This seriously delicious drunken mussels recipe is one of the quickest shellfish preparations known to man. Bring a flavorful, wine-based broth to a boil, add mussels and cover; cook until they open, and eat. That's it!

Chef John
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Ingredients

2
Original recipe yields 2 servings
The ingredient list now reflects the servings specified
Ingredient Checklist

Directions

Instructions Checklist
  • Melt butter in a large stock pot over medium heat. Add garlic and let sizzle for about 30 seconds. Season with red pepper flakes and lemon zest, stirring for about 45 seconds.

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  • Quickly pour in wine into the pan and season with black pepper. Bring sauce to a boil, stir in mussels, and cover immediately. Shake pot and let boil for 1 minute.

  • Stir mussels, replace cover, and let boil for 2 more minutes. The shells will begin to open. Stir in parsley, cover pot, and cook until all shells are open, 1 to 3 minutes.

  • Serve with grilled bread and lemon wedge.

Partner Tip

Reynolds® Aluminum foil can be used to keep food moist, cook it evenly, and make clean-up easier.

Nutrition Facts

553 calories; 14.8 g total fat; 91 mg cholesterol; 620 mg sodium. 40.5 g carbohydrates; 28.1 g protein; Full Nutrition

Reviews (163)

Read More Reviews

Most helpful positive review

Rating: 5 stars
07/28/2012
This was a big winner with everyone. I had 3 pounds of mussels. We subbed beer for the wine, used a tablespoon of crushed red pepper (we like 'em hot!) and since we were having clams as well we wanted this to be a red sauce. I added a 28 ounce can of crushed tomatoes and doubled the butter. I let the sauce cook a bit to thicken and then added the mussels. So good! Loved the sauce over some linguine. Will be making this again! Read More
(92)

Most helpful critical review

Rating: 2 stars
01/03/2014
This was NOT good. If I were to make thing again I would likely double the butter, and split the wine with some type of stock. Two cups of wine is terrible. I used good, dry white and even added a leek that I had in the fridge but there was no flavor besides the wine. Seafood like this shouldn't need salt and this did. Read More
(21)
222 Ratings
  • 5 star values: 148
  • 4 star values: 50
  • 3 star values: 10
  • 2 star values: 9
  • 1 star values: 5
Rating: 5 stars
07/28/2012
This was a big winner with everyone. I had 3 pounds of mussels. We subbed beer for the wine, used a tablespoon of crushed red pepper (we like 'em hot!) and since we were having clams as well we wanted this to be a red sauce. I added a 28 ounce can of crushed tomatoes and doubled the butter. I let the sauce cook a bit to thicken and then added the mussels. So good! Loved the sauce over some linguine. Will be making this again! Read More
(92)
Rating: 5 stars
07/28/2012
This was a big winner with everyone. I had 3 pounds of mussels. We subbed beer for the wine, used a tablespoon of crushed red pepper (we like 'em hot!) and since we were having clams as well we wanted this to be a red sauce. I added a 28 ounce can of crushed tomatoes and doubled the butter. I let the sauce cook a bit to thicken and then added the mussels. So good! Loved the sauce over some linguine. Will be making this again! Read More
(92)
Rating: 5 stars
10/20/2012
Loved it! Thank you! Would not change a thing. Read More
(67)
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Rating: 5 stars
07/06/2012
I changed this one just a bit and it turned out awesome. Used beer instead of wine and added some heavy cream. It was a hit at our last dinner party. Read More
(52)
Rating: 5 stars
07/23/2014
Simply superb! I decreased the amount of white wine (1.5 cups) and added a large splash of heavy cream (about 1 Tbsp). Other than that I followed the recipe exactly as written. As someone who really loves mussels and who has made them many times in a variety of ways... I can say that this is my new favorite recipe for them. I made 'em especially for my elderly father who really enjoyed dipping his crusty bread into the amazing sauce. Many thanks to Chef John for yet another splendid recipe! Read More
(36)
Rating: 2 stars
01/03/2014
This was NOT good. If I were to make thing again I would likely double the butter, and split the wine with some type of stock. Two cups of wine is terrible. I used good, dry white and even added a leek that I had in the fridge but there was no flavor besides the wine. Seafood like this shouldn't need salt and this did. Read More
(21)
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Rating: 5 stars
07/01/2014
This is an excellent base recipe - so many things that you can do to tweak! For the second attempt, I made some adjustments (in order of addition to the pot: More butter (not much - though more butter is always best), More garlic, about 2 medium chopped leeks (they were in the fridge getting sad from the farmer's market 3 weeks ago), a huge tomato roughly chopped (again, from the farmer's market last week. Poor dear was getting squishy - oh well, cut off the weird stuff and use the rest! I tasted first, it was divine), added 1/2 pound of fresh shrimp with shells still on - backs cut with scissors to make for easy peeling later but not de-veined, 3/4 of a medium summer squash- diced into 1/2 in cubes (this might've been too small, oh well), about 1/2 of the wine replaced with distilled water, I didn't have parsley but I had a ton of sorrel (again, starting to get sad. We tend to play favorites with vegetables, running out of kale but never eating the other greens!) so I took about 3/4 of a big bundle and roughly sliced across to make ribbons. Dropped some in at the end - got a bit brown and strange looking but added a wonderful toothy brightness to vegetable bites that lemon couldn't capture alone. The result? Fantastic! A medley of bright vegetables in a light, mildly tomato sauce. I meant to add cream but forgot! It was still delectable. Must be served with a big bowl for shells (both mussel and shrimp). What to do with the shells? Bury them in the yard, I suppose! Read More
(21)
Rating: 5 stars
12/23/2013
This recipe is divine! I felt like I was eating this at a "Legal Seafood" restaurant in Boston. Anyone that loves seafood, has traveled some and has experienced a "Legal Seafood" restaurant in Boston knows what I'm saying. I only made half of this recipe. I live in Colorado at an elevation of 6,800 feet and it only took 2 minutes for the mussels to open, I expected that it would take much longer than that yet the mussels were done perfectly. Being that I only made half of the original recipe amounts, I found that 1 cup of a nice white wine was too much. I suggest that anyone that makes this entree as written for 2 servings to only use 1 cup of wine instead of the 2 cups that is called for. Read More
(19)
Rating: 4 stars
05/18/2016
I LOVE this recipe and made many times. What I have learned is that having the parsley doesn't make or break this dish. What does make this dish is the lemon zest and wine, which needs to be a chardonnay with a good oak finish. I tried with a Pinot Grigio and it was too fizzy. And go big with the butter using a stick. It's not like you eat all of it as much is left in the juice you discard. And take time with the letting the ingredients really saute and blend together the medley of flavors before adding the mussels. And these heat up really well as left overs with the broth in a saucepan the next day. I found the best economical wine to use is Kirkland's Chardonnay. Like they say, if you won't drink it, don't cook with it. Good luck! Read More
(15)
Rating: 5 stars
06/27/2012
Excellent! We couldn't stop mopping up the broth with our crusty bread:) Read More
(9)