Mushrooms are a tasty, versatile, healthy vegetable with a variety of applications in the kitchen. Because they are dense and hearty they can function as a protein replacement in a main course, or as the highlight of a side dish or soup. Mushrooms are particularly adaptable to soup dishes because they have great depth and texture, regardless of which variety you choose.
There are many varieties of mushrooms available that can be incorporated into a hearty soup: button, shiitake, Portobello, cremini and porcini to name a few. You can also find dried mushroom that will reconstitute beautifully into a soup.
Mushroom soup recipes may specify a particular variety of mushroom, or may not specify at all. While it is optimal to use what is specified in the recipe, you can also substitute what is available in your market, or what you have on hand, and still achieve a tasty result. The dish is a terrific way to use mushrooms that are just past their prime, as they will still incorporate well into a soup and add even more flavor density.
Mushrooms, have no fat and very few calories – about 15 calories per cup, sliced (70 grams); 2 grams of protein and 1 gram of fiber, making them a healthy addition to any soup.