When we traveled to San Diego recently for a long weekend get-a-away, I researched vegan restaurants to visit while away. San Diego, California boasts vegan options, but one little pub served the best Portobello fries I’ve ever tasted. Of course, the portobello fries, although vegan, were deep-fried. As a result, I decided to create my own oil-free version of portobello fries at home.
HOW TO CHOOSE PORTOBELLO MUSHROOMS
For example, when choosing portobello mushrooms, pick large mushrooms, similar in size. Since mushrooms shrink when cooked, if you buy the smaller ones, they won’t cook evenly or resemble fries.
Then, make sure the portobellos mushrooms are firm, with unblemished caps. The gills (the brown gills inside the mushroom cap) should be dry, which indicates freshness. Next, make sure the mushrooms do not have a slimy film, which means they are beginning to spoil. Last but not least, store mushrooms in the packaging provided by the store or a paper bag to maintain freshness.
HOW TO CLEAN AND PREPARE THE PORTOBELLO MUSHROOMS
Although some experts suggest to only clean mushrooms with a clean towel and no water, I disagree. Because portobello mushrooms are delicate, be careful as you remove the stem. Using a small amount of water, wash the outside of the mushroom cap, gently washing away any dirt. Do not, for example, submerge the mushrooms to wash them. Instead, use the water to help remove the dirt and carefully use a paper towel or cloth towel to dry off the mushroom.
In order to remove the gills, turn the cap over to the open side, and carefully remove the brown gills by scraping the gills with a small spoon. Then, make sure you use minimal water and paper towel to pat dry.
Once cleaned, I cut the portobello mushrooms, lengthwise about 1/4-1/2 an inch wide, so they are all approximately the same size. As a result, the portobello fries will cook evenly.
HOW TO MAKE CRISPY VEGAN PORTOBELLO FRIES WITHOUT ANY OIL
I prefer my portobello fries extra crispy which is easily achieved without using oil. Silicone Baking Mats provide perfect baking without oil and sticking if baking in the oven.
First, you need a few simple ingredients. I bathe my mushrooms in a dijon mustard/plant-milk mixture before dipping in a bread crumb/nutritional yeast mixture.
- Large Portobello Mushrooms
- Unsweetened, unflavored almond, or other plant-based milk
- Dijon Mustard
- Italian Panko Bread Crumbs (or gluten-free Panko crumbs for those who are gluten-free) or homemade bread crumbs
- Nutritional Yeast
Next, you simply dip the portobello fries in the almond milk/dijon mixture and then dredge into the Panko bread crumb/nutritional yeast mixture.
- Dip each portobello fry into the plant milk mixture, and then dredge it into the bread crumbs mixture; one at a time until all mushrooms are covered in bread crumbs.
BAKING PORTOBELLO FRIES
- Lay each fry on a baking sheet, separated from each other, on a silicone mat or parchment paper.
- Cook at 400 for 20 minutes, flipping each fry over after cooking for 10 minutes.
- To avoid having to flip the portobello fries at the halfway point, I use my Copper Chef Crisper and “air-fryer” in the oven. Because the secondary pan is lifted from the pan beneath, it cooks the portobello fries on top and on the bottom without having to flip them over.
AIR-FRYING PORTOBELLO MUSHROOM FRIES
Without a doubt, I prefer air-frying over baking simply because it takes less time, but the drawback is you can only cook a single layer at a time. Regardless, this was still easier in my opinion. But not everyone has an air-fryer, and you wouldn’t want to miss out on trying this portobello fries recipe!
- Lay each fry in the base of the air-fry plan, separated from each other.
- Cook at 400 for 9 minutes
- Remove and repeat this process until all the portobello fries are cooked.
WHAT SHOULD I DIP MY PORTOBELLO FRIES IN?
Today, I decided to make a creamy whole-grain mustard dip using raw cashews, whole-grain mustard, and water. But, here are other dipping suggestions you may enjoy.
I also decided to serve with carrots and celery to offer a few more veggies for dipping.
The next time you are craving a crunchy snack, try portobello fries! You won’t be disappointed.
IF YOU LOVE CRUNCHY SNACKS, CHECK OUT THESE FAVORITE RECIPES
- Vegan Zucchini Fries
- Crunchy Baked Zucchini Coins
- Steak Fries Crispy Air Fryer Steak Fries Recipe
- Sweet Potato Chips
- Oven-Baked Fries Perfect Crispy Oil-Free and Garlic
- Skinny AF Sweet Potato Fries
- Air Fried Chickpeas
- Baked Sweet Potato Vietnamese Loaded French Fries
- Baked Onions Rings