Spicy Buttery Steamed Mussels (for two!)

in Dinner

There are times when I share recipes with you that I know very good and well require multiple steps (hello ding dongs!), a few ingredients that are a little pricey (wassup Arroz con Pollo), and some technique that might be unfamiliar (heeyyy French Omelet). Challenges are cool, but sometimes you just want something to be easy, delicious, brainless. I get it. This dish costs around $10 and takes maybe, like, 15 minutes to whip up. Too easy!

Valentine’s Day lands on a Tuesday this year, which means some of you might be coming home from work and you might be a little tired. This is what you should make. This is it!

On another note, if you’re a single lady on Valentine’s Day this year, you should make this too. I mean, I ate it all by myself while standing over the stove, so I dunno, there’s no shame.

And honestly, if you want to take to the comments to tell me how much you hate Valentine’s Day that’s cool, too. I’m here to support you…

Actually, if you tell me you hate it, I might love you more.

It’s not that I’m a Valentine’s Day hater, per se; I can just be pretty apathetic about stuff like this. I dunno. I think sometimes I should care more. Sometimes I think my girly-gene was never given to me…

Whatever. This dish is delicious and easy regardless of your relationship and V-Day sentiments, okay? Trust me on this.

It starts with mussels. Soak ’em with some water and flour. This’ll release the sand. Then there’s a good amount of butter, shallots, garlic, Italian parsley and white wine. Those things are combined to create a broth thing that you might want to bathe in. That’s cool. This is normal.

You add the mussels and allow ’em to steam for a few minutes. AND THAT’S IT.

On another more sentimental, girly, Valentine-sy note, I’d like to let you know that this blog has been a serious love of mine for the past few years. You visiting it daily, weekly, monthly, and leaving comments and sending me emails, mean the world to me. So, thank you.

Alright, enough with the sappy shiz. I’m gonna go eat some gross conversation candy now.



Spicy Buttery Steamed Mussels

Print this recipe!

1 pound mussels
2 tablespoons flour
4 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 shallots, minced
2 garlic cloves
4 tablespoons Italian parsley, minced and divided
1 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper (scale it back to 1 teaspoon if you’re adverse to spicy)
1 cup dry white wine

1. Place the mussels in a bowl and cover them with cold water. Mix in the two tablespoons of flour and allow to stand for 30 minutes. This will allow the mussels to release any sand. Next, drain the mussels and pull the “beards” off. If the mussels are dirty, scrub them, removing any dirt and be sure to discard any that aren’t tightly shut.

2. In a large saute pan, melt butter over medium heat. Once melted, add the shallots and garlic; cook for 3-4 minutes and until translucent. Add 2 tablespoons of Italian parsley, crushed red pepper and white wine. Bring to a simmer, reducing liquid for 5-7 minutes.

3. Transfer clean mussels to the pot and cover with a lid, steaming them for 2-3 minutes. Holding the lid down, give the pot a shake one or two times; this will make sure the mussels at the bottom don’t burn. You’ll know when the mussels are done when they’re all open, throwing away any that refuse to open. Scoop mussels into two separate bowls, and ladle liquid over each bowl. Serve with bread. BOOM.

{ 43 comments… read them below or add one }

Mary @ Bake Break February 13, 2012 at 9:17 pm

Adrianna, have you seen your fingernails? Clearly you have a girly-gene. I’m jealous of your girly-gene when it comes to fingernails, really.

Also, I love that you ended the recipe with a BOOM. I say that way too much. It just gets the job done!


Taryn February 14, 2012 at 11:58 am

I say BOOM to end things all the time too! Left over from working with some friends that said it whenever we accomplished a task.


Adrianna February 14, 2012 at 4:19 pm

Mary, you’re right. I have a serious love for nail polish and I’m not sure if it gets girlier. UGH!


Heather (Heather's Dish) February 13, 2012 at 9:20 pm

girl, let’s be honest…you had me at buttery. just about anything you said after that i would’ve taken :)


Rachel February 13, 2012 at 9:24 pm

I love Valentine’s day because, as a teacher, it is the last holiday I can actually celebrate with my students! We can have a party and actually say, “Happy Valentine’s Day!”


