Traditional recipes

Chouriço and clams recipe

Chouriço and clams recipe

  • Recipes
  • Dish type
  • Starters
  • Seafood starters

Serve this delectable dish with a fresh, warm loaf of crusty bread for mopping up all the delicious sauce. Use Spanish chorizo if you can't find the Portuguese chouriço.

52 people made this

IngredientsServes: 6

  • 350g (12 oz) clams in shell, scrubbed
  • 675g (1 1/2 lb) fresh chouriço, roughly chopped
  • 1 large onion, cut into thin wedges
  • 1 (400g) tin chopped tomatoes
  • 450ml (16 fl oz) white wine
  • 4 tablespoons olive oil

MethodPrep:30min ›Cook:20min ›Ready in:50min

  1. Wash clams well in a sink of cold water. Discard any clams that are already opened.
  2. In a large stockpot with a tight-fitting lid, place the cleaned clams. Add the sausage, onion, tomatoes and wine. Cover and set over high heat. Steam until all the clams open up. Be sure to shake the pan often to insure even heat.
  3. Drizzle olive oil over the cooked clams. Evenly divide all the ingredients into warm soup bowls. Divide the stock into side bowls for dipping.


Chouriço is simply the Portuguese chorizo. If you can't find chouriço from Portugal for this dish, the more ubiquitous Spanish chorizo will do just fine.

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Reviews & ratingsAverage global rating:(49)

Reviews in English (41)

by Sally Bray

Used different ingredients.Excellent! Excellent! Excellent! Truly an easy recipe and very tasty. I did however add about 400ml of water just to make a little bit more stock and about 2 cloves of fresh chopped garlic. Truly a favourite from now on!-21 Jul 2008

by SweetPea

Absolutely wonderful.. I also added a couple of large stalks of celery while steaming.. You can grill thick slices of crusty bread rubbed with a clove of garlic to dip in the tasty juices..-21 Jul 2008


Fabulous -- easy, light and something different!-21 Jul 2008

Easy Baked Stuffed Clams Recipe (Clams and Chorizo)

This baked stuffed clams recipe is delicious. The combination of clams and chorizo are briny, smoky, salty, and all around perfect. Cooking stuffed clams may feel overwhelming, but I promise you it’s not! I’ll show you how to cook stuffed clams – and trust me, you’re not going to want to miss out. These chorizo stuffed clams make a show-stopping appetizer or light meal.

While many seafood dishes are breaded and fried, I kept this one light and healthy with an almond flour instead of bread crumbs. The chorizo adds a ton of flavor – without adding any carbs.

There are many different clam varieties. I used Cherry Stones for the baked stuffed clams recipe, but you can use whatever variety you like or have access to.

Notes about this recipe

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  1. Although chorizo is already par cooked, I begin by browning the chorizo to make it more crisp and to release flavorful juices, about 4-5 minutes.
  2. Minced shallot and thinly sliced garlic (utilized mandoline) is added and sautéd until fragrant.
  3. I added 4 anchovy filets and butter to enrich the seafood taste, so the chorizo doesn’t overpower the flavor. The filets will dissolve into the oil.
  4. I then deglaze the pan with white wine and scrape up the delicious browned bits on the bottom of the pan. Next add vegetable broth, red pepper flakes and lemon zest.

The broth should be lightly boiling, gently nestle your clams into the broth and cover with a tight fitting lid. Allow the clams to steam for 5-7 minutes.

If clams haven’t opened after 5-7 minutes, give your pan a shake to get those stubborn clams movin’. Be careful and don’t cook clams for too long, or they will become tough and rubbery. Some clams will not open as fully as others and those are still ok to eat, use a knife to open them when eating. If a clam has a bad smell, that is a sign it needs to be tossed.

Once the clams are steamed open, I top with fresh parsley. This dish is to be served in bowls and enjoyed with freshly toasted bread to soak up all the delicious broth. You may also prepare pasta and laddle the broth and clams over the top. Serve with a lemon wedge on the side.

This clams and chorizo dish is best enjoyed fresh and right away. Clams cool quickly. If you need to store leftovers, do so in the refrigerator and carefully reheat in the microwave. Do not freeze, will alter taste and consistency of clam.

Portuguese Stuffed Quahogs

Portuguese Stuffed Quahogs are an appetizer staple in Southeastern Massachusetts. Each hearty bite is seasoned perfectly and loaded with all the Portuguese flavors one would expect in a stuffed quahog.

Growing up in Fall River, MA was wonderful back in the 80’s and early 90’s. We had safe streets, and lots of lovely Portuguese families who took pride in their properties, and taught their children to work hard and be respectful.

