• PEI rope cultured mussels are chilled quickly after harvest, and may be stored alive in their shells for about a week.

• Do not transport or store mussels in water or in direct contact with melted ice.

• To ensure maximum shelf life, store rope cultured mussels at just above freezing (1 – 2 degrees C) and cover with a damp cloth.

• Mussels prefer airy packaging. Do not store live mussels in closed containers or plastic bags.

• Do not rinse mussels until you are ready to use.

• The mussels will leak a small amount of liquid each day, which must be drained off regularly or the mussels will drown. For this reason avoid direct contact with ice.

PEI Cultured Mussels >>


Rope cultured mussels are a versatile food that can be used in soups, chowders, salads, casseroles, paellas, or just as a snack or appetizer. They can be steamed, baked, battered, deep-fried, pan-fried, pickled or smoked.



The following are just a small assortment of tasty and nutritious ways of preparing mussels:

Mussels au Naturel


Each year we steam over 1800 kg (4000 lbs) of mussels at the PEI International Shellfish Festival using the following tried and true method. We typically cook 12 kg (25 lbs) in a pot at once, but 2.3 kg (5 lbs) should be enough for you and your family. Our rule of thumb for serving 0.5 kg (1 lb) per person.

Preparation time: 10 minutes
Total cooking time: 10-15 minutes
Serves 4

2.3 kg (5 lbs) of fresh PEI mussels
Tap water
Melted Butter

In a large pot add 1- 2 cm of water.
Discard any broken or open mussels.
Bring water to boil.
Add mussels
Cover pot and steam for 8-10 minutes.
When mussels are open, they are done.

Discard any unopened mussels.

Tip - Substitute melted butter for your favourite dipping sauce such as curry, salsa, seafood sauce, etc.

Serve with melted butter

Mussel Mariniere


Preparation time: 10 minutes
Total cooking time: 10 minutes
Serves 4

2kg (5 lbs) PEI Blue Mussels
1/4 cup white wine
1 onion, coarsely chopped
1 celery stalk, chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
Dash of Thyme

Place all ingredients, except mussels, in a large pot with a tight fitting lid.
Bring to a boil.
Immediately add mussels.

Steam until mussels open, 3-5 minutes.
Serve as is, or strain broth, place over high heat, add 1 cup of cream, reduce to taste, stirring constantly.

Herb Steamed Mussels


Preparation time: 15 minutes
Total cooking time: 15 minutes
Serves 1

1 kg (2 lbs) of PEI mussels
1 tsp thyme
1 tbsp chopped parsley
1 thinly sliced lemon

In large pot, steam mussels until all shells open (5-7 minutes)
Drain broth into a saucepan
Add thyme and parsley, cover and simmer for 10 minutes
Place mussels and lemon slices in a bowl
Pour broth over mussels

Crispy PEI Mussels


Preparation time: 15 minutes
Total cooking time: 2-3 minutes
Serves 1

1 cup cooked, shucked PEI mussels
1 cup dry breadcrumbs
1 egg
2 tbsp water

Roll mussels in breadcrumbs
Beat egg and combine with water
Dip breaded mussels in egg mixture then roll in crumbs again
Fry in deep fat heated to 190°C (375°F) for 2-3 minutes.

Drain well

PEI Mussel Grill a la BBQ


Preparation time: 15 minutes
Total cooking time: 4-5 minutes
Serves 1

1 kg (2 lbs) of PEI mussels
1/4 cup melted butter
8 lemon wedges

Arrange grill 10-12 cm above hot coals
Place mussels on the grill and cook until the shells open (4-5 minutes)
Serve at once with melted butter and lemon wedges

Mussels au Gratin - Appetizer


Preparation time: 15 minutes
Total cooking time: 12-15 minutes
Serves 2

12 PEI mussels
1 egg white
1 tsp water
1/2 cup breadcrumbs
1 tsp parsley, chopped
1 tbsp melted butter
1 slice bacon, chopped
Salt & pepper to taste

Beat the egg white with water
In separate bowl, mix the breadcrumbs and parsley
Cover and steam mussels in a small amount of water (1 cm in pot) until open (about 5-8 minutes)
Remove mussels meats from shells, saving half the shells
Dip mussels in egg, then in breadcrumbs
Place mussel back in the half shell and drizzle melted butter over them
Sprinkle with chopped bacon
Arrange each shell on a cookie sheet and broil 3-4 minutes or until tops are browned.

