Italian Stuffed Mushrooms (Easy Appetizer Recipe)

These Italian Stuffed Mushrooms are an irresistible party snack or appetizer. Easy to make with a mouthwatering blend of Italian sausage, breadcrumbs, fresh herbs, and cheese, then baked with marinara sauce, it’s a recipe every party host needs on their menu.

Whether you need a tasty appetizer, a crowd-pleasing party snack, or a satisfying side dish, these Italian Stuffed Mushrooms deliver! They make mushrooms the star of the show, just like my Mushroom Pâté and Mushroom Parmesan recipes, but every bite is complemented by an insanely delicious Italian-flavored filling.

Why you’ll love it

Be prepared for a blend of irresistible Italian flavors when you pop one of these stuffed mushrooms in your mouth. Picture a delectable mix of Italian sausage, garlic, herbs, cheese, and panko breadcrumbs loaded into meaty mushroom caps and baked with marinara sauce. Yum!

On top of that, this Italian stuffed mushroom recipe is easy to make fresh or a day in advance. Simply assemble the mushrooms and store them in the fridge until it’s party time. Just pop them in the oven before your guests arrive, then dig in!

Ingredients for italian stuffed mushrooms labeled on counter.

Ingredients needed

  • Mushrooms – Cremini or white button mushrooms are the best mushrooms for stuffing because of their one-bite size, mild flavor, and are sturdy enough to hold the filling. Look for firm, plump caps with tightly closed gills, and do your best to pick mushrooms that are consistent in size. 
  • Olive oil
  • Italian sausage – Choose mild or spicy based on how much heat you or your guests can handle. 
  • Garlic
  • Panko breadcrumbs – These large and flaky breadcrumbs give the filling a light, crisp texture. If you substitute regular or Italian-seasoned breadcrumbs, know that the final dish may have a slightly different texture.
  • Parmesan cheese – It helps keep the filling moist and enhances the savory and salty flavors. If you can, grate the parmesan yourself (cheese from the block always tastes best).
  • Parsley
  • Salt and pepper
  • Marinara sauce The mushrooms are nestled in a thin layer of marinara sauce layered on the bottom of a dish before baking. Use a good-quality store-bought sauce or make my easy 30-Minute Marinara Sauce instead!
  • Mozzarella cheese – Shredded, then melted over the top of the mushrooms. 

How to make Italian stuffed mushrooms

Clean the mushrooms and remove the stems. 

Next, heat the oil in a skillet. When hot, add the sausage and cook until it’s browned. Stir in the garlic, then take the skillet off the heat.

Stir the panko, parmesan, and parsley into the sausage mixture. Season with salt and pepper.

Spread the tomato sauce in an oven-proof skillet or baking dish. Fill each mushroom with the sausage mixture, then place them in the baking dish.

Bake the stuffed mushrooms for 30 minutes. Sprinkle mozzarella on top of each one, then pop them back into the oven until the mushrooms are tender and the cheese is melted. Enjoy!

Overhead close up of stuffed mushrooms in skillet.

Tips and tricks

  • Remember to wash the mushrooms before cooking. Either brush off the dirt with a damp paper towel or wash them under running water. Always dry the mushrooms VERY well with paper towels or else they’ll be soggy!
  • Gently twist the stems to remove them from the mushrooms. Don’t toss them, though! The leftover chopped mushroom stems can be used to make homemade broth, mushroom gravy, and mushroom sauce, or even added to the stuffing mixture.
  • Italian sausage stuffed mushrooms are best when served warm, so don’t waste any time getting them in front of your guests once they’re out of the oven. 

