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top down view of a bowl filled with Instant Pot Clam Chowder with a spoon inside

Instant Pot Clam Chowder

This creamy and rich Clam Chowder Instant Pot recipe is a family dinner favorite that can also serve as an appetizer.
Course Appetizer, Main Course
Cuisine American, Western
Keyword Instant Pot Clam Chowder
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Servings 8
Calories 380kcal


  • 1 Tbsp oil
  • 4 X 6.5 oz cans minced clams
  • ½ lb (230g) bacon chopped
  • 1 medium onion diced
  • 3 cloves garlic minced
  • 3 medium-large potatoes pared and cubed
  • 2 cups (450g) celery diced
  • 1 tsp salt
  • tsp black pepper
  • ½ tsp ground thyme
  • 4 cups (950ml) low sodium chicken broth
  • 1 cup (240ml) heavy cream
  • ½ cup (120ml) sour cream
  • 2 Tbsp cornstarch


  • Turn your Instant Pot to sauté, heat oil and cook bacon in batches until crispy. Remove and set aside.
  • Cook chopped onion for about a minute and garlic for about 30 secs.
  • Add clams with juice to the pot. Add the bacon back to the pot with all the other ingredients except the sour cream, cream, and cornstarch.
  • Cover and set to manual pressure / high pressure for 10 mins, until potatoes are tender. Allow for a natural pressure release.
  • Turn the pot back on to sauté mode. In a separate cup, mix the cream and cornstarch until no longer lumpy and add to Instant Pot.
  • Add sour cream to the pot and stir to combine.
  • Use a potato masher to mash the potatoes in the chowder, leaving some lumps. Let simmer for a few mins.
  • Turn off, garnish with bacon and green onions, and serve hot.




  • Cook time does not include time for the Instant Pot to come up to pressure, or for the pressure to release.
  • To make this Clam Chowder Instant Pot recipe EVEN EASIER, prep all your ingredients ahead of time. This makes whipping up this dish even FASTER.
  • Add more cream if you like a thinner chowder.
  • If you like a thicker chowder, add a tablespoon each of cornstarch and water to the hot chowder and stir it in.
  • Do NOT use a quick pressure release because this can cause the soup or soup foam to come out of the top vent.
Chef's Tip: If you don’t have canned clams, you can use frozen clams with clam juice.

Serving Suggestions

Weight Watchers Points

There are 12 Blue Plan SmartPoints in one serving of this Instant Pot Clam Chowder.


Calories: 380kcal | Carbohydrates: 23g | Protein: 23g | Fat: 23g | Saturated Fat: 13g | Cholesterol: 100mg | Sodium: 1445mg | Potassium: 584mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 750IU | Vitamin C: 7mg | Calcium: 80mg | Iron: 2mg