Creamy Clam Chowder
I love Clam Chowder and this recipe for Creamy Clam Chowder is my favourite. It is a little less traditional than some that I have seen but I think it is really good and isn’t
super finicky or time consuming to make. It really reminds me of the Clam Chowder you get at Earl’s Restaurants.
Today was a super rainy day here in the Columbia Valley which is great for my trees and grass but not so good for my plans to till my garden today. Had to give that plan a hard pass! What the rain did do, though, was make me crave some soup. I love soup, especially on a cool, rainy day.
Everything is better with bacon so I start by grabbing my soup pot and rendering some chopped bacon until crispy. I remove the bacon from the pot and set aside. I keep the bacon fat in the pot. Then, I add chopped leeks, celery, carrots, roma tomatoes, and garlic to that pot to saute them. Once the vegetables have softened, I add some fresh thyme, tarragon, bay leaf, salt and pepper.
Meanwhile, while the veggies are cooking, I melt butter in a small pot and add corn starch. Mix it well and cook it for a few minutes before adding it to the veggie pot. Many recipes call for flour but I use corn starch or potato starch so the recipe is gluten-free.
Sorry to my dairy-free readers but this soup isn’t one that you can remove the dairy. Ok, maybe you can, but I don’t. I don’t think it lends itself to any of the dairy substitutes.
Mix together equal amounts of milk and heavy cream. Add the mixture to the soup pot and add back the bacon and two cans of baby clams along with some clam juice. At this point, I also add diced baker potatoes. I like the baking potatoes because they are little higher in starch which adds to the creaminess of the soup. Cook on medium-low to low until the potatoes are done.
Creamy Clam Chowder is a delicious, decadent hug in a bowl. Try it and let me know how you like it. If you aren’t trying to keep it gluten-free, feel free to add some Sourdough Croutons on top and finish with some fresh parsley.
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Creamy Clam Chowder
- 6-8 slices bacon chopped
- 1 cup leeks chopped
- 3 cloves garlic minced
- 1 cup celery chopped
- 1 cup carrots chopped small
- 1 cup roma tomatoes chopped
- 1/4 cup clam juice
- 2 tbsp thyme fresh
- 1 tsp pepper
- 1 tsp sea salt
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 tsp tarragon dried
- 1/4 cup butter
- 1/4 cup corn starch
- 1 1/2 cup milk
- 1 1/2 cup heavy cream
- 1 baker potato peeled and diced
- 2 cans baby clams 126 gram size
Render bacon on medium heat in your soup pot until it is crispy, then set aside. Retain bacon fat in pot.
Add the chopped leeks, celery, carrots, and tomatoes to the soup pot and saute on medium or medium-low for a couple of minutes. Then add the fresh thyme, salt, pepper, dried tarragon, bay leaf and clam juice. Continue cooking until vegetables are softened. While vegetables are cooking, get a small pot and melt butter.
Once the butter is melted, add the corn starch and mix well. Cook for a few minutes before adding to the soup pot.
Add the cans of clams in their juice, milk and heavy cream to the pot along with the potatoes and the reserved bacon. Cook on medium-low to low until potatoes are cooked through. Approximately 20 - 30 minutes.
Taste the broth and adjust for seasoning, adding salt and pepper to taste.