Portobello mushrooms are the steaks of the vegetarian world. They are meaty, dense, and sturdy enough to hold up when grilled. And, they have deep earthy flavor, especially when cooked. Portobello mushrooms are a great substitute for a beef burger. We’ll explore that in the recipes.
These mushrooms are in the cremini family of edible fungi. They are the largest of this type of mushroom, growing up to 4″ in diameter and more than an inch thick. This makes them particularly well suited for grilling on a Foreman grill.
The portobello is low in calories and moderately high in dietary fiber. They are a terrific source of minerals, such as selenium, copper, phosphorous, and potassium. Selenium is an essential mineral that works as an antioxidant to help fight damaging free radicals in the body. Free radicals can damage cell membranes, contributing to heart disease and cancer. Copper is necessary for the formation of hemoglobin in the blood. It is also essential for healthy hair.
Mushrooms have high moisture content. This is fine when grilling on an outdoor grill over a hot flame. Most recipes recommend marinating mushrooms before grilling them. I tried that and it was not very successful with the Foreman Grill. The marinade, consisting of olive oil and balsamic vinegar with spices, added excessive moisture to the portobellos.
The nice thing about the Foreman Grill is that it actually helps to retain some moisture in the foods being grilled. That works great for most vegetables. It is a little trickier with mushrooms. The marinated ones steamed and the kitchen instantly turned into a mini spa with the windows fogging up. A mushroom facial is not what I was going for.
I don’t think a liquid marinade when cooking portobello mushrooms on the Foreman Grill is necessary. A little olive oil is fine. You will find that the mushrooms release water that collects in the drip tray. This basic recipe worked fine and the mushrooms were not steamed but still very moist. Do not wash the mushrooms. Just wipe off the dirt with a damp paper towel.
Basic Grilled Portobello Mushrooms Recipe
- 2 Whole portobello mushrooms, stems removed
- 2 TBS extra virgin olive oil (EVOO)
- Sea salt
- Ground black pepper
Total time: 10 min – Prep time: 5 min – Cook time: 5 min
1. Heat the Foreman grill to high.
2. Coat the mushrooms in EVOO, salt, and pepper on all sides.
3. Grill stem side down with the top closed for 4 to 5 minutes, depending on the thickness of the mushrooms.
Note: You can slice the mushrooms first and then grill them. This will take less time. I find that sliced, grilled mushrooms are very nice served atop a creamy parmesan polenta.
Portobello Mushroom Burger Recipe
If you are not a meat eater this may be your go-to burger option. This recipe is fairly classic. You can choose different toppings to your liking. And, feel free to skip the mayo and substitute the butter for EVOO if you are vegan.
- 2 Whole grilled portobello mushrooms, as prepared above
- 2 Slices Monterey Jack or cheddar cheese
- 2 Round crusty Italian rolls, sliced in half
- 1 TBS butter, softened
- 1 TBS prepared pesto (store bought or homemade)
- 1/4 Cup mayonnaise
- 2 Large tomato slices
- Romaine or butter lettuce
1. In a small bowl, stir together the pesto and mayonnaise.
2. Prepare the mushrooms as described in the previous Basic Grilled Portobello Mushrooms Recipe. Remove to a plate and immediately place the cheese on top of each mushroom to slightly melt.
3. While the grill is still hot, butter the rolls and toast them with the top of the grill left open. This may take 1 to 2 minutes. Keep an eye on them.
4. Assemble the burgers: Spread the pesto-mayonnaise mixture on the toasted rolls. Place a grilled mushroom with cheese on the bottom half of each roll and top with the tomato slices and lettuce. Place the other half of the roll on top and enjoy.
Serve these burgers with a handful of your favorite chips.
Cleaning the Foreman Grill After Grilling Muhsrooms
When grilling mushrooms on the Foreman Grill you might find that they leave a black residue behind. This is normal, as mushrooms darken as they cook. I find that it is best to wipe down the grill plates, very carefully, with a damp cloth or paper towel while they are still warm. You can hold the towel with tongs so you don’t get too close to the plates with your hands. After the grill cools down, clean with hot, soapy water using a gentle sponge. Rinse and wipe dry. This should remove any residue left behind.