Monday, January 5, 2015

Mom's Famous Family Clam Dip

Let's talk clam dip. Because talking about clam dip leads us to talking about family. And football. And holidays. Special occasions. 

But seriously, let's talk about it because it's delicious!

Clam dip has been in my family since the beginning of time. I remember eating this stuff as a toddler. I believe my grandma used to be the one to make it, but for as long as I can remember, my mom has been the one to make it. There wasn't a Thanksgiving, Christmas, or Super Bowl where clam dip wasn't served. Our family clamors for it (Get it? Clamors? I'm such a dork, I know).  
My mom has to usually make double or triple batches so my brother can take half the dip home to devour. In fact, this dip has even been used to suss out potential new family members. It's been said that no one can join our family unless they like clam dip. I had a boyfriend when I was younger that refused to even taste clam dip, which led to semi-serious jokes about his character and getting rid of the dude. I should have known the relationship was doomed from that moment on.

As for the hubby? It was love at first bite :)

Even though this is the family clam dip, I don't make it often. I made it the year the hubby and I first moved to Kentucky, and then promptly lost the recipe. I hadn't made it since. With the Ducks making the very first college playoffs, I knew I needed a little extra-good juju for the game. So I rang up Mom. The first thing you should know is that Mom doesn't really have a recipe. Yes, she told me all the ingredients. But then she told me to just add to taste. I love a good challenge, and the hubby loves to taste-test. Plus, he's really good at it. So we forged ahead. With perfect results!

A bit more onion, a dash more Worcestershire sauce, a teaspoon more ketchup... With some playing around in the kitchen, we did it. Plus, I wrote down quantities, so that helped. I hope the hubby is prepared to have clam dip at my every whim now :) 

Thanksgiving. Yes! Christmas. Yes! College football playoffs. Yes! The Superbowl. Yes! Easter, the NFL draft, 4th of July, birthdays, Halloween... Yes, yes, and oh yes!

And especially when Oregon plays Ohio St for the national championship! Can I tell you how much I hate living in this area when the college football championship turns out to be my alma mater vs everyone that lives around here's favorite team? I wear Oregon stuff year round here, and I never get comments. Never. Until last week. Ugh, ready for this to be over with already!  

And I secretly hope we kick their butts. Ok, well, maybe not secretly. He he.

Here's the recipe for my Mom's Famous Family Clam Dip. I hope it adds some deliciousness and flavor to your family gatherings!

Ingredients (for 1 batch):

1 (8 oz) block of cream cheese, room temp
3 tbsp ketchup
1 tbsp mayo
1/4- 1/2 tsp Worcestershire sauce
1 (8 1/2 oz) can minced clams, half the juice drained
1/2 small onion, cut into small chunks


1. Place cream cheese in a large mixing bowl. Using a hand mixer with one egg beater attached, whip the cream cheese until fluffy.
2. Add ketchup, mayo, 1/4 tsp Worcestershire sauce, and clams with half the juice to bowl. Using a garlic press, press about 2 tbsp of onion juice into mixture. Using a spoon add any onion bits that came through the front of the garlic press to the bowl. Using a spatula, give them mixture a good stir. Give the mixture a taste. If the cream cheese is the most predominant flavor, press 2 more tbsp of onion through the garlic press into the mixture. Add 1/4 tsp more of Worcestershire sauce to the mixture. Give another good stir, and taste-test again. You're wanting to really taste the onion, and not so much the cream cheese. Keep adding onion to cut down on the cream cheese taste. I ended up adding 1/2 a small onion to get mine perfect.
3. Once your dip is where you want it, place (covered) in the fridge to chill. Dip will stay good in the fridge for 3-5 days. Serve with ruffled chips.

Looking for other dip recipes? Try these!


  1. Even when I'm dealing with the ravages of disease, clam dip will always get me out of bed and feeling better. Maybe we should petition the AMA to add it to the routine protocol for the treatment of head colds!
    Go Ducks!

    1. Me too, I'm being going at it since we've had some in the house. So yummy! Go Ducks!!!

  2. I am embarrassed to say, but I don't think I've ever had clam dip!! It sounds delicious though!

    1. You must try it, Pam! So good! As you can see from the ingredients, it's not the healthiest... but it's perfect for the special occasional treat! :)

  3. I've never eaten this, not even once so I must try it when we watch the championship - I know how you feel about your alma mater and where you live. I live in Norman, OK - Where OU is and where my husband and daughter got their undergrad and grad degrees and our son graduated law school there - oh yeah, and the football team usually (not this year) is somewhere in the championship mix. Where did I go to school? KU - home of the Jayhawks and perhaps the worst football team in any league! People snicker behind my back because I wear KU hoodies and sweatshirts all the time...........until basketball season! Thank Good for BB!

    1. My hubby is a huge Kentucky fan, so he shares your pain with Kansas football vs Kansas basketball :) I used to work in Corvallis, OR (home of Oregon's rival the Oregon St Beavers) and I used to get teased mercilessly for wearing my Oregon gear. Definitely had to deal with my fair share of snickering. All in good fun, right? Have a great day Kelly! :)


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