Grilled Clams and Chorizo Recipe

Jul 22, 2011 12:21 pm

A new take on the summer clambake

Grilled clams
Photo credit: Tara Donne © 2011
The clams open like magic on the grill. The chorizos just kinda sit there. Slackers.

I like to think of this dish as a Latin clambake. A smoked paprika and butter sauce serves as the base to which grilled chorizo and grilled clams are added. It’s quick, easy, and delicious! If you have never grilled clams, you will see just how quickly they cook and how flavorful they are. But the best part is that, since you can see them pop open, you won’t have to worry about the clams overcooking and turning rubbery. This recipe is as fun to make as it is delicious to eat.

Reprinted with permission from Latin Grilling: Recipes to Share, from Argentine Asado to Yucatecan Barbecue and More by Lourdes Castro, copyright © 2011. Published by Ten Speed Press, a division of Random House, Inc.

Servings: 8


1 1/2 pounds fresh chorizo
1 stick (1/2 cup) unsalted butter, diced
1 1/2 cups white wine
4 cloves garlic, minced
3 shallots, sliced
2 tomatoes, chopped
1 1/2 teaspoons smoked paprika
36 small clams in the shell, scrubbed
extra-virgin olive oil
1 baguette, halved lengthwise
1/4 cup lightly packed flat-leaf parsley leaves and tender stems, chopped
3 lemons, cut into wedges

Grill the chorizo and prepare the sauce

  1. Heat your grill to medium-high (450°F) and close the lid. Wait at least 15 minutes before continuing. Oil the grill grates with a vegetable oil–soaked paper towel held with a long pair of tongs.
  2. Place the chorizo on one side of the grill, close the lid, and cook for 8 to 10 minutes, or until the chorizo is a deep golden brown. Turn the sausage over and grill for another 4 to 5 minutes, until its skin is charred and shriveled. Remove the chorizo from the grill.
  3. Set a roasting pan set on the other side of the grill and add the butter, wine, garlic, shallots, 
  4. tomatoes, smoked paprika, ½ teaspoon of salt, and ¼ teaspoon of black pepper. Cook, stirring intermittently, for 8 minutes, or until the tomatoes start to break down and the shallots soften.
  5. Meanwhile, slice the chorizo into thin rounds and add to the pan with the sauce. Stir to combine, and leave the pan on the grill.

Grill the clams

  1. Increase the grill heat to high (550°F), leaving the lid open.
  2. Place the clams directly on the grill grate and cook until they pop open, about 3 to 6 minutes. Use tongs to transfer the clams to the pan as soon as they open. Discard any clams that remain shut after 8 or 9 minutes.
  3. Toss the clams, chorizo, and sauce together, and set aside.

Grill and slice the bread

Drizzle some olive oil over the inside of the cut baguette and place the bread halves cut side down on the grill. Allow to toast for a few minutes, until slightly charred and toasted. Remove from the heat and cut into slices. 


Garnish the clams and chorizo with a sprinkling of parsley and wedges of lemon. Serve with the baguette slices.

Cooking Notes:


Use your favorite clams in this recipe, or feel free to experiment with different types of shellfish, such as mussels. Shrimp also work really well in this recipe.


I have used everything from a stainless-steel roasting pan to a paella pan to a disposable foil roasting pan—all with success. Just make sure the pan fits on the grill with enough extra space to grill the chorizo and clams.

Advance Preparation:

All of the ingredients for the sauce can be prepared and placed in the pan. As the clams can become rubbery as they sit, the clams and chorizo should be grilled just before serving.

Level of Difficulty: 
Prep Time: 
30 minutes
Cooking Time: 
30 minutes
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