A quick vegetarian pasta dish that warms you from the inside! As a lifelong vegetarian (35+ years) I consume only sustainable animal products – milk from pasture-raised cows, and eggs from free-roaming chickens. And this 20-minute pasta dish delivers amazingly rich flavor.
First, boil the pasta in the biggest pot you have with generously salted water. While the pasta is boiling make the sauce. Gently sauté the mushrooms in some butter (or oil) over medium heat and thicken with flour and milk. Season with salt, fresh garlic, and chili flakes (for a little zing).
When I was in France one of the very best dishes I had was a pasta dish with a creamy mushroom sauce. It was at a little family-owned restaurant just north of Paris, where my wife and I sat with friends and drank too much – but that is another story.
Ever since I came home I have been trying to re-create this recipe.
For a long time, I didn’t have success. Then one day I tried something new. Instead of using heavy cream to make a creamy sauce, I made a béchamel. That’s a combination of butter, flour, and milk. And that’s when I recreated the taste that I love and made a new family favorite.
As for mushrooms I’ve used all kinds:
- White Mushrooms (button)
- Cremini Mushrooms
- Baby Bellas
- Full-size Portobello Mushrooms
- Oyster mushrooms
- even wild mushrooms
- or any other kind of mushrooms
My absolute favorite though is when I use Japanese mushrooms – Enoki and Shiitake. They give an Umami flavor from the savory mushrooms to the rich sauce that is hard to resist.
Use some pasta water to make the sauce thicker or thinner based on your preference. If it gets too thin, just cook it a little longer and it will thicken up
Cook the pasta just a little bit less than al dente. When you add it to the sauce and then add the mushrooms.
The first time you make this dish you might have some lumps in your sauce. Use low heat and take your time. It shouldn’t take more than 10 minutes total, however, In the amount of time it takes to cook the pasta the sauce should come together.
You can also use your favorite pasta or even fresh pasta once you get the hang of the sauce. That takes it to the next level.
What I love about this dish is that it has a pretty advanced, but still easy technique – making a cream sauce with just three ingredients. Also, this whole dish comes together in just a single large skillet (except for the pasta water)
The Special Detail is the mushroom flavor. The Sauté mushrooms go perfectly with this traditional dish. Also, don’t forget to squeeze some fresh lemon juice over the top. Trust me on this one.
Substitutions and Alterations
Oil instead of butter to sauté the ‘shrooms. Yes, you can also make a creamy sauce with flour and water – it’s done this way in Louisiana more often, and takes a little bit longer. But it works
Instead of using vegetable stock, try using a combination of 50% white wine and 50% stock.
Any kind of mushroom
- Gluten-Free option – Use gluten-free pasta.
- Vegan Option – the sauce can be made with vegetable stock and flour and then thickens with a cornstarch slurry. Add a touch of nutmeg, too
- Carnivore Option – serve with some chicken breasts cooked in a white wine sauce. That would be a great first-date dinner to impress for sure!
- I’ve made this pasta dish with Roasted tomatoes. But any fresh seasonal vegetable pairs nicely with this.
- A nice salad with lots of leafy greens
- Try a glass of white wine with this dinner.
- Garlic bread
Simple Creamy Mushroom Pasta Recipe
- 1 Really big pasta pot
- 4 tbsp Butter 1 to saute mushrooms, 3 for flour
- 1 C Mushrooms
- 3 tbsp Flour
- 1 C Milk
- 2 cloves Garlic
- 1 lb Linguine
- salt & pepper to taste
- 1 Lemon
- Bring a big pot of salted water to a rolling boil
- Add pasta and cook until al-dente (about 1 minute less than package directions)
- Chop mushrooms into 1 inch sized pieces
- Mince the garlic
- In a large saucepan over medium heat add 1 tbsp butter, galric and mushrooms. Saute for 3-4 mintues until mushrooms are cooked, but not shrinking.
- Remove mushrooms from pan and and set aside.
- Turn heat to low and add in remaining butter and flour stirring constantly. Do this for 3-4 minutes until the butter and flour are combined.
- Slowly add milk stirring constantly to avoid lumps. You should see the sauce begin to form.
- If sauce gets too thick, add some pasta water. If sauce is too thin continue to stir over low heat until you get a sauce like consistency
- When the pasta is done cooking drain, and add to sauce in pan. Toss to cover all the noodles.Add in the mushrooms, and continue to mix.
- Squueze some fresh lemon over the top and serve immediately.
Garnish with a generous grating of Parmesan cheese or with freshly chopped cilantro, fresh parsley other fresh herbs. Maybe add some fresh ground black pepper too if you have some, None is needed to make the sauce, but it goes great on top.
This dish doesn’t freeze well but keeps nicely in an airtight container until the next day or two.
This creamy mushroom pasta recipe is an easy weeknight meal with incredible mushroom flavor. The next time you need a fast dish the whole family will enjoy, think about this mushroom recipe.