Budget-Friendly Pasta with Clam Sauce

25 Mar
Canned clams, cayenne, garlic, Parmesan, oregano, olive oil, white wine and salt

Canned clams, cayenne, garlic, Parmesan, oregano, olive oil, white wine and salt

One of my favorite pasta dishes is pasta with clam sauce. I love the dish, but I hate ordering it out because it seems too simple to spend $15 on. That’s why I’ve taken the college student approach and decided that if it’s too expensive to buy, it’s time to make.

I didn’t want to spend the extra dough on fresh clams, so I turned to the canned version instead. Canned clams cost about a dollar a jar and have a more concentrated flavor than fresh clams. By cutting back on spending on the main ingredient, the dish becomes college budget friendly.

Here’s how I made pasta with clam sauce on a college allowance.

Pasta with Clam Sauce Ingredients: (Serves 4)

Garlic and clam broth base

Garlic and clam broth base

  • 2 cans of clams (I suggest whole, but chopped is cheaper)
  • 1 box of spaghetti
  • ¼ cup dry white wine
  • 2 cloves of garlic (diced or pressed)
  • ¼ teaspoon Cayenne pepper
  • ¼ teaspoon oregano
  • 2 tablespoons of olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon of butter
  • ¼ cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • Pinch of salt
Clam Sauce

Clam Sauce

Step 1: Open canned clams and drain clam juice into a small sauce pan. Put clams to the side. Bring juice to a simmer and heat until it reduces by about half.

Step 2: Boil water and prepare pasta.

Step 3: While waiting for water to boil, heat olive oil in a large sauce pan on medium heat. Add garlic and let brown.

Step 4: Once garlic is browned, add reduced clam juice and simmer for 2 minutes.

Step 5: Add white wine, cayenne pepper, salt and oregano and simmer for another 2 minutes.

Step 6: Add clams and simmer for 3 minutes. Add butter to finish sauce.

Pasta with Clam Sauce

Pasta with Clam Sauce

Step 7: Mix drained pasta and sauce. Top with Parmesan cheese and oregano.

Step 8: Enjoy!

Not to toot my own horn or anything, but my ½ roommate (the boyfriend of one of my roommates) said this pasta with clam sauce was just as good as the one he had in Italy. With that kind of recommendation, why not try it out?

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