Enjoy a restaurant quality dinner at home with an easy to prepare recipe for mussels marinara. The delicious seafood recipe is ready in about 20 minutes.
Seafood recipes are typically easy and quick to prepare. If you enjoyed my recipes for New England Chowder or Korean Barbecue Shrimp, you will definitely want to try this restaurant quality and easy recipe for Mussels Marinara.
The ingredients in Mussels Marinara
- extra virgin olive oil
- red pepper flakes
- red wine
- canned diced tomatoes and tomato sauce
- fresh basil
If you love seafood and especially shellfish, mussels are the perfect and quick dinner. A couple pounds of fresh mussels is also economical. It will only set you back about $5. I love to serve this recipe to a bunch of family and friends. Place a big, steaming bowl of this recipe for mussels with tomato and basil marinara in the middle of the table and let everyone serve themselves. A simply tossed salad of mixed greens, sliced tomatoes and crunchy chunks of cucumber with my favorite vinaigrette and a baguette round out this delicious meal.
How to buy fresh mussels
Prince Edward Island are some of my favorite mussels. Visit their website for tons of information and delicious recipes to try. Mussels are typically sold in mesh bags. Be sure to check for the tag that gives information on where the mussels were harvested and on what date. The mussels should smell fresh and not fishy. If they have an off odor, they are likely past their prime. Plan on about 1 pound of mussels per person. It’s best to buy mussels the day you will cook them.
- Mussels contain more iron than beef and a serving has 18 g of protein
- The shellfish can live to be 5 years old but, the harvested ones are around 1 year old.
- They are an aphrodisiac.
- Mussels can filter up to a gallon of water an hour.
Chef cooking notes for mussels marinara
- Give the mussels a rinse in a colander under cold water. Give any shells a squeeze if they are open (see the photo above). If they close, they are fresh and good to cook. Set them aside until ready to cook them.
- This is a one pot meal so that is a bonus!
- After sauteing the onion, garlic and red pepper flakes, the sauce gets some rich flavor from red wine. Be sure to reduce it to intensify its flavor.
- Both canned diced tomatoes and tomato sauce give the sauce added flavor and texture.
- Mussels cook quickly – in about 6 to 8 minutes. They are ready when the shells have opened.
More summer time recipes
- Antipasto Skewers
- Texas Caviar
- Grilled Balsamic Chicken Sandwiches with Fresh Mozzarella
- Homestyle Red Potato Salad with Dill Pickles
If you make this delicious and easy mussels recipe, I’d love hearing from you all. Be sure to leave a comment and/or give this recipe a rating ~ I do my best to reply to all your comments. And snap a photo to post to Instagram. I’ll add the photos to my Insta stories as I love seeing all your creations.
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An easy to prepare mussels recipe with a chunky tomato sauce with a spicy kick from red pepper flakes.
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 1/2 cup diced onion
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
- 1/2 cup red wine such as cabernet sauvignon or merlot
- 1 (14-ounce) canned diced tomatoes
- 1 (14-ounce) canned tomato sauce
- 4 pounds mussels (rinsed)
- 8 – 10 large fresh basil leaves, thinly sliced
- 2 tablespoons butter
- In a large stock pot over medium heat, add the olive oil. When the oil just begins to shimmer add the onion, garlic, and red pepper flakes. Saute for 4 to 5 minutes.
- Add the wine to the pot and continue cooking over medium high heat for an additional 2 to 3 minutes. The wine will be reduced by about half.
- Add the canned diced tomatoes and the tomato sauce and stir to combine.
- Add the mussels and stir to combine with the tomatoes. Cover the pot and cook until the mussels have just opened. The cooking time should be about 6 to 8 minutes.
- Discard any unopened mussels.
- Spoon mussels and broth into large bowls, sprinkle with basil and serve.
Only use the freshest mussels. They should have a briny aroma. The shells should be tightly closed.
It is best to use mussels the day you purchase them.
- Category: appetizer or entree
- Method: saute and simmer
- Cuisine: Italian
- Serving Size: 1 pound
- Calories: 319
- Sugar: 7.8 g
- Sodium: 998 mg
- Fat: 16.6 g
- Saturated Fat: 5.4 g
- Unsaturated Fat: 0 g
- Trans Fat: 0 g
- Carbohydrates: 18.3 g
- Fiber: 3.3 g
- Protein: 20.7 g
- Cholesterol: 57 mg
Keywords: recipe for mussels, mussels recipe tomato, mussels recipe easy