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top view of a creamy chowder soup and two plates next to it with crunchy round bread bowls on white plates with the top perfectly cut off and chunky cream soup and a spoon

Clam Chowder

  • Author: Melissa Griffiths - Bless this Mess
  • Total Time: 55 minutes
  • Yield: Serves 6
  • Diet: Gluten Free


You'll love how quick and easy this clam chowder recipe is and your family will love it as much as mine. It's rich and creamy but oh so simple to make. 


  • 4 tablespoons butter
  • 2 to 3 stalks celery, chopped (about 1 cup)
  • 1 medium onion, chopped (about 1 cup)
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic or 2 cloves minced
  • 2 pounds potatoes, peeled and cut into 1/2 inch pieces
  • 2 teaspoons dried thyme leaves (or 1 tablespoon fresh)
  • 2 jars clam juice (8 ounce jars)
  • 2 can minced clams with juice (6.5 ounce cans)
  • 4 cups chicken or seafood stock
  • 1 cup cold water
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • chopped fresh chives for serving, optional
  • bread bowls or oyster crackers for serving, optional


  1. In a large stockpot or Dutch oven add the butter, chopped celery, and onion, and cook over medium high heat, stirring occasionally, until the onion is tender, about 5 minutes.
  2. Add the garlic and stir until fragrant, about 30 seconds.
  3. Add the potatoes, thyme, clams with juice, clam juice, and chicken stock to the pan. Bring the mixture to a boil and then reduce to medium. Add a lid to the pot and simmer until the potatoes are tender, about 20 minutes.
  4. When the potatoes are tender add the cold water to a small bowl and whisk in the cornstarch. Add the cornstarch mixture to the stock pot and stir to combine. Let the mixture simmer for 3 more minutes.
  5. Add the cream, salt, and pepper and remove from the heat.
  6. Adjust the salt and pepper to taste.
  7. Serve in bread bowl or normal bowls with chopped chives and oyster crackers


  • I really like Snow's brand clams.
  • You can add more clams to this recipe and you can replace some of the chicken stock with more clam juice. The taste is great. This is just how I make it for my family because it's a little more economical like this.
  • I've made this with new red potatoes and I didn't peel them. That works just fine too.
  • I don't like bacon in my clam chowder, I think it hides the clam flavor. That being said, if you do like it, fry up 4-6 pieces in your Dutch oven first, remove the bacon and cook the veggies in the remaining bacon grease instead of butter. Add the crumbled cooked bacon before serving.
  • If you have the time you can cook the potatoes longer than just to the tender stage. Sometimes I'll cook them an extra 15-20 minutes until they are super super tender, it makes the soup thicker and we like it like this too.
  • Prep Time: 15 min
  • Cook Time: 40 min
  • Category: main dish
  • Method: stove top
  • Cuisine: American

Keywords: how to make clam chowder, clam chowder, clam chowder recipe, clam chowder with canned clams, clam chowder without fresh clams, clam chowder without bacon