Can I Eat Clam Chowder While Pregnant? Facts Explained

As any expectant mother knows, eating healthy is essential for your baby’s growth. You may be feeling overwhelmed with all the dietary dos and don’ts that come with being pregnant, especially when it comes to seafood.

Can I eat clam chowder while pregnant? 

Clams are safe for pregnant women if fully cooked. Eating them raw or undercooked is not recommended. Clams are safe in clam chowder if other pregnancy-safe ingredients, such as pasteurized milk and cream, are used.

This blog post will answer your burning questions about what safety measures you should take when consuming this beloved New England soup while pregnant. Let’s dive into the facts so that you can make an informed decision on whether or not clam chowder should make its way into your pregnancy diet.

Can I Eat Clam Chowder While Pregnant

Can I Eat Clam Chowder While Pregnant?

This unusual shellfish is delicate, chewy, and highly delectable.

It’s high in fiber, calcium, potassium, phosphorus, and magnesium.

This soup-like meal is also a wonderful substitute for your pregnancy diet when it’s chilly, or you want to hydrate more lightly. It is also a good diet food to lose weight post-pregnancy.

Pregnant women can consume clam chowder without worry and enjoy all of these advantages.

However, before you reach a safe pregnancy condition, you must fulfill a series of criteria. These are:

  1. It’s best if you thoroughly cook the clam chowder. When it comes to clams, undercooked or raw seafood is not recommended for pregnant women, as they contain germs that can cause harm. Raw clams are full of disease-causing bacteria like Vibrio vulnificus, which is found in seawater. These and other pathogens are destroyed during the cooking process. However, this is precisely why it’s critical to ensure that your clam chowder is thoroughly cooked. When eating it at home or in a restaurant, be sure to keep the soup hot so that all germs are destroyed.
  2. It’s the finest approach to be sure everything is safe for the baby. If you’re dining out, ask for the recipe or specify any additions to your clam chowder that you want.
  3. Canned clam nuggets are pre-cooked, but reducing the regular cooking time to make them pregnancy-safe is not necessary.
  4. When preparing unshucked clams, which are still in their shell, you must remove all of the filth and sand. The most effective method to do this is to soak them in saltwater repeatedly for half an hour at a time while rinsing them out between.

If you’re a pregnant woman wondering if clam chowder is safe to eat while pregnant, it might be difficult to distinguish the facts from the myths.

What is Clam Chowder?

Clam chowder is a type of soup that typically contains clams, potatoes, onion, celery, and cream or milk. It can also include bacon, ham, fish stock, or flour. Clam chowder is popular in New England and Atlantic Canada.

Are There Any Specific Precautions That Pregnant Women Should Take When Eating Clam Chowder?

1. Stop Eating Raw Meat 

During pregnancy, the immune system’s ability to defend itself against foodborne infections is weakened. Infants’ immune systems aren’t fully formed yet. Uncooked or raw fish might induce birth defects or miscarriages in infants.

2. Avoidance of Mercurial Seafood

In most fish, the amount of mercury is high enough to harm your baby’s developing neurological system. Tilapia and catfish (like shrimp) are good choices since they contain no mercury.

Mercury accumulates in the body over time, so pregnant women should exercise caution.

3. Accept Difference 

Mercury is present in the flesh of most shellfish. Consuming several fish and shellfish, on the other hand, might aid in reducing mercury intake. Keep in mind that a 3–6-ounce portion size for fish is a usual serving size.

4. Pick Your Battles 

Seafood is safe during pregnancy when cooked correctly. As a result, make careful selections. Uncooked or uncooked fish may be harmful to your health. Parasites and germs are destroyed during cooking. As a result, keep a warm supper on hand.

To ensure accurate cooking, use a food thermometer instead of relying just on the heat coming from the stovetop or oven’s elements. Restaurant leftovers should be returned lukewarm.

If you’re eating out, ordering delivery, or preparing your meals at home, avoid placing them near or on raw fish or meat. This lowers the risk of parasites and other bacterial or fungal illnesses being transmitted into your meal.

5. Handle Cautiously 

  • Knives and chopping boards intended for raw fish are necessary.
  • Keep perishables and leftovers at 40°F (4°C) or 0°F (-17°C) in airtight containers.
  • After four days, trash is perishable, cooked, or uneaten food.
  • Before and after handling food, you must clean your hands thoroughly.

Pregnant Women and Clam Dishes

If you want clam chowder while you’re expecting, there are alternative methods to eat them that are also safe for expectant mothers. Here are some meals and activities to consider before eating:

Clams That Are Sold In Cans Or Tins

They’re safe to eat hot or cold if they aren’t going in the fridge. The clams are already cooked and sterile, so there’s nothing to be concerned about.

Juice Of Clams

Fresh clam juice is often produced by steaming or sautéing clams, and it is safe as long as it is served hot.

