Photo of Roasted garlic clam sauce over polenta by WW

Roasted garlic clam sauce over polenta

SmartPoints® value per serving
Total Time
1 hr 20 min
20 min
1 hr
Roasting gives garlic a buttery soft texture and tames its sharp taste. It's one of our favorite ways to prepare garlic, and you'll go back to this method again and again whenever a clove or two is needed. It's an excellent addition to this dish and other Italian-inspired meals. For this recipe, the roasted garlic is combined with softened onions, crushed tomatoes, tomato paste, and canned clams for an intensely rich flavor. The sauce goes well over cooked polenta, but you can also use pasta or rice, if desired. Finish it off with chopped fresh basil right before serving for added brightness and color.


Garlic clove(s)

4 medium clove(s), not peeled

Fat free chicken broth

5 Tbsp, divided

Uncooked onion(s)

1 small, chopped

Canned crushed tomatoes

28 oz

Canned tomato paste

1 Tbsp

Table salt

½ tsp

Black pepper

½ tsp

Canned clams

13 oz, diced, drained


1 Tbsp, fresh, minced

Cooked cornmeal

2 cup(s), warmed (also known as polenta)


  1. Preheat oven to 400ºF. Place garlic in a custard cup or any small ovenproof cup; add 3 tablespoons of broth and cover cup with aluminum foil. Place in oven and roast 30 minutes. (Or place garlic and 3 tablespoons of broth on 2 sheets of heavy aluminum foil; tightly seal and roast in oven.) Remove garlic from oven and set aside to cool.
  2. Place remaining 2 tablespoons of broth in a 12-inch skillet. Add onion and cook over low heat, stirring occasionally, until tender, about 3 minutes.
  3. Squeeze garlic pulp from skins into skillet by squeezing the cooled cloves through your fingers. Add crushed tomatoes, tomato paste, salt and pepper; simmer, uncovered for 30 minutes. Stir clams into tomato mixture and heat through; add basil and serve sauce over polenta. Yields about a scant cup of sauce plus 1/2 cup of polenta per serving.