Cooking with Mushrooms

17 Mar 2016
POSTED BY Y Magazine
Make dinner time delicious by mixing it up with different flavours and textures

Finding the right daily nutritional balance is no easy feat. Managing sugar, carbohydrate, fat and red meat intake takes serious effort and planning, but transforming your favourite recipes into more nutritious family meals may be easier than you realise.

Adopting the “blenditarian” lifestyle is a simple solution for healthier eating. It involves blending mushrooms into meat to make everyday dishes more healthy and delicious. Adding chopped mushrooms to ground beef at a ratio of at least 25 per cent can enhance the taste of dishes, deliver an extra serving of vegetables and beneficial nutrients, and trim total calories and fat intake.

Any mushroom variety will work. Creminis and portabellas lend rich, earthy flavours to any meal, while white button mushrooms offer a more delicate taste. For the more adventurous eaters out there, maitake and shiitake varieties bring a bold woodsy taste and meaty texture to the plate.

The key to blending is developing the perfect mushroom consistency. For example, if using ground meat for tacos or burgers, chop mushrooms to mimic the familiar crumbled texture, using a knife and cutting board, food processor or vegetable chopper. For stews, halve or quarter mushrooms, or slice them to match strips of meat in fajitas or a stir-fry.

Practice your blending technique with these simple recipes and find more deliciously blended dishes to share with your family at

* Family Features

Recipe: Classic Blended Burger


Prep time: 15 minutes
Cook time: 10-15 minutes
Servings: 4


  • 225g cremini or white button mushrooms
  • 3 tbsp olive oil, divided
  • 450g ground beef
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 4 buns


  1. Finely dice mushrooms or gently pulse in food processor.
  2. In skillet, warm two tbsp olive oil on medium-high heat and add mushrooms, sautéing for five-seven minutes, or until golden brown. Remove from heat and cool five minutes.
  3. Transfer cooled mushrooms to medium bowl. Add ground beef and salt, mixing until combined. Make four patties. Add remaining olive oil to pan and cook burger patties on medium-high heat until desired doneness. Plate and add desired toppings to bun.
  4. Topping recommendations: feta cheese, romesco sauce, sweet peppers and sautéed red onions.


Blended Chilli and Macaroni


Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook time: 25 minutes
Servings: 8


  • 225g mushrooms
  • 450g lean ground beef
  • 1 package chilli seasoning
  • 1 can beef broth
  • 1 can kidney beans, rinsed
  • 1 can tomato paste
  • 1 cup medium salsa
  • 2 cups elbow macaroni, uncooked
  • shredded cheese
  • Sour cream
  • Coriander


  1. In food processor with metal blade, pulse mushrooms until finely chopped.
  2. In large saucepan, put brown meat and mushrooms with chilli seasoning.
  3. In another saucepan, mix broth, kidney beans, tomato paste, salsa and macaroni.
  4. Bring mixture to boil and cover. Simmer on low for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  5. When macaroni is al dente, stir in browned meat and mushrooms.
  6. Serve topped with cheese, sour cream and coriander.


Asian Lettuce Wraps


Prep time: 15 minutes
Cook time: 15 minutes
Servings: 4


  • 225g fresh mushrooms
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic
  • 1 tbsp minced ginger
  • 225g lean ground beef
  • 1 tbsp canola oil
  • 1/2 tsp dried thyme leaves
  • 1/2 tsp dried oregano leaves
  • 1/2 tsp ground mustard
  • 1/4 tsp dried minced garlic
  • 1/4 tsp dried minced onion
  • 1 red pepper, finely chopped
  • 2 tbsp hoisin sauce
  • 1 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp rice vinegar
  • 1 head Boston lettuce
  • 1/2 cup shredded carrots
  • 1/4 cup chopped cashews (optional)


  1. In food processor with metal blade, pulse mushrooms, onion, garlic and ginger until finely chopped. Add ground beef; pulse until combined.
  2. In large, nonstick skillet, heat oil over medium-high heat. Add mushroom mixture, thyme, oregano, mustard, garlic and dried onion. Cook, stirring often, for 10 minutes or until browned.
  3. Stir in red pepper, hoisin sauce, soy sauce and vinegar. Simmer five minutes; remove from heat.
  4. Serve in lettuce leaves garnished with shredded carrots and chopped cashews.

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