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garlicky guinness mussels in a bowl with lemon

Garlicky Guinness Mussels

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  • Author: Shelagh
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 5 minutes
  • Total Time: 20 minutes
  • Yield: 4 1x
  • Category: Appetizers
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: Irish


Mussels have been a staple in Ireland for years. Paired with garlic and a touch of Guinness, it’s the perfection. Enjoy as an appetizer or as a full meal, but be sure to serve with some crusty bread, or better yet, Irish Soda Bread.


Units Scale
  • 2 lbs. mussels*, rinsed in cold water, scrubbed and de-bearded
  • 2 tablespoons Irish butter (Kerrygold is awesome!)
  • 1 large shallot, minced
  • 5 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 long red chili (or jalapeño), finely minced
  • 2 teaspoons fresh thyme, minced
  • 1/2 cup Guinness
  • 1/2 cup half & half
  • A handful of fresh Italian parsley, roughly minced
  • Flaky sea salt (such as Maldon)
  • Fresh cracked black pepper
  • 1 lemon, cut into wedges
  • Crusty Irish Soda or sourdough bread for dunking


  1. Place a heavy-bottomed large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the butter and shallots and sauté for about 3 minutes until they are translucent and soft. Then add the garlic, chili, and thyme then sauté another 30 seconds or so.
  2. Add the mussels to the pan, and pour in the Guinness. Stir, cover, and bring to a boil for about 3 minutes. The mussels are cooked when they open up. Once they have opened up, stir in the half & half, and parsley. Stir to combine and bring to a low simmer.
  3. Taste the broth and add a good pinch of flaky salt and fresh cracked black pepper.
  4. Now quickly tip your mussels onto pre-heated bowls (as is the Irish way!) and pour a lavish portion of the Guinness broth over the top. Give a good shot of lemon juice over your bowl and serve with crusty bread and enjoy your heart out!


*be sure your mussels are closed tight before you add them to the pan. If they aren’t, they are dead, don’t eat them. Same goes for after the mussels are cooked, make sure they open up, otherwise toss them.