Quick Mussels with Tomatoes, Garlic and White Wine

Quick Mussels with Tomatoes, Garlic and White Wine.  If you are one of the lucky ones that truly enjoys ordering a bowl of mussels in a restaurant, then this recipe for Mussels Fra Diavolo is for you!  Fresh mussels steamed with extra-virgin olive oil, garlic, white wine, parsley, cayenne pepper, and whole peeled tomatoes is an exquisite seafood dish, and one you’ll be amazed how quick and easy you can make this dish.

Mussels Fra Diavolo is a spicy seafood dish and one we enjoy making over and over again.

We will show you how to make an amazing full flavor broth for this seafood dish, and everyone who tastes it becomes totally hooked and addicted!

My husband loves to make Mussels Fra Diavolo.  He makes the broth, or as he calls it- “the sauce” with a spicy kick to it.  It’s so good – it’s definitely restaurant-worthy!  And, he loves to invite the entire neighborhood over to eat them too!  Oh yeah.  He does.

When you buy mussels, take a closer look to make sure their shells are closed.  Keep them refrigerated until you are ready to cook them. While rinsing them, discard any mussels you find already open.  Those are no good and should be thrown out.

Mussels Fra Diavolo is fantastic when served with spaghetti as the side.
Simply toss the spaghetti with the sauce that is made from the mussels.  You’ll want to have some crusty bread near by for dipping because the sauce is so addicting and irresistible!

With this recipe, you can make this seafood dish as mild or as spicy as you like it,  simply by adding more of less cayenne pepper or even crushed red pepper flakes.

We always enjoy eating a bowl of steamed mussels with family and friends along with a bottle of wine and some crusty bread.  And, with that… comes a lot of conversations flying across the table.  Usually with us and most of the time – it’s all at once!


Here’s some leftover Tips:

You can freeze any leftover broth/sauce with mussels (discarding all shells) for future use. You may use it for any seafood risotto dish or just add it with some spaghetti.  Just allow it to defrost on the counter. Do not  microwave.

If you’re planning to use it to make risotto, first remove and reserve any remaining mussels and set them aside to add them in last.  Use the any leftover broth to cook the rice in.  Simply simmer the broth, add the rice, once the rice is about done, then finish off the cooking by adding in the mussels at the very end just to heat them in the risotto. You may also buy additional mussels, steam them,  add them to the risotto at the last minute, or serve them as the side.


Quick Mussels with Tomatoes, Garlic and White Wine

  • 4 to 6 pounds fresh live Mussels in shells- rinsed clean
  • 4 ounces extra virgin olive oil
  • 8 large garlic cloves -sliced
  • 3/4 cup fresh parsley- chopped
  • 1 ripe tomato – chopped
  • 1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper, or crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1- (28 ounce) can Italian whole peeled tomatoes-drained, rinsed
  • 1 cup dry white wine

Rinse mussels under cold running water as many times as possible, until you remove most of the sand. Fill a huge pot with cold water again and allow them to soak for at least 15 minutes. Using your fingers, pull out any beards that are visible between the shells and discard them.
Transfer mussels into a colander and set aside.
Throw away any mussels that are found open, they are bad and not good to eat.


In the meantime, using a very large sauce pot, heat olive oil and garlic on medium-low heat.  Sauté’ garlic until slightly golden.  Add cayenne pepper, ripe tomato and fresh parsley.  Stir for 1 minute.

Open can of plump tomatoes, drain all the liquid and lightly rinse.
Add them into the pot and cook on medium heat for about 15 to 20 minutes.
Add wine and lower heat for about 3 minutes.

Add all mussels and cover.
Turn heat back on high. Bring to a boil, then lower the heat to a simmer.
Allow mussels to simmer and steam, using a large spoon, stirring the mussels every few minutes to infuse all flavors of the broth and to ensure even cooking.  Steam for about 10 to 15 minutes.  Their shells will open as mussels continue to cook while steaming.

Taste the broth for salt. ( No salt is really needed; the mussels give enough sodium to the broth). The broth should have a slight kick to it.  If desired, season with more cayenne pepper and white wine, to taste. Transfer all mussels with broth to a large serving bowl and serve immediately.  Remember to serve with crusty bread at the table for dipping.

Serves 4 to 6


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