Mushroom Parmesan

This crunchy and flavorful Mushroom Parmesan recipe pairs briny olives and capers with tomato sauce and hen-of-the-woods mushrooms.

Mushroom Parmesan
Photo: Gentl & Hyers
Active Time:
35 mins
Total Time:
2 hrs 5 mins

This light, beautiful, briny twist on eggplant Parm, starring panko-coated hen-of-the-woods mushrooms is from photographer Andrea Gentl's 2022 cookbook, Cooking with Mushrooms: A Fungi Lover's Guide to the World's Most Versatile, Flavorful, Health-Boosting Ingredients. Baking the panko with the mushrooms ensures that as the mushrooms release their liquid, the panko absorbs the flavorful juices, adding extra earthiness to the cheesy, tomato-packed casserole. Castelvetrano olives add fruity complexity to the sauce. This recipe calls for Himalayan pink salt , which adds a faintly floral, sweet flavor. You can find it at most specialty grocery stores, or substitute kosher salt, if desired.



  • 2 pounds fresh hen-of-the-woods mushrooms (about 6 mushrooms)

  • cup extra-virgin olive oil

  • ¾ teaspoon Himalayan pink salt (see Note)

  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper

  • 2 cups panko


  • 1 (28-ounce) can whole peeled San Marzano plum tomatoes

  • 1 (14-ounce) can whole peeled plum tomatoes

  • ¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil

  • 8 medium garlic cloves, smashed

  • 20 pitted Castelvetrano olives, roughly chopped (about 1/2 cup)

  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh oregano or 1 tablespoon dried oregano (such as Sicilian oregano)

  • 1 tablespoon drained capers, roughly chopped

  • ¾ teaspoon Himalayan pink salt, plus more

Additional Ingredients

  • 1 pound fresh mozzarella cheese, thinly sliced

  • 4 ouces Parmesan cheese, grated (about 1 cup)

  • 1 tablespoon fresh oregano leaves or 1 1/2 teaspoons dried oregano (such as Sicilian oregano)


Make the mushrooms:

  1. Preheat oven to 400°F. Cut mushrooms into 2- x 1- x 1-inch rectangles. Arrange in an even layer on a large baking sheet. Drizzle evenly with oil, and sprinkle evenly with salt and pepper. Toss mushrooms using your hands to evenly coat with oil; top evenly with panko, and toss again. Spread mushroom mixture in a single layer on baking sheet.

  2. Roast mushrooms in preheated oven until mushrooms are soft and caramel-colored but not crispy and panko is golden brown, about 25 minutes, flipping mushrooms halfway through roasting time. Remove from oven, and set aside. Reduce oven temperature to 350°F.

Make the sauce:

  1. Pour both cans of tomatoes with juices into a large bowl; crush tomatoes using your hands. (Alternatively, use an immersion blender; process about 1 minute for a smoother puree.) Set aside.

  2. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium until oil starts to shimmer. Add garlic, and cook until just beginning to brown, about 1 minute, flipping halfway through cooking time. Remove from heat; let oil cool 1 minute (to prevent tomatoes from splattering when added to oil).

  3. Add reserved tomatoes with juices to oil in skillet, and return to heat over medium. Cook, stirring occasionally, until tomato sauce is thickened and you can just see the bottom of skillet when stirred, about 12 minutes. Stir in olives, oregano, capers, and salt. Add additional salt to taste. Remove from heat, and set aside.

  4. Spread a thin layer of sauce on bottom of a 13- x 9-inch baking dish. Arrange one-third of mushroom-panko mixture evenly over sauce; top with one-third of remaining sauce. Sprinkle evenly with one-third of mozzarella; sprinkle evenly with 1/3 cup Parmesan. Repeat layering process 2 more times, ending with remaining 1/3 cup Parmesan. Bake at 350°F until bubbling and browned, about 45 minutes. Let cool 15 minutes. Sprinkle evenly with oregano, and serve.


Excerpted with permission from Cooking with Mushrooms by Andrea Gentl. Artisan Books © 2022

Make Ahead

Sauce can be made up to 1 day in advance and stored in an airtight container in refrigerator.

Suggested Pairing

Earthy, berry-inflected Italian red: Poliziano Vino Nobile di Montepulciano

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