A Really Great Mushroom Casserole
A remix of the mushroom casserole I loved as a kid. Brown rice, mushrooms, garlic, onions along side a bit of cottage cheese and sour cream and Parmesan for texture and creaminess.
I had one favorite thing to eat when I was a kid - mushroom casserole. It was the one dish I was loyal to above all else. I would request it when I was recovering from the flu, pneumonia, or strep throat. I would request it weeknights, weekends, and holidays. It was a simple dish, and one of four (maybe five) recipes my mom had in her culinary arsenal. She combined rice, mushrooms (or creamy mushroom soup), and cheese in a casserole dish, and baked it until it was creamy, melty, and golden at the edges. Simple enough.
My Version of Mushroom Casserole
I made a healthier, from-scratch remix of my mom's classic the other night using brown rice, sautéed mushrooms, garlic, and onions -all made creamy with a blend of cottage cheese and a bit of yogurt or sour cream.
Variations on Mushroom Casserole
You can certainly use whatever cooked grains you like. I suspect this would be delicious with barley, wheat berries, quinoa, whole grain rices - or even a mix of grains. I love it made with wild rice.
Add-ins: My mom used to hide all sorts of things in this casserole (pre-cooked chicken breast or pork chops), but because we don't roll like that anymore (vegetarian), I sometimes play around with other ingredients. Anything from chopped leafy greens, toasted nuts, sun-dried tomatoes, or pre-cooked lentils are great as add-ins. But, honestly, the simple version is really good - just like I've written down below.
A Make Ahead Recipe
This is a great recipe to make ahead of time! You can prepare the rice and mushroom mixture up to a few days in advance, and then simply bake it off when you're ready.
A Really Great Mushroom Casserole
Use any cooked grain you like. Feel free to use low-fat cottage cheese, sour cream, or yogurt if you prefer.
- 1/2 pound (8 ounces) brown mushrooms, cleaned and chopped
- 1 large onion, well chopped
- 3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
- 3 cups cooked brown rice, room temperature
- 2 large eggs
- 1 cup cottage cheese
- 1/2 cup yogurt or sour cream
- 1/2 teaspoon fine grain sea salt
- 1/3 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
- toppings: toasted almonds, or a bit of fresh tarragon, chopped
Preheat oven to 350F degrees. Rub a medium-large baking dish with a bit of olive oil or butter and set aside. The pan I use is slightly smaller than a classic 9x13 baking dish - just grab for something in this ballpark.
In a large skillet over medium-high heat saute the mushrooms in a glug of olive oil sprinkled with a couple pinches of salt. Stir every minute or so until the mushrooms have released their liquid and have browned a bit. Add the onions and cook for another 4 or 5 minutes or until they are translucent. Stir in the garlic, cook for another minute and remove from heat. Add the rice to the skillet and stir until combined.
In a medium bowl whisk together the eggs, cottage cheese, sour cream, and salt.
Combine the rice mixture and cottage cheese mixture in a large bowl, stir until well combined and then turn out into your prepared baking dish. Sprinkle with 2/3 of the Parmesan cheese, cover with foil and place in oven for 30 minutes. Remove foil and bake for another 20 or 30 minutes more or hot throughout and golden along the edges. Sprinkle with the remaining Parmesan, and toasted almonds (and/or tarragon) and enjoy.
Post Your Comment
Yummm. I haven't had a casserole in ages, but I hear they're back in style. And mushrooms class it way up. This looks SO SO good!!
Mine is baking as we speak, and smells so good. I snuck a spoonful when I removed the tinfoil, and let's just say there was a whole lot of promise in that bite. Thank you!
For those of you who are interested in a non-dairy or vegan options - I've been giving this a bit of thought today. Instead opting for soy-based non-dairy products (which I tend to avoid), I think I might take this in a totally different direction. What about tossing the brown rice with some crushed tomatoes and garlic, or a tomato/saffron sauce? Then turning the rice into the baking dish and topping it with olive oil toasted breadcrumbs, some chopped olives? A drizzle of pesto before serving...might be tasty. I'll let you know if I think of any other ideas. -h
This recipe reminds me of my own childhood, as one of ten children, where a meal would at times be rice with chile beef soup and cheese, with veggies on the side. The mushroom part of this recipe with creamy cottage cheese, and sour cream sounds much better than the can of mushroom soup I was cooking with in the 70's. The MSG in it doesn't suit me anymore. Thanks again for a great recipe, the creative writing and photo.
How deliciously simple! I think my dad made the same casserole when I was a kid. Your version sounds like a wonderful metamorphasis.
My mom made a mushroom casserole as well. It was made with brown rice,cream of mushroom soup, steamed broccoli and cheddar cheese.
I would be interested in any "bread" recipes you recommend for gluten intolerant folks like me! The leeks, dill and green beans were wonderful!!!
I wonder why I don't make more casseroles as this looks satisfying and elegantly simple. I think I'll have to try it with quinoa, though. It's my favorite go-to grain right now since I'm a little brown-riced-out these days. Thanks for the recipe!
This looks absolutely perfect for the weather that's approaching... Thank You!!
Heidi, I have been a long-time reader of your blog...so much so that when I saw Super Natural Cooking at my local bookstore, I felt star-struck and in the company of an old friend...simultaneously! This is yet another great looking recipe that I can't wait to try. The care and joy you invest in your cooking and writing is wonderful and very inspiring!
Wow, does that look good. I am thinking it would be great with the mushroom -thyme soup base I made up for Thanksgiving, and I love your suggestion of greens in it. Greta dish for this time of year. Also--I tried making some risotto with barley the other day, a la Super Natural Cooking...it was fantastic! Thanks!
I made this tonight and it was awesome!!! I added a bunch of chopped spinach that I had in the fridge. My boyfriend had thirds, which doesn't happen a lot! thanks, Heidi!
Mushrooms are one of my favorites, and this recipe looks so comforting. For a vegan twist, maybe substitute the eggs, cheese and cream for some cooked oatmeal, and a little rice milk. Top with a margarine breadcrumb sprinkle and bake until crispy...
Well...jump back!! This is the very recipe that your Mom and Dad served at their rehearsal dinner before their wedding 42 years ago in your grandmothers back yard. How do I remember you ask?....because I helped make the casseroles. (a little chicken as an addition). The dish was a hit. I can hardly wait to try your "health-up" version. HS: I had no idea! What a great story. I love that they had their rehearsal dinner in Grandma's backyard :) xoxo -h
This reminds me of one of the best paella's I've ever had at a restaurant called Calle Ocho in NYC. It's listed on the menu as simply mushroom paella and it is absolutely delicious yet so simple. This looks like a wonderful recreation!
Even though I love mushrooms, I don't use them enough in my cooking and this looks like a great recipe to try to start. Thanks for sharing.
This looks like an awesome simple comfort food dish. I love mushrooms and can't wait to try this out! Thanks for sharing it!
Well, I made this last night, or a vegan version, and it was perfect! For anyone interested in vegan subbing, I used Toffutti better than cream cheese, and a bechamel made from walnut oil and oat milk. The bechamel helps it hold together so you can omit the eggs completely. It's probably a different 'beast' to Heidi' version, but it's still yummy :)
I made this today with zucchini and sage and ate it with some fresh tomatoes. It is delicious!