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  • 3 to 4 dozen clams
  • 1 bowl cold water
  • 1 to 2 TBLS flour

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For a while now, I have been wanting to devote a blog specifically on How to Clean Clams. Additionally, on how to clean mussels, as well. The technique is the same. You will notice that any recipe I have created for clams and mussels, always include a mention on how to do just this. Believe me, there are numerous other methods that will also work perfectly. This is my way.

No matter if you are purchasing clams from your local fish market, or pulling them out of the water yourself, they will all contain a bit of sand and/or grit. This is one ingredient you do not want in your finished dish. Speaking of finished dishes, be sure to check out a few of my most prized recipes for clams and mussels at the end. Not sure if I told you lately, but I love, love, love clams. In fact, I could probably eat them every single day.


I also think that before I get into the process of cleaning clams, it is equally as important to understand a few of the varieties, and which type of clams to use in various dishes and preparations. Additionally, you should also note that if a clam is open prior to prep, they are dead, and should be discarded. Also, once cooked, if the clam does not open, it too should be discarded.


Littleneck clams are the smallest. Honestly, I have found that there is not much of a difference between littleneck and middleneck clams. Middlenecks may just be slightly bigger. Both are perfect for consuming raw, steaming, grilling or as the star in your pasta dish. Obviously, littlenecks and middlenecks are the ones I use most often. Yes, clams can be frozen. In fact, if you place a live clam in the freezer, once they unthaw, they will actually come back to life. How crazy is that?


Topneck clams can also be consumed raw (not sure I could do this as they are quite large), and are great to stuff and bake. I love using topnecks for my Clams Oreganata. Unlike topneck clams, chowder clams are generally large and quite tough. Hence, the name. Chowder clams are typically cut into pieces and used in chowders. Try out my recipes for New England and Manhattan Clam Chowder. Despite their size, I will use whatever type of clam is available for my recipes. I may just have to treat them differently during preparation.


If you love clams as much as I do, I have a ton, I mean a ton of recipes using these gifts from the sea. Click here to check them out!


So, let’s get down to the business at hand. How do we clean clams? No matter the type of clam, the method to clean is the same. As mentioned earlier, there are other successful ways to get the sand and grit out of them. This is mine. Keep in mind the clams are alive. Fill a bowl with cold water. Add in a few tablespoons of flour. Mix around a bit. Add the clams. Allow the clams to sit and soak for about ten minutes. As the clams are soaking, they will ingest the flour water (which they do not like very well) and spit it out along with any bits of sand and grit. Rinse thoroughly. Guess what? They are now ready to use in your favorite dish. Don’t forget, if any of the clams are cracked and/or open prior to soaking, discard immediately. So, now that you know how to clean clams, go ahead and try out a few of my recipes!


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!

Be sure to follow me on social media! I’m always talking food, fashion, and family! I also love sharing some of my favorite Amazon Finds too. Click here to check out my Amazon page! FacebookInstagramTikTokTwitter and Pinterest!

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  1. […] your littleneck, middleneck or cherrystone clams at The Carolina Meat & Fish Co. Also, click here to learn how to clean your clams prior to using them in your favorite recipe. In addition, I give […]

  2. […] with enough water to just to the fill line. Leave enough room to add in the clam juice and lemon. Clean the clams and mussels. Toss your clams and mussels into the steaming tray and steam until opened. […]

  3. […] oven to 450 degrees. Want to know how to properly clean clams prior to cooking? Click here. Lay the cleaned and rinsed clams on a baking sheet. Bake for about two to three minutes. Just long […]

  4. […] other ingredients. In a large bowl, combine the flour with enough water to cover the clams. Click here to learn how to clean clams properly. Be sure to discard any clams that are open prior to […]

  5. […] along with any dirt/grit. Let them soak for about five minutes. Rinse and set back in fridge. Click here to read all about the appropriate way to clean […]

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