Clam Chowder

We make Clam Chowder all year long! A creamy and comforting chowder recipe loaded with potatoes, bacon and clams!

We’re soup obsessed in our house – we make different kinds of soup recipes all year long, no matter what the temperature is. Our popular Beefy Tomato Soup is always on the menu, or more chowder recipes like this Chicken Corn Chowder!

Clam chowder in a bowl with crackers

New England Clam Chowder Recipe

This creamy classic chowder is one of our favorite dinners to make! Serve it in the summer with corn on the cob or bunker down with a big bowl in the winter with lots of fresh bread and extra crackers on the side.

We use canned, chopped clams in this soup recipe to make it easy. You can, of course use fresh clams too if you have them on hand, but we find that grabbing a few cans of clams works just as well!

How Do You Make Clam Chowder From Scratch?

Start by cooking a few slices of bacon, right in the soup pot. Drain off all but a few tablespoons of the bacon drippings, and then cook your onions, garlic and potatoes right in there.

Once the vegetables have softened, add flour to make a roux (this is what helps thicken the chowder) and the pour in chicken stock and clam juice. Bring to a simmer whilw scraping up the bottom of the pot and whisking out any lumps.

Clam chowder in a pot with bacon

Once the chowder has thickened, pour in milk and heavy cream along with a few cans of chopped clams and their juice. Simmer the Clam Chowder for 20 minutes, partially covered over medium low heat.

Stir the chowder often so that the potatoes don’t stick to the bottom of the pot as it cooks.

After 20 minutes, stir in the cooked bacon and taste the chowder for seasonings. Serve with crackers or bread on the side for dipping.

Chowder recipe in soup ladle

What Are The Best Potatoes To Use For Clam Chowder?

You definitely want to use a russet potato to make New England Clam Chowder. The starch in russet potatoes helps to thicken the chowder, unlike a more waxy potato like red potatoes or Yukon Golds.

But if those potatoes are what you have on hand, of course go ahead and use them up. You might have to thicken the chowder a little more as it cooks but it’s going to be delicious either way.

Creamy chowder recipe in a bowl with bacon and crackers

How Long Does Clam Chowder Stay Good For?

Homemade clam chowder will keep for 3-4 days in the refrigerator. Reheat the chowder in the microwave or on the stove top for an easy lunch or dinner! If the chowder gets too thick as it sits in the refrigerator, just add a splash or two of chicken broth and thin it out.

Can You Freeze Clam Chowder?

Like most cream based soups, clam chowder doesn’t freeze well. You could make the chowder up until the part where you add the cream and milk, then freeze and finish the soup after thawing.

But as far as saving leftover chowder, you’re best best is just to finish it up!

Looking For More Soup Recipes?

Creamy chowder recipe in a bowl with bacon and crackers

Clam Chowder

  • Author: Dan
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 25 minutes
  • Total Time: 35 minutes
  • Yield: 6 Servings 1x

Creamy and comforting New England Clam Chowder is always on our dinner menu! Packed with potatoes, crispy bacon and clams, this chowder is the whole meal!



  • 6 slices bacon, diced
  • 1 cup diced onion
  • 3 cups diced russet potatoes
  • 12 tablespoons garlic
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 1 cup chicken stock
  • 8 ounces clam juice
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 3 cans (6.5 ounce each) chopped clams with juice
  • 1 tablespoon fresh thyme, chopped (or 1 teaspoon dried thyme)
  • Kosher salt and black pepper to taste
  • Fresh parsley for garnish


  1. Cook the bacon in a large soup pot until crisp. Let cool, then chop the bacon and set aside. Drain all but 3 tablespoons of the bacon drippings, then add the onions, potatoes and garlic. Season with salt (going light with the salt as the bacon will add a lot of salt to this chowder) and pepper to taste, and the thyme. Cook for 5-7 minutes until the vegetables have softened and then sprinkle in the flour. Stir the flour into the potatoes and onions and cook for 1 minute.
  2. Pour the chicken broth and clam juice into the pot, scraping up the bottom of the pot as you stir. Bring to a simmer for 5 minutes to let the soup thicken. Stir in the milk, cream and clams with the juice from the cans.
  3. Bring the chowder to a simmer and cook partially covered for 20 minutes. Stir the chowder often so that the potatoes don’t stick to the bottom of the pot.
  4. After 20 minutes, check to make sure the potatoes are tender, then stir in the cooked, chopped bacon. Taste for seasonings and add more salt and pepper if needed.
  • Category: Dinner
  • Method: Stove Top
  • Cuisine: American

Keywords: mantitlement, soup recipe, chowder recipes, new england clam chowder, clam chowder, chowder recipe, seafood chowder

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