Learn how to select, store, and prepare portabella mushrooms from a mushroom expert.
Portabella mushrooms are the definition of versatile. They can be the star of the plate or a fantastic accompaniment to your favorite dish. Their “meaty” texture makes them a great burger or steak alternative. But they’re also delicious served on top of burgers and steaks, as well as in pasta dishes, casseroles, and stir-fries.
We asked Lindsey Roberts, Marketing Manager for Monterey Mushrooms®, Inc. to teach us about selecting, storing, and serving portabella mushrooms. Monterey Mushrooms is a part of our family of partners and they are experts on all things mushrooms! They are known for popularizing the portabella mushroom and we can’t think of anyone better to teach us about them.
FUN FACT: Portabella and portabello mushrooms are the same things. West Coast chefs commonly refer to them with an ‘a’ at the end and East Coast chefs prefer portabello with an ‘o’.
How to Select Portabella Mushrooms
When selecting portabella mushrooms, look for caps that are firm and uniform in color, not spotty. Mushrooms should be dry to slightly tacky, not slimy. For a stronger earthy taste, choose mushrooms with thick veils that are dark in color. For a more delicate flavor, choose mushrooms with thinner veils that are lighter in color.
How to Store Portabella Mushrooms
If you purchase pre-packaged mushrooms, leave them in their packaging and store in the refrigerator. The packaging is designed to keep the mushrooms fresh.
If you purchase loose mushrooms, place them in a brown paper sack. Do not use a plastic bag. Plastic causes the mushrooms to break down sooner because the moisture from the mushrooms gets trapped.
Do not freeze raw portabella mushrooms. Instead, sauté and then freeze. Sautéd mushrooms can be stored in the freezer for up to a month.
How to Serve Portabella Mushrooms
Raw, grilled, or sautéd, portabella mushrooms are a tasty treat! But before you serve them, you need to clean them.
How to clean Portabella Mushrooms
Wipe the cap and stem with a damp paper towel. If you are preparing many mushrooms at once, you can run them under water very quickly and then immediately pat them dry with a paper towel. Never soak mushrooms in water. They will absorb the water and become spongy.
Now that we know how to clean mushrooms, let’s get to the best part. Eating them!
Portabella Mushroom Recipes
Here are a few of our personal favorite portabella recipes:
DID YOU KNOW: The portabella is a mature baby bella mushroom. Portabella mushrooms are about three days older and are grown on a bed that has been thinned to allow the mushrooms to gain size. Portabella mushroom caps range in size from three inches to six inches in diameter.
Be sure to pick up Monterey Mushrooms at your next trip to the grocery store and make one of these delicious recipes for your family!
What’s your favorite way to serve portabella mushrooms? Share your ideas and recipes in the comments below.