Pasta al Vongole is an Italian pasta dish, made with tender sautéed clams and a flavorful white wine sauce. It is quick and easy to prepare, making it perfect for a weeknight dinner.
This was my dad’s favorite dish to make…It might have been the only dish he could make from scratch. We ate it a lot growing up. So it was the very first dish I ever made for Spencer when we started dating 34 years ago.
What are the best clams to use for clam spaghetti?
My dad always used canned clams and clam juice, but I like to use a combination of both fresh and canned clams in my sauce.
We didn’t call it by any fancy Italian name when I was a kid. It was just called “clam spaghetti”.
You can call it Pasta al Vongole, if you want to.
Pasta Al Vongole
- 2 shallots minced
- 2-3 cloves of garlic minced
- 1 cup dry white wine
- 2 cans canned clams with juice
- 1 pound fresh clams in shells you can sometimes find steamer clams frozen in the grocery store
- 2 Tablespoons olive oil
- 2 Tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1 pound linguine
- fresh chopped parsley
- Freshly grated Parmesan or Reggiano
- Saute shallots in olive oil and butter...(maybe a tablespoon or two of each. I like to be generous with the butter!)
- Add minced garlic and saute another minute or two until fragrant, but not browned.
- Add canned clams, wine and fresh clams and cover for a few minutes to steam the clams. 5 minutes or so or until clams open. Discard any un-opened clams.
- Toss with pasta, fresh parsley and cheese.
So if you are wondering if my kids will eat this…Yes! They love it. Sophie, 11, said, “Clam spaghetti! My favorite!” But then, she says that when I make pesto, Macaroni and Cheese, and carbonara, so it could just be pasta that she’s crazy about.