In the 70’s, my dad emigrated from St. Miguel Azores to Fall River, MA also known as the Spindle City. I grew up with an amazing Portuguese family and lots of access to the Portuguese foodie culture.

Growing up, my dad loved Portuguese food so much so my mom would incorporate it into our meal plans mixing traditional American and Portuguese cultures.

One of my favorite Portuguese appetizers that my mom made several times a year were stuffed quahogs.

Stuffed Quahogs are one of those meals or appetizers that everyone has their own spin on. Some people use Papo Secos, and other crushed crackers. Regardless, this recipe is delicious and loaded with Portuguese flair.

What is a Portuguese Stuffed Quahog?

A Portuguese Stuffed Quahog is a blend of Portuguese rolls (Papo Secos), Chourico (hot or mild), parsley, bell pepper, crushed red peppers, chopped quahog, and Portuguese all seasoning spice. In addition of garlic, onion, and paprika is also crucial to achieving a bold flavor.

The bread mixture is moistened with reserved water from boiling the quahogs. Some people use chicken stock, but I don’t mind using the juices from boiling the shellfish. However, it is important to NOT use the bottom of the pan water where possible sand could be lurking.

Each is baked and served on a scrubbed, half Quahog shell.

They are typically spicy, but can be tailored to the spice level of the people eating them. Red pepper sauce like Tabasco, a pad of butter, fresh parsley, and lemon juice are also typically served with Portuguese style stuffed quahogs.

Ingredients needed to make 10 Portuguese Stuffed Quahogs

  • 4-5 Quahogs- fresh is best. You want to make sure they are scrubbed and carefully rinsed to remove any sand or debris. I used 4 and put the extra two fillings in small ramekins which works the same way for baking and is easier to eat.
  • 4 cups of water to boil the quahogs (2 cups will be reserved for stuffing once quahogs are done being boiled)
  • 1 egg
  • 1 medium green bell pepper, diced
  • 1 large yellow onion, diced
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 4 tablespoons of butter
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons of crushed red pepper
  • 5 large Portuguese Rolls (Papo secos)
  • 3 large garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 link of chourico, ground or chopped into small pieces
  • 1/2 tablespoon Portuguese all seasoning (Adobo brand works well)
  • Paprika

How to Make Portuguese Stuffed Quahogs

The first step to making these quahogs is to put your 4 cups of water into a stockpot. Once the water is rapidly boiling, add your quahogs. Boil them until they open up.

If they fail to open up (give them a full 20 minutes) they are bad and should NOT be eaten.

Once they are boiled, reserve 2 cups of water from the top of the pan. Do not use the water at the bottom because that might have sand residue.

Run the quahogs under cold water and twist their shells into two pieces.

Remove any lose pieces and set aside shells and bellies.

You should have 4 quahog bellies. Using knife, chop them into super small pieces. Quahogs can be a choking hazard so tiny pieces are a must!! I choked on one as a child!

Pull apart Portuguese Rolls into small chunks.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.

Pour over the reserved quahog water and let the bread absorb it while you saute the onion, pepper (bell), garlic, and chourico in a skillet with the oil and butter.

Saute meat, and veggies until tender. The onion will take on a translucent look set aside.

Add soaked bread to a colander and squeeze out any excess liquid. It is okay if the bread is mushy.

Add bread to a large bowl with chopped quahogs, crushed red pepper, egg, Portuguese seasoning, and sauteed chourico and veggies.

Mix everything until fully combined.

Stuff Quahogs generously will mixture and place them on a large baking sheet. If you have extra mixture, bake it in small oven-safe ramekins.

Optional- sprinkle each with paprika.

Bake quahogs uncovered for 40-45 minutes. The outside with have a crispy texture and the insides will remain moist but should not be super soggy.

Enjoy quahogs warm with a pad of butter, pepper sauce, parsley, and a lemon wedge. These were flavorful enough where I opted to omit them.

Stuffed Quahog Tips

If you do not want to stuff the stuffing into the shells, you will need ten (10) 4-ounce ramekins. These bake fine in this size.

You can use a food processor to “pulse” your ingredients like chourico, pepper, onion, and garlic so they have a finer texture.

These quahogs are best warmed, but do store in the fridge for up top 3 days. I have not tested them past this point because they are so good!

I individually wrap each one with plastic wrap for lunches or quick snacks.

Portuguese Clams and Sausage

By David Leite | The New Portuguese Table | Clarkson Potter, 2009

A cataplana, a fixture in the Algarve, is kind of a spiritual cousin to the pressure cooker. Shaped like a giant clam, the hinged pan clamps down during cooking, locking in the juices of its contents. When carried to the table and popped open, it fills the room with steam redolent of the sea. If you’re bereft of a cataplana, a Dutch oven with a tight-fitting lid works perfectly, if less attractively.

