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Moules Marinière (Mussels with Garlic and Parsley) - (Photo by Erich Boenzli)
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5 from 4 votes

Moules Marinière (Mussels with Garlic and Parsley)

Moules Marinière (Mussels with Garlic and Parsley) is French fast food at its best. Deliciously ready in 25 minutes.
Prep Time10 minutes
Cook Time15 minutes
Total Time25 minutes
Course: Appetizer, Dinner, Lunch, Main Course
Cuisine: French
Keyword: moules mariniere, mussels in white wine, mussels with garlic and parsley
Servings: 2
Calories: 517kcal


  • 2 pounds fresh mussels, cleaned
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 3 tablespoons sliced leek
  • 2 tablespoons sliced shallot
  • 1 tablespoon sliced garlic
  • 2 bay leaves
  • ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
  • ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 cup dry white wine
  • 3 tablespoons crème fraîche (or heavy cream)
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest
  • 4 tablespoons minced fresh parsley leaves
  • French baguette (optional)


  • In a large saucepan with a lid, over medium heat, melt half the butter
  • Add shallots, leek, garlic, and bay leaves
  • Stir occasionally until vegetables are soft but not brown (about 6 minutes)
  • Season with salt and freshly cracked pepper
  • Crank up heat to high and add white wine
  • When the wine has reduced by about half, add mussels, give it a good stir, and put the lid on
  • Shake the whole pan with a lid on, several times per minute. After a few minutes, check if the mussels have opened. It will only take three to five minutes.
  • As soon as they’re open, transfer to a warm bowl and cover with a lid or foil to keep mussels warm
  • Remove pan from heat, add remaining butter and crème fraîche, and whisk until it has emulsified. Taste the sauce you just created and season to your liking.
  • Put the mussels back into the pot
  • Add lemon zest, lemon juice, and parsley, and stir
  • Serve immediately on warm plates with toasted baguette. Don’t forget to spoon over all the remaining sauce in the pot!


  • How to buy mussels: Fresh. Yes, walk right past the frozen seafood section. Although it works for a lot of seafood, like shrimp, fish, etc, frozen mussels just won’t do the trick. They lose their delicate flavor and texture, and turn into an inner tube. So buy them fresh. Your grocery store most likely sells fresh farmed mussels.  Note: When you work with live mussels, remember this: Any open mussels before cooking, throw out. Any closed mussels after cooking, throw out. 
  • Cooking tip: Be careful with the amount of salt you use. Mussels contain their own briny liquid that they’ll release upon opening. 
  • Bay leaves: When making the sauce, I recommend removing the indigestible bay leaves before returning cooked mussels to the pot. 
  • Serving: Serve immediately on warm plates with toasted baguette. Nobody likes cold mussels. Unless you’re a seagull, that is. Don’t forget to spoon over all the remaining sauce in the pot!
  • Suggestion: If you enjoy this, then you're gonna love our seafood newburg!


Calories: 517kcal | Carbohydrates: 20g | Protein: 29g | Fat: 26g | Sodium: 986mg | Potassium: 1014mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 4g | Vitamin A: 2065IU | Vitamin C: 38mg | Calcium: 139mg