Belgian mussels

Moules Frites are a quintessential French and Belgian Bistro food. It can also be a fun family meal as everything can be eaten using your fingers! Follow this recipe to make delicious Belgian-style mussels and serve with chips.

Belgian mussels


Prep time
Less then 30 minutes
Cooking time
Less then 10 minutes


  • 2kg / 4.5lb mussels
  • 50g / 2oz unsalted butter
  • 3 large shallots, finely sliced
  • 2 sticks celery, finely sliced
  • 1 leek, finely sliced
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 tbsp chopped fresh parsley
  • 1 sprig fresh thyme
  • 1 tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • 300ml / 1/2 pint dry white wine
  • 200ml / 7fl oz double cream


  1. To clean the mussels, wash in cold running water, scrub them and remove the beards. Discard any that do not close when tapped.

  2. To cook the mussels, melt the butter in a large pan or stockpot. Add the shallots, celery, leek and bay leaves and cook until softened but not browned.

  3. Add the mussels, half the parsley, the thyme and freshly ground black pepper and stir well.

  4. Add the wine, bring to the boil, then cover the pan and steam the mussels for around three minutes.

  5. The mussels are ready when they open. Discard any unopened mussels. Pour in the cream and stir thoroughly.

  6. Serve in big bowls garnished with the remaining parsley.