New England-Style Clambake Recipe

The classic summer seafood feast.

by Farideh Sadeghin
Sep 6 2018, 1:00pm

Photo by Eleanore Galloway

Servings: 8
Prep: 1-2 hours
Total: 4 hours


1 shovel
large canvas tarp
20 pound river rocks, or smooth flat rocks
6 pounds rockweed

5 pounds littleneck clams
2 pounds baby potatoes
6 ears corn
2 (3-pound) chickens, quartered
Kosher salt
2-3 pounds kielbasa sausage
6 (1-2 pound) lobsters
6 large eggs

to serve:
Melted butter
Old Bay seasoning
Lemon wedges


1. Prepare the food: Place all the clams and potatoes in mesh seafood bags and tie them off. Carefully pull the husks back on the corn and remove the silks. Pull the husks back up so that they’re covering the corn. Season the chicken all over with salt and pepper and wrap in a double layer of aluminum foil. Wrap all the kielbasa in a double layer of aluminum foil as well.

2. Prepare the clambake: Soak a canvas tarp in the ocean and set aside. Dig a hole in the sand (make sure you’re above the tide line!) that is about 2 feet around and 1 1/2 feet deep. If you hit water, you’ve gone too far. Line the base of the hole with river rocks, then build a fire over top. Let the fire burn for at least 1 hour, or until the fire has burned down to embers. Now, you’re gunna wanna move quick! Throw some rockweed over the the top and then layer on the potatoes, chickens, and kielbasa. Top with another layer of rockweed, then add the clams, corn, and lobsters. Top with more rockweed and add in the eggs, placing them towards the edge of the hole so you can easily access them. The eggs are there to tell you when the clambake is done: when they’re hard boiled, it’s ready! then cover with the tarp. Sit back, relax, and drink a few beers. The clambake will take anywhere from 1 1/2 -2 hours to bake.

3. When it’s ready, use tongs to carefully remove the seaweed and all the food. Give them a rinse and place them on platters. Serve with melted butter, Old Bay, and lemon wedges.