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Vegan Mushroom Ragu Sauce

This Mushroom ragu features big, bold flavours, a super chunky texture, it is vegan & is just as good on pasta, polenta or even baked potatoes.

And boy does this recipe taste good! It is full of big and bold flavours and it certainly fills the belly despite its super low calorie count.

It cooks in a shade under an hour and it is super simple.

Super Chunky vegan mushroom ragu served with polenta and a parsley garnish

A Chunky Mushroom Sauce or Stew

If you visit my site often you may have noticed that I am rather fond of a good ragu sauce.

This mushroom ragu joins dishes as diverse as my sausage ragu, a duck ragu, lamb ragu, tinned-sardine ragu and of course a classic ragu all bolognese.

I am neither vegan nor vegetarian, but find myself cooking “sans meat” on a pretty regular basis. I’m a cook and a greedy eater, so as far as I am concerned if it tastes good it goes.

Texturally this is a full-on celebration of mushrooms, something that apparently some people really do not like… Who knew?

The addition of the balsamic vinegar at the end just pulls everything together. It adds a bit of sweetness and tartness to balance the dish.

Close up vegan mushroom ragu served with polenta and a parsley garnish

Frequently Asked Questions

Do I have to use the type of mushrooms mentioned in the recipe?

No, use whatever you can find around, chestnut mushrooms and oyster mushrooms are a relatively common starting point.

But just make the weight with anything from button mushrooms to chanterelle, shiitake to king oyster will work just as well.

The only exception for me would be the dried porcini mushrooms. Yes they are expensive but we do not use many and they add so much flavour to the dish.

Can I use frozen mushrooms?

I always have a bag of frozen wild mushrooms in the freezer and they are superb, I use them in my cream of wild mushroom soup. But for this recipe, their water content is too high, so I would say no.

A word of note!

I mention this in my notes and if you are vegan I am sure you know this already, but not all wine is vegan!

So if keeping this dish vegan is important to you make sure you read the label on the bottle.

Overhead vegan mushroom ragu served with polenta and a parsley garnish

Serving Suggestions

Whilst developing this recipe I always had one dish in mind as a serving partner. That was a nice cheesy polenta made using gruyere cheese, I did say I wasn’t vegan.

If you are sticking with the vegan thing then subbing the cheese out for nutritional yeast can give you a ‘similar’ vibe.

But this mushroom ragu is incredibly versatile. Throw it over some pasta, onto a jacket potato, or on some buttered toast and you are away.

But don’t stop there, go wild and crazy. If you cut the mushrooms smaller you can fill cannelloni, use it as a base for a mushroom shepherd’s pie or even stuff pancakes with it.

It would also work well as a side dish for bacon wrapped pork tenderloin or to a steak.

Vegan mushroom ragu served with polenta and a parsley garnish served in a white bowl.

Equipment Used

I only mention brands of equipment if I think that they make a material difference to a recipe. But if you have any questions feel free to ask them in the comments section below the recipe.

  • Stovetop.
  • 30cm or 12″ frying pan.
  • Kettle to boil water to steep the dried mushrooms.
  • Stirring and serving spoons.
  • Kitchen knife.
  • Chopping board.
  • Weighing scales and or measuring jug, cups and spoons.
Super chunky vegan mushroom ragu served with polenta and a parsley garnish.
Yield: 2 Servings

Vegan Mushroom Ragu Recipe

Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 45 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour

This rich mushroom ragu loaded with chestnut, oyster and dried porcini recipe is the perfect vegan-vegetarian meal, served with pasta, polenta or even spooned over a baked potato.


  • 15g (½ Cup) Dried Porcini Mushrooms
  • 50g (1 Large) Shallot
  • 4 Cloves Garlic
  • 75g (~1 Cup) Oyster Mushrooms
  • 500g (~4 Cups) Chestnut Mushrooms
  • 2 Tbsp Olive Oil
  • ¾ Tsp Coarse Sea Salt
  • 125ml (½ Cup) Red Wine
  • 250ml (1 Cup) Tomato Passata
  • ½ Tsp Dried Thyme
  • ½ Tsp Dried Rosemary
  • 1 Tbsp Balsamic Vinegar


  1. Add 100ml (⅓ Cup + 1 Tbsp) of boiling water to the dried mushrooms and allow them to steep.
  2. Peel the shallot and dice it as finely as you can.
  3. Dice the garlic cloves as finely as you can.
  4. Tear the oyster mushrooms into strips 5-6mm (¼") wide and 4-5cm (2") long.
  5. Cut the mushrooms and cut them into 3-4cm (1½") chunks.
  6. Chop half of the chestnut mushrooms into a 5-6mm (¼") dice.
  7. Cut the remaining chestnut mushrooms into bite-sized pieces, I like quarters.
  8. Drain the dried mushrooms, keeping the soaking liquid and chop them into a 5-6mm (¼") dice.
  9. Heat the oil in a 30cm or 12" frying pan over a medium high heat.
  10. Add the diced shallot and garlic and cook to soften for 2-3 minutes.
  11. Turn the heat up to medium-high and add the oyster and both sets of chestnut mushrooms.
  12. Season with the salt and cook for 8-10 minutes until golden, stirring regularly. The mushrooms will reduce in volume by about half to two-thirds.
  13. Add the soaked and chopped porcini mushrooms and pour in the red wine and steeping liquid from the porcini.
  14. Cook on high until the liquid has been reduced by half then pour in the tomato passata.
  15. Add the dried rosemary and thyme then reduce the heat to low and simmer for 25 minutes.
  16. Now is a great time to taste and add more salt if required.
  17. Just before serving stir through the balsamic vinegar.


Not all wine is vegan so if that is important to you then read the label, but if it is important to you then you know this anyway!

Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:


Amount Per Serving: Calories: 204Total Fat: 14gSaturated Fat: 2gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 11gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 876mgCarbohydrates: 7gFiber: 1gSugar: 2gProtein: 1g

Calorific details are provided by a third-party application and are to be used as indicative figures only.

Did you make this recipe?

If you made this recipe, I'd love to see what you did and what I can do better, share a picture with me on Instagram and tag me @krumplibrian and tell me how it went!


Tuesday 11th of December 2018

Polenta and mushrooms are a dreamy combination of ingredients. I always love using a mix of mushroom varieties. Looks/sounds divine. I'm in!

Brian Jones

Wednesday 12th of December 2018

Cheers Valentina, this is a corking recipe, cooking the mushrooms slowly helps drive of the liquid and makes them super shroomy!


Tuesday 11th of December 2018

Leftover cheesy polenta (had to use Parmesan) is brilliant cooled, any moisture blotted out and fried to crispness and served with a smoked pork boiling sausage and salad. Wish they sold fresh chicken livers over here. Lovely recipe and works really well with sweetcorn instead of peas.l

Brian Jones

Wednesday 12th of December 2018

Yes I've been playing with "dry" polenta recipes in recent weeks, it is super tasty.

Mary Bostow

Thursday 6th of December 2018

This looks amazing! I’m not a huge fan of mushrooms but my hubby is. And with the right flavoring I can still eat them. I can’t wait to try this!

Brian Jones

Thursday 6th of December 2018

Thanks Mary, it is very good, but I do love mushrooms ;)

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