Easy Creamy Clam Chowder

Easy Creamy Clam Chowder ~ hearty, creamy chowder packed with clams, potatoes and bits of smoky bacon. Uses flavorful, budget friendly canned clams.

Soup | September 19, 2017 | By

Easy Creamy Clam Chowder ~ hearty, New England style chowder packed with clams, potatoes and bits of smoky bacon.

Easy Creamy Clam Chowder ~ hearty, creamy chowder packed with clams, potatoes and bits of smoky bacon. Uses flavorful, budget friendly canned clams.

You know by now how much I love soup and this Easy Creamy Clam Chowder is one of my favorites. Creamy, with bite size pieces of potato, bits of crispy Applewood smoked bacon and tender clams in almost every bite.

It’s a great one pot meal any time of the year and if you’re lucky enough to squirrel away some leftovers, they make the ideal lunch. 

If you’ve shied away from making clam chowder at home because you think it’s difficult or expensive, Easy Creamy Clam Chowder is your recipe ~ quick enough for weeknights, but is elevated enough to entertain with. 

Easy Creamy Clam Chowder ~ hearty, creamy chowder packed with clams, potatoes and bits of smoky bacon. Uses flavorful, budget friendly canned clams.

You’ve probably seen recipes calling for fresh clams, but I use canned in this recipe because it’s both easier and cost-effective without sacrificing flavor.

Easy Creamy Clam Chowder ~ hearty, creamy chowder packed with clams, potatoes and bits of smoky bacon. Uses flavorful, budget friendly canned clams.

I also adapted this recipe to use whole milk instead of the heavy cream you may see in other chowder recipes because whenever my grandkids visit I always buy whole milk for them to drink with their favorite goodies. Their leftover whole milk adds just the right amount of creaminess to this Easy Creamy Clam Chowder

Easy Creamy Clam Chowder ~ hearty, creamy chowder packed with clams, potatoes and bits of smoky bacon. Uses flavorful, budget friendly canned clams.

  • 4 slices Applewood smoked bacon
  • 1 medium carrot
  • 1 stalk of celery
  • 1 medium onion
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 2 cloves of garlic, grated
  • 3 small potatoes (Yukon used but russet or redskin are good also)
  • 8 ounce bottle of clam juice
  • 1/2 cup chicken stock
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons of Old Bay seasoning
  • 1 tablespoon of fresh thyme, minced
  • 1/2 cup of flour
  • 2 cups whole milk
  • 2 – 6.5 ounce cans of  clams and their juice
  • 2 tablespoons of flat leaf parsley, chopped

Easy Creamy Clam Chowder Instructions:

Easy Creamy Clam Chowder ~ hearty, creamy chowder packed with clams, potatoes and bits of smoky bacon. Uses flavorful, budget friendly canned clams.

Cook the bacon in a soup pot or Dutch oven until it’s crispy then remove it from the skillet, leaving the bacon fat in the pot.

Drop in the carrots, celery and onion, season with salt and pepper and cook about 5 minutes or until the carrots have started to soften then grate in the garlic and continue cooking another minute.

Home cook tip:

Seasoning isn’t a one-time event. Just as there are many levels to most dishes and they should be seasoned at every level. That doesn’t mean an excessive amount of seasoning; it means dividing the seasoning between the layers so the flavors develop throughout the dish and you only taste and make minor adjustments at the end.  

Add the potatoes then pour in the clam juice and chicken stock. Season with Old Bay seasoning, salt, pepper and fresh thyme. Cover the pot and cook over low heat about 5 minutes or until the potatoes and carrots are tender.

Easy Creamy Clam Chowder ~ hearty, creamy chowder packed with clams, potatoes and bits of smoky bacon. Uses flavorful, budget friendly canned clams.

In a medium bowl, whisk the flour and milk together then pour it into pot, stirring slowly and blending completely. 

Simmer uncovered 5-7 minutes or until it thickens.

Add the clams and their juices then rough chop the bacon and fold it into the chowder. Continue cooking over low heat 2-3 minutes then stir in the parsley.

Taste and add salt according to your preferences. 

Easy Creamy Clam Chowder ~ hearty, creamy chowder packed with clams, potatoes and bits of smoky bacon. Uses flavorful, budget friendly canned clams.

I love a nice bakery type bread with this chowder, oyster crackers or for the kids ~ some Goldfish crackers. 

Looking for another chowder recipe? Try the unique smoky flavors of this Smoked Salmon Chowder.

Enjoy!
Easy Creamy Clam Chowder ~ hearty, creamy chowder packed with clams, potatoes and bits of smoky bacon. Uses flavorful, budget friendly canned clams.

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Easy Creamy Clam Chowder
Ingredients
  • 4 slices Applewood smoked bacon
  • 1 medium carrot
  • 1 stalk celery
  • 1 medium onion
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 3 small potatoes (Yukon used)
  • 1/2 cup chicken stock
  • 2 cups whole milk
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 8 ounce bottle of clam juice
  • 2 6,5 ounce cans clams
  • 1 tablespoon fresh thyme minced
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons Old Bay seasoning
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 2 tablespoons fresh flat leaf parsley
Instructions
  1. Cook the bacon in a Dutch oven or soup pot until it’s crispy then remove it from the skillet, leaving the bacon fat in the pot.
  2. Finely chop the carrots, celery and onion and drop them into the pot. Season with salt and pepper and cook about 5 minutes or until the carrots have started to soften.

  3. Grate in the garlic and continue cooking another minute.
  4. Add the potatoes then pour in the clam juice and chicken stock and season with Old Bay seasoning, salt, pepper and fresh thyme. Cover the pot and cook over low heat about 5 minutes or until the potatoes and carrots are tender.

  5. In a medium bowl, whisk the flour and milk together then pour it into pot, stirring slowly and blending completely.
  6. Simmer uncovered about 5 minutes until it thickens.
  7. Add the clams, their juices and the bacon and continue cooking over low heat 2-3 minutes.
  8. Fold in the parsley, taste and add salt according to your preferences.