Our no-fail method for how to cook mushrooms perfectly every time! Use any type or size of mushroom! Jump to our recipe for How to Cook Mushrooms or read on to see our tips.
Mushrooms are one our favorite ingredients. They are delicious, nutritious and when using our go-to method, they are simple to cook! We’re sharing our basic mushroom recipe plus a lemon garlic butter version (my favorite).
YOU MAY ALSO LIKE: If you prefer to roast your mushrooms, take a look at this roasted portobello mushroom recipe. We roast mushrooms and serve them alongside eggs. Perfect for breakfast, brunch and even dinner. See the Roasted Portobello Mushrooms Recipe
How to Quickly Sauté Mushrooms
Sautéing means to quickly cook the mushrooms in fat on the stove. This method works with all types of mushrooms — in our photo below, we’re using baby bella (or cremini) and shiitake mushrooms, but larger mushrooms like portobello or more exotic mushrooms like king oyster mushrooms all work.
There are four tricks for the best cooked mushrooms:
- Keep them dry. If you notice any dirt on the mushrooms, use a slightly damp paper towel to brush it off. Don’t submerge them in water or rinse them. Mushrooms act like a sponge so water will be absorbed, which causes the final cooked mushrooms to be squeaky instead of flavorful and browned.
- Cut or tear them to a similar size. This applies to most things when cooking. If you are using a variety of mushrooms, cut — or if they are more fragile — tear the mushrooms so that they are all a similar size.
- Don’t crowd mushrooms in the pan. Have you heard of this one before? Julia Child and other popular chefs have shared this time and time again. There’s a reason for that! If you pile raw mushrooms up on top of each other in a pan they will steam. If instead, you spread them out so that they are only just touching one another, they will brown and crisp around the edges. If you have ever made oven-roasted fries or tried to crisp vegetables in the oven you’ll need to apply the same thinking. An example of this is our oven-roasted squash. We actually use two sheet pans for roasting so the squash pieces don’t touch one another. This way they caramelize and brown instead of steam.
- Salt mushrooms at the end of cooking. I know this seems odd, but mushrooms are one of the only things I salt towards the end of cooking. Salt brings out moisture, which in the case of mushrooms, prevents them from browning in the pan.
When it comes to cooking mushrooms on the stove, use a wide heavy skillet — we love using our cast iron pan. When the pan is hot, throw in the mushrooms and spread them into one layer.
Allow the mushrooms to brown on one side — you shouldn’t need to stir them much. When they are brown, flip them and let them brown on the second side. When both sides are brown and the mushrooms have shrunk in size, add a little flavor — salt and any other seasoning you love. For this batch, we season with salt and stir in a little butter, fresh thyme, garlic and lemon zest. After a minute or two they are absolute perfection.
Serve these mushrooms next to our Easy Pan Roasted Chicken Breasts, these Soft and Creamy Scrambled Eggs or add them on top of this Kale and Bean Salad with Tahini Dressing. You can even turn them into a stunning appetizer! Make these Mushroom and Truffle Salt Crostini!
No-Fail Method for How to Cook Mushrooms
When cooking the mushrooms, make sure they are spread into one layer in the pan and not crowded — this way they will brown instead of steam.
You Will NeedBasic Recipe
8 ounces mushrooms such as cremini, shitake or Portobello (about 2 1/2 cups chopped or sliced)
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1/4 teaspoon sea salt or more to taste
Fresh ground black pepperOptional
1 tablespoon butter
1 garlic clove, minced
2 teaspoons fresh thyme leaves or 1/2 teaspoon dried
1 tablespoon fresh grated lemon zest
Juice of half a lemon
- Basic Recipe
- Lemon Garlic Butter Mushrooms (optional)
Using a damp paper towel, brush all dirt from mushrooms. Cut away and discard any hard stems. Chop into 1/4-inch slices or, if there are larger mushrooms like portobello, cut into 1/4-inch cubes.
Heat olive oil in a large, wide skillet over medium heat. Add mushrooms and spread into one layer. Cook, without moving, until browned on one side, 3 to 5 minutes. Stir then cook another 3 to 5 minutes or until mostly golden brown on all sides. Season to taste with salt and black pepper.
At the same time as seasoning with the salt and pepper, stir in butter, garlic, thyme and lemon zest. Cook until the garlic is fragrant and the butter absorbs into mushrooms, about 2 minutes. Take the skillet off of the heat and stir in lemon juice.
Adam and Joanne's Tips
- Try truffle or porcini salt: If you can find it (we buy it online or in specialty kitchen shops), swap regular sea salt for truffle or porcini salt. This deepens the mushroom flavor and tastes incredible!
- Nutrition facts: The nutrition facts provided below are estimates. We have used the USDA Supertracker recipe calculator to calculate approximate values. Nutrition provided is for the lemon garlic version of the recipe.