This is a quick and easy appetizer or side dish for seafood lovers. Don't let the ease of preparation or the minimal ingredients fool you; these stuffed clams are full of flavor and are absolutely delicious! They will dress up any meal and are always a big hit.
(*Note: I save and freeze clam juice from canned clams that I use in different recipes. You may use the reserved juice of the drained clams plus one 8 oz. bottle of clam juice and enough water to equal 1 1/2 cups total.)
Drain clams in small strainer over a 2 cup measuring cup; set clams aside.
Add enough clam juice and water to the cup to equal 1 1/2 cups.
Pour clam juice into a microwavable bowl; add 4 tablespoons butter and 1 teaspoon old bay seasoning; cover bowl with lid or wax paper; microwave on high power for 3 1/2 minutes or until it begins to boil
Remove from microwave, add dry stuffing mix (and seasoning packet, if included;) stir well. Cover and allow to rest for 5 minutes.
Preheat oven to 375ºF.
Add clams to mixture; mix to combine well.
Spoon mixture into empty, clean clam shells. Place filled shells in a 9"X13" baking dish or on a rimmed baking sheet; set aside.
Place remaining 1 tablespoon butter in small microwavable cup; cover with small piece of wax paper or paper towel to prevent splatter; microwave on high power for 10 to 15 seconds to melt butter.
Brush or spoon butter evenly over each stuffed shell.
Lightly sprinkle each with a little extra old bay seasoning.
Bake at 375ºF for 30 minutes. Garnish as desired. Serve hot or warm. Cover and refrigerate leftovers.