Juicy grilled portobello mushroom steaks, a quick and easy mushroom dinner ready in 30 minutes. Just soak the large mushroom caps in a savory simple marinade, grill or pan fry, and serve. An easy low carb, meat-free meal.
These grilled portobello mushroom steaks, juicy thanks to an easy steak marinade, will have neighbors lining up for your BBQ or your kitchen dinner. This easy recipe for these mushroom steaks uses only 6 simple ingredients and is easy to cook into a meaty, savory meal rich with umami flavor. Use a regular skillet on the stove, an outdoor grill or a grilling frying pan on the stove so you can get BBQ stripes and flavor.
These mushroom steaks are satisfying yet light, the opposite of their meat-counterparts. Just like my Italian stuffed mushrooms and my shiitake mushroom stir fry, my zucchini pizza bites, this is a surprisingly delicious savory recipe, and a terrific way to eat mushrooms.
Why You'll Love These
Super easy steak recipe everyone will love. These savory steaks are hearty, savory, juicy, meat-free, low carb, spicy, umami, plant based and the whole dish is only a handful of simple familiar ingredients! And perfect for all diets, this recipe is vegan, gluten-free, grain-free/paleo and dairy free.
Serve as a steak or hamburger. As a steak on a plate, I served mine with fresh veggies and cauliflower mashed potatoes, and a steak sauce on the side. Or I slip it on a hamburger bun with sliced tomato and lettuce, and serve up an awesome plant-based burger.
The steak marinade. The best way to flavor these portobello mushroom steaks is to soak them in a great marinade. Similar recipes use liquid smoke, but tamari sauce, my sauce's prime ingredient, is robust and flavorful and more easily accessible at grocery stores. It's also gluten free.
High nutrition. Portobellos, from the cremini mushroom family, are a popular meat substitute for good reason. Not only are they thick and meaty and take on any meat marinade, portobellos are high in nutrition. One portobello is low carb, and low in calories, yet provides 5 grams of protein, and a myriad of nutrients that support the immune system, cardiovascular system, brain function and more. There is a toxin in small quantities, called agaritine, which can be eliminated by cooking portobellos. And cooking portobellos is best to achieve the meaty texture.
Portobello mushrooms. These large, plate-sized mushrooms are the star ingredient of this steak recipe. These large mushrooms, up to 5-inches in diameter, are native to Italy and have been around since the 1700s. Portobello mushrooms are mature cremini mushrooms, and have an open cap, large brown gills inside.
Tamari sauce. This umami sauce is light and delicious with mushrooms, although soy sauce and coconut aminos can be used instead.
Balsamic vinegar. The unique flavor makes this vinegar a must. No other vinegar can be used. The balsamic flavor is uniquely able to bypass the mushroom's moisture barrier and flavor it.
Olive oil. Again, olive oil is best but if you don't have it on hand, you can use another.
Garlic. I used fresh chopped cloves, but powder is also fine, use ½ teaspoon as powder has a more concentrated flavor.
Cayenne pepper. Adds a heat element that brings out the flavor of the tamari sauce and erases the need for worcestershire sauce, liquid smoke or other such ingredients found in similar recipes.
Brown sugar. This is optional, but I like the sweet and sour profile it adds. I also add salt and black pepper to taste, about ¼ teaspoon of each.
You can pan fry these steaks using an ordinary frying pan, or use a cast iron grilling pan for the distinctive BBQ stripes. Or of course throw these steaks on the outdoor grill!
Step by Step Instructions
Clean the portobellos by lightly running them under water, then quickly patting them dry with paper towels.
To clean mushrooms, gently towel them with a wet paper towel, do not submerge them under running water or they will soak it up like a sponge thanks to substances in their caps called hydrophobins.
Removing the inside gills and stem. Remove the stem so the mushroom can be grilled flat. Removing the gills is optional. I like the mushroom steaks both ways. Some argue the gills are fibrous and unpleasant, others disagree. If you want to remove them, use a spoon.
Marinate the Mushrooms
In a large shallow bowl, stir together the marinade ingredients. Taste and add more seasonings if you want, such as steak seasoning, rosemary, dill, black pepper, and salt.
Add the mushrooms to the bowl, spoon the marinade all over them, flip them and spoon more marinade.
