This recipe was inspired by the White Cheddar Mushrooms appetizer offered by Longhorn Steakhouse. This is one of my favorite appetizers in the whole wide world. It’s ultra rich, super flavorful and deliciously savory. Like the Longhorn version, this recipe has a great cheese fondu sauce that cradles the mushrooms like the precious babies they are.
I found super-sized mushroom caps at my local grocery store, but you can use pretty much any mushroom– button or portobello or baby bella– for this recipe. The bigger the mushrooms, the fewer you’ll get (although it’s not hard to double or triple the recipe). My mushrooms were about 2 1/2 inches in diameter and this recipe made me five of those. I’d estimate you’d get 10 baby bellas or buttons.
In lieu of the traditional panko breadcrumb topping on Longhorn’s offering, I crushed some plain pork rinds and put them on the top. The texture is really similar to panko, so you won’t notice much of a difference.
White Cheddar Stuffed Mushrooms with Crispy “Panko Breadcrumbs”
- 5 large raw mushroom caps or 10 small mushrooms (approximately)
- 6 oz. freshly shredded sharp white cheddar cheese (I used Organic Valley Raw Cheddar)
- 1 1/2 T butter
- 3 T heavy whipping cream
- 2 cloves of garlic, chopped (may sub. 1/2 tsp. garlic powder)
- 1/4 tsp. garlic powder (in addition to above)
- 2-3 T finely chopped onions (or 1/8 tsp. onion powder)
- 1/4 tsp. black pepper
- 1/2 tsp. dried Italian seasoning
- 3 T dry white wine (or white cooking wine)
- 1/4 C (about 1/2 oz.) T crushed pork rinds (plain, although you could also use spicy)
1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
2. Use a spoon to hollow out the mushroom caps to prepare them for filling. Be careful: they can be fragile.
3. Place the empty mushroom caps cup-side up into the oven for about ten minutes or until water begins to pool in the center of each mushroom cap. Carefully pour the water off the mushrooms and return them to the pan to cool. Set aside.
4. In a small sauce pan, melt butter and saute onions and garlic in the butter for about three minutes over low-medium heat.
5. Add in heavy whipping cream, black pepper, white wine and Italian seasoning into the butter mix and bring to a low boil over medium heat. Allow the mixture to boil lightly for a minute, then add in 1/2 of the shredded cheddar cheese. Use a whisk to bring the sauce together and make sure cheese melts completely. Allow to simmer lightly for about five minutes to thicken and cook off remaining alcohol, then set aside for a few minutes.
6. Check to make sure no more water has pooled in the bottom of the mushrooms. If it has, dump it out.
7. In a small bowl, combine the other half of the shredded cheese, 2 T of pork rinds and 1/4 tsp. garlic powder. Use your hands to mix it up.
8. Stuff each mushroom with the cheese mixture.
9. Pour the hot cheese sauce into a small baking dish (I used a 7 x 5 dish), then place the stuffed mushrooms directly into the sauce.
10. Top the mushrooms– and a little bit of the sauce– with more crushed pork rinds.
11. Turn the broiler on in your oven. Broil the mushrooms for about five minutes or until the cheese is melty and bubbly. Allow the mushrooms to cool for a few moments. Serve topped with sauce.
NUTRITION: (for 1/5th of recipe): 235 calories, 3 g carbs, 2 g fiber (1 g net carbs), 18 g fat, 15 g protein