February 11, 2012

Clam Chowder with Greens {a lighter NE Clam Chowder option}

The thick and creamy goodness of New England style clam chowder, chock full of clams, cream, and tender potatoes ... it's one of my favorites.  But, I felt it necessary to find a lower-fat, lower-carb, healthier version to make at home that didn't induce the usual post-bowl guilt I felt after indulging in it's rich yumminess.

Still, it was difficult for me to let go of the traditional.  I did grow up in New England, after all.  When I came across a recipe packing in greens and boasting lower calories and carbs, I was skeptical, but tried to hold on to a chowder-open mind.  Replace the traditional potatoes with leafy greens??  Really???  Though skeptical, I was intrigued.

So, figuring the worst that could happen was a wasted pot of chowder, I took the plunge and cooked up a batch.  Well guess what?  This is now my go-to Clam Chowder.  No wasted pot of chowder here.  While it's not quite as thick as the traditional fare, it's got great flavor and a healthy kick from the greens.

Healthy greens like these turnip and mustard greens ...

... chopped up and cooked up with a whole mess of clams, half-and-half, and turkey bacon.

Serve up a bowl with some whole-grain bread, and you've got yourself a hearty meal with all the creamy goodness of New England Clam Chowder ... and minus the guilt.

Clam Chowder with Greens
Source:  Adapted from Prevention Healthy Cooking's Lose Weight the Smart Low-Carb Way

1/4 lb. (about 5 slices) turkey bacon
1 T. olive oil
1 large onion, finely chopped
1 garlic clove, minced
6 T. flour
4 c. (about 12 oz.) chopped turnip or other greens
2 (14 1/2 oz.) cans chicken broth
3 (10 oz.) cans chopped clams, juice reserved
1 c. milk or half-and-half
1/4 tsp. black pepper

1.  Drain clams, reserving the juice.

2.  Chop bacon; cook in a large saucepan over medium-low heat until crisp.  Drain on a paper towel and set aside.

3.  Add olive oil to the same pan, and then add onion and garlic.  Cook, stirring occasionally, until onion is translucent, about 8-10 minutes.  Add flour and cook and stir about 1 minute, coating onions with the flour.  Add chopped greens and cook about 2 minutes. 

4.  Stir in chicken broth and reserved clam juice.  Bring to a simmer over medium heat and cook for about 10 minutes.  

5.  Stir in milk or half-and-half and heat through.  Stir in black pepper, clams, and turkey bacon; cook for 1-2 minutes more.

Note:  I usually use a combination of turnip greens and mustard greens.


This post is linked with Strut Your Stuff Saturday hosted by Six Sisters' Stuff, Sundae Scoop hosted by I {heart} Naptime, Think Pink Sundays hosted by Flamingo Toes, Mangia Mondays hosted by Shine Your Light, Savvy HomeMade Monday hosted by Home Savvy A to Z, Tuesday Talent Show hosted by Chef in Training, Totally Tasty Tuesdays hosted by Mandy's Recipe Box, Cast Party Wednesday hosted by Lady Behind the Curtain, Foodie Friday hosted by Rattlebridge Farm.


  1. This looks So Delicious!!!!! Thank you for sharing with us on six sister's stuff! We hope to see you next Saturday!
    -The Sisters

  2. WOW this looks and sounds so delicious! What a yummy recipe...its finally cold here so I may have to give this a try.


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