Discover three different ways to get all the flavors of a New England clambake: fire pit, stovetop, or stovetop/grill combo. Plus party tips!
Three Ways to Throw a Clambake
1) Fire Pit
For a traditional clambake, the food is cooked in a fire pit lined with hot stones and layered with seaweed. Find a beach that permits open pit cooking and start digging. All the directions are right in the recipe below!
No beach? No problem! Steam everything on the stovetop, and your clambake is ready in just one hour. Try this recipe:
3) Stovetop + Grill Combo
This method combines stovetop and grill — a great solution if you don’t have a pot big enough to hold everything for a stovetop clambake.
Stovetop: Steam the clams and chorizo together; add mussels if you like.
Stovetop or grill: Your choice for the lobsters.
Grill: Corn and potatoes.
Related: Choosing and Using Shellfish
Complete Your Clambake Menu
Lots of clambakes start off with a hearty bowl of chowder.
Drinks are easy. Cold beer, white wine, or a big jug of lemonade will go nicely.
How about a scrumptious berry pie for dessert?
Clambake Party Tips
- Send invitations decorated with fishing or sailing motifs.
- Cover tables with newspaper or a red and white checked tablecloth.
- Scatter nautical items like seashells, fishnet, heavy rope, bleached starfish, and lanterns across tables.
- Pick up napkins, cups, disposable plates, etc. in beachy colors.
- Use plastic beach pails for discarded shells.
- Set up a volleyball net and bring colorful beach balls for kicking around.
- Stock extra sunblock and towels for guests if you’re at the beach or poolside.