Clam Spaghetti

Hi Friends-

Let me start this post by saying two things:
1) I have been looking forward to making this dish since Sunday, when I decided to make it. Now that I’ve had it, I’m already looking forward to eating it tomorrow. Once it’s gone, I will begin to look forward to the next time I make it. I LOVE IT.
2) This dish is not for everyone.

Ok, so I know that was more than two things…but sometimes I just can’t help but get carried away! This is one of the two things I requested that my mom immediately make every single time I came home from college. It’s an old family recipe…and by that I mean both the recipe itself and the recipe card:

It’s wrinkled and stained and edited and has probably been made a thousand times in several different kitchens. And I’m so lucky to have the actual recipe card in my possession. Some day, just for kicks, I’m going to follow this recipe exactly…just to see how much it actually makes. I have a hard time even envisioning it. To start with, the recipe calls for 4 large onions, chopped. This is one of the very few recipes where I even use one whole onion, let alone four. I don’t think I have a cutting board big enough for four of them! So, I scale things back a bit, but this is still a recipe of lots. Lots of everything…So let’s begin shall we?

Chop up an onion (yes a whole onion) and lots of garlic. Saute them over low heat in a big pan with some olive oil and some dried chilies.

Leave the seeds in for a kick like I do, or take them out.

Saute over low heat, until the onions become translucent. Now is also the time to start heating some water for the spaghetti.

Add one tablespoon of basil and one tablespoon of oregano (seems like a lot, but trust me)

Then add the juice from one can of minced clams and 1/2 a cup of white wine. *Now pay attention here…this is the most important part. The recipe SPECIFICALLY says that the cook may drink the wine instead. I do both :)

When your water is ready, add the spaghetti and cook as directed. Add some green onions, some fresh parsley, some pimentos, two cans of diced clams and one can of baby shrimp to the onion mixture. I usually rinse the canned stuff to get rid of most of the salt. Also, for the record, I have no idea what pimentos are, or really even what they taste like, or what else you would ever use them for except stuffing olives…but for as long as I can remember, my mom has been buying them in their little glass jar at the grocery store. So I buy them too.

It looks like Christmas doesn’t it?! Finally, mix in the spaghetti, toss and serve.

You can top with Parmesan cheese if you want to. SO GOOD!

Clam Spaghetti

by Lindsay L

Keywords: saute entree clams spaghetti Italian

Ingredients (Serves 4)

  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 4 dried red peppers, minced
  • 1 Tbsp dried basil
  • 1 Tbsp dried oregano
  • 2 cans chopped clams, reserve juice from one
  • 1/2 c white wine
  • 1 can baby shrimp
  • 1/2 box spaghetti
  • 1 jar pimentos
  • 4 green onions, sliced
  • 2 Tbsp fresh parsley, minced
  • Parmesan cheese


1. Add the onion and garlic to a large pan with some EVOO and saute over LOW heat until onions are translucent (about 30 minutes).

2. Add the dried basil, oregano and red peppers and saute for 2 more minutes.

3. Add the juice from one can of clams, the wine, the clams, shrimp and fresh parsley. Let simmer while you cook the pasta according to package directions.

4. When the pasta is done, add the pimentos, green onions and spaghetti to the pan and toss to combine.

5. Serve warm and top with Parmesan cheese if desired.

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About Lindsay

Lindsay Livingston is a Registered Dietitian and new mom from Columbus, Ohio. On her blog, she shares simple, healthy recipes, nutrition tips, workouts and snapshots of her life. Follow her on Twitter @LeanGrnBeanBlog and Instagram @TheLeanGreenBean and be sure to subscribe via RSS or email so you never miss a post!


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