What To Serve With Mussels? [Sauces & More]

The summer months are right around and the corner and with the absence of COVID restrictions, we now have more opportunities to gather and catch up around a table of good food.

What better way to do that then with a meal centered around mussels? These seafood delicacies are delicious and fun to eat.

But one question remains and that is what to serve with mussels?

Though mussels seem large when served in their shell, they aren’t as calorie dense so they are served with heartier sides like potatoes, pasta, rice, or bread. Salads with fresh vegetables are also common alongside mussels. Mussels are also typically served with or in a sauce or broth, with lots of garlic, cheese, and herbs. Though mussels are cheap in price, serving them with the right side dishes will provide a 5-star experience even in the comforts of your own home.

As an avid seafood lover, I’ve come to hone the skill of serving all sorts of seafood at my table, including mussels.

I rounded up all the recipes I use for various occasions when serving mussels and compiled them below.

In this article, you will find ideas for serving mussels as a starter and a main course. I also included the best side dishes and salads to serve with common mussel recipes. 

What To Serve With Mussles As a Starter

Any dinner that includes a delicious choice of starters is bound to welcomed with glee and excitement.

Mussels are a great way to kick off any meal because they are light in calories and will kick things off with yummy flavors and lively conversations. 

1.Garlic Cheese Baked Mussels

Mussels stuffed with a cheesy mixture of mayo, cheddar, cream cheese, and garlic and then baked in its shell are gooey, slightly sweet, and buttery.

These mussels are easy to prepare but more importantly, easy to eat. The savory flavors of the sea are finger-licking good and will pair nicely with a glass of white wine. 

2.Fried Mussels

Fried mussels is a Greek appetizer that involves the mussel meat outside of the shell. This meat is coated in a mixture of flour and spices like onion powder, fenugreek, salt and pepper.

They are then fried to be crispy on the outside and tender on the inside. Then these mussels are dipped into skordialia, a sauce of garlic, walnuts, wine, and bread.

The mix of crispy and tender textures dipped into a garlic mixture will amaze your guests and elevate your dinner, regardless of what you serve for the main course. 

3.Mussels Au Gratin

Mussels au gratin is a very fancy and indulgent appetizer. Though it is served at many restaurants, it isn’t hard to make.

These mussels are stuffed with a mixture of cheese, breadcrumbs, garlic, and parsley.

They come out of the oven crunch, packed with garlic flavored and topped with fresh herbs. This appetizer has never stopped to awe those who enjoy it and it will be a hit at your table. 

4.Cheddar Biscuits

When seafood is involved, cheddar biscuits are involved. They are fluffy, cheesy, and buttery.

They will complement the mussels in whatever form they’re served.

Because mussels are very light in calories on their own, these biscuits are the perfect way to balance that out and offer a filling, comforting meal.

These fluffy delights are the perfect accompaniment to any meal. For more ideas on how to serve biscuits, click here to read our dedicated article (add link when available).

What Traditional Dishes To Serve With Mussels As A Main Course

It is safe to say that there isn’t a shortage of ideas on how to serve mussels for the main course.

Many cultures have adopted them into their cuisines because mussels are abundant and found in many bodies of water throughout the world.

I selected the top traditional dishes served around the world as a main course containing mussels.

Grab your napkins though, because these dishes will have you salivating. 

5.Moules Marinières

Translated to English, this dish is called “Sailor-Style Mussels” from France. This dish is very popular and is a classic main course option.

Mussels are cooked in a white wine sauce that is flavored with leeks, fresh parsley, shallots, and garlic.

These flavors intermingle with the mussel meat and make for a rather fancy dinner.

Patrons often dip their slices of rustic sourdough bread into the sauce and savour every garlicy, herby taste of that broth. 

6.Thai Basil Mussels

If you love red thai curry, you will be enthralled by Thai Basil Mussels. This main course is essentially mussels cooked in a red curry sauce.

It is often spicy, citrusy, and fresh with herbs.

Regardless of the presentation, the purple-black mussel shells peeking out of a golden-red broth looks absolutely lovely and begs for sampling.

7.Spanish Seafood Paella

Spain is the “Treasure Island” for seafood recipes especially the Spanish Seafood Paella.

This paella is a dish of saute veggies, tomatoes, and saffron rice. They are all cooked together with chicken, shrimp and mussels in pot of white wine and chicken broth.

It is a filling dish containing all the right flavors and textures to wow your guests. 

8.Cioppino Seafood Stew

The Cioppino Seafood Stew is a San Fransisco classic. It showcases not only mussels, but also lobster or crab legs, clams, shrimp, scallops, and cod.

This seafood is cooked in a seafood stock that is infused with spices and tomato juice. 

