This Mediterranean Steamed Clams in White Wine Sauce is my Lebanese take on a traditional white wine steamer clam recipe. Taking fresh steamer clams, garlic, white wine, a touch of balsamic vinegar, olive oil, mini peppers, shallots, and kalamata olives cooked for just a few minutes and served alongside crusty bread.

How could you pass that up?

Mediterranean ingredients added to these fresh clams make for such a fun and delicious change from your average clam in white wine sauce. And it sure beats paying a pretty penny for this dish at a restaurant!

After gathering your ingredients, and prep your veggies, because this dish comes together in just a few minutes. And, since steamer clams don’t need much time at all to cook, you’ll have to stay close by while they’re cooking – to remove them from heat as soon as they pop open!

Now, let’s dive in to what you need to make this steamed clams in white wine sauce recipe!

Clam bake recipe with fresh steamer clams mini peppers shallots kalamata olives with a side of bread


  • Steamer clams. Purchase them from your local seafood market or harvest them (we have a great guide on how to harvest clams). Make sure they’re fresh by running 2 tests. First, smell to see if they have a fishy scent, or if they smell like salt water. They should smell like salt water. Second, check if any are open and rub them together. If they close within a few seconds, they’re alive. If they don’t close, they’re no good.

  • Extra virgin olive oil. I much prefer to use olive oil instead of butter whenever I can, and in this dish, it’s a must for a full Mediterranean palette.

  • Garlic, minced. I’ve tried this dish with sliced garlic, however, it didn’t add quite enough garlic flavor, so I knew the next time I was able to make this dish I would try with minced. Glad I did, it was a great touch.

  • Dry white wine. Use a good bottle, so you can enjoy it with dinner. I know most people like to say use a cheap wine, and maybe you should for other dishes, but why would you for a good seafood dish? I highly recommend using a good drinking wine. Nothing too expensive, but use what you drink and this clam in white wine sauce will come to life!

  • Balsamic vinegar. I like to add balsamic vinegar to this, to add a tangy flavor with a deep note. 

  • Red pepper flakes. Leave this out if you don’t enjoy the heat. However, a little dash of heat really does wonders in this dish.

  • Sweet mini peppers, sliced into rings. They add a nice pop of color and the rings look great in this dish.

  • Shallots, sliced into large rings.

  • Kalamata olives. These olives make this dish. They add the right fatty element and tang.

  • Freshly squeezed lemon juice. Adding fresh lemon juice at the very end, right before serving helps keep the lemon flavor strong in this dish. Yum!

  • Finely chopped parsley. Sprinkled right before serving. Adds great color and much-needed fresh herb flavor!

  • Salt & black pepper. Add to taste once the dish is served.

Spoon of mediterranean clam bake recipe with steamer clams, white wine, vinegar, peppers, shallots and olives


  • You will need a large enough pot to cook your clams in. No need to purchase any special clam bake pot.

  • Keep the pot at a gentle simmer and remove the clams from heat after they pop open. 

  • Prepare all the ingredients you need before starting the cooking process.

  • Serve with a side of Baguette or other crusty bread.

  • Discard clams that don’t open during the cooking process.

  • Once cooked, you can store steamer clams for up to 2 days. 

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fresh steamer clams in a glass bowl


I have a lot of tips and tricks when it comes to working with shellfish, or any seafood for that matter, since I work with them pretty much daily. Here are just a few that I always share:

  • Steamer Clam Safety! How to check if steamer clams are alive is going to be my absolute best tip when working with clams. A bag clam is all it takes for a dish to be ruined. So, check if the clams have a fishy smell, and if they’re opening and are NOT closing on their own. Discard them if so.

  • DO NOT store raw clams in any liquid. If you have them on ice, be sure to constantly check them to remove any excess water.

  • Stay close to the pot when cooking steamer clams. They cook extremely fast and as soon as they pop open, they must come off the heat. Overcooking clams makes them rubbery.

  • Use a good drinking wine. Avoid the super cheap stuff. I know that’s contrary to what most say, but this is a delicious seafood dish, and a good drinking wine (not too expensive) will help elevate this dish and provide better flavors than the cheap stuff. After all, clam in white wine sauce isn’t your typical dish.


Where To Get Steamer Clams

Harvest them:

If you’re up for an adventure, check out our guide on How to Dig Clams. In Washington State, the Hood canal clam season is abundant, and the coast has many beaches to choose from to harvest your fair share of clams.

Hood Canal clamming is extremely popular, and such a fun experience for a Catch-and-cook day.

So, after a successful trip, make this Mediterranean Clam Bake recipe!

