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Help! Canned Clam Chowder

What can I add to make it better (other than chopped clams)?

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  1. White or red? If it's red, maybe some fresh thyme and/or additional bay leaf, even a little chopped cooked bacon.

      1. If it's the condensed kind, add heavy cream and whole milk in equal parts. Tablespoon of butter would help some. If you're fat averse, add some chicken or seafood stock. You can also thicken it by adding grated potato (white, not the waxy kind). Makes it more of a stew.

        I take mine with a dash of Tabasco. Makes it a little pink and I'd probly get shot in New England but I'm not there so nya-nya-nya.

        1. If it's condensed, use 1/2 and 1/2 instead of milk. Some chopped bacon. I like to add a dash or two of Worcestershire, but that can get you kicked out of New England.

          1. How about adding fresh or frozen fish? To me the clams in canned clam chowder have very little flavor. Adding fish or clams would at least make it taste like it came from the sea.

            1. Butter, black pepper, cayenne, and bacon lardons.

              1. Ya know, Legal Seafoods here in Boston will send their chowder to you. Actually they'll send a lot of their stuff to you.


                I personally find their chowder to be a little too thick, but lots of people here absolutely love it. And it's definitely better than nasty canned chowder.

                1 Reply
                1. re: Bostonbob3

                  If your chowder's too thick, thin it with clam juice.

                2. If you don't care about authenticity, you could add some crumpled bacon, butter, chives or scallions chopped, and if you have thinned it with heavy cream and heated it thoroughly, a squeeze of lemon juice. I would add the chopped canned clams with their juice, too. Most of the canned chowders do have potato in them already.

                  1. a splash of sherry and some crumbled dried rosemary...

                    1. Oddly butter and black pepper do wonders. But it depends on what brand you are starting with. I find that doxsee is really good, if it still exists. But try the butter and black pepper (and salt if necessary).

                      1. Why not combine the suggested additions (milk, cream, bacon, clams, and black pepper) add some potatoes and skip the library paste altogether?

                        1 Reply
                        1. Daisy would say add some sofrito!