Contest-Winning New England Clam Chowder Recipe
Contest-Winning New England Clam Chowder Recipe photo by Taste of Home
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Contest-Winning New England Clam Chowder Recipe

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In the Pacific Northwest, we dig our own razor clams and I grind them for the chowder! Since these aren't readily available, the canned clams are perfectly acceptable. —Sandy Larson, Port Angeles, Washington
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 20 min. Cook: 35 min.
MAKES:5 servings
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 20 min. Cook: 35 min.
MAKES: 5 servings


  • 4 center-cut bacon strips
  • 2 celery ribs, chopped
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 3 small potatoes, peeled and cubed
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 bottle (8 ounces) clam juice
  • 3 teaspoons reduced-sodium chicken bouillon granules
  • 1/4 teaspoon white pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 cups fat-free half-and-half, divided
  • 2 cans (6-1/2 ounces each) chopped clams, undrained

Nutritional Facts

1-1/3 cups: 260 calories, 4g fat (1g saturated fat), 22mg cholesterol, 788mg sodium, 39g carbohydrate (9g sugars, 3g fiber), 13g protein.


  1. In a Dutch oven, cook bacon over medium heat until crisp. Remove to paper towels to drain; set aside. Saute celery and onion in the drippings until tender. Add garlic; cook 1 minute longer. Stir in the potatoes, water, clam juice, bouillon, pepper and thyme. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer, uncovered, for 15-20 minutes or until potatoes are tender.
  2. In a small bowl, combine flour and 1 cup half-and-half until smooth. Gradually stir into soup. Bring to a boil; cook and stir for 1-2 minutes or until thickened.
  3. Stir in clams and remaining half-and-half; heat through (do not boil). Crumble the cooked bacon; sprinkle over each serving. Yield: 5 servings.
Originally published as New England Clam Chowder in Healthy Cooking October/November 2008, p31

Reviews for Contest-Winning New England Clam Chowder

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MY REVIEW User ID: 8892696 250355
Reviewed Jul. 12, 2016

"Was so flavorful im glad i made it. I served it with garlic bread sticks!"

mwajr User ID: 8833959 247050
Reviewed Apr. 13, 2016

"I substituted 2 leeks (mostly the white parts) for the onion, unsalted chicken broth for the bullion and added salt to taste. This is a great recipe!! Thanks for sharing."

abashu User ID: 6784654 244555
Reviewed Feb. 27, 2016

"I have a recipe I love and thought I would give this one a try. My old favorite is much better."

kvanvuren User ID: 5637536 244427
Reviewed Feb. 24, 2016

"This was the first time I made clam chowder and I made this for supper tonight. My family and I really liked it! I doubled the recipe, more than doubled the potatoes and decreased the half and half to 3 cups, instead of 4 cups with the recipe doubled.

Thank you for the recipe!"

cclaudiamc User ID: 1015500 243364
Reviewed Feb. 7, 2016

"This was an excellent recipe for clam chowder. I did use 3 cans of clams which I drained and added the juice to the water for cooking the potatoes and did not buy 8 oz. of just clam juice separetly. I also used 1/4 instead of 1/3 cup flour because I did not want it too thick, it was perfect for us with 1/4 cup flour. I wish the reviewer "from New England" had been more specific in why she would not make this again. A negative remark with no explanation is of no help at all. Enlighten us please as to why you made it in the first place since you have stated it "is definetly NOT New England Clm Chowder.""

cbenne12 User ID: 7424916 242427
Reviewed Jan. 24, 2016

"Will not be making this again. Coming from New England, this is definitely NOT New England Clam Chowder."

Blgrubb User ID: 8691908 241464
Reviewed Jan. 10, 2016

"Made Clam Chowder for the first time...glad it was this recipe. It was excellent. My husband & I couldn't quit eating it. Followed the recipe exactly except I added an extra can of clams, but drained them. Already planning when to make it again."

Lovepiggs User ID: 986676 238645
Reviewed Dec. 3, 2015

"My first time making clam chowder. I'm glad I chose this recipe. It was delicious. We like it a little thicker, so next time I'll adjust the flour and liquid accordingly. But it was still very good. I used chicken broth instead of water, otherwise followed recipe exactly.

Oh, also, I added one carrot chopped into very small pieces."

SkylerHale User ID: 8620255 237498
Reviewed Nov. 16, 2015

"amazing my dad said it was like a restaurant."

whirleycook User ID: 6530905 236274
Reviewed Nov. 3, 2015

"I did make some minor changes but basically this is a great recipe. Great for a rainy day. I used fresh thyme, not dried. Used a small dice for the potatoes. I used whole fat half and half cuz I couldn't find fat free. I made the roux in a separate pot, using about 1/4 cup of flour instead of 1/3, and stirred it into the potato clam juice mixture. My potatoes were soft but a little teeny bit firm at about 12 minutes. I found that I didn't really need very much thinning at the end so I used only about 1/4 cup of the half and half there. Result was a lovely delicious thick and creamy chowder that is the best I've ever made. Served it with fresh baguette bread and butter. Hubs an I ate the whole pot and I had to make another the following day because we didn't get enough! Thanks for sharing the recipe."

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