Cooking Tips

Do I Need to Clean Scallops?

Plus, how to make a quick scallop broth.

Published Mar. 9, 2023.

Cooking scallops might be the easiest way to pull off a luxe meal on a weeknight: The succulent shellfish need only a quick sear or a tumble of buttery cracker crumbs for a restaurant-worthy dinner in minutes. Even better, they’re a cinch to prep.

Unlike other bivalves, the sea scallops you buy at the store are actually just the adductor muscle that opens and closes the shell. They’re almost always sold shucked, so you don’t have to deal with scrubbing shells or removing grit as you would for clams or mussels. 


Baked Scallops with Bibb Salad

Buttery Ritz Crackers add richness to these baked scallops that are served with a light, lemony salad.
Get the Recipe

After removing the tendons, you can discard them or use them to make a quick scallop broth. 

  1. Sweat the tendons in a little butter (you can use some leek trimmings, too, if you have them around).
  2. Add clam juice, cream, or any other liquid you’re planning to incorporate in a seafood-based dish. 
  3. Simmer the mixture for a few minutes to infuse the liquid with subtle scallop flavor. 
  4. Then strain it all through a fine-mesh strainer, pressing the solids to extract as much liquid as possible. 

Use your scallop elixir to make next-level chowder, risotto, or seafood pasta sauce.

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