Best Easy Zuppa Di Mussels Red Sauce Recipe

Zuppa di Mussels is a classic Italian dish that combines the briny flavors of fresh mussels with a rich and savory red sauce. This recipe is not only delicious, but also incredibly easy to make, making it the perfect choice for a quick and impressive meal.

To start, gather the following ingredients:

– 2 pounds of fresh mussels
– 1 tablespoon of olive oil
– 4 cloves of garlic, minced
– 1 small onion, finely chopped
– 1 can (14.5 ounces) of diced tomatoes
– 1 cup of tomato sauce
– ½ cup of dry white wine
– 1 teaspoon of dried oregano
– 1 teaspoon of dried basil
– Salt and pepper to taste
– Fresh parsley for garnish

Begin by cleaning the mussels thoroughly, discarding any that are cracked or open. In a large pot, heat the olive oil over medium heat and sauté the garlic and onion until softened and fragrant. Add the diced tomatoes, tomato sauce, white wine, oregano, basil, salt, and pepper to the pot, stirring well to combine. Bring the mixture to a simmer and let it cook for about 10 minutes to allow the flavors to meld together.

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Once the sauce is ready, add the cleaned mussels to the pot and cover with a lid. Let the mussels steam for about 5-7 minutes, or until they have opened up. Discard any mussels that remain closed as they may be unsafe to eat.

To serve, ladle the mussels and sauce into bowls, garnishing with fresh parsley. This dish pairs perfectly with crusty bread or pasta, allowing you to soak up every last bit of the flavorful sauce.


1. Can I use frozen mussels for this recipe?
Fresh mussels are recommended for the best flavor, but frozen mussels can be used in a pinch. Just make sure to thaw them first.

2. Can I substitute the white wine with something else?
If you prefer not to use wine, you can substitute it with seafood or vegetable broth.

3. Can I add other seafood to this recipe?
Absolutely! Feel free to add shrimp, clams, or any other seafood you enjoy.

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4. Can I make this recipe ahead of time?
While it is best to enjoy this dish fresh, you can make the sauce ahead of time and then add the mussels just before serving.

5. How can I tell if a mussel is bad?
Discard any mussels that are cracked, open, or do not open during cooking.

6. Can I freeze leftover Zuppa di Mussels?
It is not recommended to freeze this dish, as the texture of the mussels may become rubbery.

7. Can I use fresh herbs instead of dried?
Fresh herbs can be used for added flavor, but adjust the quantities accordingly.

8. Can I make this dish spicy?
If you like a kick of heat, feel free to add red pepper flakes or a dash of hot sauce to the sauce.

9. Can I use a different type of tomato sauce?
While this recipe calls for diced tomatoes and tomato sauce, you can experiment with different types of tomato products for a unique flavor.

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10. Can I skip the onion and garlic?
While they add depth of flavor, you can omit them if you have dietary restrictions or preferences.

11. Can I use a different type of wine?
If you don’t have white wine on hand, you can substitute it with dry vermouth or even chicken broth.

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