Perfect Mussels Provencale

Perfect Mussels Provencale is a French-style recipe for mussels cooked with ripe tomatoes, shallots, garlic, olive oil, and white wine.  Shellfish, like mussels, is one of the easiest meals to prepare and cook.  These mussels provencale sounds fancy, but this French seafood dish is very simple and easy to make. Best of all, they always turn out very light, delicate, and packed with fresh flavors. 


Perfect Mussels Provencale by


serve them as an appetizer or main course…

Mussels are sometimes meant to be an appetizer but we so much enjoy them as a meal, especially with friends.  

If you are entertaining dinner for a small group (or for someone special) and want to “wow” them with something delicious and elegant, but effortless, this is a dish you should make.

It is simple, elegant, and refined.

Serve these mussels with a side of our parmesan truffle oil potato wedges, or with spaghetti and some crusty bread to soak up some of that delicious sauce. 

So yummy! 🙂

Perfect Mussels Provencale by


How To Shop for Fresh Mussels?  

  • When you buy mussels, take a closer look to make sure their shells are fully closed.  Otherwise, if you find some are opened, means they’re not good, and should not be purchased. 
  • They should also smell fresh, like the sea.  So ask if you can sniff and smell them. 
  • Often, you can choose and pick out your mussels.  If they are loose, and they are placed into a bag, make sure the bag is open at the top, so they can breathe.

What to Do When You Bring Mussels Home?

  • When you get home, keep the mussels refrigerated until you are ready to cook them. 
  • Make sure they are kept either in an open bag or in a large bowl, uncovered.  This will allow them to breathe.  Do not close the bag, or they will die and open up, and you will have to discard them. 
  • Keep them on ice or chill in the refrigerator, until you are ready to cook them. 
  • If some mussels begin to open, pinch them closed, and run them under cold running water for a a few minutes. 



When you are ready to cook them, rinse them well, a few times.  Examine them.  If you find any mussels open, just give them a pinch to close them. If they don’t stay closed – then those should be thrown out.

  1. Place the mussels into a large pot, or large bowl, and place them inside your kitchen sink. 
  2. Run cold tap water over them for a few minutes to clean any debris or any sand from them, at least 5 to 10 minutes.  
  3. Drain and change the tap water a few times, to remove any further debris from them.  Drain in a colander. 

Ingredients needed for Perfect Mussels Provenciale recipe:

  • fresh mussels
  • extra virgin olive oil
  • butter
  • fresh ripe tomatoes
  • large shallots
  • large cloves of garlic
  • white wine
  • crushed red pepper flakes
  • sea salt
Photos of ingredients and mussels. by

Cook’s Notes and Tips:

  • Mussels should be cooked immediately after washing and rinsing, to retain freshness.
  • It’s best to cook the vegetables first, for at least 18 to 20 minutes before the mussels are tossed in.  This can be done while you are rinsing the mussels under cold running tap water.
  • Keep in mind, you can make this mussel dish a little more spicy, by adding additional crushed red pepper flakes to this recipe.
  • Always taste the sauce, then you can adjust the seasonings to your liking.

Mussels Provencale is perfect when the mussels are cooked on high heat with shallots, fresh tomatoes, lots of garlic, and a generous amount of white wine. 

How many Mussels do we need?

It’s a good idea to plan about one pound for every person. If you are having 6 guests for dinner, then 6 pounds would be sufficient.

How to serve Mussels Provencale?

  • Serve them in a bowl with a large spoon and allow everyone to serve themselves at the table.  It’s so much fun! 
  • Have a basket full of crusty French bread at the table for serving, to soak up some of the sauce.
  • You can even dish out some mussels and serve them over spaghetti, and spoon some of that yummy sauce over the entire dish. 
Photo of mussels in a bowl and over spaghetti. by

Perfect Mussels Provencale…

This dish is from the region of Provence, which is located in the south of France, near the city of Marseille.  Provence is famous for its seafood dishes as well as the birthplace of bouillabaisse, which is spicy mixed seafood soup.  

Most people may think French dishes are elaborate and time-consuming.  But the beautiful thing about our Perfect Mussels Provencale is that it is one of the easiest dishes to prepare.

It’s literally the best!


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Perfect Mussels Provencale by

Finally, more delicious seafood recipes…

Yield: servings 6 to 8

Perfect Mussels Provencale

Perfect Mussels Provencale by

Perfect Mussels Provencale are cooked and steamed with ripe tomatoes, shallots, garlic, olive oil, and white wine.  Simple, easy, and loaded with fresh flavors!

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes


  • 4 pounds mussels
  • 2/3 cup olive oil
  • 4 Tbsp. butter
  • 5 ripe tomatoes- sliced
  • 4 shallots- thinly sliced
  • 3 large cloves of garlic - sliced
  • 1 tsp. sea salt, (and extra to taste)
  • 1/8 tsp. paprika
  • 1/4 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1.5 cups white wine - divided


  1. In an ex-large saucepan, heat olive oil and butter on moderate heat. Toss in the shallots, garlic, and tomatoes, salt, paprika, and crushed red pepper. Cover and simmer on a low flame, and cook the vegetables for 10 to 12 minutes.
  2. Pour in 3/4 cup of white wine and cover again, and continue to cook for an additional 5 to 7 minutes.
  3. Toss in the mussels. Cover, and raise the flame to high heat. Cook the mussels on high heat for 5 minutes. Stirring and tossing them in the pot, every so often.
  4. Pour in an additional 3/4 cup of white wine. Cover again, and continue to cook on high heat for an additional 5 to 7 minutes, until all the mussels are open.
  5. Turn off the heat. Taste the sauce and adjust the seasonings to taste. Transfer to a serving bowl. Serve immediately.
  6. Serves 6 to 8

Nutrition Information:


6 to 8

Serving Size:

1/2 pound

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 441Total Fat: 27.8gSaturated Fat: 7gCholesterol: 79mgSodium: 986mgCarbohydrates: 12.7gNet Carbohydrates: 11.7gFiber: 1gSugar: 2.1gProtein: 27.8g

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Thanks for stopping by!  

 xo anna and liz

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Welcome! From Anna and Liz

We believe the kitchen is the center and the heart of the home. It is where we cook, eat, and unwind with family and friends, creating memorable traditions! Read more…

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    1. Thank you so much, Liz. The French really know how to make elegant dishes that taste fabulous without a ton of ingredients. Have a great day! 🙂

  1. I dearly love mussels but my husband is not a fan 🙁 One day when we can go to our favorite French restaurant again I’ll be ordering Moules et Frites. ♥

    1. That sounds wonderful! We are fortunate enough to have all the restaurants open here in Charleston, but wished it was the same everywhere.
      Thanks for stopping by Susan! Have a great day! 🙂