Get some surf on your turf with this tasty mussels recipe that will get you feeling all fancy pantsy like you’re enjoying a grown-up dinner at a French restaurant. keto-friendly. quick. one-pot. Dinner you can put together in under 20 minutes. Ooh la la! *adult beverage optional 😄.
Total carbs 7g, net carbs 7g
Mussels in garlicky wine sauce can make a meal seem fancy, even though they are messily eaten with fingers. Eat them hot, straight out of the shells, using the shells to drink up the delicious sauce, or sop up the sauce with crusty french bread if your carb budget allows.
Ingredients you'll need
Why eat mussels?
Mussels are a tasty, nutritious, protein-packed, affordable and sustainable seafood choice.
How to choose mussels
Only eat live mussels that look and smell yummy.
Look for mussels with shells intact. Discard any mussels with broken shells. These may be contaminated. Discard mussels with shells that do not close to the touch. These are dead. Mussels should smell like fresh ocean water. If they smell bad or fishy, don't eat them.
How do you prepare mussels for cooking?
Scrub mussels under cold, running water, discard any that won’t close when handled, smell foul or have broken shells. Rinse well. Don’t use soap.
How do you cook raw mussels?
The preferred method is to steam, not boil mussels. While boiling submerges food in water and dilutes the flavor of food, steaming uses a small amount of boiling liquid to cook food in steam. For mussels, use an aromatic liquid to add flavor to the mussels while cooking.
Use a large pot with a lid to steam mussels in their shells in a flavorful liquid such as wine, beer, tomato sauce or broth with herbs and spices. You can also wrap them in wet, fresh seaweed with a bit of water to steam them over an open fire.
How can you tell when mussels are done cooking?
Mussels are done cooking when the shells open. This only takes a few minutes. Since you can eat mussels raw, you don't have to worry about cooking them past the point of their shells opening. Do not, however, attempt to eat any mussels that did not open. Throw out cooked mussels with shells that remained closed after cooking as this indicates that they were already dead prior to cooking. I usually get one or two duds, no worries.
How to store mussels before cooking
When shopping for mussels ask the store or fish vendor for a bag of ice to pack with the mussels, so that they stay fresh for the trip home. If you drove there on a hot day, bring a cooler to pack them in.
Once you get home, store them in a large bowl covered with a damp towel and keep in the fridge. They should keep for 1-2 days. Don’t go too long or they will start dying off and you can’t eat mussels that died prior to cooking.
How to store mussels after cooking
You can remove the meats from the shells. Use the leftovers in sauces, rice, pasta, omelets or soup. Keep covered in fridge for up to two days.
Create a flavorful, savory steaming liquid by sautéing garlic in butter, add white wine, cream, salt, turmeric (to add a touch of golden color) and chives for a sprinkle of color.
Equipment you'll need
You'll need a large pot with a lid like a Dutch oven.
Provide an empty bowl on the side for shells. Eat the mussels straight out of the shells, using the shells to drink up the creamy wine sauce or sop up sauce with crusty bread if your carb budget allows. You may serve these with a side salad or vegetables. Skip the frites (fries).
This dish is best served hot and fresh. Serve immediately after cooking the mussels. Do not pre-cook mussels. You can prepare ahead of time by cleaning the mussels in advance, but cook them just prior to serving.
Frequently asked questions
Yes. They are an excellent choice nutritionally. They are full of minerals such as iron, immune boosting zinc, thyroid regulating selenium, folic acid for beautiful skin and hair, and anti-inflammatory omega-3 fatty acids great for brain health and feeling good overall. And, the Vitamin B12 in a pound of mussels is through the roof at 626% RDA. B12 keeps your nervous system and blood cells healthy. Food is medicine.
You can get sick. It is not safe to eat dead mussels, since they have started deteriorating, they can give you food poisoning.
Yes and no. It isn't advisable to eat raw mussels unless they have been properly prepared and from a reputable source. Mussels can contain a bacteria called Vibrio parahaemolyticus that may cause food poisoning.
If you are nervous about undercooking shellfish, then steam mussels for 4-9 minutes. For more info check out the CDC Food Safety page on Vibriosis.
These tasty mussels will make you feel like you're enjoying a grown-up dinner at a fancy French restaurant. You can whip-up this keto-friendly, quick and easy one-pot meal in under 20 minutes.
4 pounds fresh mussels in shells (about 2 bags), scrubbed
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
6 cloves garlic, sliced
1 glass (5 fluid ounces) white wine, I used Pinot Grigio, Sauvignon Blanc and Chardonnay are also great choices
¼ cup heavy cream
¼ teaspoon salt
a pinch of turmeric (optional - add turmeric if you want the sauce to become golden)
a handful of fresh chives, chopped
- Melt butter in a large pot over high heat. Add garlic. Cook 1 minute.
- Add wine. Bring to a boil. Boil 1 minute. Add cream, salt, turmeric if you want the sauce to become golden, and ½ the chives. Gently add mussels. Toss gently to coat mussels. Cover the pot and cook over high heat 4-5 minutes, watching the pot, until most of the mussels have opened. Throw out any mussels that haven’t opened.
- With a slotted spoon, spoon mussels into a large serving bowl. Pour sauce over mussels. Sprinkle with remaining chives.
After cooking, throw out any mussels that haven't opened.
- Prep Time: 10 minutes
- Cook Time: 10 minutes
- Category: Dinner
- Method: Steam
- Cuisine: American
Keywords: Keto low-carb Mussels in creamy white wine sauce fancy French dinner