My love for a good mushroom risotto goes back a long way. It used to be a firm favorite when we went out to dinner.
Of course a standard risotto recipe uses parmesan in the risotto and is usually served with extra parmesan on top.
I knew I had to make a batch of vegan mushroom risotto for the blog, and I can tell you, this version doesn’t miss the cheese at all.
When I first made this recipe, I used white wine, which a lot of risotto recipes call for.
But….I just wasn’t a fan. There was a bit too much of an acidic after taste to it I found. So I made it again – sans wine this time and it had ALL the flavor with none of the acidity.
If you would like to add some wine to this then you can add 1/2 cup of wine to this same recipe. You add it in after the rice, and let it cook off and absorb with the rice before you add in the stock.
This risotto is creamy and rich and tastes as if there may actually be cream in it, when of course there is none.
The mushroom flavor cooks in so well with the risotto rice, and it makes a perfect savory entrée.
And if you love a delicious vegan rice dish then also check out our vegan fried rice and our vegan paella.
HOW TO MAKE VEGAN MUSHROOM RISOTTO
You will find full instructions and measurements in the recipe card at the bottom of the post. This is a summary of the process to go along with the process photos.
- Add olive oil to a pot with chopped onion and sauté on medium-high for a couple of minutes until softened.
- Add sliced mushrooms and garlic and toss with the onions.
- Cover the pot and cook for a couple of minutes until the mushrooms have released some of their water.
- Then remove the lid and add the risotto rice and sauté it with the onions, mushrooms, and garlic.
- Add 3 cups of vegetable stock, stir well, cover and simmer for around 20 minutes until the broth is mostly absorbed.
- Add 1 and 1/2 cups vegetable stock, stir well again, cover and simmer for around 10 minutes until the broth is mostly absorbed.
- Then add a final 1 and 1/2 cups of vegetable stock, stir well again, cover, and simmer for a final 5-10 minutes.
- It’s ready when all the stock has been mostly absorbed by the rice.
- Turn off the heat and stir in 2 Tbsp of vegan butter.
- Add sea salt and black pepper to taste.
The Mushrooms. We used cremini mushrooms (also called brown button mushrooms, baby bellas or portobellini mushrooms) but plain white button mushrooms also work great.
Risotto Rice. We used arborio rice which is a widely available type of risotto rice. I highly recommend you use the same rice as we did so that the recipe has consistent results. Other popular types of risotto rice according to the Kitchn are carnaroli and vialone nano though apparently, you can really use any short-grain rice.
Vegetable Stock. You can really use any vegetable stock or broth. However, if your stock has dehydrated vegetable pieces in it, it’s better to strain it so that it’s just the clear broth. It’s also ideal (but not crucial) for your vegetable stock or broth to be hot when it goes into the risotto. This helps it to absorb the rice better.
Cooking Times. The cooking times mentioned in this recipe are just a guide, if you’re cooking on a gas stove or just using a different pot, it might go faster. So you need to keep a watch for when the stock is mostly absorbed before adding more stock rather than judging it by time alone.
HOW TO SERVE RISOTTO
Serve it topped with fresh chopped parsley and ground black pepper. Some vegan parmesan can also be really tasty sprinkled on top. You can either make up a batch of homemade vegan parmesan or use a store-bought option.
STORING AND FREEZING
Keep leftovers stored in an airtight container in the fridge and consume within around 3 days.
It’s not ideal to freeze as the texture can change too much after thawing.
MORE VEGAN DINNER RECIPES
- Vegan Stuffed Peppers
- Vegan Pho
- Vegan Ramen
- Teriyaki Tofu
- Vegetable Casserole
- Easy Ratatouille
- 40 g / 1.4 oz dry porcini* OR a mixture of porcini and shiitake (I used 50/50)
- 750 g / 26 oz favorite fresh mushrooms (shiitake, chestnut/cremini, oyster)
- extra virgin olive oil
- 4 small shallots or ½ large onion, finely diced
- 3 large garlic cloves, 2 finely diced and 1 finely grated
- 400 g / 2 cups risotto rice
- 120 ml / ½ cup vegan white wine
- approx. 2 cups / 500 ml veggie stock, from a stock cube or homemade vegan stock
- 2 tbsp white miso paste (optional)
- salt and black pepper, to taste
- 35 g / ¼ cup cashews soaked in boiling water for 30 min (optional)
- 2-3 sprigs of fresh thyme, leaves only
- 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar (optional)
- well minced fresh parsley, to garnish
- Clean your dry mushrooms of any grit under the tap. Place in a measuring jug or a small pot and cover in about 500 ml / 2 cups of boiling water. Cover and set aside to brew for 30 minutes or so.
- Next, clean all your fresh mushrooms using a damp paper towel or a damp mushroom brush. Try to keep your mushrooms as dry as possible. Slice and set aside.
- Heat up 2 tbsp of olive oil in a heavy-bottomed pan or pot, one that you have a fitted lid for.
- Add in chopped shallots (or onion) and fry on low heat until translucent (about 5 minutes), stirring from time to time.
- Add 2 garlic cloves to the shallots and fry, stirring frequently, until fragrant and softened (about 2 minutes).
- Mix in rice and fry it off for a few seconds, stirring frequently.
- Gently drain mushroom stock (infusion) away making sure you don’t disturb a little grit that tends to settle at the bottom of the pot. Heat up your mushroom stock in a small pot. Save rehydrated porcini for later.
- Next add wine. Allow the wine to cook off completely before adding the first small portion (60 ml / ¼ cup or so) of hot mushroom stock.
- Keep on adding the stock, in small amounts, until fully absorbed by the rice before adding the next portion. Make sure to stir the rice often to activate the starch, which makes for a creamy risotto. Once you run out of mushroom stock, heat up a little vegetable stock to supplement.
- If you like the idea of using miso, dissolve it in a bit of hot stock first and add it into the risotto while incorporating stock. Make sure you season your risotto as you go, tasting often.
- While you make your risotto, you may want to make a bit of porcini cream to fold into the risotto at the last minute to make it more indulgent. Blend soaked and drained cashews with about 20 g / 7 oz of soaked porcini and a splash of water in a blender until super smooth.
- When the risotto is nearly done, it’s time to pan-fry the fresh mushrooms – you may need to do them in batches as overcrowding the pan will produce soggier mushrooms. Heat up a large pan with about 2 tablespoons of olive oil, add sliced fresh mushrooms onto the hot oil and leave undisturbed for a minute or two so that they caramelize on one side. Stir the pan and again leave them to caramelize for a bit. Give them a stir from time to time until they are mostly caramelized and look cooked. Add a finely grated garlic clove, thyme leaves, and a generous sprinkling of salt and pepper. Stir well, allowing the garlic to cook gently in the mushrooms.
- Keep on adding the stock to the rice until the rice is almost al dente – i.e. has a small amount of bite to it when tasted. It will take about 15-20 minutes from the moment you first started adding liquid to the pan.
- Taste a grain of rice to make sure it is almost ready. If it is, stir some porcini cream (if using) and a bit of balsamic vinegar if you like a touch of acidity to break through the creaminess. Switch the heat off, cover the pan/pot and allow the risotto to rest for 5 minutes.
- Divide the risotto between bowls, top with pan-fried mushrooms and fresh parsley.