March 31, 2014

Guy Fieri's Chunky New England Clam Chowder

I was so excited to make this Chunky New England Clam Chowder tonight! This is one of the dishes I love to eat out and have always wanted to make at home. I still remember having "real" clam chowder for the first time in San Francisco a loooong time ago on a family vacay after I graduated high school. All the little shops and carts along the Wharf sold Clam Chowder in a bread bowl. Of course, my Dad and I had to try it and I still remember how tasty it was! Unfortunately, I haven't been able to take a trip to Boston yet to try their chowda but this recipe will just have to do for now!
All dressed up with the family in San Fran.
After San Fran, we went to Seattle then took a cruise to Vancouver. A once in a lifetime trip!
A few months ago I caught an episode of Guy's Big Bite with Guy Fieri on Food Network and he was making Mike's Clam Chowder with his Chef friend Jay from Boston. Out of all the recipe for chowder I have seen this one seemed the easiest, with easy to find ingredients and not a lot of prep and looked delicious. And, I, like most of America, love Guy Fieri so if he says this chowda is the bomb, well then it is! Serve in a sourdough bread bowl with oyster crackers to complete the true chowda experience!



Makes 8 servings
  • 5 cups clam juice
  • 1 pound potatoes, diced (I used 2 large baking potatoes, peeled)
  • 5 slices thick cut bacon, 1/2-inch dice
  • 1 small yellow onion, diced
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 1 tablespoon freshly chopped thyme leaves (or 1 tsp dried thyme)
  • 1/2 stick butter (4 tbsp)
  • 1/2-3/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 cups half and half
  • 2 pounds fresh or frozen clams, diced
  • 2 tablespoons freshly chopped parsley leaves
  • Kosher salt and white pepper, to taste


  1. Bring the clam juice and diced potatoes to a boil in a large soup pot. 
  2. Cook until the potatoes are tender. Set aside.
  3. To make roux: In a pot, render the bacon, until crispy. 
  4. Stir in the onion until it's translucent.
  5.  Add bay leaves, thyme and butter and let it melt. 
  6. Whisk in the flour and let the roux cook until it turns golden brown, about 3 to 4 minutes.
  7. Bring the clam juice and potato back to a boil. 
  8. Whisk in a ladleful of clam juice into the roux then gradually whisk the roux into the soup pot until it thickens. 
  9. Then whisk in the half and half and heat to a simmer while whisking. 
  10. Add the clams and let simmer for 2 to 3 minutes. 
  11. Remove bay leaves and discard. 
  12. Then add the parsley and kosher salt and pepper to taste. 
  13. Serve hot with oyster crackers and in a bread bowl if you would like!
Recipe from Guy's Big Bite on Food Network .
First I cubed thick cut bacon.
Then I rendered it down in a large skillet over medium heat, stirring occasionally.
Once the bacon in crispy, add the diced onion and cook until translucent.
Do not drain the bacon fat- that's your flavor and part of the roux!
You need 5 cups of clam juice for this recipe. Here are the two brands of clam juice I found at my store. Each bottle is 8oz or 1 cup.
Peel and cube your potatoes and add to a large soup pot with your 5 cups of clam juice. Bring to a boil and cook until the potatoes are fork tender, about 10-15 minutes. Remove from heat.
Once your onions are done, add bay leaves, thyme, and butter and let mix and melt.
Now whisk in 1/2 cup flour and let cook. Add up to 1/4 cup more flour if needed to thicken the roux.
 After about 4 minutes it should be thickened and golden brown.
The finished roux! Now add 1 ladle of the clam juice and potato liquid to the roux, whisking to combine.
Remove and discard bay leaves.
Bring the clam juice and potatoes back to a boil. Then add in roux, a scoop at a time, to the clam juice mix. Whisk until it thickens.
Now add 2 cups half and half and whisk until it comes to a simmer.
I bought these fresh shucked, chopped clams at Joe Patti's Seafood Market when I visited Pensacola on my last trip back home. You need 2 lbs for this recipe.

Add chopped clams (drained) to your simmering soup and let cook for 2-3 minutes. Turn heat to low.

Add chopped parsley and salt and pepper.
Some stores and delis sell pre-cut bread bowls.
 I found a sourdough loaf at my bakery and cut it into a bowl.
Serve in a sourdough bread bowl with extra bread or crackers for dipping!
This chunky chowder is loaded with tasty ingredients and full of flavor..and guess what?
 It only takes 25 minutes to make!
I would love to hear what you and your family think of this chowder. Comment below!
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  1. I love Guy Fieri! This looks amazing! I'm a bit under the weather now, so this is going on my must make list. Thanks for sharing!

  2. how many servings would you say this is for?

  3. I would like to know the answer to that too.

    1. 8 servings. Thanks for pointing out that I forgot this! I added it above too.

  4. Instead of bacon fat and flour (roux) I like to use instant garlic mashed potatoes to thicken the broth. Less fat and more potato flavor, just add a bit at a time until the consistency you like.

  5. We have fresh razor clams that we will be using in this recipe. Do we need to pre-cook the clams?

    1. Nope, just add them to the broth and they will cook that way. If you precook them they will get tough.

  6. This looks fantastic! Have you tried freezing it, and reheating it later? I’m on the prowl for good freezer meals.

    Heard about Fishing Lodge Alaska

    1. Yes! This soup is easy to freeze flat in large ziploc bags and reheat on the stovetop later.

  7. I have fresh raw clams still in the shell. How do I use them to make this chowder?


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