close up Photo of a grilled portobello mushroom with bruschetta topping

It’s a fact that Lincoln has the best nose of any 7 year old I know. He can sniff out what I’m making for dinner from a mile away, and is almost always right.

(I’m sure this has absolutely nothing to do with the fact that I tend to make the same five things over and over and over. 😂)

Anyway, the other night he walked in the door while I was cooking and excitedly asked, “Are we have burgers for dinner?!” (his all time favorite meal). I saw his soul slightly crumple when I had to tell him that no, burgers were not on the menu. It was mushrooms he was smelling.

POOR GUY!

All that to prove that Grilled Portobello Mushrooms are a dead ringer for beef burgers in both sight, scent, and meaty texture, but they’re vegetarian, low-carb, and best served au naturel (ie no bun necessary.) If you’ve never tried a grilled portobello mushroom, prepare to have your world rocked!

grilled portobello mushrooms on a plate

Sizzling Grilled Portobello Mushrooms

Grilled Portobello Mushrooms with Bruschetta are marinated portobello mushrooms that are grilled until smokey and charred then topped with a fresh, flavor-packed bruschetta topping. The combination of sweet and tangy bruschetta with smokey portobello mushrooms is so, so delicious. Plus, this gorgeous, gluten free dish will be on the table in under 30 minutes and can be served as a light main or side dish to dinner.

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What are Portobello Mushrooms?

Imma let you in on a little secret – portobello mushrooms are just grown up white button mushrooms. Yeah! Think of white button mushrooms as babies, which turn into teenagers, aka crimini mushrooms then, when fully grown, are considered portobello mushrooms. They’re thick and beefy, with a flavor that lends itself super well to being grilled. You can find them at any regular grocery store these days.

Easy Mushroom Marinade

In this dish, I briefly marinate the portobellos before grilling in a simple mixture of extra virgin olive oil, balsamic vinegar, and steak seasoning, which imparts bold beefy flavor to the portobellos. Read below for my favorite store-bought seasoning blend, or you can make your own. The mushrooms only need to marinate for 10-15 minutes – just enough time to whip up the fresh bruschetta topping.

overhead Photo of grilled portobello mushrooms with bruschetta topping

Will These Work as Burgers?

Portobello mushrooms release a ton of liquid after grilling so if you want to serve grilled portobello mushroom burgers, let the mushrooms rest for at least 5 minutes on a few paper towels before placing onto a bun and adding toppings.

Why I Love This Dish

  • Portobello mushrooms are a great, thoughtful option to have on hand at grill outs for vegetarian or vegan friends and family. They grill up in just a few minutes and are extremely easy to prep.
  • In contrast to cooking ground meat burgers, you don’t need to worry about internal temperatures, levels of doneness, or meat juices on the countertop when making grilled portobello mushrooms. I have to remind myself several times when I cook this dish that I don’t need to wash my hands every time I come into contact with the mushrooms like I do when cooking beef or turkey burgers!
  • They’re incredible! As a beef burger lover, I can truly say that these grilled portobello mushrooms are just as satisfying as a regular meat burger. They’re super elegant, too. Pair with a glass of crisp white wine for a light and tasty spring and summer supper.

I can’t wait for you to try this dish – let’s get started!

Fork taking a bite of grilled portobello mushrooms with bruschetta

Step 1: Prep the Portobello Mushrooms

Portobello mushrooms are sold in packs at my local grocery store, and come in a range of sizes.

Portobello mushrooms in a pacakge

As you can see, they can be shorter in diameter with a big bowl shape, or larger and flatter. It all depends on at what point the mushroom were picked. Luckily, any size and shape of portobello mushroom will grill fantastically.

underside of portobello mushrooms

Use a small knife to remove the tough stem then use a small spoon to gently scrape out the gills. Lastly, run the tops of the mushrooms under cold water to remove any dirt then pat dry with a paper or kitchen towel.

how to scrape out the gills of a portobello mushroom

Step 2: Marinate the Mushroom Caps

Next make the easy portobello mushroom marinade by adding extra virgin olive oil, balsamic vinegar, and steak seasoning (I like Tone’s Beef Seasoning Blend) to a large Ziplock bag then squishing to combine. Add the prepared mushroom caps then gently shake the bag to coat. Remove all the air from the bag then seal and place on the countertop to marinate while you prepare the bruschetta topping. Again – MUSHROOMS, FTW! No need to refrigerate like you would if marinating meat!

