Savory Mushroom Polenta

If you are looking for a quick and easy weeknight meal this is it!  A big bowl of creamy polenta topped with sauteed mushrooms in balsamic vinegar is my definition of comfort food!  I love to serve this with sautéed asparagus or brussels sprouts! A kale salad would be a great starter to this hearty meal.  The recipe that inspired this dish is from bon appetit and the link can be found below. I have made several changes to make this easier and it uses what I have on hand in my pantry.

The original recipe calls for baking the polenta. I just make mine on the stove! I use this recipe from Allrecipes. Make sure to whisk the polenta very slowly into the boiling water or it will clump up like crazy!

What the Husband thinks: 

Each Monday I post meatless recipes that I’ve tried out on my husband, David. He rates them using the Missing the Meat rating system we came up with.

Missing the Meat Rating  3 out of 5 stars

3 stars
Check out the Rating system:

So I asked my husband David what he thought about this dish. Here’s what he said:

“What I liked most about the meal was how savory everything was.  There was a bit of tang and I think that’s from the Apple cider vinegar which was really really good. Also being a southern boy anything that resembles grits I love.  I think one thing that makes me not miss the meat so much is that some mushrooms are kind of meaty so I really could do without meat on this meal.

I will say I am not as “full” as I would like to be but I think in the future when we make this we could have bigger portions, add a side dish, or make dessert. We will definitely make this again and pretty often. It’s very good and easy. I give this three out of 5 stars simply because I’m not very full. Otherwise this is really good. 

I hope you enjoy this savory mushroom polenta! Let me know in the comments below if you try this recipe and what your rating is!”

 Link to inspiration recipe

Link to Polenta recipe:

Savory Mushroom Polenta

Recipe by muddymermaidCourse: Meatless Monday’s, weeknight dinnersCuisine: vegitarian, veganDifficulty: Easy


Prep time


Cooking time





Mushrooms sautéed in balsamic vinegar


  • Polenta
  • 4 cups vegetable broth (or water)

  • 2 teaspoons vegetable bouillon (optional)

  • 1 cup polenta (corn meal)

  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil

  • Salt and pepper to taste

  • ½ cup parmesan

  • Sautéed Mushrooms
  • 1 16oz pkg mushrooms sliced (white button or baby bella’s are fine)

  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme

  • Salt and pepper to taste

  • ¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil

  • 1 Tbsp. balsamic vinegar


  • Heat water or vegetable broth along with bouillon in a medium sized saucepan. Once boiling slowly whisk in polenta and stir until smooth. Reduce the heat to low and cover. Let polenta cook for about 20-30 minutes depending on the coarseness of the grain. Most recipes say cook polenta for 30 minutes but mine is a finer grain and is done in 20 minutes so adjust as necessary. Polenta should be smooth and creamy. Remove from heat. Stir in 1 tablespoon olive oil, parmesan, and salt and pepper to taste.
  • Heat ¼ cup olive oil in a skillet on medium heat. Add chopped garlic and stir until translucent. Add sliced mushrooms and stir, making sure all mushrooms get coated in the olive oil. Season with thyme, salt, and pepper. After 2-3 minutes add wine and stir. Continue stirring until mushrooms are tender (about 5 minutes). Turn off the heat, add vinegar and stir.
  • Serve polenta in a bowl topped with the sauteed mushrooms. If you have any fresh thyme or parsley it would be great to add on top!


  • If you don’t have thyme, rosemary is a great alternative.
  •  I have used balsamic, rice, or apple cider vinegar for this recipe and all were great.  You can use almost any vinegar for this recipe, except white vinegar.  That would probably be too overpowering.   
  • The original recipe is great but I’ve modified it to fit ingredients I always have in my pantry and to shorten the cooking time.  It also allows me to avoid turning my oven on, which pulls more electricity and heats up the house.  
  • Omit parmesean if vegan or replace with vegan cheese.  I’ve made it without parm and it was still very good! 
  • Save money and don’t buy “polenta.”  It’s just a coarse ground cornmeal with a marked up price!  I just buy the 5 lb sacks of cornmeal and use that.  Just don’t use one that says “fine ground” on the packaging.  It will have a gluey texture once cooked.  

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