Save on Pinterest

Manhattan Clam Chowder

Total Time

Prep: 10 min. Cook: 40 min.


8 servings (about 2 quarts)

Updated: Apr. 22, 2022
I typically serve this chowder with a tossed salad and hot rolls. It is easy to make and tastes wonderful on a cold winter evening. My family has enjoyed it for more than 30 years. —Joan Hopewell, Columbus, New Jersey
Manhattan Clam Chowder Recipe photo by Taste of Home


  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 cup chopped onion
  • 2/3 cup chopped celery
  • 2 teaspoons minced green pepper
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 2 cups hot water
  • 1 cup cubed peeled potatoes
  • 1 can (28 ounces) diced tomatoes, undrained
  • 2 cans (6-1/2 ounces each) minced clams, undrained
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • Dash cayenne pepper
  • 2 teaspoons minced fresh parsley


  1. In a large saucepan, heat butter over low heat. Add onion, celery, green pepper and garlic; cook, stirring frequently, for 20 minutes. Add water and potatoes; bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer, covered, until potatoes are tender, about 15 minutes.
  2. Add tomatoes, clams, salt, thyme, pepper and cayenne; heat through. Stir in parsley. Serve immediately.

Manhattan Clam Chowder Tips

What's the difference between New England and Manhattan clam chowder?

You can tell these two types of soup apart by the cream. Manhattan clam chowder does not contain cream, while New England clam chowder does. Manhattan uses a tomato base instead and typically calls for more vegetables compared to the New England version.

What is the origin of Manhattan clam chowder?

Manhattan clam chowder originated from a soup cookbook published in 1934 by Virginia Elliot and Robert Jones, long after New England clam chowder was born. When Manhattan chowder came to be, many were in an uproar for it competing with the New England original. A Maine legislator even introduced a bill that outlawed the use of tomatoes in any clam chowder recipe! Today, both New England and Manhattan chowders are loved, but there is still a healthy competition between the two.

Can you make this recipe in a Crock-Pot?

With some slight alternations, you can make Manhattan clam chowder in a Crock-Pot or Instant Pot on the slow cooker setting. Check out the directions for our slow-cooker Manhattan clam chowder recipe.

Can you make this recipe with fresh clams?

Yes, you can use fresh clams for this recipe by steaming and mincing the clams before making the chowder. To steam, place clams in a covered stockpot with a cup and a half of water. Cook for about 8-10 minutes on medium-high, or until shells pop open. Remove shells from stockpot and scoop clam meat out. Mince clam meat and voila! Your clams are ready.

How long does homemade Manhattan clam chowder last in the fridge?

Manhattan clam chowder can last between 1-2 days in the refrigerator. Also, keep in mind if you shuck fresh clams, they will last for 1-2 days as well. If you'd like to enjoy your chowder for longer, you can also freeze it. We recommending freezing this recipe for up to 3 months in an airtight freezer container. Get more tips with our complete guide for how to freeze soup.

Nutrition Facts

1 cup: 91 calories, 3g fat (2g saturated fat), 15mg cholesterol, 652mg sodium, 13g carbohydrate (5g sugars, 3g fiber), 5g protein.

Recommended Video