Portobello Mushrooms: Cultivating a Delicious Mushroom

In the spotlight today at the Garden Bench Top are the widely popular portobello mushrooms.

We love everything there is to this gourmet delight. They are a highly nutritional and versatile ingredient that, we believe, should feature in every households’ menu.

portobello mushrooms

Today we are going to take a deep dive into the wonderful world of portobello mushroom. We’ll initially look at their characteristics and explore why they are so popular.

Then, we’ll take a look at growing portobello mushrooms – since we are a gardening resource.

Finally, we’ll answer all your questions about portobello mushrooms in our frequently asked questions section of the article.

Are you ready? Grab your learning hat and let’s go.

Portobello Mushrooms – Everything you Need to Know

As you may have gathered from our introduction to this article, we are little bit excited about today’s focus – portobello mushrooms.

In our eyes, you couldn’t find a better produce to cultivate and enjoy at the dinner table. There is so much to admire about these humble portobello mushrooms.

Let’s take a closer look.

A Rundown

Portobello mushrooms belong to the edible mushrooms group and are known to the botany world as Agaricus bisporus.

If you are looking to spot some portobello mushrooms in the wild, you will have to travel to the woodlands of Europe and North America.

Having said that, portobello mushrooms are cultivated around the world for consumption.

What do they look like?

Portobello mushrooms are larger than your standard mushroom size, and it is their size that actually defines them as a portobello mushroom (vs cremini or button mushrooms).

The portobello mushroom caps can span between 4-6 inches (10-15 centimeters) wide in diameter, and are usually have a darker brown coloration on top with the typical characteristic mushroom gills underneath.

what do portobello mushrooms look like
mushroom gills under cap

What’s the correct spelling?

You can be forgiven if you are slightly confused as to which spelling is the correct and official spelling of the topic of the day. In our article, we like to use the spelling Portobello mushroom, but just to make sure everyone doesn’t feel left out, we use the other forms of spelling interchangeably. It is equally suitable to use the spelling portabella mushroom, portobella mushroom or portabello mushrooms.

Which spelling you choose to use is entirely up to you and it will largely be influenced by the region you currently reside.

Why are they so special?

What makes portobello mushrooms stand apart from the rest is generally their size. Portobello mushrooms are unusually larger than their cousins. Coupled with their meat like texture and meaty flavor, rather than spongy and squishy like shiitake mushrooms, makes them a great meat-substitute in vegetarian and vegan meatless meals.

In fact, deep-fried crumbed portobello mushrooms are a perfect replacement for a meat patty in a burger. This is definitely a favorite around the Garden Bench Top team!

Nutrition in Portobello Mushrooms

Now for those that are into their facts and figures, here is a summary of the nutritional content of your average portobello mushroom:

Portobello mushrooms contain essential vitamins and minerals.

Nutrient TypeAmount
Carbohydrates3.3 g
Protein1.78 g
Sugar2.1 g
Fiber1.09 g
Calories18.5 calories
Fat0.3 g

As you can see from the table, portobello mushrooms contain minimal carbs, fats and sugars. This is great news for those looking at their waist lines and counting calories.

Portobello mushrooms also contain essential vitamins and minerals that help their body’s cells metabolize and regenerate. These include minerals like potassium, niacin and selenium. As well as vitamin D, which helps the body absorb calcium.

Grow Portobello Mushrooms

Growing portobello mushrooms at home is an extremely easy process and has many intangible benefits. In fact, portobello mushrooms are one of the mushrooms we highly recommend beginners trying their hand at, before advancing onto more complicated mushrooms, like shiitake or lionsmane mushrooms.

Growing your own produce is a rewarding process. Simply knowing what is going into (or not going into) producing the food you and your family are consuming on a daily basis gives you peace of mind. You are not consuming unnecessary toxins or chemicals that are used by commercial farmers to deter pests and disease.

Plus you have the added environmental benefits or producing less plastic waste and packaging that local markets use to sell their goods.

Feeling inspired yet to try your hand at growing portobello mushrooms? Follow our step-by-step guide for growing portobello mushrooms at home.

FAQ’s about Portobello Mushrooms

portobello mushrooms faq
portobello mushrooms questions

Now for all those questions we haven’t yet addressed in this article, here is our FAQ section.

Please note, if you haven’t found an answer by the end of this section, feel free to reach out to us, and we’ll be sure to include your question in our FAQ section.

Can I Freeze Portobello Mushrooms?

If you are short for space and need to begin to freeze your portobello mushrooms, here are our recommendations for both fresh and cooked.

Fresh portobello mushrooms are best kept in a brown paper bag in the refrigerator. The brown paper bag helps to minimize moisture collection and spoiling your mushrooms, while also allowing them to breathe. Freezing fresh mushrooms will likely destroy the integrity of the mushroom as the water content freezes and expands. This basically leaves you with a mushy mess when you go to defrost the mushrooms.

Cooked portobello mushrooms can be frozen since they contain much less water content than fresh ones. Again their texture and integrity may suffer after you defrost the cooked mushrooms, however they keep much better than the fresh portobello mushrooms.

Portobello mushrooms vs cremini mushrooms vs button mushrooms?

Surprisingly, portobello mushrooms, cremini mushrooms and button mushrooms are all the same type of mushroom. The only difference between them is the age and the point at which they are harvested during their growth cycle.

To put it in a different way, the button mushrooms (also affectionately referred to the baby bella) are the baby form. Cremini mushrooms are the teenagers of the group (before the mushroom cap pulls away from the stem). And the portobello mushrooms are the adults of the bunch, a fully matured mushroom.

What Next?

If you are a regular visitor at the Garden Bench Top, you will probably be able to guess our next recommended steps. Go get your hands dirty and give growing your own portobello mushrooms of course!

It really is easy! So go grab your garden gloves and check out our easy to implement mushroom growing guide.