15-Minute Manhattan Clam Chowder

National Clam Chowder Day is this week and I’m celebrating with a 15 minute Manhattan Clam Chowder recipe.

I once ordered Manhattan Clam Chowder at a restaurant thinking that the word Manhattan meant it would be somehow fancier than normal. When the waiter brought a bowl of red soup I said,  “What’s this? I ordered Clam Chowder.”

Manhattan Clam Chowder
He was confused and so was I.

It turns out that Manhattan Clam Chowder is not fancier than New England Clam Chowder. They’re different styles of soup. Different but equally good.

New England clam chowder is rich and creamy. Manhattan Clam Chowder has the acidic sweet bite of tomato and a touch of spicy heat.

The important thing: They both have lots of clams.
Clam Chowder
This version of Manhattan Clam Chowder is ready from start to finish in 15 minutes. Like all my SOUPin15 recipes there’s a SouperTip that makes the soup so delicious, so quickly. The SouperTip today is an ingredient: Clam juice.

Clam juice is made by briefly steaming fresh clams in salted water and filtering the resulting broth before bottling. It’s sold near the canned fish in all grocery stores. It’s usually in small glass bottles.

Clam juice has a mild fish flavor. Whenever you’re making a fish-based soup, some clam juice can be used as part of the broth to add extra flavor. It will work in all fish and seafood soup, not just clam chowders.

Manhattan Clam Chowder

For the links to all of my 15 minute soup recipes and to read all the tips that make them delicious quickly, click here.

Here’s the 15-Minute Manhattan Clam Chowder recipe. See you in 15!



15-Minute Manhattan Clam Chowder

  • Author: Christine Pittman
  • Cook Time: 15 minutes
  • Total Time: 15 minutes
  • Yield: 6 servings


This clam chowder is tomato-based, not creamy. And it has a bit of kick from some hot sauce. If you’re used to a creamy clam chowder, this is a bright change. To make this soup in 15 minutes, first read the recipe. While you read, get out all of the ingredients and tools, pots, bowls, etc. that you will need. This is so that everything is within reach and ready to go. But you don’t have to do any prep. All of the preparations are explained in the instruction section and are included in the 15 minute time of the recipe. See you in 15! Yield 12 cups.


  • 1 Tbsp. neutral oil (like vegetable or grape seed)
  • 1 Tbsp. unsalted butter
  • 2 medium baking potatoes
  • 4 (8 oz.) bottles of clam juice
  • 2 ribs of celery
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1 small onion
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 Tbsp. tomato paste
  • 1/2 tsp. dried thyme leaves
  • 1 (28 oz.) can diced tomatoes
  • 1/4 tsp. hot sauce (such as tabasco)
  • 4 (6.5 oz.) cans chopped clams with juice


  1. Put the oil and butter in a large pot or Dutch oven over medium heat. Finely dice the potatoes (1/4-inch cubes is great). Add the potatoes to the pot. Stir and cover.
  2. Pour the clam juice into a microwave-safe bowl and heat it in the microwave on high for 5 minutes.
  3. While the broth heats, finely chop the celery. Add it to the potatoes along with the salt. Stir and cover. Peel and chop the onion. Add it to the pot with the potatoes. Stir and cover. Mince the garlic. Add the garlic along with the tomato paste and thyme. Cook and stir for 30 seconds.
  4. Add the hot clam juice to the pot along with the diced tomatoes and the tabasco. Increase heat to high, cover and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to a simmer. Open the cans of clams and put the clams along with the juice from the cans into the soup. Stir. Cook until the clams are very well heated through, 3-4 minutes. Taste and add more salt and/or tabasco if desired.

Manhattan Clam Chowder (5) edit square 600px

7 responses to “15-Minute Manhattan Clam Chowder”

  1. […] 15-Minute Manhattan Clam Chowder  […]

  2. […] you like this New England Clam Chowder recipe I’m betting you also like this Manhattan Clam Chowder recipe. Just as easy but with a tomato base instead of a creamy […]

  3. […] soup that uses quick-cooking seafood is this Manhattan Clam Chowder. It uses canned clams and they cook up just as quickly as the […]

  4. I just recently had for real New England Clam Chowder and it was fabulous, now I’ve got to try the Manhattan version, it sounds wonderful!

  5. This looks SOOOO fantastic! I don’t cook with clam juice often enough – it adds SO much flavor!

  6. Jenny Flake says:

    15 minutes?!  I’m so in!  Looks great!!

  7. I absolutely must make this soon – I love Manhattan clam chowder!!

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