Spaghetti with White Clam Sauce
Recipe Type: Main
Prep Time: 
Cook Time: 
Total Time: 
Serves: 4
Like so many great Italian dishes, the beauty of this meal is in its simplicity - which also means that the raw ingredients have to be quality.
  • 3 dozen littleneck clams (8-9 per person), cleaned
  • 5 large garlic cloves, finely minced
  • 4 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 Tbsp minced chili OR red chili flakes
  • ½ cup dry white wine
  • 1 handful fresh parsley, chopped
  • ¼ cup pasta water
  • 1 lb spaghetti or linguine
  • Salt and black pepper
  1. In a large pot of boiling water, drop your spaghetti or linguine to cook until al dente.
  2. In a skillet wide enough to fit the clams almost in a single layer, add the olive oil, garlic and chili. Sauté over medium low heat for a few minutes, until the garlic starts to turn golden brown and becomes fragrant.
  3. Turn the heat up a touch and add the white wine, then the clams and half of the chopped parsley.
  4. Immediately cover the clams with a tightly fitting lid. Let the clams steam for roughly 8-10 minutes, this depends on the size of your clams, how jam-packed the skillet is, etc.
  5. After 8 minutes, remove the lid and with a slotted spoon or tongs, remove any clams that have opened - set them in a bowl to the side. Keep the lid on for a few more minutes to continue cooking any clams still unopened.
  6. Add ¼ cup of starchy pasta water to the skillet with the clam sauce and the remaining chopped parsley. Taste and season with a bit of black pepper and salt if needed.
  7. Drain the pasta and drop it directly into the clam sauce, tossing a couple of times to coat the pasta in sauce. Transfer the cooked clams, shells and all, back into the pasta and sauce and serve.
Recipe by Honest Cooking at