Easy Croatian Mussels (Dagnje na Buzaru)

Steamed Mussels
LauriPatterson / Getty Images
Prep: 20 mins
Cook: 20 mins
Total: 40 mins
Servings: 4 servings
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
1289 Calories
62g Fat
52g Carbs
111g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 4
Amount per serving
Calories 1289
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 62g 79%
Saturated Fat 10g 49%
Cholesterol 254mg 85%
Sodium 1868mg 81%
Total Carbohydrate 52g 19%
Dietary Fiber 1g 4%
Total Sugars 2g
Protein 111g
Vitamin C 69mg 343%
Calcium 210mg 16%
Iron 32mg 179%
Potassium 1353mg 29%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

This Croatian Mussels recipe is known as dagnje na buzaru or školjke na buzaru. "Buzara" in Croatian literally means "stew," but buzara-style cooking simply means that some type of shellfish or crustacean is cooked with olive oil, wine, garlic, breadcrumbs, and fresh herbs. At most, this easy recipe will take 40 minutes to prepare from start to finish, and it's especially delicious when served with a crusty baguette to sop up the cooking broth.

Mussels na buzaru is similar to classic French steamed mussels known as moules marinières in French. While mussels are seasonal (the old rule was to eat mussels in cool months and only in those months that have an "R" in their spelling), current wisdom dictates that "farmed" mussels are safe to eat year-round.

Fish, shellfish, crustacean, and bivalve recipes are popular along the Dalmatian Coast where there are a strong Italian influence and diverse seafood offerings from the Adriatic Sea.


  • 4 pounds mussels

  • 3/4 cup olive oil

  • 1/4 cup chopped parsley

  • 8 cloves garlic, or to taste, chopped

  • 1 1/4 cups dry white wine

  • 1 dash coarse sea salt, or to taste

  • 1 dash freshly ground black pepper, or to taste

  • 1/2 to 3/4 cup fresh breadcrumbs

  • 1 baguette, optional for serving

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

  2. Scrub and debeard 4 pounds mussels. The "beard" is the hairy thing hanging from one side of the shell. Pull it off with a side-to-side motion.

  3. In a large, hot skillet, add debearded mussels, 3/4 cup olive oil, 1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley, and 8 cloves (more or less to taste) chopped garlic. Let this simmer undisturbed until mussels just begin to open. Stir, lower heat, and add 1 1/4 cups dry white wine, coarse sea salt, and black pepper to taste.

  4. Let all the shells open, stirring occasionally. If, by the end of cooking, any shells do not open, discard them. Turn the heat back to high to finish the cooking quickly without toughening the mussel meat.

  5. Mix 1/2 to 3/4 cup fresh breadcrumbs into the broth, but you'll want to leave some liquid present. Serve with crusty bread to soak up the broth.


  • Be careful not to over-salt because mussels from the sea are naturally salty.
  • When trying to decide how much you will need, figure about a pound of mussels per person.