Mushrooms Instead of Meat on Monday

Once upon a time all I ate was peanut butter and jelly on bleach white bread.

Once upon a time I did not like mushrooms. I thought of them as slippery, slimy, and tasting like dirt.

It is amazing how your taste buds change as you get older as your culinary horizons expand. Sometimes you just need to revisit a food that you had turned up your nose too as a child and a whole world of taste may open up to you!

My wallet is happy that my tastebuds have done a 180 and learned to love mushrooms. Mushrooms are in season year round so they can be found in your store or farmers’ market with out any trouble! They are a great sourch of vitamin D & C as well as antioxidants that help boost your immune system. I know my body can use all the boosts it can get with 3 kids running around the house.

But there is more to mushrooms than the white button mushroom. These are my favorite for stuffing and serving as an appetizer. They are the prefect vessel to serve a variety of yummy ingredients in a nice neat package. Be sure to chop up the stems and add them to your filling mixture. Let nothing go to waste! Try this mouth watering recipe for Bacon Blu Cheese Stuffed Mushrooms.

The Crimini are the ones I most often reach for in my market. I love them sautéed in butter and topped on a black bean burger.

Pro Tip: Just be sure to let the mushrooms caramelize enough before moving them around the pan. The longer the mushroom is in contact with the pan the better the color will be on them mushroom. Go crazy with sautéed mushrooms on a mushroom burger! Try this recipe for a Mushroom Burger.


When a crimini grows up it becomes a portabella.  I love to marinade these and grill them in the summer. A meaty texture and a rich flavor is a great substitute for a burger. Dress it up with your favorite toppings and you won’t even miss the burger! Or for another penny pinching meal idea try this recipe for Mushroom Fajita Enchiladas.

If you MUST have your meat try ditching the bun and using two de-stemmed large portable as a ‘bun’. The juices of the burger seep into the gills of the mushroom and it is a delicious alternative to a bun! Great for those who are gluten free also.


Shiitake mushrooms are the ones I reach for when it comes to making a stir fry. I leave the smaller ones whole and then slice the larger ones into strips. A great compliment to my favorite stir fry mix! Another option would be to add them to a risotto. Try this recipe for Mushroom Feta Quinoa Risotto. 


Don’t forget the following mushrooms as options in your cooking:


Is your mouth watering, your tummy wanting more recipes and information on mushrooms?

The Mushroom Council has a website set up to provide you with all sorts of nutritional information, education on types of mushrooms, recipes and restaurants across the country to enjoy the versatile and yummy mushroom! Be sure to check them out at 

Are you looking for creative ways to add mushrooms to your favorite dishes or ‘swap’ out meat for mushrooms? You will want to check out Mushroom Swapability. Search by mushroom type ,main ingredient, meal type, qualifier (e.g., vegetarian, better-for-you, university, foodservice), cuisine type, user-contributed (e.g., Taste of Home,Blogger Recipe) or healthy (e.g., recipes that are 500 calories).

The Mushroom Channel can be found on FacebookTwitter, and Pinterest.

Do you want to learn more about The Mushroom Channel and the versatile mushroom? Join the upcoming Twitter Party on Wednesday, March 20th 8-9 PM EST.  The hashtag for the party will be #MushroomDish. The party will serve as a discussion for everything mushrooms, from their versatile nature to their flavorful umami qualities. The perfect opportunity for anyone who has ever wanted to get the dish on mushrooms.

I will be there so be sure to pop in and say hello. Follow me @howipinchapenny.

**The above images are from  This blog post is sponsored by National Nutrition Month Campaign with the Mushroom Council. All opinions are my own. I hope you will love mushrooms as much as I do!


  • Arelis Cintron

    I’ve never heard of Maitake or Enoki, might have to see if my local grocery stores carry it or maybe even at Whole Foods! I love mushrooms!

  • Sarah Mock

    There are so many tasty options. All are full of vitamins and a great inexpensive option for meals. We are having stir fry tonight!

  • Janeane Davis

    I will admit, I am not a mushroom fan. Not for any good reason, just scared to try them. I think after your article I am going to try some of those Enoki mushrooms in something. I feel brave!

  • Caroll BritsHonee Atkins

    I too started loving mushrooms later in life. I must try some of these recipes. Mushrooms are really delicious!

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  • Sarah Mock

    Isn’t it amazing what we learn to like as we ‘mature’?

  • Sarah Mock

    Janeane: try marinating them in a favorite oil based salad dressing then grilling them. This is how I learned to start to like them.