Spain on a Fork > All Recipes > Tapas > Mussels in a Spicy Tomato Sauce – Mussels Marinara Recipe
All Recipes, Tapas / December 8, 2017

Mussels in a Spicy Tomato Sauce – Mussels Marinara Recipe

– Mussels in a Spicy Tomato Sauce –

I will be honest with you, when it comes to shellfish, it always seems like most people don´t even think of mussels. This is a crying shame, because mussels are one of the healthiest and tastiest shellfish out there. Everyone that has consumed mussels or have heard of them, usually associate them with steamed mussels, which is a fantastic dish! but today we´re going to take things up a notch. This recipe for Mussels in a Spicy Tomato Sauce really takes this shellfish to another level. The combination of ingredients in this dish brings out the perfect balance in flavor and texture, and it´s a great starter or appetizer to any meal, heck you can even serve it as a main course next to some roasted potatoes!

Fresh Mussels, The Secret to a Great Mussels Dish

The secret to this recipe is to buy FRESH mussels, I say fresh in capital letters because you do not want to use frozen or pre-cooked mussels in this dish. You know, life is short, and we´re always trying to bring more excitement to it, this dish will definitely bring a spark to your dinner table, just make sure your mussels are fresh!! Watch the video below on how to easily make these Mussels in a Spicy Tomato Sauce or check out the recipe card below, which you can print 🙂 . Salud!

Watch the Video Below on How to Make Mussels in a Spicy Tomato Sauce

5 from 1 vote

Mussels in a Spicy Tomato Sauce - Mussels Marinara Recipe

Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Servings 4
Author Albert Bevia @ Spain on a Fork


  • -2 cloves of garlic
  • -1/2 onion
  • -1 small dried cayenne pepper
  • -1 1/2 cups tomato puree
  • -1/4 cup white wine
  • -1 bay leaf
  • -12 mussels
  • sugar
  • sea salt
  • black pepper
  • fresh parsley


  1. To make the spicy tomato sauce finely mince 2 cloves of garlic, finely mince 1 small dried cayenne pepper and finely dice 1/2 of an onion, then heat a frying pan with a medium heat and add 2 tablespoons of extra virgin Spanish olive oil, once the oil get´s hot add the minced garlic and minced cayenne pepper, mix with the oil and immediately add the diced onions, cook for about 3 minutes, then add 1 1/2 cups of tomato puree, season with sea salt, freshly cracked black pepper, a pinch of white sugar and 1 bay leaf, mix everything together, after about 5 minutes add a 1/4 cup of white wine, mix it all together and lower the fire to a LOW heat
  2. Grab about 1 pound of fresh mussels, clean them thoroughly, start by taking out the beard and then rinsing them in fresh cold water and scrubing them well until completely cleaned
  3. Turn the heat on the tomato sauce back to a MEDIUM heat and add the mussels to the pan, cover with a lid and cook for about 5 minutes
  4. Remove the lid and transfer everything to a plate (discard any mussels that did not open), garnish the dish with fresh parsley
  5. Enjoy!

Recipe Notes

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  1. Regina Matonak

    5 stars
    I have made this recipe several times. Each time I alter it a bit depending on my mood. Regardless, this recipe is always great. It is one of my favorites

    03 . Dec . 2023
    • Spain on a Fork

      Happy to hear that! Much love 🙂

      04 . Dec . 2023
  2. Al broccolo

    I made 3lbs for the boys during our cigar and bourbon night and they were a huge hit and we ate them before the bourbon lol

    24 . Dec . 2022
    • Spain on a Fork

      Happy to hear that! Thanks for the comment 🙂 Much love

      27 . Dec . 2022
  3. Kathy Anderson

    Your recipe is delicious. I made it on Friday night for dinner and my husband loved it.
    I made just a couple of adjustments, I didn’t have tomato purée but used crushed tomatoes. I then added diced green bell pepper to the onion and garlic. And I added Italian
    seasoning and crushed red pepper. It evolved into a homemade marinara sauce that was perfect with the mussels. I served it over whole grain spaghetti and we thought we were at a restaurant, it was that good! Looking forward to trying more of your recipes.

    06 . Aug . 2018
    • Spain on a Fork

      Those are some great adjustments you made Kathy, so glad you guys enjoyed it! much love 🙂

      06 . Aug . 2018
  4. Shanika

    Oh my! These mussels look amazing! I’ve never tried them, but I definitely want to try them now!

    17 . Apr . 2018
    • Spain on a Fork

      They are really good Shanika, thanks for the comment 🙂

      17 . Apr . 2018
  5. Barbara

    Ah, this is an amazing recipe! It reminds me of the Italian recipe Cozze alla Tarantina. Superb!! Well done Albert! ;-D

    28 . Feb . 2018
    • Spain on a Fork

      Thank you so much Barbara 🙂

      28 . Feb . 2018
  6. Makos (@thehungrybites)

    I love mussels! And these mussels in a spicy tomato sauce look delicious!

    31 . Jan . 2018
    • Spain on a Fork

      Thank you Makos 🙂

      31 . Jan . 2018

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