It is then served with all its juices and seafood with a glass of red wine. And don’t forget the crusty sourdough to mop all that goodness!

The tender seafood in the perfectly seasoned broth is a sure way to welcome the summer!

What Pairs With Mussels and Clams?

When mussels are served, clams seem to make their way to the table as well.

We already covered what to serve with stuffed clams in a previous article, and here we want to showcase mussels and clams together. 

9.Saffron Rice

Seafood always mixes well with rice, which makes the meal more filling and wholesome. Saffron rice is cooked with turmeric and stock.

The flavors of this rice will elevate your typical bowl of rice and make your mussels and clams look magical. 

10.Shrimp Linguine

Linguine is an elegant pasta that will always have room for seafood. Shrimp linguine is cooked in saucy chicken broth and with a dash of lemon juice.

On its own, it will be gone in no time. When you top it with mussels and clams, you will have yourself a restaurant-quality dinner. 

11.Baby Red Potatoes

Baby red potatoes are the perfect accompaniment to mussels and clams. Usually they are well seasoned with garlic, butter, and salt.

They salty, garlicy flavors bring out the seafood flavors in the mussels and clams.

Theses potatoes are also filling and hit the spot. Plus, if your mussels in clams are still in shells, baby potatoes can also be consumed as finger food. 

What Goes With Mussels and Chips?

Chips in America are defined as a bad of Frito Lays. Everywhere else in the world, chips are potato fries.

Mussels and chips are a common combination that is served in French and Belgian bistros.

This combination can be as fancy or as simple as you’d like, and I found several sides to make this meal a hit. 

12.Marinated Dill Cucumbers

It’s hard to find anything more summery than a crunchy cucumber marinated in vinaigrette flavored with dill and garlic.

It is fresh and that crunch goes well with the crispy chips and tender mussels.

13.Breaded Zucchini

Breaded zucchini is a cult favorite among my friends who frequent my home over the summer.

The zucchini is juicy on the inside, coated in a brown, crispy panko mixture of garlic and parmesan.

While it isn’t too rich in flavor, it still has just enough of the garlic and juicy flavors to enhance the taste of mussels and chips.


Aioli is a sauce made is mayo, garlic, olive oil, and lemon juice.

Homemade Aioli Sauce

This sauce has the perfect amont of garlic, creaminess and citrus to enhance the flavors of your seafood, chips, and breaded zucchini.

It will elevate your meal and certainly bring everything together. 


What better way to top off your meal of mussels and chips than with a cold glass of beer? It is refreshing and tends to complement the sea flavors.

Not a fan of alcohol? Grab a bottle of cold kombucha or your favorite soft drink. Those will work great too. 

What Sauces Go Well With Mussels?

Mussels are typically served in various sauces and these types of dishes are usually regarded as the fancier, posh way of eating mussels.

These sauces are usually flavored with garlic, wine, tomatoes, and herbs to accentuate the seafood flavors of mussels.

Such dishes are sometimes a labor of love but are so worth every bite. When served with the right side dishes, you will have an exquisite meal.

16.Tomato Sauce

Mussels cooked in tomato sauce are most commonly found in Italian restaurants.

The juices and flavors of the tomatoes are typically flavorful and pair well with herbs like parsley, oregano, and basil.

This sauce tends to give off a comforting vibe and provide a well-rounded meal. 

17.White Wine Sauces

Any wine, but especially white wine makes the simplest dish an elegant feast. White wine sauces are usually a combination of chicken broth, wine, garlic, and lemon.

The sauce is gentle and flavorful. It accentuates mussels and any other seafood dish. 

18.Garlic Butter Sauce 

For those who love a good garlic sauce but prefer to skip the wine, a simple sauce with melted butter, herbs, lemon and garlic is the way to go.

This sauce will infuse your mussels with all the right flavors that will keep you and your guests licking your fingers. 

What To Serve With Mussels And Pasta?

Mussels and pasta are the perfect combination. Mussels are light and are perfectly balanced by the scrumptiously-flavored pasta dishes.

My go-to pasta for mussels is cooked with basil, garlic, tomatoes, and onions. It has the perfect flavors to bring out the mussels.

19.Garlic Bread 

Garlic bread is almost a given in at least one dish with mussels and tomato sauce. It will mop all those flavors and even accentuate them.

Whoever said “no” to a buttery, garlic slice of sourdough? I never did and many people enjoy it as well. 

20.Broiled Salmon

Salmon is always well-received by the patrons of my dinner table. This fatty fish doesn’t require a lot of seasoning because it is already tasty on its own.

Brolied Salmon

When I serve broiled salmon alone with a dish of pasta and mussels, my guests rave about it for days. 

