In this light clam chowder recipe, traditional heavy cream is replaced with milk and flour-thickened clam juice, resulting in a creamy, satisfying chowder that isn't quite so heavy.
Total cook time
- 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil,
- 1 cup diced onion,
- 1 cup diced celery,
- ½ cup all-purpose flour,
- ½ teaspoon dried thyme,
- ¼ teaspoon salt,
- ¼ teaspoon ground pepper,
- 1 bay leaf,
- 4 cups clam juice or seafood stock,
- 1 cup whole milk,
- 3 cups diced white potatoes,
- 1 16-ounce container chopped fresh clams (plus their liquid), thawed if frozen,
- Chopped cooked bacon for garnish,
- Snipped chives for garnish,
Heat oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add onion and celery; cook, stirring frequently, until softened and beginning to brown, 3 to 6 minutes. Sprinkle flour, thyme, salt, pepper and bay leaf over the vegetables and cook, stirring, for 1 minute more. Add clam juice (or seafood stock) and milk; bring to a gentle boil, stirring constantly.
Stir in potatoes and bring just to a simmer. Simmer, uncovered, stirring occasionally, until the potatoes are tender, 12 to 15 minutes.
Add clams and cook, stirring frequently, until cooked through, 2 to 4 minutes. Serve topped with bacon and chives, if desired.
All recipe ingredients should be cooked to a safe internal temperature according to USDA guidelines. After preparing a recipe, please store any leftovers in the refrigerator.