This recipe for Mushroom Bourguignon takes all the comfort and flavour of the original French recipe and gives it an inspired plant-based makeover. Making use of umami-rich ingredients such as mushrooms (both dried and fresh), savoury herbs, and full-bodied red wine, you’ll want to make sure this soothing main course recipe is on regular rotation when the weather outside is cold and grey. It’s also a worthy main meal for holidays like Christmas or Thanksgiving.
What is Mushroom Bourguignon?
Mushroom bourguignon is based on the traditional French recipe for Beef Bourguignon, a stew-like dish that is made by braising beef, mushrooms, and onions in red Burgundy wine until tender. In this plant-based version, the beef is replaced with a selection of both fresh and dried mushrooms. The mushrooms are sautéed until they begin to brown and then slowly braised in a stock- and red wine-based sauce along with savoury aromatics and pearl onions.
Mushroom Bourguignon ingredients
This recipe calls for equal amounts of button mushrooms and brown mushrooms. Both types of mushroom contribute a deeply flavourful earthiness and nuttiness to the finished bourguignon. Before the mushrooms are cooked, they are cut into quarters. These pieces are small enough to be eaten without a fork while also being large enough to hold their shape after a not-insignificant braising time.
Dried porcini mushrooms
Known for their woodsy, earthy flavour and robust texture, porcini mushrooms perform double duty as ingredients in this vegan bourguignon recipe. The dried porcini are rehydrated in hot water before they are finely chopped and combined with the sautéed fresh mushrooms. The liquid used for soaking is also added to the sauce, lending extra umami and depth of flavour to the finished dish.
Red wine is the backbone of this Mushroom Bourguignon recipe (in fact, the term “bourguignon” translates to “cooked in red wine” in English). Red wine has two functions as an ingredient in bourguignon: it adds flavour and it helps tenderise the mushrooms.
In keeping with a traditional bourguignon recipe, the onions in this plant-based version should be of the small and less pungent variety (think whole pearl onions or shallots). To make quick work of peeling onions, bring a large pot of water to boil and submerge the whole onions for 1 to 2 minutes. Drain and then cool, use your fingers to slip the skins right off, no paring knife required.
Carrots and capsicum
Carrots and red capsicum are thinly sliced or diced before being used for the base of the sauce in this recipe. Sweet (but not overwhelmingly so), these vegetables are added for flavour and colour.
A few tablespoons of tomato paste are all you need to give this bourguignon depth and an intense hit of fresh-off-the-vine ripe tomato flavour.
Vegan beef stock
Vegan beef stock is combined with red wine to marinate the onions, carrots, bay leaves, and thyme before it is used as the main braising recipe in this Mushroom Bourguignon. If vegan beef stock is unavailable, mushroom stock is a good substitute.
Bay leaf and fresh thyme
These aromatic herbs deepen the flavour of this mushroom recipe. For best results use fresh herbs (dried herbs, but in smaller amounts, can be substituted if fresh is unavailable).
A powerful source of umami in any vegan kitchen, soy sauce increases the savoury flavour in Mushroom Bourguignon by elevating the depth and richness of the other ingredients.
All-purpose flour is used in bourguignon as a flavourless but effective thickener.
Best wine for Mushroom Bourguignon
Red wine is an important ingredient in any Bourguignon recipe. Not only does wine add plenty of rich flavour to this classic comfort food, its natural acidity helps tenderise the mushrooms as they cook. Because wine is such a stand out ingredient in this recipe, make sure you choose a bottle that you love to drink—it can be inexpensive, as long as it’s tasty on its own. When choosing wine for bourguignon, opt for a fairly dry varietal that has big flavour, such as:
- Pinot Noir
- Red Bordeaux
What should I serve with Mushroom Bourguignon?
Serve Mushroom Bourguignon with your choice of a basic-yet-comforting, carbohydrate-rich side dish. Mashed potatoes, pasta (either wide noodles or more compact shapes such as shells) and polenta are all excellent options. For toppings, I love it as-is, but you could also try adding a dollop of vegan sour cream and a sprinkle of fresh chives or Italian parsley before serving.