Adrianna February 14, 2012 at 4:19 pm

HA. I love this.


Natashia@foodonpaper February 13, 2012 at 9:45 pm

I hate valentines day and so does my boyfriend. My hate comes from years of being single and feeling like the odd one out. I do however like the whole excuse to bake and make something pretty in pink, then pig out on it :)


Kiran @ KiranTarun.com February 13, 2012 at 9:55 pm

Mussels is something I need to try — like ASAP. That looks yummy 😀


Nina @ ambrosia February 13, 2012 at 10:04 pm

I don’t really like Valentine’s Day either, but I really do love mussels! This dish looks fabulous.


Danni February 13, 2012 at 10:53 pm

Wow… these look totally yummy. Always been a bit scared to cook mussels at home but maybe it’s time to give it a go!


Mike February 13, 2012 at 11:02 pm

That’s a very French-y recipe…awesome though!


Anna @ the shady pine February 14, 2012 at 2:53 am

I order mussels a lot when we are out but don’t tend to cook them at home. Why not you ask? Well there is no good reason I can think of so now that I have this recipe I will be getting on and trying it….looks delicious!


Bev Weidner February 14, 2012 at 4:43 am

This. Is. My. Favorite. Meal. Of. All. Time.

Happy Balemtime’s!


Terri A. February 14, 2012 at 4:55 am

I don’t hate Valentines Day, but I don’t really get it – really? One day a year to show your love? Odd. I’m missing the girly-girl gene, too. On the other hand – these mussels look so good!


Margarita February 14, 2012 at 6:35 am

This is how mussels should be cooked. Just perfect!


Allyn February 14, 2012 at 6:45 am

Mussels might just be one of my favorite foods of all time. This one restaurant we love had a beer steamed mussel dish last year that I think would be my choice for my last meal on earth. Soooooo good.
Will totally be giving this a try!


ileana February 14, 2012 at 6:48 am

Not usually a big fan of mussels, but you make these look good!


Joss February 14, 2012 at 7:02 am

I have never been a fan of mussels :( I love your photography though :)


Hilliary @Happily Ever Healthy February 14, 2012 at 8:00 am

Holy cow I need to make these. Steamed mussels are my favorite but I am the only one in my family that likes them!


erin @ yummy supper February 14, 2012 at 8:48 am

Adrianna, Happy Valentine’s Day to you! Mussels are always good in my book, and my man would be pysched if I busted out a big bowl of these for Valentine’s Day. Hey, maybe I’ll just do that;)


Katie February 14, 2012 at 9:41 am

I love mussels! I’ll definitely try this!


Connie February 14, 2012 at 9:44 am

Wow…I want some of those now.


Stacey! February 14, 2012 at 1:38 pm

I’m a happily married lady whose husband is being nice today and making dinner and I still don’t care about Valentine’s Day. Womp womp. These mussels look AMAZING and I can’t wait to try ’em out! The first time I made them I used a mish-mash of recipes I found from Martha, Smitten Kitchen, etc. I ate the entire recipe myself and then ate an entire loaf of French bread with the remaining liquid. Yummm. That settles it… I’m making these tomorrow!

Thanks for all the love and hard work you put into the blog! :)


Adrianna February 14, 2012 at 4:20 pm

STACEY! You’re cool Thank you!


Katie February 14, 2012 at 1:49 pm

Great post! question for you though – why the flour? I’ve heard of removing sand by soaking clams/mussels etc in water but haven’t heard of the flour.



Adrianna February 14, 2012 at 4:22 pm

Good question. The mussels will actually feed on that flour; this will clean their stomachs of the sand and other stuff you don’t want to eat.


Katie February 17, 2012 at 12:59 pm

Nice! I had no idea. Does it work for clams too? We went to a friends beach house during the summer and got a massive amount of clams and oysters. So we soaked them in the salt water for a day.


Adrianna February 24, 2012 at 7:16 pm

I’ve actually never tried them with clams. BUT google is telling me that this’ll work with clams too!


