Drunken Mussels

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These Drunken Mussels cook in a quick and easy, garlicky white wine-broth sauce with anchovies for ultimate flavor.

Drunken Mussels in white wine

Drunken Mussels

I love these mussels, especially when prepared with lots of garlic and white wine. Serve it with toasted or grilled bread for dunking into that glorious broth. The anchovies add a complex, salty flavor that is not fishy – so don’t omit them! The best part, this dish cooks in under 20 minutes. If you love mussels, here are some more easy mussels recipes I love, Steamed Mussels with Piri Piri and Mussels Fra Diavolo.

Garlic White Wine Mussels

We love ordering mussels out but they are also one of the easiest things to cook! They only take a few minutes, add them to your favorite broth. Here I use garlic, white wine and anchovies with crushed red pepper flakes. The flavor is out of this world! Serve this as an appetizer or main dish.

How to Clean Mussels Before Cooking

Some mussels come cleaned, but if not here’s how to clean mussels before cooking them. You’ll want to remove the beard, which are the strings hanging from the mussel shell.

  • Rinse and scrub the mussels under cold water.
  • To debeard the mussels, use your fingers or paring knife to remove the beards and discard them.

How long should you cook mussels?

Mussels cook very fast! After cooking the sauce:

  • Throw in the mussels and cover the pot.
  • Shake the pot and boil for a minute.
  • Stir the mussels, cover, and boil for a few more minutes until the shells begin to open. This takes about 3 to 5 minutes. Once the shells are open, they are ready. Throw out any mussels that don’t open.

What to Serve with Mussels in White Wine Sauce

These mussels in white wine sauce would be delicious served over pasta, like angel hair or fusilli. You could also soak up the sauce with grilled or toasted bread.


  • Wine: Use a white wine that is good enough to drink! Don’t use a “cooking wine.” If you prefer not to cook with wine, use more broth.
  • Spiciness: If you prefer milder food, omit the crushed red pepper.

Mussel Poteasy mussel recipemussels appetizer with bread

More Mussels Recipes You’ll Love:

Drunken Mussels

5 from 4 votes
These Drunken Mussels cook in a quick and easy, garlicky white wine-broth sauce with anchovies for ultimate flavor.
Course: Dinner
Cuisine: Italian
Drunken Mussels in white wine
Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 15 minutes
Total: 25 minutes
Yield: 4 servings
Serving Size: 11 mussels plus broth


  • 2 pounds live mussels, about 44
  • 1 tablespoon butter, (use vegan butter for DF)
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 4 to 6 jarred anchovies
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 3/4 cup white wine
  • 3/4 cup vegetable broth
  • kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1/3 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
  • sliced grilled or broiled french bread, optional for serving and dipping into the yummy broth


  • Rinse and scrub mussels under cold water.
  • Using your fingers or paring knife, remove beards (strings that hang from the mussel shells), and discard.
  • Add butter, oil and anchovies to a large pot over medium heat. Cook until the anchovies break down, about 1 minute. Add garlic and red pepper flakes and let sizzle for about 30 seconds.
  • Quickly pour in wine and broth into the pan and season with salt and black pepper, to taste.
  • Bring sauce to a boil and cook 3 to 4 minutes, then stir in mussels, and cover immediately. Shake pot and let boil for 1 minute.
  • Stir mussels, cover, and let boil for 3 to 4 minutes until the shells begin to open.
  • Stir in parsley. Serve with grilled bread, if desired.

Last Step:

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Serving: 11 mussels plus broth, Calories: 307 kcal, Carbohydrates: 11 g, Protein: 29 g, Fat: 12 g, Saturated Fat: 3.5 g, Cholesterol: 75.5 mg, Sodium: 858.5 mg, Fiber: 0.5 g, Sugar: 0.5 g


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20 comments on “Drunken Mussels”

  1. I always start my recipe search on Skinnytaste bc I know it will be healthy and delicious…and this don’t disappoint!

  2. Avatar photo
    Pattie Quijada

    I understand that Weight watchers is forever evolving and changing but some of us are still following the older plans. It makes it very difficult when you don’t put the point value like you used to for purple green and blue. If you’re on the new plan then you need to figure out the new point value.

  3. If I am using frozen mussels do you think I’ll need to adjust cooking times? I think they are probably already cooked and I don’t think I’m supposed to thaw them. But definitky I want them to be hot! 

    1. I don’t see why not, though I haven’t tried it. Conversion should be 1/2 teaspoon paste to 1 anchovy fillet. Let me know how it comes out!

  4. If I am using frozen mussels do you think I’ll need to alter the cooking time? I’m pretty sure I’m not supposed to thaw them first…

  5. Why do you now not just list the WW points like you used to??? now we actually have to log in to the site to see the points………what a pain in the ass………..

  6. Hello! I understand why the anchovies are necessary, but I’m wondering if I could replace anchovies with fish sauce because I always have that around.