Cream and mushrooms are a magical combo, and these creamy mushroom recipes celebrate it in all its glory—but without relying on a can.
The power duo is nothing new, of course; cream and mushrooms have been combined in French and Italian dishes for centuries, but it was only in 1934 that the Campbell Soup Company produced a line of condensed soups that changed American cooking. Its canned cream of mushroom, when it wasn’t being diluted to serve as actual soup, showed up in an almost endless array of casseroles and sauces.
These 15 recipes (three for actual soup) extrapolate the rich flavor and unctuous texture of cream of mushroom soup without requiring a can opener, and put them to use in an array of delicious, comforting dishes perfect for fall and winter eating.
Related Reading: A Visual Guide to Types of Mushrooms
Cream of mushroom goes from pasty, over-salted pomade to lithe, creamy, and mushroom rich when you make it yourself. In this Kim Laidlaw recipe, dried porcini join fresh cremini mushrooms to yield a soup of unusual deliciousness. A bit of sherry and heavy cream add luxuriousness. Get our Cream of Mushroom Soup recipe.
Dried Porcini Mushrooms, $9.02+ from Walmart
Available in several amounts depending on your needs.
Although you add the sautéed cremini mushrooms, chicken broth, and heavy cream at separate stages, this delicious potato gratin recipe has at its heart the best-ever cream of mushroom flavor. Shredded Gruyère cheese and fresh thyme round out the rich, dinner party–ready flavors. Get our Creamy Mushroom-Potato Gratin recipe.
We love baked pasta dishes for their versatility, their make-ahead potential, and their delicious powers of satisfaction. This one, by Kim Laidlaw, marries homemade cream of mushroom soup with penne pasta, sautéed fresh creminis, and shredded Gruyère cheese. It’s the perfect dish to make when you have leftover soup and want to transform it into something else! Get our Creamy Mushroom Pasta Bake recipe.
Bialetti Pasta Pot with Strainer Lid, $34.99 from Amazon
A pot with a built-in strainer makes draining your pasta a cinch.
For a different take on the same theme, you start by searing bone-in chicken breasts, and then—in the same pan—you construct a delicious, richly concentrated cream of mushroom sauce. Shallots, garlic, fresh cremini mushrooms, white wine, chicken broth, and cream marry into a rich sauce for rigatoni pasta. Swap in gluten-free pasta if need be. Get our Creamy Rigatoni recipe.
The blue cheese toasts—baguette slices topped with melted blue—get all the attention, but it’s the soup that builds a delicious foundation. Yellow onions and garlic cook with fresh thyme to form a flavorful base, then sliced white mushrooms do their magic. Sherry and a restrained amount of heavy cream finish it off. Get our Creamy Mushroom Soup with Blue Cheese Toast recipe.
It’s a gravy, yes (you haven’t lived until you’ve slathered it on meatloaf), but it’s also one of the most richly concentrated cream of mushroom bases ever. Cremini mushrooms are sweated in butter with shallots. Flour joins for thickening purposes, then a bit of Marsala and a whole lot of beef broth create the sauce. A small amount of heavy cream, finally, smooths out the edges. Use it in your casseroles as you would the inferior stuff from a can and prepare to have your mind blown (and tastebuds overjoyed). Get our Creamy Mushroom Gravy recipe.
Bacon and a classic mirepoix of onion, carrot, and celery form the base of this extraordinarily concentrated variation on cream of mushroom. Since it’s a chowder, there are smooth, soft cubes of potato, and nutty, earthy-tasting wild rice. It’s the mushrooms, though, that suffuse every spoonful with richness. Get our Mushroom and Wild Rice Chowder recipe.
The thing that makes this spaghetti so delicious is a rich cream of mushroom base: sautéed onion and cremini mushrooms, thickened with flour, and diluted with chicken broth and milk, béchamel-style, coat the pasta perfectly. The thing that makes it easy is that you can use leftover cooked chicken or a shredded rotisserie chicken from the store—or even leave it vegetarian. Either way, the end result is a deeply flavored pasta dish that’s perfect for a weeknight dinner. Get our Creamy Chicken and Mushroom Spaghetti recipe.
Related Reading: The Best New Weeknight Cookbooks for Fall
Somewhere between stuffing and bread pudding lies this rich, creamy, crusty casserole (or call it a gratin) made with sautéed cremini and chanterelle mushrooms plus rehydrated dried porcinis. They’re mixed with baguette cubes in a decadent sauce made with Cambozola, a cheese that’s like a cross between Camembert and Gorgonzola. Baked until bubbly, this makes a great side to simple roast chicken, seared steak, or works as a vegetarian meal on its own alongside a simple salad. Get our Mixed Mushroom Casserole recipe.
Beef Stroganoff is a classic creamy mushroom dish, but our one-pot version is even better because it’s easy enough for even the most exhausted Monday nights. Simply saute ground beef, mushrooms, and onions in butter, then simmer in the same pot with paprika, wine, and beef broth. Even the egg noodles get tossed right into the mix until just tender, and it’s all finished with sour cream for a luscious bowl of beefy, creamy mushroom goodness. Get our One-Pot Beef Stroganoff recipe.
If you don’t eat meat (or are just trying to eat less meat), try our creamy kale and mushroom version of the classic Russian dish. It relies on sautéed cremini mushrooms and dried porcinis plus their soaking liquid to keep the flavor deep and umami-rich. Onions, wine, butter, and sour cream add to the richness and complex flavor. Get our Kale and Mushroom Stroganoff recipe.
Though usually made with rice, using the ancient grain farro for risotto gives it not only more nutritional value but a toothsome chew. Mushrooms combine with thyme, butter, parmesan, and white wine for delicious earthy flavors, and while there’s no actual cream in this dish, the final texture is definitely creamy. Get our Easy Mushroom Farro Risotto recipe.
Whole milk, butter, and chicken broth thickened with flour form the basis of this creamy pot pie filling. Along with chicken and cremini mushrooms, you’ll also find carrots, leeks, and peas swimming in the rich, delicious sauce. The flaky pie dough can be replaced with a lid of store-bought puff pastry if you want a weeknight shortcut (just remember to let it thaw overnight). Get our Chicken Mushroom Pot Pie recipe.
Morel mushrooms are a sure sign of spring, but making creamed mushrooms to top crunchy toast is a good move to make all year; you can use a mix of other wild mushrooms, as in our Wild Mushroom a la Creme recipe, or just sub in fresh chanterelles or porcini for the morels. Honestly, even white button mushrooms will taste good once they’ve been roasted with garlic and herbs and enriched with crème fraîche and Cognac. Get our Morel Mushroom Toast recipe.
This mac and cheese recipe is easy yet elegant, thanks to a couple things. First, you sautee bacon and use some of the rendered fat to saute the mushrooms. Then you mix them both into a classic, creamy, béchamel-based macaroni and cheese and bake it in individual portions in a muffin tin. Sharp white cheddar adds extra richness and umami flavor. Perfect as party appetizers, these also make for a fun dinner that might even get picky kids to try (and like!) mushrooms. Even better? You can make these ahead and freeze them in an air-tight container for up to three months. Get our Bacon and Mushroom Mac and Cheese Bites recipe.