portobello mushrooms marinating in a bag

Step 3: Prepare the Bruschetta Topping

While the mushrooms are marinating, prep the bruschetta topping, which tastes so fresh and delicious in contrast to the smokey, grilled mushrooms. DROOL. To a bowl add:

  • Roma tomatoes
  • Basil 
  • Parmesan cheese
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • Balsamic vinegar
  • Fresh garlic
  • Salt and pepper

That’s it! I doubled the parmesan cheese in this topping from my regular go-to bruschetta recipe to make this dish even more satisfying and full of flavor.

fresh bruschetta topping in a bowl

Step 4: Grill the Portobellos

Whether you’re using an outdoor grill or a grill pan, preheat over medium-high heat then either brush the grill grates with vegetable oil or spray the grill pan with nonstick spray to prevent sticking.

Place the mushrooms gill side up then grill until the bottom has nice, dark grill marks – again, this will give us that craveable char-grilled flavor. I rotate the caps halfway through to get the criss cross grill lines.

Portobello mushrooms grilling in a grill pan

Flip then cook until the mushrooms are tender, another 3-4 minutes, spooning some of the marinade over the tops of the caps. Again, these are mushrooms so we don’t need to obsess over internal temperatures or levels of doneness. Just give the mushrooms a little squeeze with tongs. If they are tender to your liking – they’re done!

Remove the grilled mushrooms to a plate lined with several paper towels then let them sit for 5 minutes. They’ll release a ton of liquid during this resting time.

charred portobello mushrooms in a grill pan

Last step is to plate the grilled portobellos then spoon the fresh bruschetta topping on top. INSANELY delicious, you guys! I recommend serving two mushrooms per person if serving as a light main dish, or one per person as a healthy side dish. However you eat it – enjoy!

grilled portobello mushrooms on a plate with bruschetta

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Grilled Portobello Mushrooms with Bruschetta

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Description

Grilled Portobello Mushrooms with Bruschetta pairs sizzling grilled portobello mushrooms with a fresh bruschetta topping. Serve as a healthy main or side dish with dinner.

Ingredients

makes 4 mushrooms

  • 4 portobello mushroom caps
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 Tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • 1 Tablespoon steak seasoning
  • For the Bruschetta Topping:
    • 1 cup seeded then diced Roma tomatoes (3-4 Roma tomatoes)
    • 1/4 cup packed fresh basil leaves, chopped
    • 1-1/2 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
    • 1-1/2 Tablespoons balsamic vinegar
    • 1/4 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese
    • 1 garlic clove, pressed, microplaned or finely minced
    • salt and pepper

Directions

  1. Use a small knife to remove stems from mushrooms then use a small spoon to gently scrape out the gills. Wash the tops of the caps under cold running water then pat dry with a kitchen towel or paper towel.
  2. Add extra virgin olive oil, balsamic vinegar, and steak seasoning to a large Ziplock bag then squish to combine. Add cleaned mushrooms then gently shake to coat. Press out all the air then let mushrooms marinate on the countertop while you prepare the Bruschetta Topping.
  3. For the Bruschetta Topping: Add all ingredients to a bowl then stir to combine.
  4. Heat a grill or grill pan over medium-high heat. Once hot, brush grill grates with vegetable oil or spray your grill pan with nonstick spray. Add mushrooms gill side up then grill until deep grill marks appear on the bottom - 3-4 minutes (I rotate mine halfway through to get the criss cross grill marks). Flip then grill until mushrooms are tender, another 3-4 minutes, spooning and spreading some of the marinade over the tops of the caps. Total grilling time will depend on how thick and large your mushrooms are but in general they shouldn't take longer than 4 minutes on each side.
  5. Transfer grilled mushrooms to a plate lined with several layers of paper towels to drain for 5 minutes. Transfer grilled mushrooms to plates then spoon bruschetta topping on top and serve.

This recipe is courtesy of Iowa Girl Eats, http://iowagirleats.com.

Photo collage of grilled portobello mushrooms with bruschetta