Wine and Garlic Steamed ClamsRecipe

Wine and Garlic Steamed Clams are delicious and super easy to make. Clams and mussels are so easy to make but almost no one thinks to make them at home.  That’s one of the reasons that serving garlic steamed clams for a special meal or holiday party always feels so elegant and unexpected.

This recipe can be tossed with pasta for an easy main course or serve in bowls with lots of crusty bread as an appetizer.

Once you’ve tried this it is so simple you’ll even cook up a quick linguini and clam sauce for a quick weeknight dinner.




White Wine and Garlic Steamed Clams

Course: Appetizer, Main Course, Seafood
Cuisine: Clams, Italian, Mediterranean, seafood
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 4 servings
Calories: 173 kcal
Author: Kelly DiMascio

This is such a simple preparation for clams, but so tasty.  My favorite type of recipe for entertaining is one that is amazingly tasty, special and easy to make.   

Toss with pasta for an easy dinner or serve with crusty bread as an appetizer.  Make it a meal with a simple salad dressed with a balsamic vinegarette. 



  • 3 T butter
  • 1 T extra virgin olive oil
  • 3 cloves fresh garlic finely minced
  • 1/2 C dry white wine
  • 2 lbs small clams Littlenecks or Manilla, rinsed and cleaned
  • 3 T fresh parsley chopped
  • 1 lemon cut into wedges


  1. Melt butter with olive oil in a sauté pan over medium heat.

  2. Add garlic and cook for 2-3 minutes until garlic is fragrant, being careful not to burn the garlic or the butter.
  3. Add wine and increase heat to medium-high until wine is brought to a boil.
  4. Add clams and cooked covered for 5-7 minutes, stirring occasionally, until clams have opened.
  5. Discard any clams still closed.
  6. Add parsley and give the pot a quick stir.
  7. Transfer clams and broth to a large serving bowl, serving with lemon wedges on the side. 

  8. Serve with crusty French bread to soak up all the garlicky goodness of the broth.  Mangiamo!

Recipe Notes

How to Select Clams

Select clams with shells that are tightly closed.  Discard any clams that are open or have craked or broken shells.

How to Handle Clams Prior to Cooking

Immediately unwrap and remove clams from packaging as soon as you get home.   Clams are alive and need to breathe. Store live clams in a 32 to 35 degree F efrigerator in an open bowl or container, and cover with a moist cloth or paper towels. Carefully kept live clams should remain fresh for two to three days.

Do not put live clams in an airtight container or submerge them in fresh water.  The clams will die and be inedible.  

How to Clean Clams

Soak your clams for 20 minutes in bowl of fresh water just before cooking. The clams will expel salt and sand.  Remove the clams from the water by gently scooping out the clams with a slotted spoon.  This will keep from reintroducing the salt and sand that has been removed from the clams.

Once the clams have been soaked, scrub off any mud, sand, barnacles, or seeweed.  

Set aside any clams that sheels have opened.  Tap them on the counter or bowl and set aside for a minute.  if the sheels close they are still good to cook, if they remain open they should be discarded.  Also, discard any clams with broken or dmaged shells.

Handling Leftover Clams

Cooked clams can be stored in a covered container in the refrigerator 2 to 3 days. Freezing is not recommended for cooked clams - they will become tough.

Reheating Leftover Clams

Remove cooked clams from broth.  In a saucepan reheat the broth, once the broth is heated through add the clams and carefully heat the clams until just warmed through.  Cooking to ling will make them tough.  You can also add leftover clams to pasta sauce for a quick meal.

Nutrition Facts
White Wine and Garlic Steamed Clams
Amount Per Serving
Calories 173 Calories from Fat 108
% Daily Value*
Fat 12g18%
Saturated Fat 6g38%
Cholesterol 33mg11%
Sodium 284mg12%
Potassium 99mg3%
Carbohydrates 5g2%
Sugar 1g1%
Protein 5g10%
Vitamin A 610IU12%
Vitamin C 18.8mg23%
Calcium 34mg3%
Iron 1mg6%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.


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