Mussels with Lemon Garlic Orzo Pasta

Do you ever cook meals you don't like because someone in your family likes it? I find myself doing this all to often. I hate shell fish. Like really  really really hate it. I even hate the smell of it cooking. Blah.

Though despite my detest for shell fish(alive and cooked!) I always find myself making it for my husband or when we have company over.

One of the Hubs favorite appetizers is mussels steamed in white wine and garlic, then dipped in melted butter. Double yuk.

As much as I love butter... I can't handle dipping things in it. Eww.

I made this quick and easy pasta dish with mussels served on top to my husband the other night and he was wowed. He LOVED it. 

Mussels with Orzo


1 lb  live mussels
1/2 cup dry white wine
1/2 a lemon zest and juice
2 tbs of minced garlic
about 12 oz uncooked orzo pasta (or other favorite pasta)
1 tbs red pepper flakes
4 tbs of butter
few sprigs of fresh dill weed
Salt and Pepper to taste


Rinse mussels and remove beards.

If any mussels remain open when rinsing discard them because they are dead.

First in a large pan add in lemon juice, wine, garlic and mussels. Simmer over medium heat until all the mussels open back up.

Remove from heat. Strain the cooking juices into a bowl, cover mussels, set aside.

Boil pasta according to box directions. Strain. Toss with butter, pepper flakes, lemon zest, and dill. Salt and pepper to taste.

Plate a portion of pasta, set a few mussels on top and drizzle the cooking juices over each plate.

Top with a lemon slice and parsley or sliced scallions to add a little green into the dish.




  1. Wow! This looks so good! I have never had orzo but it sounds delicious! But I love me some garlic and red pepper flakes any day :)

  2. This actually sounds really good, Carrie. (and this is from a girl who has never even tried mussels!) I bet this would be great with shrimp though. Wait, you said shellfish, YIKES, no shrimp? Oh well, that just leaves more for ME!

    I often cook things that have zero appeal to me, when my husband and sons go crazy for them. At least I can leave them with great food that they love on the nights when I'm headed out with friends. ;)

  3. The only time I can do shellfish is crab if it's mixed in with serious amounts of cheese (like in crab rangoons or crab dip)

  4. I love Orzo! Great recipe with mussels.

  5. I love Orzo and I will be having a giveaway tomorrow for RiceSelect Orzo and other goods!

  6. Good morning, I featured this recipe on my blog today for my weekly seafood round-up. It looks great, thanks for allowing me to share! Here is the link: