Articles / Maybe You're Cleaning Mushrooms All Wrong

Maybe You're Cleaning Mushrooms All Wrong

Published September 24, 2019

Let’s talk about mushrooms for a second. Yes, they’re one of the planet’s great ingredients: versatile, meaty, laced with umami, all good things. But there’s this myth about cleaning mushrooms that has always bugged me and that has plagued home cooks for as long as I can remember. Most people have been convinced (through no fault of their own) that the only way to adequately clean mushrooms, which are notoriously dirty, is to wipe them one by one with a damp towel. This takes forever, and just isn’t true. There’s a better way. Check it out below.

Now that you’re no longer burdened with the responsibility of onerous mushroom cleaning, I’ve got a couple of recipes in mind; one is a classic, the other a nice surprise. There’s mushroom-barley soup, which is (or should be) an absolutely staple in fall and winter; this version couldn’t possibly be simpler or more comforting. Then there’s one of my favorite non-meat burgers, made with mushrooms, nuts and rolled oats (among other things). Yes, technically they’re “veggie burgers,” but calling them that puts them in the same category as those frozen pucks you get from the supermarket, and they couldn’t be more different from those. These ones are so much better, and it’s also really easy to make a big batch and freeze them. I eat (and love) regular burgers, and still find these satisfying (check out the miso and tahini variations, too).

Give them a try. Or don’t. But do yourself a favor and make something with mushrooms this week; you won’t know what to do with all that free time.


Whether you cook mushrooms constantly, infrequently, or somewhere in between, there’s a decent chance you’re cleaning them wrong.