Recipe courtesy of The Clam Shack

Fried Clams

  • Level: Easy
  • Total: 25 min
  • Prep: 20 min
  • Cook: 5 min
  • Yield: 4 to 6 servings
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2 pints shucked clams or 5 dozen soft-shell clams in the shell

1/2 cup milk

Solid vegetable shortening, for deep-frying

2 cups corn flour (very fine corn meal or masa harina is fine)

1 cup all-purpose flour

Lemon wedges, for serving

Tartar sauce, for serving


  1. Shuck and trim your clams--the secret to tender clams is to completely trim away the neck and use only the belly. If they're muddy, rinse and pat dry. 
  2. Preheat the oven to 200 degrees F. Heat the shortening over medium heat in a deep fryer or a heavy, deep skillet until it melts and reaches 375 degrees F. 
  3. Combine 4 cups cold water and the milk in one dish. This is called the "wash." Combine the flours in another dish to make the "breader." Using your hands, dip about a third of the clams in the wash. Shake off the excess liquid. Dredge the clams in the breader, making sure the clams are evenly coated. Transfer to a colander or use a large slotted spoon and shake off extra breader. Drop into the oil and fry until golden, about 1 minute. Use a slotted spoon to remove and keep warm in the oven while you finish the rest. 
  4. Serve with lemon wedges and tartar sauce.