I first had this meaty cataplana 12 years ago in Bridgewater, Connecticut, of all places, at the home of my friends Manny Almeida and Kevin Bagley. Manny, who’s from the same Azorean island as my family, just whipped it up one summer evening. I’ve since had it many times in Portugal, most memorably at an ocean-side joint in the town of Sagres, just east of the vertiginous promontory where Henry the Navigator supposedly built a school and shipyard for his sailors.–David Leite

Portuguese-Style Steamed Clams

When Portuguese immigrants arrived in Northern California around the turn of the 20th century, they found Dungeness crab easy to catch along the Pacific coast in Sonoma and Mendocino counties. They also discovered abundant shellfish, like clams, that could be harvested during low tide. This recipe, a classic from San Francisco’s Hayes Street Grill, is quick and easy to make. It incorporates spicy Portuguese-style chouriço sausage and tomatoes, which make it richer and deeper than simple clams. It works as a starter, but it’s substantial enough for a main course.

Courtesy Patricia Unterman, Hayes Street Grill, San Francisco

  • ¹⁄₃ cup olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 2 cups chopped yellow onion
  • 3 cups chopped red bell pepper
  • 8 ounces chouriço or Spanish-style chorizo, diced
  • 1½ cups dry white wine
  • 5 cups fish or chicken stock, preferably homemade
  • Dried red pepper flakes, to taste

In large sauté pan or skillet, warm oil over medium heat. Add garlic, onions, pepper and sausage. Sauté until sausage is browned, about 12–15 minutes. Add wine and scrape bottom of pan with wooden spatula. Add stock, and cook until mixture is slightly thickened. Using slotted spoon, skim any fat off surface. Add pepper flakes to taste, and add chopped tomato. (This can all be done ahead of time and refrigerated until just before serving time.)

About 15 minutes before serving, bring broth to boil. Add clams and cover skillet. Cook until clams have opened, about 6–10 minutes. Ladle into individual bowls. Garnish with parsley. Serve with toasted or crusty bread, with spoon for broth and fork for clams. Serves 6.

Here’s your excuse to enjoy a sleek red wine with shellfish. The slight fattiness of the sausage in the broth will meet the moderate tannins of the Mendocino-grown Lioco 2014 Sativa Carignan. The grape variety is called Carinhana in Portuguese, which was likely drank by the immigrant Portuguese fishermen who settled along the coast. Made from 70-year-old vines grown more than 2,000 feet above sea level and fermented with the stems, the wine is dark, dry and medium bodied.
But it’s very fruity and direct, too.

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Recipe Summary

  • 4 cups water
  • 1 (16 ounce) package Portuguese chourico sausage links
  • 12 quahogs
  • 1 large onion, coarsely chopped
  • 1 (12 ounce) package chicken-flavored bread stuffing mix (such as Kraft® Stove Top®)
  • ½ cup margarine
  • ¼ cup butter

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).

Bring water to a boil over high heat. Add sausage links reduce heat to medium and simmer for 10 minutes. Remove links from broth reserve the broth. Remove casings from the sausage.

Bring the broth back to a simmer and add the quahogs cook until they open, 5 to 10 minutes. Remove the quahogs reserve the broth. Remove the cooked quahogs from the shells. Separate the shell halves. If necessary wash the shells.

Place the sausage and quahog meat into the bowl of a food processor process until chopped, about 12 seconds, depending on your processor. Scrape mixture into a bowl. Add chopped onion to the processor chop about 5 seconds. Stir in to the meat mixture.

Make the full container of stuffing according to package directions, using the margarine, and substituting the sausage/clam broth for water. There may be more broth than you need.

Mix together the stuffing and sausage/clam/onion mixture. Spoon filling into empty clam shell halves and top each with a small pat of butter (about a third of a teaspoon).

Place the shells on a baking pan bake in the preheated oven until toasty brown on top, 15 to 20 minutes.

Portuguese Seafood Stew with Chouriço

In pockets along the East Coast, Portuguese America hides in plain sight — and has for two hundred years or more. In fact, some historians contend that Miguel Corte Real, a Portuguese explorer, came ashore and lived among the Native Americans in the vicinity of New England’s Narragansett Bay a century before the English landed at Plymouth Rock.

Early nineteenth-century whaling captains, knowing that the Portuguese were expert seamen, departed New England ports intending to fill in the balance of their crew with Portuguese recruits from the Azores. After traveling around the globe in pursuit of whales, a good many of these Portuguese sailors signed off back in New Bedford or other Yankee whaling ports, settling there to raise families. Later in the century, other Portuguese people immigrated to seaport towns in Connecticut, Rhode Island, Massachusetts, and New York, seeking to market their well-honed sea-related skills in the New World’s rapidly growing fishing industry.

