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  • 3 dozen littleneck or middleneck clams
  • 4 Tablespoons salted butter
  • 5 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 shallot, minced
  • 1 Cup white wine
  • 1 Cup clam juice
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • juice of 1/2 lemon
  • 1/2 Cup heavy whipping cream
  • 2 Tablespoons fresh parsley, chopped

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Just when I think I can’t find another way to enjoy clams. These Butter Garlic Steamed Clams happened last night! If you enjoy clams as much as I do, you will love these amazing seafood appetizer. Don’t forget the crusty bread to soak up this amazing sauce! You can also prepare these clams on the grill wrapped in foil packets. The smokiness from the grill will lend a lovely smokiness to this shellfish dish.

Of course, this dish would make a perfect addition to your Feast of the Seven Fishes meal on Christmas Eve.

a cast iron pan of butter garlic steamed clams with bread and lemons


Clams are a bivalve mollusk. Meaning they have a two-part hinged shell. They bury themselves under sand or in mud and can be found in both oceans and rivers. (See below on how to properly clean clams prior to use).

Additionally, clams are one of the most sustainable options when it comes to seafood. They are super affordable, can feed a large crowd and are incredibly easy to prepare.


This recipe for steamed clams is best suited for what are known as Northern quahogs clams. Littleneck, middleneck or cherrystone clams will work perfectly. Avoid the larger chowder clams, as they are too big and will be quite chewy using this preparation.


Believe it, or not, I devoted an entire blog on how to Clean Clams. Place clams in a bowl of water with about a tablespoon of flour. Allow the clams to soak for at least five minutes. Up to twenty minutes is fine. As the clams ingest the water/flour mixture they will spit it out, along with any dirt that may be lingering inside the shell. Rinse and reserve in fridge until ready to use. Discard any clams that are open prior to soaking.


Preparing this amazing clam dish could not be easier. Consider at least a dozen clams per person. On a side note, feel free to add mussels, or use this recipe just for mussels.

Once you add the shallots and garlic to the melted butter, be sure not to brown or burn. You are only looking to infuse the butter. Any white wine you have on hand will do. Personally, I prefer a Pinot Grigio in most of my recipes that call for white wine. Do NOT substitute with red wine.


  • Do NOT skip the cleaning of the clams
  • Be sure to discard any clams that are open prior to steaming
  • If you do not have white wine on hand, or wish not to use in this recipe, replace with extra clam juice
  • Be sure to use a lid to steam open the clams
  • If doubling or tripling this recipe, once the clams start to open, transfer to a bowl and reserve (this will help to avoid the clams from steaming too long and becoming chewy)
  • Add pasta to serve as an entree
  • Be sure to have plenty of crusty bread on hand to soak up that fabulous seafood broth


Following a keto, or low-carb diet? Enjoy clams, as much as you desire. Clams are low in calories, sugar and carbohydrates.

Yes, Butter Garlic Steamed Clams can be enjoyed on a keto diet. Just be sure to skip the dunking of the bread.

ENJOY these Butter Garlic Steamed Clams! If you love clam dishes as much as I do, check out a few more of my favorite clam recipes:

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a cast iron pan of butter garlic clams with bread and lemons



These Butter Garlic Steamed Clams are by far one of my most popular clam dishes. It’s super easy to prepare and has tons of flavor. Serve as an appetizer, or meal. Steam on the stovetop, or even the grill for an added smokiness. 


  • 3 dozen littleneck or middleneck clams
  • 4 Tablespoons salted butter
  • 5 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 shallot, minced
  • 1 Cup white wine
  • 1 Cup clam juice
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • juice of 1/2 lemon
  • 1/2 Cup heavy whipping cream
  • 2 Tablespoons fresh parsley, chopped


  1. Soak and rinse the clams. Reserve in fridge.
  2. Melt the butter in a deep pan. 
  3. Add in the garlic and shallots. Allow to cook for just a few minutes to infuse the butter.
  4. Pour in the clam juice and white wine.
  5. Season with kosher salt, black pepper and crushed red pepper.
  6. Allow the broth to come to a heavy simmer.
  7. Add in the reserved clams and lemon juice.
  8. Place lid to allow the clams to steam open.
  9. Discard any clams that fail to open.
  10. Once clams have fully opened, remove pan from heat.
  11. Add in the heavy whipping cream. 
  12. Give it a gentle toss.
  13. Garnish with fresh chopped parsley.
  14. Serve with crusty bread and lemon wedges.
  15. ENJOY!



  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 6 minutes


  • Serving Size: 12 clams

Keywords: what are quahog clams, clam recipes, shellfish recipes, how to clean clams, how to steam clams, clam appetizer ideas, seafood appetizer ideas, littleneck clams, middleneck clams, what are littleneck and middleneck clams, what clams are best for steaming, shellfish, shellfish appetizers, can you eat clams raw, sauce ideas for clams,


I am more than just recipes. I love fashion and style too! Most importantly, I love my Family (my Hubby and my Fur Babies). My Husband (aka my “Kitchen Bitch”) means the world to me. He’s pretty damn cool too. Not only is he one of the nicest guys you will ever meet, he also has had a lengthy career in professional hockey. Not only winning two Stanley Cups with the Pittsburgh Penguins in the early ’90’s, but most recently winning the Calder Cup with the Charlotte Checkers, amongst many other accolades. If you live in Charlotte and play hockey, or have a family member who plays, be sure to contact him. He is known as one of the best skate sharpeners in the world!

Our life has changed dramatically in the past few years with the passing of our two goldendoodles, Vegas and Viva. We were lucky enough to have Vegas for five years (totally wish it was longer). Most recently, losing our Viva to a brain tumor in July of 2020. We welcomed our mini goldendoodle 7, almost seven years ago. We just added the amazing Hazel! Of course, I am always posting tons and tons of photos! Be sure to check out my recipe for Pet Bone Broth! This broth is super rich in nutrients and will provide your pet with a multitude of health benefits!

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