It’s fine to consume clam juice that has been used as a basis for meals such as stews, soups, and sauces since it is also cooked. Clam juice from a commercially produced jar is safe since it is sterilized.

Clam Strips

If the clams are big, it’s a good idea to cut them in half to ensure that they’re piping hot and thoroughly cooked.

Stuffed clams

Stuffed clams are deep-fried or baked and typically contain a filling, though some varieties include cheese or breadcrumbs on top. As long as they’re fully cooked, stuffed clams are acceptable during pregnancy.

What Are Some Of The Potential Side Effects Of Consuming Clam Chowder While Pregnant?

Clam chowder is a type of soup that is typically made with milk, butter, and flour, as well as diced potatoes and onions. It can also contain clams, bacon, and other seafood. While clam chowder can be a delicious and nutritious meal, there are some potential risks associated with consuming it while pregnant.

Lead Poisoning

One of the main ingredients in clam chowder, milk, can pose a risk to pregnant women.


Another potential risk of consuming clam chowder while pregnant is listeria. Symptoms of listeriosis, the illness caused by listeria, include fever, muscle aches, and gastrointestinal problems.

If you’re pregnant and crave clam chowder, opt for a recipe that uses canned clams instead of fresh ones. When preparing clam chowder at home, be sure to cook it thoroughly and avoid using any ingredients that may be contaminated with harmful bacteria.

Can I Eat Clam Chowder While Pregnant? If So, How Much? 

If you are craving for clam chowder while pregnant, the following general guidelines can help you stay safe while indulging in this delicious soup.

First of all, it’s important to check with your doctor or midwife to see if they have any specific recommendations for you. They may want you to limit your intake of certain ingredients or avoid the soup altogether if you have a history of food allergies.

Assuming you’ve been given the green light to enjoy clam chowder during pregnancy, the next step is to pay attention to portion sizes. A good rule of thumb is to stick to one cup per day, or less if you’re struggling with morning sickness or other digestive issues. This will also help you lose weight without starving yourself.

Opt for fresh, wild-caught clams and organic potatoes, and avoid processed soups that may contain unhealthy additives.

By following these simple guidelines, you can enjoy a bowl of clam chowder while keeping your pregnancy safe and healthy. So go ahead and indulge.

Where Can Pregnant Women Find Safe, Healthy, And Delicious Clam Chowder Recipes?

One food that pregnant women may be wondering about is clam chowder. But can you eat clam chowder while pregnant? Yes, clam chowder can be safe for pregnant women to eat as long as it is made with fresh ingredients and cooked properly. Here are some delicious and healthy clam chowder recipes that pregnant women can enjoy:

Creamy New England Clam Chowder

This classic soup is made with fresh-farmed clams, potatoes, onion, celery, and cream. It’s hearty and filling, but still light enough for a summer lunch or dinner.

Manhattan Clam Chowder

This soup is made with fresh clams, tomatoes, peppers, and onions.

New England Clam Chowder With Corn

This soup is made with fresh clams, potatoes, onion, celery, corn, and cream. It’s a delicious and hearty soup that will leave you feeling satisfied.

So there you have it! Three delicious and safe clam chowder recipes for pregnant women to enjoy. although avoid adding cinnamon to any of this.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q1: Can I eat canned clam chowder while pregnant?

Ans: Clams are a good source of protein, iron, and omega-3 fatty acids, all of which are important for a healthy pregnancy. However, clams can also contain harmful bacteria that can cause food poisoning. 

Q2: Is it OK to have seafood soup while pregnant?

Ans: When you’re expecting, try to consume a variety of cooked fish two to three times each week. Seafood is an excellent source of nutrients and omega-3 DHA, which is important for your baby’s brain and eye development. Omega-3 DHA is required for the formation of your baby’s brain and eyes.

Q3: Are there clams in Campbell’s clam chowder?

Ans: Traditional clam chowder is made with onions, salt pork, tender clams, and their juice, potatoes, fresh cream, and milk.

Q4: What should you avoid if you’re expecting?

Ans: You should avoid consuming alcohol, unpasteurized dairy products, mercury-rich fish, and deli meats.


You can safely enjoy clam chowder as long as it is made with fresh ingredients and cooked properly. Clam chowder can be a great source of protein, iron, and omega-3 fatty acids, all of which are important for a healthy pregnancy.

By following these simple guidelines, you can enjoy a delicious and nutritious bowl of clam chowder while keeping your pregnancy safe and healthy. So go ahead and indulge!

My name is Mark Joseph, and I’m on a mission to help new parents navigate the world of parenting. With over 5 years of experience as a parenting coach, I’m here to provide you with insight into all aspects of pregnancy, childbirth, and raising your newborn baby. Instagram Linkedln Facebook

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