Lemon Garlic Butter Mussels

Mussels in Lemon Garlic Butter Sauce is one of our favorite appetizers to order at a seafood restaurant. The sauce is so good that we would dip the complimentary bread that comes with our food in the sauce. I have been craving it recently so I decided to make it at home. This recipe is best eaten with crostinis so make sure you also get a baguette at the store.

Important note: Buy mussels that look and smell fresh, with closed shells. And as soon as you get home from the store, you need to examine the mussels. Mussels that have a strong, fishy smell and have visibly broken shells are considered bad and should not be eaten as they can make you ill.

Cleaning the mussels is fairly easy. Just before cooking, soak the mussels in fresh salt water for 15 minutes. Mix 6 cups of water with 1/2 cup salt. While mussels are submerged in the water, they filter water and expel sand as they breathe. After about 20 minutes, the mussels will have less salt and sand stored inside their shells. Pull off any beards just before cooking by pulling it toward the hinge. Scrub each mussel to remove sand and grime from the shells. You will know that the mussels are completely cleaned if they are soft to the touch and look shiny. Set each mussels aside as you clean them. Double check that none of the mussels are open or cracked. If you see some, throw them out. Better safe than sorry. Now you are ready to cook!


  • 1 pound of mussels, cleaned
  • 1/4 cup of heavy cream
  • 3 tablespoons of butter
  • 1/2 cup of white wine
  • 1 shallot, finely diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon of red pepper flakes
  • 1 lemon, juiced
  • Basil leaves for topping (optional)
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 fresh baguette, sliced 1/2"³
  • Olive oil spray


  1. Set your oven to the high broil heat setting.
  2. Lay the sliced baguettes on a sheet pan and spray or brush the pieces with olive oil.
  3. Sprinkle the baguettes with ground pepper and sea salt.
  4. Broil the bread for 1 minute and 30 seconds or until golden brown.
  5. Now carefully remove the pan from the oven and flip each baguette slice over.
  6. Spray or brush the pieces with olive oil and return the pan to the oven to finish toasting.
  7. Broil for another 1 minute and 30 seconds or until golden brown.
  8. Remove from the oven when slices are golden brown and set aside.
  9. In large skillet, melt butter over medium heat.
  10. Add the garlic and saute until golden brown, followed by shallots.
  11. Stir until translucent, about 2 minutes.
  12. Add in the red pepper flakes and stir.
  13. Pour the white wine into the pan and let simmer for 2-3 minutes.
  14. Add the mussels and cover the pan.
  15. Simmer over low heat for about 5-7 minutes or until the mussels have opened up.
  16. Discard any mussels that do not open.
  17. Remove the pan from the heat.
  18. Add the heavy cream and lemon.
  19. Stir to combine.
  20. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
  21. Top with basil leaves.
  22. Enjoy!

You can substitute shallot with 1/2 of small red onion.


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