Mussels South of Two Borders

July/August 2009, July/August 2008, January/February 2008

Your rating: None Average: 3.8 (34 votes)

Prince Edward Island may account for a healthy share of the world's mussel production, but this recipe takes those mollusks farther south for a Latin American preparation that combines chorizo, chiles and beer.

"there was just nothing "right" about this recipe. Too many conflicting tastes & nothing shone, certainly not the mussels. Ate less than half of it & will prob. throw away the other half. "
Mussels South of Two Borders

Makes: 2 servings

Active Time:

Total Time:


  • 1/3 cup diced Spanish chorizo, (see Shopping Tip)
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 1 small plum tomato, diced
  • 2 tablespoons chopped canned green chiles, drained
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
  • 1 cup beer, preferably dark Mexican beer, such as Negra Modelo
  • 2 pounds mussels, scrubbed and debearded if necessary (see Tip)
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro


  1. Cook chorizo in a large saucepan over medium heat until beginning to brown, 3 to 5 minutes. Add onion; cook, stirring often, until softened, about 3 minutes. Stir in tomato, chiles, cumin and pepper; cook, stirring occasionally, until the tomato begins to break down, about 3 minutes. Pour in beer, increase heat to medium-high, and bring to a boil, scraping up any browned bits.
  2. Stir in mussels and return to a simmer. Cover, reduce heat to medium-low, and cook just until the mussels have opened, about 7 minutes. Remove from the heat (discard any unopened mussels); stir in cilantro. Serve with the sauce.

Tips & Notes

  • Shopping Tip: For this recipe we use fully cooked Spanish-style chorizo—spicy pork sausage seasoned with smoked paprika and chile—recognizable for its characteristic red color. Find it near other cured sausages in well-stocked supermarkets, specialty-food stores or online at
  • Tip: To clean mussels, scrub with a stiff brush under cold running water. Scrape off any barnacles using the shell of another mussel. Pull off the fuzzy “beard” from each one (some mussels may not have a beard).


Per serving: 285 calories; 6 g fat (1 g sat, 1 g mono); 48 mg cholesterol; 20 g carbohydrates; 0 g added sugars; 28 g protein; 3 g fiber; 510 mg sodium; 407 mg potassium.

Nutrition Bonus: Vitamin C (40% daily value), Iron (35% dv), Folate (17% dv), Vitamin A & Zinc (15% dv).

Carbohydrate Servings: 1

Exchanges: 1 vegetable, 2 lean meat

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