Am @ The Cook's Sister February 14, 2012 at 2:17 pm

These mussels look fantastic! Thank you for sharing!


Mara @ Elemental Custard February 14, 2012 at 2:23 pm

Oh YUM I love mussels. Just discovered your blog!


Lee February 14, 2012 at 3:24 pm

Love mussells, hate Valentine’s Day. It’s a holiday dreamed up by Hallmark and Russell Stovers. They had a meeting one day and said “how can we sucker everyone out of more money?” My husband is the only man we know who doesn’t have the stress of puttin’ on the dog for Vday. He is under a strict “don’t even go there” orders issued by me. I’ve never understood it. We show each other our love every day of the week – don’t need a special day for it.

Can’t wait to try this recipe!


Sue February 14, 2012 at 5:20 pm

These look delicious! I have never cooked mussels, but my husband would be thrilled with these! And I don’t get Valentine’s Day either. It’s just a ploy of Hallmark, the candy companies and florists!


France February 15, 2012 at 1:01 am

I didn’t get the sappy gene either. But I don’t mind, I like saving those types of emotions for non hallmark holidays anyway. Hubby hates, mussels, I LOVE them, so yes I would eat these over the stove by myself with zero shame, just maybe not on Valentines day, he’ll feel left out. He got the sappy gene.
I can’t wait to try these and your trick about the flour is a new one. Thank you for that!


Heather Michelle @ A Sweet Simple Life February 15, 2012 at 6:03 am

These look delish! And I must confess, I wasn’t sappy one bit until I met my husband. Somehow in three years, I’ve developed a gushy, girly, totally cheesy side. I even cry at rom coms, so it could happen…


Kelly February 15, 2012 at 6:39 am

Ahhh – heavens just opened and angels are singing. Why didn’t I think of that?! I get so excited to see mussels on a restaurant menu, as if it’s a rare and difficult delicacy. Thank you for bringing me back down to earth.


Living The Sweet Life February 15, 2012 at 7:57 pm

YUM!! I love mussels – – this is some serious good eats :) and with the whole valentines shin-dig … I’m not a huge fan, it’s just gotten silly and out of control now. Tell the special people (person) in your life you love them all the time – – don’t spend a ridiculous amount on flowers and chocolates on just one day


Kasey February 15, 2012 at 8:11 pm

Mussels are the perfect V-day dessert! It was actually a recipe in our Feb. Pairings Box :) I learned that mussels are an aphrodisiac, and you’re totally right…so easy to make! I love to hate Valentine’s Day, but I think any day when you’re encouraged to tell someone (anyone) you love them is a good day :) xoxo


the gannet February 16, 2012 at 1:11 am

oh my. mussels are my FAVOURITE. The Me and my man ended up in bed…..with KFC and Spiderman II. Longs shifts on a Tuesday are not conducive to romance for me – this weekend however will involve treats galore.
PS made your pumpkin sandwich cookies…huge hit. x


Adrianna February 16, 2012 at 12:16 pm

I love everything about this.


Julie February 16, 2012 at 9:26 am

These mussels made me hungry! It’s like 9:00 am here, and I would gladly trade my coffee for them. Are mussels breakfast food? Yes…..I dunno…..mmmm caffeine.

I married, and don’t give two hoots about valentines day. Some ladies demand diamonds and chocolate. I however, demand sci-fi re-runs and more coffee than a normal person.

Now, I also demand mussels (listen up husband.) Going on my grocery list. I forgot how easy this dish is!


Sarah February 16, 2012 at 2:04 pm

I’ve often made mussels, but never knew of the flour sand-releasing trick. Thanks!


Julia {The Roasted Root} February 16, 2012 at 7:00 pm

As a seafood lover who has never made mussels at home, I can tell you I will start with your recipe. I ate about a million mussels on Valentine’s Day at all-you-can-eat-sushi (yup, the mussels were all-you-can-eat, too!), so you’d think I’d be over shell fish for a while, but nope! The second I saw your post, it clicked that I need to start making these bad boys at home!


Nadette@Eat, Read, Rant! February 22, 2012 at 1:51 pm

Well that was easy! Adding it to the list!


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