Recipe courtesy of Canadian Cove Cultured Shellfish, Atlantic Aqua Farms, Orwell Cove, PEI

Mussel Chowder


Preparation time: 15 minutes
Total cooking time: 12-15 minutes
Serves 12

1.5 kg (3 lbs) PEI Mussels
3/4 cup finely ground salt pork
1/3 cup substitute lard for pork
1 1/4 cup diced onion
2 tbsp all purpose flour
2 cups diced potatoes
2 cups hot milk
1/2 cup hot light cream
Salt & pepper to taste

Steam mussels in small amount of water (1 cm in pot) until open (5-8 minutes) and remove from shells.
Discard shells, but save meat and juice
Strain juice through cheesecloth, stopping when sediment at the bottom is reached
Add enough hot water to make 4 cups of mussel stock, and set aside
Sauté salt pork in large pot
Add onions and continue to sauté until onions become transparent
Add flour and stir until blended
Add stock and stir until smooth
Bring to boil, add potatoes, and simmer until potatoes are cooked
Add hot milk, hot light cream and mussels
Season to taste with salt & pepper.

Recipe courtesy of Canadian Cove Cultured Shellfish, Atlantic Aqua Farms, Orwell Cove, PEI

Len's Cocktail Mussels - Appetizer


Preparation time: 15 minutes
Total cooking time: 10 minutes
Serves 2 - 4

0.9 kg (2 lbs) of PEI mussels
1/4 cup white wine
2 cups of tomato ketchup
4 tbsp horseradish
4 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
Juice from 2 lemons

Steam mussels in small amount of water (1 cm in pot) until open (5-8 minutes) and remove from shells.
Discard broth and shells
Chill mussels
In a separate bowl, combine ketchup, horseradish, Worcestershire and lemon juice
Mix together and chill.

Serve with mussels on hors d'oevre plate.

Can also be served in half shell over bed of lettuce with sauce served on top.

Recipe courtesy of Confederation Cove Mussel Co. Ltd., Borden-Carlton, PEI

Curried Confederation Blues


Preparation time: 15 minutes
Total cooking time: 10 minutes
Serves 4


1.8 kg (4 lbs) of PEI mussels
400 mls of canned coconut milk
1 onion, chopped
1 tbsp curry powder
4 tomatoes, chopped
2 cups rice (optional)

In a large pan, add all ingredients including mussels
Cook over medium heat, stirring once until mussels open (about 5-8 minutes
Serve over rice (optional)

Recipe courtesy of Confederation Cove Mussel Co. Ltd., Borden-Carlton, PEI.

Mama's Mussels Italian


Preparation time: 10 minutes
Total cooking time: 15 minutes
Serves 2-3

1.5 kg (3 lbs) PEI Mussels
540 mls of canned Italian stewed tomatoes
1/2 cup white wine
1/2 tsp hot red pepper flakes
1/2 cup parsley, chopped

In a large saucepan, combine all ingredients except mussels
Boil uncovered, stirring often until thick (about 5 minutes)
Add mussels, cover and cook over medium heat, stirring once until mussels open (8-10 minutes)

Recipe courtesy of Confederation Cove Mussel Co. Ltd., Borden-Carlton, PEI

Confederation Blue Brochettes


Preparation time: 10 minutes
Total cooking time: 15 minutes
Serves 6-8 as appetizer or 2 as entrée

0.9 kg (2 lbs) of PEI mussels
1/4 cup white wine
0.5 kg (1 lb) bacon
PEI Maple syrup (optional)
2 cup rice (optional)

Steam mussels in small amount of water (1 cm in pot) until open (5-8 minutes) and remove from shells.
Discard broth and shells
Pan fry bacon until fat becomes clear and pliable, but not too crisp
Allow to cool enough to handle comfortably
Wrap each mussel meat in a strip pf bacon and place 6-8 wrapped meats on a skewer
Broil or barbeque, rotating once with high flame/heat until bacon crisps
Drizzle with maple syrup (optional) and serve as appetizer, or on rice (optional) as entrée.

Recipe courtesy of Confederation Cove Mussel Co. Ltd., Borden-Carlton, PEI

DL's Seafood Sauce


Excellent sauce for dipping seafood such as mussels, shrimp and clams

1 cup tomato ketchup
1 tbsp creamy horseradish
1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
Salt & pepper to taste
• Fresh mussels should have tightly-closed and un-cracked shells.

• They should smell fresh and mild, with no sour or ammonia-like odors.

• Wash hands before and after handling any uncooked seafood.

• Use separate utensils for preparation and serving.

• To steam P.E.I. rope cultured mussels, first rinse under cool running water.

• For 1kg (2.2 lbs) of mussels, steam in covered pot over medium heat for 7 - 10 minutes or until the shells are wide open, and the meat is coming loose from the shell.

• Discard mussels that don't open during cooking.

Chef Michael Smith on cooking mussels and P.E.I. foodie culture.