Spicy Mussels and Rice

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This spicy mussels and rice is an easy weeknight dinner that combines perfectly cooked mussels, a spicy broth, and fluffy white rice.

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If you love mussels, you’ll love this spicy mussels and rice recipe. It’s so ridiculously easy to prepare and lends itself well to substitutions.

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How to Make Spicy Mussels and Rice:

Making this recipe is a breeze. You’ll start by cleaning the mussels. We used New Zealand green-lipped mussels, but you can use black mussels too. Debeard the mussels first and scrub the shells. I keep them over ice as I prepare the rest of the meal.

After you’ve completed that, prepare the rice according to package instructions. This recipe accounts for white rice, which takes about 15-20 minutes to cook. If the rice finishes cooking before the broth, simply keep the lid on it to keep it warm.

While the rice cooks, prepare the broth. This broth is made up of just a few ingredients: onion, scallions, minced hot pepper, butter, and chicken broth. You’ll sauté the aromatics and then add butter. Once it’s frothy, add the chicken broth and bring to a boil. Right before you add the mussels, throw in the lemon wedges. Add the mussels, reduce heat to medium, cover and cook for about 5-10 minutes until they’ve opened. Remove the opened mussels and cover and cook a few minutes more until any remaining mussels open. After that, discard any mussels that haven’t opened.

To serve, divide the cooked rice between shallow bowls and ladle the spicy broth on top and and pile on the mussels. I like to drizzle with a touch of chili oil to finish the dish!

What substitutions can you make in this rice and mussels recipe? Plenty!

This recipe is very versatile and you can make lots of substitutions!

Rice: Soba noodles, brown rice, or cauliflower rice

Mussels: Shrimp, cod filets, or clams

Adding Ingredients: You can get creative with the ingredients here with vegetables like sugar snap peas, sliced bell peppers, shredded carrots, or even coconut milk to give the broth a richer consistency.

Looking for more seafood recipes? Check my archives!

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Spicy Mussels and Rice

This spicy mussels and rice is an easy weeknight dinner that combines perfectly cooked mussels, a spicy broth, and fluffy white rice.
4.07 from 16 votes
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Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 4
Calories: 482kcal



  • 3 pounds mussels debeared and scrubbed
  • 1 cup rice
  • 4 tablespoons butter divided
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 yellow onion peeled and diced
  • 4 cloves garlic peeled and minced
  • 3 scallions trimmed and minced
  • 1 red Fresno chili pepper trimmed and minced
  • 4 cups chicken stock low-sodium
  • 1 lemon cut into 8 wedges
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Chili oil optional, for garnish


Prepare the Mussels:

  • Debeard and scrub the mussels. Transfer to a bowl of ice until needed.

Prepare the Rice:

  • Combine the rice, one tablespoon butter, 2 cups water, and salt to a small pot. Bring to a boil and stir once. Reduce heat, cover, and simmer for 15 minutes. Turn off the heat and rest, covered, for 5-10 minutes before fluffing with a fork.

Start the Broth:

  • As the rice cooks, prepare the broth. In a wide pot heat the remaining 3 tablespoons butter over medium heat. Add the onion and cook for 5 minutes until it begins to soften.
  • Add the garlic, scallions, and red Fresno pepper and cook for 1-2 minutes, being careful not to burn the garlic. Season with salt and pepper.

Cook the Broth:

  • Pour the chicken stock into the pot and bring to a boil for 5 minutes. Add the lemon wedges and cook an additional minute.

Cook the Mussels:

  • Add the mussels to the pot and reduce heat to low. Cover and cook for 7-9 minutes. Check on the mussels and remove all the opened mussels and transfer them to a bowl. Cover and cook any unopened mussels for 2-3 minutes more. Check the mussels again, transfer the opened mussels to the bowl, and discard any unopened mussels at this point.
  • Bring the broth back to a boil and taste and season with salt and pepper. Cook for 2-3 minutes more.

To Serve:

  • Divide the rice between shallow bowls. Ladle the broth over each dish and serve with mussels on top. Garnish with a drizzle of chili oil. Enjoy!


Calories: 482kcal | Carbohydrates: 53g | Protein: 30g | Fat: 17g | Sodium: 679mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin C: 33mg
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  1. 1 star
    Absolutely discussing. It’s neither a soup, nor like egg fried rice. It’s something weird in the middle were there it not enough both to treat it as soup-like meal and at the same time the broth makes the rice soggy. Would not reccomend.

    1. I’m sorry you weren’t a fan! It is meant to be served as a light broth over rice, but I can see how it may not be for everyone.

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