Manhattan Clam Chowder

6 to 8 main course servings
  • 8 pounds quahog or large cherrystone clams, scrubbed and rinsed, opened clams discarded
  • 4 slices bacon, cut into 1/2-inch lengths
  • 2 cups finely chopped onion
  • 1 cup finely chopped celery
  • 1/2 cup chopped bell pepper
  • 3/4 cup diced carrot
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons minced garlic
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons dried oregano leaves
  • 4 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • 1 1/4 pounds potatoes, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch cubes (about 3 cups)
  • 1 cup chicken stock
  • 3 cups peeled, seeded and chopped tomatoes or 1 (28-ounce) can whole tomatoes, chopped and juices reserved
  • 1/4 cup chopped parsley leaves
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • Salt

In a large stockpot bring 2 cups of water to a boil. Add clams, cover and cook for 5 minutes. Uncover, quickly stir clams well with a wooden spoon, and recover. Allow clams to cook 5 to 10 minutes longer (this will depend on the type and size of clams you are using), or until most of the clams are opened. Transfer clams to a large bowl or baking dish and strain broth through a fine-meshed sieve into a bowl. (You should have about 6 cups of clam broth. If not, add enough water to bring the volume up to 6 cups.) When clams are cool enough to handle, remove them from their shells and chop into 1/2-inch pieces. Set clams and broth aside.

In a large heavy pot add bacon and render until golden and crispy. Pour off all fat except 4 tablespoons. Add onions, celery, bell pepper and carrots and cook for 10 minutes, until vegetables are softened. Do not allow to color. Add garlic, bay leaves, oregano, thyme and crushed red pepper and cook an additional 2 minutes. Increase heat to high and add potatoes, reserved clam broth, and chicken stock and bring to a boil, covered. Cook for 20 minutes, or until potatoes are tender and the broth has thickened somewhat. Add tomatoes and continue to cook for 10 to 15 minutes. Remove the pot from the heat and add reserved clams and parsley and season with pepper and salt, if necessary. Allow chowder to sit for up to 1 hour to allow flavors to meld, then reheat slowly over low fire if necessary. Do not allow to boil.

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4.8 66
WOW!!! Awesome Chowder!!!! item not reviewed by moderator and published
Pretty good, but was a little bland item not reviewed by moderator and published
Too spicy! I made the canned clam version and followed the recipe exactly. The chowder tasted more like chili, not chowder. If I make this again I will only use a good pinch of red pepper. item not reviewed by moderator and published
Awesome recipe! item not reviewed by moderator and published
Super easy recipe and delicious! out of this world! Thank you for this recipe. item not reviewed by moderator and published
Great recipe. Tasting the next day, after all ingredients had time to really mix flavors resulted in a very pleasing end result. I substituted sweet potatoes for the white potatoes and used fresh fennel instead of celery. Next time I'll use 10 lbs of Cherrystones instead of 8. item not reviewed by moderator and published
Delicious Manhattan clam chowder. I did use canned chopped clams, baby clams and bottled clam juice. I didn't have fresh clams, it is an excellent soup! Simple to make, awesome flavors. I used fresh plum tomatoes too. item not reviewed by moderator and published
Best Manhattan Chowder I have ever had. I followed the directions almost to the letter, but used canned clams instead with their broth, and some homemade chicken stock that I'd made from a smoked chicken, which gave it another layer of flavor. I also stuck an immersion blender in before I added the tomatoes to thicken the soup, which I would highly recommend. Fantastic flavor! item not reviewed by moderator and published
Really delicious. I am in California so was not able to get fresh clams but my butcher had frozen which were terrific. I actually followed the recipe which is unusual only substituting Aleppo pepper for the red crushed. My family likes spicy so Tapatio was on the table to suit them. I will make this a regular chowder as I prefer this over the heavier cream based Boston style. Fabulous and easy and with sourdough from SF it was the real deal. item not reviewed by moderator and published
It may be worth the fresh clams but I didn't have any. I didn't have celery or bacon. Ok, it's too cold outside to go out so I made it with what I already have. I used 2 cans of baby clams, and sauted the onions in 2 tbsp. butter and 1/8 cup olive oil. Everything else was per the recipe. OMG, I did not miss the bacon and the flavor was amazing. I will make this again exactly how I made it, except I would buy celery next time. This is a keeper!!!! item not reviewed by moderator and published
I'm sorry but if you leave out half the ingredients how can you give it less than five stars? You didn't make the recipe. item not reviewed by moderator and published
I didn't have any clams so I used a can of tuna and some cheese whiz. Delicious! item not reviewed by moderator and published