How to Reheat Fried Clams? 4 Methods Explained

how to reheat fried clams

Fried clams are an iconic British seafood dish, especially in New England, where you dip clams in milk or buttermilk, coat them in flour, and then deep fry them in oil. They are simple, delicious, and quick. But what happens when you have leftover clams? Can you reheat fried clams at a later time?

You can reheat fried clams in a preheated oven within 10-15 minutes. For a quicker method, you can reheat the clams inside a microwave within a few minutes. Alternatively, you can accomplish this by heating the clams on a stovetop or with the help of an air fryer.

In this article, we are going to detail various methods for reheating fried clams. We are going to take you on a step-by-step guide of each method so that you end up with crispy fried clams in the end. 

How to Reheat Fried Clams in a Microwave?

Microwaving is probably the quickest way you can get your fried clams back to their blazing glory (okay, maybe not that hot). All you need for this method are your clams and a microwave-safe container or bowl.

The biggest downside is that microwaving can leave you with very soggy batter. And unfortunately, there is no shortcut to this problem. So, only use this method if it is the only one available to you or you are in a time crunch. 

  • Line the bowl with a paper towel.
  • Take the clams out of the fridge and place them in the bowl.
  • Place the bowl inside the microwave and heat it for 30 seconds at a time. Do this 4 times or for 2 minutes.
  • Check to see if the clams are warm enough. If it has not reached your desired temperature, just put the clams back in the microwave and heat for another 30 seconds. Do this until all the clams are warm. If you have a large batch of clams, you may need to toss them around so that every piece gets an even distribution of heat.

How to Reheat Fried Clams in Oven?

The oven is arguably the best way for reheating fried clams. Because the oven can heat up the clams while preserving their crispy texture. And you can line a wide tray with all of the clams and make sure every piece gets equal attention.

The only downside is that this method is quite slow. You really will not be going anywhere if you try to rush this process. So, if you have the time to wait, here is how you can reheat your clams using an oven:

  • First, take the strips out of the oven and allow them to come closer to room temperature. This will ensure every piece becomes equally heated.
  • While the clams are resting, preheat your oven to 350 °F.
  • Place all the clams on a baking tray or broiler pan.
  • Place the tray or pan in the oven and close the lid. Keep it in for at least 5 minutes.
  • Then rotate the clams to their other side and heat for a further 5 minutes.
  • Check to see whether they are warm enough. If not, then place them back in the oven for another minute or two.

This method works best with a wire rack as it allows the air to circulate underneath the clams. So, every side of the clams becomes crispy and firm.

How to Reheat Fried Clams in a Stove?

Even without any fancy cooking equipment, you can still get fried clams that are hot and crispy. All you need for this is your trusty skillet and some oil. This method is very similar to the oven technique as it maintains the crispiness of the clams while heating them much quicker. 

One negative is that you will end up with an extra pan that you would need to wash later. Since the clams will be in direct contact with a hot pan, the risk of burning them is high. So, you have to keep your attention on them constantly. Also, depending on the size of your skillet or pan, you may not get to reheat all of the strips in one batch.

  • Place the skillet or pan over medium heat. You can put a light coating of vegetable oil on the pan. But this part is optional and putting in too much may make the clams greasy.
  • When the pan gets hot, dump in the clams.
  • Now, fry the clams for 1-2 minutes on one side. It helps if all the strips are in one layer.
  • Now, flip the clams to the other side and fry them for another 1-2 minutes. Pressing them gently ensures that all the surfaces get exposed to the heat. This will make the batter crispy. 
  • Turn the heat off and transfer the clams onto a bowl or plate with a paper towel to drain any of the excess oil. If you keep them in the oil, the batter will soak it up and become soggy.

Keep in mind that the time it takes for the clams to warm up will vary depending on the size of the clams and the temperature of the skillet. And you do have to be careful or else you will end up burning one side of the clams before you notice it. 

How to Reheat Fried Clams in an Air Fryer?

The biggest upside when using the air fryer is that it will give you toasted clams that are crispy and tender. You do not need to add any oil nor do you have to constantly keep an eye on them. And this method is much faster than the oven technique. The one noticeable downside is that not every kitchen has an air fryer readily available. 

  • Preheat the fryer to 350 to 400 °F.
  • Place the clams in the fryer basket, preferably in a single layer. You can coat them with a bit of oil but it really is not necessary.
  • Close the basket and heat it for 3-5 minutes. Check the basket afterward and if the clams are not warm enough, you can put it back in for another 20 seconds.
how to reheat fried clams

So, in short, this is what you need to keep in mind if you want to reheat your clams:

Heating MethodVerdict
OvenGives you hot, crispy clams. But it takes a long time.
Microwave ovenQuick and convenient, but the clams will end up soft and mushy.
Stove Heats up the clams pretty well, but you have to be wary of burning the seafood.
Air fryerKeeps the clams very crispy; quicker than an oven.

How to Reheat Fried Seafood and Keep It Crispy?

An air fryer is probably the best tool for reheating fried seafood while keeping them crispy. There is no oil involved to make the batter soggy. Plus, this method is much faster than using an oven, though not as fast as a microwave.

Alternatively, reheating them in an oven or over a stove also works. But you do have to be extra careful not to burn the seafood on the skillet. A toaster oven can also serve this function.

How Long Do Leftover Fried Clams Last?

Fried clams can last up to 4 days in a fridge, provided you properly store them in an airtight container. Since fried clams are a perishable food, you should not keep them out in the open for more than a couple of hours. You can keep them in the freezer for a longer period. But this may result in rubbery clams when you thaw them out.

To conclude, fried clams are a great snack option that is easy to make yet so delicious. And with the right technique, you can enjoy crispy and warm clams even days after you initially made them.

  • Laura is the owner of Julie's Cafe Bakery. She started this blog with her grandma Julie who introduced her to the amazing world of cooking. She likes to experiment with different flavors, and her favorite flavors combo is chicken with coconut milk, curry and peanuts!