Portuguese Americans have since thrived and prospered, while at the same time hewing to their original roots in such towns as Fall River, Massachusetts, and Pawtucket, Rhode Island. Family-oriented and community-minded people, they celebrate their heritage with Portuguese festivals, such as the famous Feast of the Blessed Sacrament, which attracts thousands annually to the city of New Bedford, Massachusetts. Portuguese food is a huge draw in these coastal communities — dishes such as deep fried Portuguese sweet dough, grilled linguica sandwiches, bacalhau (a variety of dishes made with salted cod), long-simmered pork, chicken, beef, and goat, and a spicy seafood and pork sausage stew.

Portuguese Seafood Stew with Chouriço

Called caldeirada in Portuguese after the large earthenware vessel it’s cooked in, this magnificent fishermen’s stew is one of Portugal’s supreme contributions to world cuisine. Chouriço, the peppery smoked Portuguese sausage, lends its distinctive flavor, but if you can’t find it you can use any garlicky cooked sausage, such as kielbasa. The stew is finished with a shower of Portuguese gremolata — roasted diced potatoes tossed with cilantro (an often-used herb in Portuguese cooking), parsley, and lemon.


  • 6 tablespoons olive oil
  • 12 ounces chouriço, cut into ½-inch slices
  • 2 green bell peppers, seeded and chopped
  • 2 onions, chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 2 bay leaves, broken in half
  • 1 cup dry white wine
  • 3 cups bottled clam juice or seafood broth (see Note)
  • 1 (14½-ounce) can tomato sauce or purée
  • 1 cup water, plus more if needed
  • 2 teaspoons smoked paprika
  • 30 mussels, scrubbed (about 1¼ pounds)
  • 12-18 littleneck clams, scrubbed (see Note)
  • 2 pounds firm boneless fish such as haddock or cod, cut into 3-inch chunks
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • Salt, if needed
  • 1¾ pounds all-purpose potatoes, unpeeled, cut into ½-inch dice (about 5½ cups)
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons grated lemon zest
  • 6 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • ½ cup chopped flat-leaf parsley
  • ½ cup chopped cilantro
  • Freshly ground black pepper


  1. For the stew, heat the oil in a very large, heavy soup pot or Dutch oven. Add the chouriço and green bell peppers and cook over medium heat until the mixture browns lightly, about 5 minutes. Remove with a slotted spoon, leaving the drippings in the pot. Add the onion, garlic, and bay leaves, and cook over medium heat until the onion begins to soften, about 5 minutes.
  2. Add the wine, raise the heat to high, and cook until reduced by about half, about 4 minutes. Add the clam juice, tomato sauce, water, and paprika, and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium and cook, covered, for 15 minutes to blend the flavors. Return the sausage and bell peppers to the sauce and heat through. (This base can be made a day ahead cover and refrigerate.)
  3. Reheat the base if necessary. Add the mussels and clams to the pot and cook, covered, over medium heat until they begin to open, about 5 minutes. Add the fish and continue cooking, covered, until all the bivalves are open and the fish is opaque, about 5 minutes. Season with pepper and, if needed, salt (it will probably not be needed the sausage and clam juice are salty). Add a bit more water if the stew is not liquid enough. The stew can sit at cool room temperature for up to an hour.
  4. Meanwhile, for the gremolata, preheat the oven to 375°F/190°C. On one or two rimmed baking sheets, toss the potatoes with the oil and salt and spread into a more or less even layer. Roast in the preheated oven for 25 to 30 minutes, or until the potatoes are lightly browned and tender when pierced with a knife. Transfer to a bowl. (Can be made up to 4 hours ahead and held at room temperature. Reheat for a minute or two in the microwave.) Toss the potatoes with the lemon zest, lemon juice, parsley, and cilantro, and season with pepper to taste.
  5. Reheat the stew gently and ladle into shallow bowls, making sure each serving gets an equal number of mussels/clams. Pass the gremolata separately so that guests can sprinkle it on their stew.

Bottled clam juice is usually shelved with the canned fish in the supermarket seafood broth — in cans or shelf-stable cartons, or in jars as a concentrate — can usually be found with the canned chicken and beef broth. If you can’t get clams, use all mussels.

Recipe excerpted from Chowderland © 2015 by Brooke Dojny. All rights reserved.

Brooke Dojny

Brooke Dojny is an award-winning food journalist and cookbook author who specializes in writing about New England food. She is the author of Chowderland ,  Lobster! ,  The New&hellip See Bio