Let them sit for 10 minutes each side, allowing them to marinade a total of 20 minutes. No longer or they might become too sour or salty.
Cook or Grill the Mushrooms
Spray or brush oil on the pan. Put it over medium heat on the stove. Be sure it is hot before adding mushrooms.
The 1 to 2 mushrooms into the pan. Put them gill-side down first and press until they sizzle to sear. Then flip and sear the other side. Cook each side about 2-3 minutes depending on their size led to juicy steaks.
The grilled portobellos tasted fine after 2 days of refrigeration in a sealed container. After that, they can get a bit rubbery.
1. Don't let them marinate beyond 20 minutes total or they may become too strong in flavor.
2. Cook the mushrooms first gill-side down to allow the mushroom to release moisture that can be cooked away so mushrooms aren't soggy.
3. Cooking options: Use a heavy frying pan or (this cast iron grill pan to cook them on your stove. Or use an outdoor grill.
4. Don't bake these marinated mushrooms in the oven, unless perhaps sealed in a foil envelope. Baking will dry out their juicy meatiness.
Umami was recently declared the fifth basic taste in line right after (1) Sweet, (2) Sour, (3) Salty and (4) Bitter. USA-based scientists made the announcement in the 1990s though history shows the Japanese had discovered nearly 100 years prior. The flavor, strongly found in tamari, is described as brothy, meaty, or savory.
Mushrooms are grown in dirt so it is important to gently wipe them with a damp paper towel instead of soaking them. Mushrooms have substances called hydrophobins on their caps that repel water, but can't protect against saturation. If you submerge a mushroom or even run it under rushing water, it will absorb the water like a sponge and make them taste-less and watery.
Yes portobello mushrooms are highly nutritious. They are full of antioxidants and essential minerals such as riboflavin, selenium, copper and potassium. However, it is best to cook portobellos as they have trace amounts of toxins that are destroyed by heat.
Meaty and savory in texture, they easily take on the flavor of sauces so that is why it is wonderful to marinade them.
You can, they are not toxic, and there is disagreement as to whether they should be removed. Some argue the gills are fiberous and unpleasant. I like the mushrooms both ways.
Both spellings are used to describe this gilled mushroom, although "portobello" is more common.
Other Savory Foods
If you tried this recipe or any other recipe on my website, please leave a 🌟 star rating and let me know how it went in the 📝 comments below. Thanks for visiting!
Grilled Portobello Mushroom Steaks
- ordinary skillet or pan
- 4 portobello mushrooms, large (lightly rinsed clean, stems and inside gills removed)
- 3 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
- 2 tablespoon olive oil
- 3 tablespoon tamari sauce or soy sauce; tamari is best for gluten-free
- 2 tablespoon garlic, chopped
- 1 tablespoon brown sugar
- pinch of cayenne pepper
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon black pepper
- Clean the portobellos by lightly running them under water, then quickly patting them dry with paper towels. Remove the inside gills and stem. Remove the gills because they taste slimy, although they are edible. Remove the stem to allow the mushroom to lay flat. A spoon works well to remove these areas.4 portobello mushrooms, large
Marinate the Mushrooms
- In a bowl, stir together the tamari sauce, balsamic vinegar, olive oil, garlic, sugar and cayenne. Taste and add optional salt and pepper.Add the mushrooms to the bowl, spoon the marinade all over them, flip them and spoon more marinadeLet them sit for 10 minutes each side, allowing them to marinate a total of 20 minutes. No longer or they might become too sour or salty.3 tablespoon balsamic vinegar, 2 tablespoon olive oil, 3 tablespoon tamari sauce, 2 tablespoon garlic, chopped, 1 tablespoon brown sugar, pinch of cayenne pepper, ¼ teaspoon salt, ¼ teaspoon black pepper
Grill the Mushrooms
- Put oil in a pan and heat it to medium heat.
- Add 1 to 2 mushrooms into the pan. Put them gill-side down first and press until they sizzle to sear. Then flip and sear the other side. Cook each side about 2-3 minutes depending on their size led to juicy steaks.
- Serve the mushrooms immediately as steaks with sides, such as mashed potatoes and veggies.
- The grilled portobellos tasted fine after 2 days of refrigeration. After that, they can get a bit rubbery.