Slowly pour in chicken broth, half and half, and clam juice. Add in potatoes and bring to a simmer. Reduce the heat to medium-low and continue simmering until potatoes are soft and tender, about 15-20 minutes.
  • Once potatoes are tender, add in the chopped clams. Simmer for an additional 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
  • Serve hot topped with cooked bacon, chives, and a sprinkle of cheddar cheese.
Notes

Nutrition

Calories: 661kcal | Carbohydrates: 65g | Protein: 20g | Fat: 37g | Saturated Fat: 18g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 4g | Monounsaturated Fat: 13g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 90mg | Sodium: 992mg | Potassium: 1518mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 5g | Vitamin A: 2498IU | Vitamin C: 20mg | Calcium: 257mg | Iron: 3mg
Course: Soup
Cuisine: American
Keyword: clam chowder
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