New England Clam Chowder

4.1 (106)
New England Clam Chowder

Chopped clams, aromatic vegetables and creamy potatoes blended with low-fat milk and just a half cup of cream gives this chunky New England-style clam chowder plenty of rich body. Serve with oyster crackers and a tossed salad to make it a meal.

Yield: 6 servings, generous 1 cup each
Active Time: 45
Total Time: 45

Ingredients

  • 2 teaspoons canola oil
  • 4 slices bacon, chopped
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 2 stalks celery, chopped
  • 2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme, or 1 teaspoon dried
  • 1 medium red potato, diced
  • 1 8-ounce bottle clam juice, (see Makeover Tip)
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 3 cups low-fat milk
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 12 ounces fresh clam strips, (see Shopping Tip), chopped, or 3 6-ounce cans chopped baby clams, rinsed
  • 2 scallions, thinly sliced

Preparation

  1. Heat oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add bacon and cook until crispy, 4 to 6 minutes. Transfer half of the cooked bacon to a paper towel-lined plate with a slotted spoon. Add onion, celery and thyme to the pan; cook, stirring, until beginning to soften, about 2 minutes. Add potato, clam juice and bay leaf. Bring to a simmer, cover and cook until the vegetables are just tender, 8 to 10 minutes.
  2. Whisk milk, cream, flour and salt in a medium bowl. Add to the pan and return to a simmer, stirring, over medium-high heat. Cook, stirring, until thickened, about 2 minutes. Add clams and cook, stirring occasionally, until the clams are just cooked through, about 3 minutes more.
  3. To serve, discard bay leaf. Ladle into bowls and top each serving with some of the reserved bacon and scallions.

Tips & Notes

  • Makeover tip: Check sodium carefully when using clam juice because the amount of sodium can vary dramatically between brands. We use Bar Harbor clam juice with only 120 mg sodium per 2-ounce serving.
  • Shopping tip: Look for fresh clam strips at the seafood counter.

Nutrition

Nutrition Per Serving

calories 253
fat 13 g (6 g sat, 4 g mono)
cholesterol 59 mg
carbohydrates 20 g
protein 16 g
fiber 1 g
sodium 585 mg
potassium 392 mg

Nutrition Bonus Iron (50% daily value), Vitamin C (23% dv), Calcium (21% dv), Vitamin A (17% dv).

Carbohydrate Serving 1

Exchanges 1/2 starch, 1/2 low-fat milk, 1 lean meat, 2 fat

From EatingWell September/October 2008