21.Garlic Butter Shrimp

Garlic butter shrimp is sautéed in plenty of butter, garlic, herbs, and a squirt of lemon juice.

The shrimp turns out juicy and buttery and will elevate simplest dish of mussels. You can mix the shrimp with the pasta or serve it as a side dish.

Either way, it will be gone in no time and will provide for a lovely feast.

How To Serve Thai Mussels

Thai mussels are also a delicacy and some of the most popular dishes are served with a red curry sauce, ginger, garlic, and red chili peppers.

It is common to expect a Thai dish to be spicy regardless of what is in it and I selected some dishes to complement these flavors.

22.Rice With Green Onions

Rice is a staple in many Thai dishes because it offsets some of the heat from peppers and curries.

The green onion white are sautéed in olive oil and then mixed with rice to cook until tender.

The fresh tones of the onions and juiciness of the rice brings out the flavors in the spiced mussels. 


Lemon wedges served alongside a plate of Thai mussels add an appealing color to the dish.

Additionally, that citrusy squirt of juice accentuates the spicy Asian flavors. Sometimes its all you need to perfect the meal and say “Voila”. 


Though traditionally not Thai, fries are great with Thai mussels. Firstly because it is hard to find someone who will turn them down.

If you’re eating something spicy, a bite of fries will help you handle the burn in your mouth, depending on how hot it is. 

What Salads To Serve With Mussels

Salads are wonderful because they can be served and enjoyed either before the main course or along with it.

There are endless options for salads, but with delicacies like mussels, we need to pay extra attention to serve premium varieties. This isn’t hard, by the way.

25.Roasted Lemon Asparagus 

Asparagus is a simple vegetable but many people love it, especially if its seasoned correctly.

The full-proof method is to roast it with lemon and butter. The citrusy flavor and vibrant color of asparagus will add crunchy freshness to your dish. 

26.Orzo Salad With Shrimp and Lemon Dressing

Orzo is gentle and delicate and when tossed with shrimp and lemon dressing, the flavors of your other entrees will come out even more.

This salad is also an excellent starter that won’t fill your guests up too much, but give them just enough bite to anticipate what is to come. 

27.Tomato Burrata Salad 

Tomato burrata salad is made with heirloom tomatoes, cherry tomatoes, mozzarella cheese, and basil.

It is sweet, light, and fresh. Serve alongside mussels in white wine sauce or lemon garlic sauce, this salad’s summer flavors will exude excitement from around the table. 

What Dessert Pairs Well With Mussels?

To finish off your delicious meal of mussels, all you have to do is get out your dessert.

The right kind of dessert will give anyone at your table a lasting impression of the meal. Below are some of the best dessert options to go with mussels. 

28.New York Cheesecake

There is nothing quite as silky and indulgent as a slice of New York-style cheesecake after a seafood dinner.

The silky, cream cheese flavors of vanilla are just what you need for a proper food coma.

Topped with strawberry sauce, this cheesecake dessert will make your home feel like any fancy restaurant. 

29.Chocolate Lava Cake

For those extra special occasions, chocolate lava cake will elevate your dinner and put a chef’s kiss on the entire night.

Chocolate Lava Cake

The rich, melty chocolate flavors will pair nicely with a glass of wine and help accentuate your fantastic kitchen skills.

Serve it with a scoop of vanilla ice cream, some berries for the perfectly rich and delicious ending to your meal. 


Cannolis are Italian, cream pastries that are shaped into a tube. Usually the filling is made with a sweet ricotta cheese.

Its crispy pastry shell and tender filling will have everyone at the table exclaiming, “Bellissimo!”

What Wines To Serve With Mussels 

When serving mussels, what better way to enjoy all those beautiful seafood flavors than with a glass or wine?

Below are the types of wine I typically serve, depending on the mussels I serve. 

31.Italian Pinot Grigio

When serving a flavorful meal like mussels in white wine, a glass of dry white wine like a Pinot Grigio will pair the best.

It isn’t sweet so it won’t interfere with the beautiful flavors of your dinner.

32.Sauvignon Blanc

Sauvignon Blanc is the best option for this dish because though it is slightly sweet, it does carry notes of lime and fruit.

These notes will complement the flavors of the lemon garlic sauce that you use to serve your mussels with for your dinner.

The refreshing notes of Sauvignon Blanc will finish off your meal with a bang, leaving you nourished and satisfied.


A fresh and fruity flavor glass of wine like rosé will hit the spot. Its bright and crisp notes will bring out the flavors of your dinner of mussels and tomato sauce, and wish it down gloriously.

This wine is also perfect to go with dessert after the meal because of its sweet, bubbly tones. 

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