Storing leftover Mushroom Bourguignon
Mushroom Bourguignon definitely falls into the category of recipes that taste even more delicious the following day (or even the day after that). Leftover bourguignon can be stored in the fridge for 3 to 4 days in a sealed container, simply reheat the cold bourguignon in the microwave or over the stove before serving. To freeze, make sure the bourguignon is cool before portioning into resealable freezer-safe bags or containers, removing as much air as possible to prevent freezer burn. Store Mushroom Bourguignon for up to 3 months in the freezer, defrosting in the fridge overnight or in the microwave.
Yes. To make this recipe alcohol-free, substitute the wine with the same amount of vegan beef stock plus a splash of balsamic vinegar for acidity. Alternatively, you could also use a dry, non-alcoholic red wine.
Yes. You can make a gluten-free bourguignon by substituting soy sauce with tamari or gluten-free soy sauce and the flour with cornstarch, brown rice flour, or garbanzo flour. For both substitutions, use the same amount called for in the original recipe.
Looking for more French recipes?
I did a high school exchange in France when I was 16, and have since travelled there to visit my old host family many times. They are like second family to me and I like to think living in France briefly as a teenager really influenced my style and taste preferences. Since going vegan have been inspired to recreate many of my favourite French classic dishes in plant-based form. These are my favourites:
Watch me make this recipe
- Dutch oven
- 1 cup Farm Hand Organic Cabernet wine
- 2 cups vegan beef stock
- 12 very small onions whole pearl onions or shallots, peeled
- 300g brown mushrooms cut into quarters
- 300g button mushrooms cut into quarters
- 2 bay leaf
- 4 sprigs of thyme
- 20 g dried porcini mushrooms
- 3 tbsp vegan butter or margarine
- 3 carrots peeled and cut into large 3cm pieces
- 4 garlic cloves minced
- 1 red capsicum diced
- 2 tbsp tomato paste
- 4 tbsp plain flour
- 1 cup vegan beef broth
- 1 cup Farm Hand Organic Cabernet
- 1 tbsp soy sauce
- olive oil for cooking
- thyme extra, for garnish
- mashed potatoes to serve
- Place onions, carrots, bay leaves and thyme into a tupperware container or large bowl. Add 1 cup of red wine and 2 cups of beef broth. Leave to marinate in the fridge overnight, for at least 10 hours.
- Preheat oven to 180C/350F.
- Drain the marinated vegetables, bay leaves and thyme. Reserve the marinade liquid. Separate the onion, carrots, bay leaves and thyme as they will be cooked separately.
- Place porcini mushrooms in a medium bowl and add 1 cup of hot water to rehydrate for 20 minutes.
- Heat generous lug of olive oil or a heaped spoonful of butter in Dutch oven over high heat. Add onions and sauté until there are golden patches. Remove to a separate bowl.
- Add more olive oil as needed, then add fresh brown and button mushrooms. Sauté until all liquid is expelled. Remove and set aside with onions.
- Once porcini mushrooms are rehydrated, drain and reserve the liquid. This will be added to the sauce. Finely dice the mushrooms.
- Reduce heat to medium, then add vegan butter or margarine to Dutch oven. Once melted, add carrot, bay leaves and thyme. Cook for 2-3 minutes, stirring constantly.
- Add diced capsicum, cook for 2 minutes.
- Add garlic, cook for 1 minute.
- Add the cooked onion and mushrooms, plus the rehydrated porcini mushrooms to the pot.
- Add tomato paste and stir for 1 minute, ensuring all vegetables are well coated.
- Add flour and stir well to combine. Flour will begin to form a paste.
- Gradually add 1 cup of vegan beef stock, stirring constantly to ensure no lumps form. Then add the reserved marinade liquid, reserved porcini broth and soy sauce. Stir well to combine.
- Increase heat to high and bring to the boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer for 20 minutes.
- Place lid onto your Dutch oven and transfer to oven for 60 minutes at 180C.
- Serve over mashed potatoes with a few extra thyme leaves to garnish.