Tuesday, May 24, 2011

A Healthy Snack: Foolproof Stuffed Mushrooms from Cleo Coyle

Cleo Coyle, mushroom eater
and author of the
Coffeehouse Mysteries

Cleo's Foolproof
Stuffed Mushroom Caps

Mushrooms are a great inspiration for a murder-mystery writer, which is why I eat them often. :) They're also incredibly low in calories. Five medium mushrooms clock in at about 20 calories with 3 grams of carbs, and they're fat free.

The health benefits are many: Mushrooms are a source of vitamin D, three essential B-vitamins, calcium (for bones), iron, potassium (which can help regulate blood pressure), and selenium, an antioxidant that's also great for the health of bones, teeth, nails, and hair, and is believed to help fight cancer, especially prostate cancer. Because selenium is primarily found in animal proteins, mushrooms are one of the best choices for vegetarians to obtain it. (Click here to read more about the health benefits of the humble 'shroom.)

Raw mushrooms are one of my favorite crudités, and in the past I've shared a tasty veggie dip for them. To get a free PDF of my recipe for Roasted Garlic Dip, click here.

For this week's recipe, I give you Foolproof Stuffed Mushroom Caps. Why are they foolproof? Because you won't have to worry about under- or over-cooking them. Ever.

You can certainly switch up the filling if you don't like mine--a combo of soft and hard cheeses + breadcrumbs combined with cooked sausage would be just as delicious.

Here is my "Cleo" method
for stuffing mushroom caps:

Ten minutes in a 400 degree F. oven with open side down. 

Flip and fill.

10 minutes more, and they're done!

(Now for an example of said method in action... :))

Cleo Coyle's
Spinach and Ricotta
Stuffed Mushrooms

To download a free PDF of this recipe 
that you can print, save, or share, click here.


1/4 cup frozen chopped spinach, thawed and drained
8 to 10 fresh, white button mushrooms (medium to large)
1/4 cup ricotta cheese (whole or part-skim)
2 tablespoons strong, salty grated cheese (I use Romano)
1/4 teaspoon white (or black) pepper
2 tablespoons (1 ounce) shredded mozzarella cheese (whole or part-skim)

Step 1 - Make the stuffing: Thaw your chopped frozen spinach (but do not cook). Place the spinach in a colander over the sink and gently press out as much liquid as you can. (I do this hours in advance or even an entire day before. Then I place the spinach in a bowl, loosely cover it with foil and keep it in the fridge to dry it out even more.)

After your spinach is well drained, measure out 1/4 cup of it and mix it in a bowl with the ricotta, the grated Romano cheese (or your favorite hard, salty cheese), and the ground pepper. Do not add the mozzarella yet.

Step 2 - Prep the mushroom caps: Clean your mushrooms and remove the stems. Lightly scrape the inside of the caps with the tip of a small teaspoon to hollow them out a bit more. Place the mushrooms, open side down, on a baking sheet or pie plate. Bake for 10 minutes in a well pre-heated 400 degree F. oven.

Step 3 - Fill and bake: Remove the pan from the oven and, using two forks, flip over the caps. Now their open sides should be up. Fill each cap with the spinach-ricotta stuffing, garnish with a bit of shredded mozzarella and return the mushrooms to the oven for another 10 minutes. Remove the pan, plate the caps and…

Eat with joy!

~ Cleo Coyle, author of

The Coffeehouse Mysteries

To get more of my recipes, win free coffee,
or find out more about my books, visit me
 at my *virtual* coffeehouse:


Click on the book covers above
to learn more about Cleo's culinary mysteries.

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  1. I don't think I've ever craved spinach and mushrooms for breakfast before, but I sure am, now! Cleo, these look delicious! And healthy, too. I love stuffed mushrooms and haven't made any in ages, for some reason. I think my children would even eat these...thanks!

  2. I'm with Elizabeth. I'm craving these right now! These would go over very well in our house. A perfect low-carb, vegetarian option! Great, Cleo!

  3. They've made me hungry, too, Cleo. Love the melted mozzarella on top.

    ~ Krista

  4. I want them and I want them NOW!!!

    They look like they'd be fun to make. Spinach, mushrooms and ricotta are favorite foods around here. Never thought to put 'em together like this. Thanks, Cleo.

  5. Cleo, these are beautiful and I love the fool-proof-ness of them. Yum!


  6. Wow! They look so good! I'm stopping for mushrooms on my way home today.

  7. Yum! Like lasagna without the noodles ... love it! Thanks for the great recipe, Cleo. :)

  8. I love mushrooms, and although I dont really like to cook, I will try this one out! And congrats for your friend on the new book!

  9. Love me some 'shrooms. Just returned from grocery shopping--now I'm all set to add this to my list of apps! Thanks, Cleo!