Purchase them:

Check out your local seafood market for fresh steamer clams. Some grocery stores also carry them.

How To Clean Clams

After harvesting fresh clams, cleaning them is a necessary step. Thankfully, it’s not complicated and I’ve laid out the steps here.

Step 1 – Soak clams in a saltwater bath for 20 minutes.

Step 2 – Another soak in a new saltwater bath for another 20 minutes.

Step 3 – Rinse the clams from the salt bath, and soak them in clean water for 15 minutes. 

Note that if any clams have opened during this process and don’t close shut on their own, you must discard them.

Mediterranean Clam bake with fresh steamer clams, peppers, shallots, olives, garlic, parsley.


I love to cook exactly what we catch or harvest on that day, it feels extra special. On the day I made this recipe I only had steamer clams, from a recent trip to the hood canal. I wanted to dress them up and tie my Lebanese flavors to it. I made it a one-pot wonder with all my favorite Mediterranean ingredients and this spectacular clam in white wine sauce dish came to life!

We enjoyed it with crusty bread and a side of Tabouli Salad, because of course, when in Lebanon (Rome ;)).

This dish is addicting!!!

Washington state is packed with beauty, as well as seafood! On the coast, you can find various fish, Dungeness crab, and a ton of clam species, like our beloved razor clams, cockle clams, and other steamer clams. However, if you’ve been to the Hood Canal, you know that you’re walking away with steamer clams for dinner. 

Steamer clams are so easy to harvest and even easier to cook. Made with a delicious Mediterranean twist and you will be set for a delicious fresh dinner!


What’s the difference between a clam bake and steamed clams?

A clam bake has other ingredients, such as other seafood or vegetables, like corn and potatoes. Whereas steamed clam recipes are a much simpler dish. Though, I’ve spruced up this steamed clam recipe and make it similar to a clam bake in that it has other ingredients besides steamed clams, and it couldn’t be more delicious!

What do you serve with clam bake?

It’s typically served with typically served with a bed of fluffy white rice or bread, I prefer baguette if you go the bread route. Other side dishes are fresh salad, like Tabouli as well as roasted potatoes. I made Hummus with pita for an appetizer.

What do you drink with clam bake?

Wine is a great pairing with most seafood – especially this recipe since white wine is used in the sauce. Sauvignon Blanc and pinot grigio make a great pairing. Otherwise choose a white wine you typically enjoy, that way the rest of the bottle can be enjoyed alongside this dish.


Anything Mediterranean would be a great option as a side.

Hummus and pita bread make a great sharing appetizer.

Serve this dish on a bed of fluffy rice or with a side of crusty bread to dip. A good bread to go with is a baguette.

A go-to fresh salad is this Tabouli Salad with a hardy side of Roasted potatoes.


I would love for you to rate this Mediterranean-style clams in white wine sauce recipe below if you loved it and share the recipe with your friends and family!

Mediterranean steamed clams with white wine peppers shallots olives

Mediterranean Steamed Clams in White Wine Sauce

You have to try this Mediterranean Steamed Clams in White Wine Sauce! With fresh steamer clams, garlic, mini peppers, shallots, and kalamata olives for my authentic Mediterranean twist on a traditional recipe.
It’s ready in just a few minutes and served alongside crusty bread or fluffy rice.
5 from 2 votes
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 10 mins
Total Time 20 mins
Course Appetizer, Main Course
Cuisine Pacific Coast
Servings 4 servings


  • 2 dozen steamer clams
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 5 large cloves garlic minced
  • 1 cup dry white wine
  • ½ tbsp balsamic
  • ¼ tsp red pepper flakes
  • ½ tsp salt and black pepper
  • 2 cups sweet mini peppers sliced into rings
  • ½ cup shallots sliced into large rings
  • ½ cup kalamata olives
  • 1 tbsp fresh lemon juice
  • ¼ cup finely chopped parsley


  • To a large pot on medium heat, add oil and garlic and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds.
  • While stirring add wine, balsamic, red pepper flakes, salt, and black pepper and bring to a simmer.
  • Add peppers, shallots, kalamata olives, and steamer clams. Cover the pot and cook until clams open. Don't go far, this only takes a few minutes.
  • Remove from heat and discard any clams that remain closed.
  • Add fresh lemon juice and chopped parsley. Serve immediately.


Best served with a bed of fluffy rice or crusty bread, like a baguette.
Keyword 20 minute meals, clam bake ideas, clam bake recipe, easy seafood dinner ideas, fresh clams, fresh steamer clams, how to steam clams, seafood appetizer, steamer clams, steamers, white wine, white wine steamed clams
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