I just worked this out on the fly, and it was pretty good!
I still have a half dozen big cans of Campbell’s Chunky Clam Chowder, but I also had 2 small cans 10 oz (5 oz drained wt.) of just clams. Clearly having the soup already made in a can is easier by far, but bought the clams before finding the soup. So decided I ought to use them up.
You can use fresh milk, but reconstituted dry or evaporated condensed works fine too. Dumped the clams (liquid and all) into a sauce pan with a sprinkle of garlic granules and about a tsp of dried onion flakes. Added 2 Tbs of butter (coconut oil or olive oil instead if no butter) along with reconstituted potatoes (see below) and brought to a simmer. Dumped in one can volume of milk, salt & pepper to taste, and slowly return to the simmer. Simmer until potatoes are soft (just a minute or two) remove from heat and let if stand a minute or three while you get the bowl, crackers, and beverage ready.
For potatoes, I used reconstituted hash browns.
Or-Ida Idaho Spuds sells these in little pint sized milk carton like packages. You add boiling water and let it sit 6 minutes, then drain & fry. Well, instead of frying, I added about 4 oz, reconstituted, to the clams, juice & butter. Other dried potatoes could be used, but might need cooking more first if thicker.
If you like celery in your chowder, add some dry celery flakes or very little (it is potent!) celery seed. The dish is amenable to other additions too. Corn, carrots, peas, whatever. I like it more pure with just potatoes, but as you like it.
In general, I’m quite pleased with the result. It isn’t gloppy thick like the canned stuff (if you like that, add about a tsp of flour to the milk before you pour it in and simmer long enough to thicken). It also doesn’t have the high Omega-6 soy or canola oil of the canned soup, nor does it have the GMO ingredients.
I do like being able to make a nice clam chowder using all canned or dry ingredients. I may score some canned ghee (butter) from the Indian grocery store and try that. Other than that, not seeing much I’d change.