Steamed clams are cooked together with wine wine, garlic, a touch of butter and loads of fresh herbs. And have extra crusty bread ready to soak up the delicious broth.
There's a short handful of meals I'll ask for on big celebratory dinner nights. Either steamed mussels or steamed clams. I know, I'm a cheap date huh?
Leave me with a big bowl of steamed clams with garlic, white wine and maybe a touch of butter, some crusty bread and a tall glass of chilled pinot grigio and I am one happy, possibly slurpy, with buttery clam broth all over me-gal!
Great side dishes to serve with Shellfish:
Roasted Cauliflower with Rosemary and Raisins
How to clean clams before cooking
Now before we get into the steaming, lets talk about how to properly clean clams first. Honestly, it takes longer to clean clams then to cook them, but worth it so you don't bite into a hard piece of sand.
- Once you bring home the clams, place them on ice and leave in the fridge until you're ready to cook them later (usually on the same day).
- 30 minutes before you're ready to cook, place the clams in a large bowl of cold tap water. This help the clams spit out any sand that may be inside.
- Right when you're ready to cook, use a small brush or towel to scrub the outside of each clam. Then, you're ready to cook!
Once you master how to clean clams (again, easy, just a bit time consuming), you're ready to cook them in any which way. Such as in my linguini with clams or seafood and chorizo paella.
More shellfish and seafood recipes.
Charbroiled Oysters with Garlic Butter and Parmesan
Julia Child’s Mussels Mariniere
Cioppino (Seafood and Tomato Stew)
Steamed Clams with White Wine and Garlic
Steamed Clams with White Wine and Garlic
- 4 tablespoon unsalted butter
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 small-medium sized shallot chopped finely
- 2-3 large garlic cloves chopped finely
- 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes optional for heat
- 1 ½ cups white wine
- 2 pounds littleneck clams cleaned and scrubbed
- Juice of 1 lemon
- Small bunch of fresh parsley leaves roughly chopped
- Begin by heating a large skillet over medium heat and add the butter and olive oil. Cook until the butter is almost fully melted.
- Add the chopped shallots and cook for 2-3 minutes, until shallots just change color. Add in the garlic and red pepper flakes and cook for another 1-2 minutes, stirring everything together.
- Pour in white wine and add in the clams. Give everyone one good stir and cover skillet with a lid. Cook clams until they all open, about 7-9 minutes.
- Once done, turn off heat and add lemon juice and fresh herbs. Give everything one more good stir and serve with crusty bread.
Absolutely delicious. I also added 6 colossal large shrimp, 2 8 Oz lobster tails and 2 fresh calimari cut into rings. Delicioso...served with crusty sourdough baguette and a white burgundy.
Oh now that sounds fantastic!! Thank you!!
Who is your pan by that you cook the garlic wine and butter steamed clams in ? Great looking pan Nice size Not too big!
The photos show a large white bowl, but I do use a medium sized pot when making clams.
The clams were divine. Accompanied the clams with fresh pasta.
That sounds perfect! Thank you for sharing Flavia!
My husband and I both love seafood, especially shellfish! Despite both of us being born and raised in the Pacific Northwest, neither of us have ever learned how to prepare it...except for Salmon and Halibut Fish & Chips.
Today, we picked up fresh Manila Clams from Anthony’s Seafood (now public 2x a week, thanks to COVID-19).
Thanks for sharing your clear, easy to follow recipe, including how to prepare the fresh clams!
They were delicious!!!
Hi Joy! We live in the PNW now too and there is nothing like salmon here! We get our clams from Taylor Shellfish right outside of Bellingham, WA...so good!! Thank you for your lovely comment and I am so thrilled you had a delicious dinner!
What type of white wine works best?
Hi Amanda! I love a Pinot Grigio or Chardonnay for steaming seafood! But really, any white wine that you enjoy 🙂
Ours were super winey.... not sure if I didn’t have the heat up enough or should have had lid off? We only had about a pound of clams tho and used the 1.5 cups...?
Hi Aimee! I think it 3was winey because you used the same amount of wine, but for half the amount of clams. Next time if you are cutting the clam amount in half, cut the wine amount in half as well.
Luis Gutierrez says
It was exactly the taste I was looking for, but I have a couple comments: it is under seasoned. It definitely needs the addition of salt, even more if you are using unsalted butter. The other issue I found was that since you instruct to put on the lid as soon as you pour in the wine there is alcohol that finds no scape. The final dish still had alcohol in it. Maybe my lid closes too tight, i don’t know, but it would be a good idea to let a part of the wine to evaporate freely before covering it up, or uncover it half way through, your choice.
Aside from that, loved them!
Hi Luis! Thanks for your comment. I usually under salt shellfish because I find it salty as is, but that can be personal preference too. And good tip about the lid, I will update the recipe to mention that the lid can be half on, allowing steam and alcohol to cook off and reduce.
Joan DeGroat says
This is the best recipe for steamed clams I have ever had!! Thank u so much for this!!
Fantastic, Thank you Chef Samantha. This may be our Top recipe from chef Samantha. WIne, butter, Clams, what can go wrong with that beautiful combination.
Samantha Ferraro says
Mike, you are so supportive. Thank you for all the wonderful comments and support. Samantha.