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Spicy Red Mussels

Tasty, rich, spicy tomato sauce with fresh, live mussels
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 45 minutes
Author Chews and Brews



  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1/2 white onion chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic minced
  • 1 tsp dried basil
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • 2 bay leaf
  • Pinch of crushed red pepper flakes
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • 1/2 cup white wine
  • 1 tbsp tomato paste
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • One 28-ounce can of Italian whole tomatoes
  • 2 large carrots peels and chopped


  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1/2 white onion chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic minced
  • 1 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1 cup white wine
  • 1 clam shell of live mussels scrubbed, cleaned and debearded
  • Bread for serving


  1. Rinse mussels under cold water and inspect them for cracks or damaged shells and throw those out.
  2. In a saucepan add olive oil and heat on medium heat. Once the oil is hot add chopped onion, crushed garlic, dried basil and oregano, crushed red pepper flakes, two bay leaves and a generous pinch of salt and pepper. Cook over medium heat for about 5 minutes.
  3. Add the wine, tomato paste and white sugar and let that simmer for a few minutes.
  4. Add the canned tomatoes and carrots and simmer over medium heat for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally while breaking the tomatoes up with a spoon. Once the sauce is done simmering, put it on low heat and start the mussels.
  5. In a dutch oven add olive oil and once hot, add chopped onion, garlic and crushed red pepper flakes and sauté for a couple minutes.
  6. Add the wine and boil until it reduces by half. Next, add half of the tomato sauce and bring mixture to a simmer. Add in the mussels, cover and cook until the mussels open, about 5 minutes. Inspect the mussels and toss out any that didn't open.
  7. Season with a pinch of salt and pepper, and serve with more tomato sauce and a side of sliced crusty french bread to soak up any extra sauce!