Variations

The beauty of mushrooms stuffed with Italian sausage is the ability to modify the filling to suit your tastes and dietary restrictions. Here are some variations you might like:

  • Protein options Instead of stuffed mushrooms with Italian sausage, add cooked and crumbled bacon, prosciutto, or chopped shrimp for extra protein.
  • Vegetarian To make a meatless version, swap the sausage for plant-based ground “sausage”, crumbled and seasoned tofu, or cooked rice, quinoa, or lentils
  • Gluten-free – Substitute gluten-free panko bread crumbs, and you’re good to go!
  • More add-in ideas Get creative with your stuffing by adding sun dried tomatoes, chopped nuts, spinach, bell peppers, and chopped artichoke hearts.
  • Cheese options – Mix and match the parmesan and mozzarella with feta or goat cheese, or add some cream cheese or ricotta to the stuffing mixture. 
  • Make it a meal Make stuffed portobello mushrooms with portobello mushroom caps for an entree-size serving. Just make sure to clean them well and remove the stems before adding the filling. 
Side view of two stuffed peppers on plate.

Serving suggestions

I like to pass these Italian mushrooms out at cocktail parties and holiday get-togethers but they’re just as good when served with dinner. Pair them with more Italian-inspired meals and sides, such as:

FAQs

How do you make stuffed mushrooms not soggy?

The key is to use fresh, large white mushrooms with dry caps. After cleaning, pat the caps dry with paper towels to prevent excess moisture. Lastly, avoid overly wet ingredients in the stuffing, like zucchini, tomatoes, etc.

How do you know when stuffed mushrooms are done?

You’ll know the stuffed mushrooms are done when the mushrooms are fork-tender and the filling is hot and cooked through, with a golden-brown color on top and lightly crisped edges.

Can you make the stuffed mushrooms ahead of time?

Yes! To make them ahead, cook the stuffing and fill the mushroom caps as normal. Place them upright in an airtight container and refrigerate for up to 24 hours before cooking. Keep in mind that you’ll likely need to add a few extra minutes to the baking time if they are cold from the refrigerator. 

How do you store the leftovers?

Transfer the leftover stuffed mushrooms to an airtight container and store in the refrigerator for 2 or 3 days.  

Two Italian stuffed mushrooms on plate with basil leaf.

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Two stuffed mushrooms on plate with fork.

Italian Stuffed Mushrooms

These Italian Stuffed Mushrooms are an irresistible party snack or appetizer. Easy to make with a mouthwatering blend of Italian sausage, breadcrumbs, fresh herbs, and cheese, then baked with marinara sauce, it’s a recipe every party host needs on their menu.
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Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour
Total Time: 1 hour 15 minutes
Servings: 6 people

Ingredients

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  • Remove the stems from the mushrooms. Reserve for another use like making stock.
  • Heat the olive oil in a medium skillet over medium-high heat. Add the sausage, and cook 8-10 minutes, until browned, breaking it up as it cooks.
  • Stir in the garlic and cook for another 2-3 minutes longer, until fragrant.
  • Off the heat, stir in the panko, parmesan and parsley. Season with a sprinkle of salt and pepper. Allow to cool slightly.
  • In a 12-inch oven-proof skillet or baking dish large enough for all of the mushrooms, spread the tomato sauce in an even layer.
  • Fill each mushroom with the sausage mixture. And place in the baking dish.
  • Bake for 30 minutes. After 30 minutes, sprinkle on the mozzarella. Return to the oven and bake for 10-15 minutes longer, until the mushrooms are tender. Enjoy!

Notes

To make them ahead, cook the stuffing and fill the mushroom caps as normal. Place them upright in an airtight container and refrigerate for up to 24 hours before cooking. Keep in mind that you’ll likely need to add a few extra minutes to the baking time if they are cold from the refrigerator.
Did you make this recipe?Mention @platingsandpairings or tag #platingsandpairings!

Equipment

Large Skillet
Baking Dish

Nutrition

Calories: 340kcal | Carbohydrates: 11g | Protein: 17g | Fat: 26g | Saturated Fat: 10g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 3g | Monounsaturated Fat: 11g | Cholesterol: 61mg | Sodium: 935mg | Potassium: 563mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 4g | Vitamin A: 540IU | Vitamin C: 9mg | Calcium: 165mg | Iron: 2mg

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