Coconut Curry Mussels with Zucchini Noodles

Coconut curry mussels are steamed in a red curry broth and served with zucchini noodles for a healthy, yet rich and satisfying appetizer or light meal. Gluten-free. 

Coconut curry broth with mussels served over zucchini noodles and topped with cilantro.

Although I spend a lot of time in the kitchen there are quite a few things I’ve never cooked before. Many of these things are meat because I was pescatarian for six years, but there are a bunch of seafood items as well, including mussels. I don’t know why because Isaac and I both really enjoy eating mussels at restaurants.

Well, I’m happy to say that a couple weeks ago I decided this needed to change. Fresh PEI mussels were easy to find at my local grocery store and super affordable.

PEI Mussels

For whatever reason I thought preparing mussels was going to be labor intensive. But just like most things we build up in our heads to be super complicated, preparing and cooking mussels was so much easier than I thought. Plus, the dish I ended up creating is absolutely delicious.

Helpful Tips for Cooking Mussels

  • Make sure all of the mussels are alive prior to cooking. Shells should be closed tightly. If a shell is slightly open you can tap it on a hard surface, if the shell closes it’s good to go, if it stays open you’ll want to throw it out.
  • Be sure to clean and debeard the mussels before cooking. This process is super simple, but PEI mussels come debearded, an added bonus of working with these mussels. 
  • All mussels should open up during the cooking process. Any mussels that don’t open should be tossed.

I thought about steaming the mussels in wine or beer because I’ve seen that done many times, but ultimately decided that a coconut broth needed to happen. One of our go-to restaurants here in Richmond, Saison, has a signature dish with seasonal seafood in a coconut-habanero broth so this sort of inspired the whole idea and then I decided red curry and zucchini noodles needed to be in there as well.

I’m sure you’ve noticed by the number of curry recipes I have here on EBF, but we have a thing for curry!

Cooking Coconut Curry Mussels in a pot.

To keep things really easy with this recipe, the ingredient list is minimal with only 8 ingredients (not counting the olive oil and sea salt) and the steaming process itself takes no time at all. Once everything is prepped and the broth has simmered for a few minutes, the mussels will steam in about 6 minutes flat.

Two bowls of coconut curry mussels in a bowl with zucchini noodles and topped with cilantro.

Mussels are typically served with some sort of carby goodness to soak up the broth. Most often you’ll see them with crusty bread or french fries. I’m sure bread or fries would be amazing with this, but I decided to keep things light and healthy by adding zucchini noodles to the broth. Once you’ve eaten the mussels and discarded the shells, you can enjoy the rich coconut curry broth like a soup with the zucchini noodles. It’s so flavorful and having the crunchy texture from the zucchini noodles is perfect.

And just in case you needed another reason to try cooking mussels at home you’ll be happy to know that they’re really healthy. A 3-ounce serving contains over 20 grams of protein and they’re a good source of vitamin B12, manganese, iron and vitamin C.

Hand holding a spoon of the coconut curry broth with zucchini noodles. Bowl of mussels in the background.

These coconut curry mussels with zucchini noodles make for an easy appetizer or light weeknight meal. They seem fancy and impressive but actually come together really quickly without much prep work at all. Next time we have a dinner party I know exactly what I’ll be making as an appetizer!

If you make these coconut curry mussels be sure to leave a comment and star rating below letting me know how they turn out! Your feedback is so helpful for the EBF team and other readers.

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coconut curry zucchini noodles

Coconut Curry Mussels with Zucchini Noodles


  • Author: Brittany Mullins
  • Prep Time: 15 mins
  • Cook Time: 15 mins
  • Total Time: 30 mins
  • Yield: 4

Description

Coconut curry mussels are steamed in a red curry broth and served with zucchini noodles for a healthy, yet rich and satisfying appetizer or light meal. 


Ingredients

  • 2 pounds PEI mussels
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 14 oz can coconut milk
  • 2 teaspoons red curry paste
  • 1 teaspoon fish sauce
  • 1 1/2 cups chicken broth
  • juice from one lime
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • cilantro, optional
  • 2 medium zucchini, spiralized

Instructions

  1. Scrub and clean mussels. Toss and mussels with cracked shells and tap any mussels with open shells. If the shell doesn’t respond by closing tightly, toss it (this means the mussel is dead).
  2. In a wide bottomed stockpot* over medium heat, add 1 teaspoon olive oil and garlic. Cook garlic until fragrant, about 3 minutes and then add coconut milk, curry paste, fish sauce, broth, lime juice and salt. Simmer broth for about 5 minutes.
  3. Add mussels to the stockpot and give them a big stir to coat. Increase heat, cover and boil broth until the mussels open, about 6 minutes. Grab bowls, add zucchini noodles to each and use tongs to transfer mussels to each bowl. Discard any mussels that do not open. Spoon some broth into each bowl, sprinkle with cilantro and serve.

Notes

*Using a wide bottomed stockpot with ensure the liquid remains shallow enough to allow the mussels to steam rather than boil in the broth.

  • Category: Appetizer
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: Seafood

Nutrition

  • Serving Size: 1/4 of recipe
  • Calories: 279
  • Sugar: 3g
  • Fat: 20g
  • Carbohydrates: 9g
  • Fiber: 1g
  • Protein: 11g

Keywords: coconut curry mussels

This post was written by me on behalf of the Mussel Industry Council of Prince Edward Island. I received compensation for participating in the campaign, but as always all thoughts and opinions are my own.

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    9 comments
  1. Excellent recipe. Just made this for supper and loved it. It is very quick to make and will make it again.

  2. Loved the flavor! I would add more red curry paste next time, and double the lime juice.

    Super easy to make…thanks for the recipe.

  3. I need to try making this! I recently discovered how much I love mussels especially in a spicy broth like this. Great tip on the PEI ones being debearded too. 🙂

    Thanks for developing the recipe and your tips for cooking them!

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