Did you know that mushrooms are one of the top five “vegetables” people make on the grill? Even so, most people are still unsure how to grill mushrooms for maximum tastiness.
In order to prepare for National Grilling Month this July, we’re bringing you mushroom grilling advice from the experts here at Monterey Mushrooms so you’re ready to fire up the grill at your next summer cookout!
1. Properly Clean Your Mushrooms Before You Grill Them
Cleaning mushrooms is different from cleaning most fruits and vegetables, so it’s important to know how to handle them.
Since mushrooms are porous, they have the ability to retain water. After all, a mushroom is more than 95% water. To maintain a mushroom’s texture, you’ll want to rinse them, instead of soaking them. Then, immediately after rinsing, lightly pat the wet mushrooms with a paper towel or a lint-free cloth to remove excess water.
In many instances, your mushrooms may only need a gentle brushing to remove any excess dirt or debris. Use your freshly washed hands or a kitchen brush to lightly brush your whole mushrooms instead of turning on the faucet.
2. Chop Based on the Size of the Mushroom
Now that you’ve cleaned your mushrooms, it’s time to chop them up before you stick them on skewers or wrap them in foil and stick them on the grill.
We recommend chopping and cooking your mushrooms based on their size:
- If the mushroom cap is 1.5” or smaller, leave it whole.
- If larger than 1.5”, cut it in half.
- If larger than 2.5” cut it into quarters
Leave Portabella Mushroom caps whole. If you do choose to slice them, cut them into 1” thick pieces.
3. Properly Put Your Mushrooms on the Grill
How to grill mushrooms depends on the type of mushroom you’re using.
Certain mushrooms, like large, whole Portabella caps, can often be placed right on the grates of your grill to cook.
Grilling mushrooms in foil is the best option for smaller, chopped mushrooms or mushroom skewers. You may also want to use a grill pan to avoid mushrooms accidentally falling between the grates.
Please remember, if you are using wooden sticks to make your grilled mushroom skewers, soak them in water for about 20 minutes before you’re ready to grill. This will prevent them from catching fire while you’re barbecuing.
4. Brush and Baste Your Mushrooms With Oil or Soak Them in Marinade
Keep your mushrooms from drying out or burning on the grill by coating them with oil.
Grab a basting brush and coat your larger mushrooms with olive oil before adding your favorite seasonings. For smaller chopped mushrooms, place them on a sheet of tin foil and drizzle the oil onto them.
Don’t put the oil away just yet — you’ll want to keep it handy since your mushrooms might need another coat once you flip them.
If you don’t like oil, don’t worry! While grilling mushrooms with oil and seasoning is a popular method, it’s not the only option.
Some grill masters prefer to marinate mushrooms for grilling. You can soak your mushrooms in your favorite marinade prior to grilling for a delicious flavor.
If you’re using a marinade, allow your mushrooms to soak for at least 20 minutes at room temperature. Your mushrooms should retain the moisture from the marinade and may not require oil when on the grill but keep an eye on them to make sure you get the perfect BBQ mushrooms.
Still looking for something different? Sometimes mushroom sauces can also be used as a substitute for oil!
5. Understand the Proper Grilling Techniques for Mushrooms
You’re finally ready to place your mushrooms on the grill! But as you’re heating up the grates, be mindful of where you’ll place your mushrooms.
How Long Should I Grill My Mushrooms?
Direct heat, or placing your mushrooms directly under the source of fire, can help reduce grill time. It’s also the best way to get those classic grill marks and show off your grilling mastery to dinner guests.
Grill marks form quickly on medium to high heat — usually within 2 to 3 minutes — so once they appear, move your mushrooms to indirect heat.
Indirect heat, or placing your mushrooms 4 to 6 inches from the heat source, is often the preferred method while you finish grilling your fungi. Keep your mushrooms here for 4 to 6 minutes on each side.
You may need to brush or drizzle with oil in between flips to keep them moist. You’ll want to avoid flipping the mushrooms too often — this can cause them to lose precious juices that retain the delicious flavors you’ve put on the grill.
How To Grill Mushrooms in Foil
If you’re grilling mushrooms in foil, this process may take anywhere from 20 to 25 minutes. Make sure to flip your foil packet halfway through to get the perfect fungi!
Fire Up the Grill for Some Delicious Summer Mushroom Recipes
Now that you know how to grill mushrooms like a pro, it’s time to show off your skills. Explore our Summer Grilling Mushroom Guide for:
- Grilling basics and Portabella Mushroom recipes.
- How to build the perfect mushroom kebab, plus recipes that everyone at the BBQ will love.
- How to build a blended burger that’s as nutritious as it is delicious.
Fire up the grill and download the Summer Grilling Guide today!