Are you looking for an easy side dish to prepare? Get out your sheet pan and roast mushrooms glazed with garlic butter and fresh herbs for intensely savory bites.
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Mushrooms on their own can be pretty bland. But all you need is the proper cooking method and complementary ingredients to make them shine at the dinner table. Roasting in a high-temperature oven kick starts the browning process on the caps while concentrating the juices. To make a big batch for the family or a holiday, I use a baking sheet to do the work.
After about 30-minutes, you’ll see the fungi develop a caramel hue. To add a more robust umami taste, I toss them in a buttery soy sauce glaze. After a few minutes in the oven, the savory pieces are ready to serve alongside a hearty protein like roasted chicken, flaky salmon, or a big juicy steak.
I recommend using a brown mushroom type like Cremini or Baby Bella as they are ideal choices for roasting. They also have a more robust, mature flavor compared to Button mushrooms because they have aged longer. Their structure holds up well and doesn’t shrink down too much when cooking.
In a pack of mushrooms, you’ll typically find a variety of sizes from small to large unless you handpick them at the market. Keep the smaller pieces that are no bigger than 1 ½ inches whole. Halve the medium-sized about 2-inches, and quarter the larger pieces.
Make sure to wash the surface of any visible dirt or debris, and pat dry well. As long as you briefly rinse them, their spongy fungus won’t absorb too much water. Not to worry though, the high heat from the oven will help drive off any residual moisture.
I keep the seasoning simple- a high-quality olive oil, salt, and pepper. The fat coats the surface, creating a protective layer that browns nicely but doesn’t completely dry out while roasting. As the moisture releases, the salt works its way to the interior to season the inside of the mushroom. A little bit of black pepper adds a mild heat.
Advantages of roasting
Roasting the mushrooms in the oven provides several advantages. First, you can cook a large batch compared to sauteeing on the stovetop, which is best for smaller portions. I prepared 2-pounds on a large rimmed baking sheet, but you could easily double the recipe.
Cranking up the oven to 450ºF (232ºC) and roasting in the lower section quickly heats the baking sheet. In under 30 minutes, the vegetables develop a deep golden color and caramelized taste due to the Maillard reaction.
It’s important to spread the mushrooms in a single layer to have maximum contact with the hot pan. The mushrooms start to release their moisture in the dry heat after about 15 minutes. Letting pieces sit unmoved for at least 10 more minutes concentrates the savory flavor and evaporates most juices. Stir it, and you’ll see the caps and cut sides turn golden brown.
Garlic butter glaze
The mushrooms taste meaty and well seasoned just from simply roasting. However, to bump up the umami taste, I add a glaze of melted butter, soy sauce, balsamic vinegar, minced garlic, and chopped thyme—the milk solids in the butter browns, adding a nutty, butterscotch flavor. Sprinkle fresh herbs like parsley or basil for a pop of color right before serving.
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Fresh mushrooms contain about 85 to 95% water. Therefore it’s inevitable for the moisture to release when cooking. Roasting at a high of 450-degrees drives out the juices and evaporates them, so they brown quicker and don’t get soggy.
Roasted mushrooms need to cook until most of the moisture releases and the areas in contact with the pan turn golden brown. This process takes about 25 to 30 minutes in a 450-degree oven.
White button mushrooms are light in color and have a mild savory flavor. Brown mushrooms like cremini and baby bella are from the same variety as the white; however, they are harvested later, maturing and developing a richer taste and darker hue.
Easy ways to make roasted mushrooms more flavorful
Fresh mushrooms have a mild savory taste when cooked because they naturally contain flavor compounds called nucleotides. This gives a meaty flavor but isn’t very strong unless the fungi have been dried out. Adding some soy sauce rich in glutamates enhances the taste of nucleotides, making a more pungent umami taste. A splash of balsamic vinegar provides some acetic acid, adding a layer of zest and brightness to the dish.
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- 2 pounds cremini mushrooms, baby bella, or button
- 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt, or sea salt
- ½ teaspoon black pepper, plus more for garnish
- 2 tablespoons melted butter
- 2 teaspoon soy sauce
- 2 teaspoons balsamic vinegar
- 2 teaspoons minced garlic
- 2 teaspoon chopped thyme, or 1 teaspoon dried
- 1 teaspoon parsley
- Set the oven rack to the lowest position. Heat to 450ºF (232ºF).
- Rinse and dry the mushrooms, then trim the stems. Leave small mushrooms whole (1 to 1 1/2-inch), halve medium-sized (1 ½ to 2-inches), and quarter large-sized (larger than 2-inches).
- In a large bowl, combine mushrooms, olive oil, salt, and pepper.
- In a large rimmed baking sheet, spread the seasoned mushrooms evenly in the pan. Roast until the liquid from the mushrooms has evaporated, about 25 to 30 minutes.
- Remove the mushrooms from the oven and carefully stir with a spatula.
- In a small bowl, combine melted butter, soy sauce, balsamic vinegar, minced garlic, and thyme.
- Pour the butter mixture over the roasted mushrooms. Stir to combine and roast until garlic is fragrant and the sauce reduces, about 3 to 5 minutes.
- Transfer mushrooms to a serving platter and garnish with parsley and black pepper.
- Recipe Yield: About 3 cups
- Serving Size: ½ cup
- Storing: Cool completely and store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.
- Reheating: Reheat in a microwave on high power in 30-second intervals or on the stovetop over medium heat until hot.
- Make it Gluten-Free: Use gluten-free tamari or coconut aminos instead of soy sauce.
- Make it Paleo and Whole 30: Use ghee instead of butter. Use coconut aminos instead of soy sauce.
- Make it Dairy-free: Use extra-virgin olive oil instead of butter.
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