How to Cook Mushrooms Without Using Oil

Well-prepared mushrooms are so flavorful and juicy that they can replace meat in side dishes or main courses. They add texture and depth to any meal of the day: Serve them on toast as part of an English breakfast, add them to soups or salads for lunch or stir them into pasta dishes or gravies for dinner. Mushrooms are fat-free and low in calories, but they lose these selling points if you cook them in oil. To create healthy mushroom dishes with rich, complex flavors, sauté your mushrooms in broth instead.

Cook mushrooms whole or sliced in any flavor of broth.
Credit: Danilo Ascione/Hemera/Getty Images

Step 1

Dampen a paper towel slightly. Use it to wipe the mushrooms clean. Mushrooms absorb water, so use a damp towel instead of a wet towel. Slice the mushrooms if desired.

Step 2

Place a few teaspoons of broth in a pan. Use a flavor of broth that complements the dish you are preparing. Heat the broth over medium heat on the stove.

Step 3

Add a mushroom to the pan when the broth is hot. Listen for a sizzling sound. If you don't hear the sizzle, let the broth warm further, then add another mushroom and listen again. When a mushroom you add sizzles immediately, add the rest of the mushrooms.

Step 4

Tilt the pan and stir the mushrooms so they are all coated with the broth. Distribute them around the pan so they aren't overlapping or touching.

Step 5

Look for additional moisture seeping from the mushrooms into the pan. If they don't seem to be releasing water, add a little bit of salt to the pan. Add thinly sliced onion, garlic or fresh herbs to the pan if desired.

Step 6

Cook the mushrooms, stirring occasionally, until all the water and broth have dried. Continue cooking, stirring constantly, until the mushrooms become golden-brown. Remove them from the pan and add them to other recipes at the very end of cooking, or serve them individually as a side dish.

Things You'll Need

  • Paper towel

  • Mushrooms

  • Pan

  • Broth

  • Salt

  • Onions, garlic, herbs (optional)


Mushrooms cook down considerably. Start with a large volume of raw mushrooms to finish with a usable amount of cooked mushrooms.

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