This cozy Chestnut and Mushroom Bourguignon is a lush vegan version of the French classic beef stew made with red wine. Rich and full of flavor it's the perfect stew for a wintery cold day. This is a dish that always wows guests, whether vegan or not, so it's a great recipe have up your sleeve for winter entertaining.
When the leaves start to fall, and we start to think about cozy long lunches after brisk walks in the fresh air, that is when we want hearty stews like this Mushroom and Chestnut Bourguignon. This delicious recipe is perfect for serving up to vegan, vegetarian and non vegan guests for Thanksgiving or Christmas.
This particular version uses chestnuts, but is also inspired by my other recipe which uses tofu, Smoked Tofu Bourguignon. I've even turned it into a Mushroom Bourguignon Pie which I find especially festive. Serve with plenty of mashed potatoes and a sharp, tangy salad such as this Kale Salad with Tahini Dressing to offset the richness. Alternatively if you wanted to make this as part of a vegan Sunday Lunch, can I suggest these Vegan Yorkshire Puddings from The Vegan Punks. The gravy from the bourguignon is *chef's kiss' in the yorkies!
- Mushrooms - I like to choose Chestnut mushrooms (these are also called cremini mushrooms) in this dish for the main bulk. However you can use baby bella, white mushrooms or a combination.
- Dried Porcini Mushrooms- (or other dried wild mushrooms) these add a rich mushroom flavour profile, plus we use their soaking liquid to really amp up the meaty mushroomy flavour.
- Red Wine- A really good smooth red wine is essential to the overall flavour of this dish. Be sure to choose one that is rich and fruity but mellow, think Merlot or Pinot Noir. Choose a wine that is one you would be happy to drink. A sour or overpoweringly tannic wine will make the bourguignon taste sour and unpleasant.
- Cooked Chestnuts:- choose to roast your own for the best flavour! (I have a comprehensive guide to Roasting Chestnuts in the Airfryer ) or use those pre-packed chestnuts which are also delicious.
- Onion or Shallot: a small white onion, or three or four shallots are traditional in this stew, and add flavour and balance.
- Carrots: I love how the carrots soak up the flavours, so be sure to cut into quite hearty chunks.
- Soy Sauce/Tamari: This adds flavour depth and saltyness that is essential. Tamari is simply gluten free soy sauce, so choose this if you are making this for someone who avoids gluten.
- Tomato paste: This adds sweetness and a little tang to the stew.
- Bay Leaf & Thyme: both add a gentle herbal depth to the mushroom stew. Choose dried or fresh, according to what you have available.
- Cloves: Cloves can be overpowering, but their fragrance adds a classic flavour to this stew. Choose no more than two whole cloves or half a teaspoon of powdered.
- Smoked Paprika and/or Liquid Smoke: these add a meaty smokey depth of flavour that once combined with the other flavours, is hard to beat.
- 5 or 6 cloves of garlic: of course choose fresh if you can!
- *Emergency corn or potato starch. Have a teaspoon of this to the side to thicken up the sauce. In this recipe the chestnuts tend to break down a bit and thicken the sauce, however if you want a thicker sauce, or omit the chestnuts you might want to add the starch.
See recipe card for quantities.
Follow these step by step pictures for the perfect Mushroom and Chestnut Bourguignon!
1. Soak the dried mushrooms in half a cup of hot water.
2. Sautee the chopped carrots and shallots and garlic in a little olive oil until t
3. Add the tomato paste to the carrots and onion and let cook a little.
4. Add in the chopped mushrooms and all the spices. Don't panic if the mushrooms fill the pan, they will cook down quickly.
5. After sauteeing the mushrooms for 6 or 7 minutes, they will start to cook down. Add the red wine and stir well.
7. Add the dried mushrooms, along with their liquid. Season with the the soy sauce and let simmer.
7. Once the mushrooms have simmered in their red wine for 20 minutes, add the chesnuts.
8. Simmer for a further 10 minutes, or until the wine sauce is reduced. Serve over mashed potatoes.
Hint: If the sauce isn't thickening up as you like, remove a little of the sauce from the pan and stir a teaspoon of corn or potato starch into it, then mix that back into the bourguignon and let it simmer for a few more minutes.
🌰Substitutions & Variations
Whilst you can make some variations on this recipe, it's best to stick fairly close to the original for the best flavour.
- Alcohol Free- I have not tested this recipe made without wine, and I do not think it will work well unless you can find a very delicious non-alcoholic red wine that isn't too sweet.
- No chestnuts- if you wish to omit the chestnuts, you can definitely do so. I have also made this recipe with chunks of smoked tofu which is delicious.
- Other mushrooms- A deluxe version of this recipe would be to make it with a mixture of wild mushrooms such as porcini, oyster, and shitake. It would taste extra rich and luxurious!
- Other onions: choose to add red onions, leeks or shallots.
- No Onions/garlic : if you want to make this recipe without onion or garlic, I suggest using fennel to replace it for the texture. Add more seasonings such as thyme or rosemary to balance the flavours.
- Gluten Free- this recipe is naturally gluten free- just be sure to use tamari (gluten free soy sauce)
Although you can make this mushroom bourguignon in a saucepan, it is lovely to use a large casserole dish or dutch oven. One day I'd like to be able to have this Le Creuset pan to use, but in the meantime, I use a large pan we picked up at a garage sale!
Like all stews and soups, this chestnut bourguignon recipe is even better the next day, so it's perfect for making ahead of time to take ahead for Thanksgiving or Christmas get togethers! To store, put it in an airtight container and refrigerate for up to 5 days. Or freeze for up to 3 months- you can reheat from frozen.
Definitely don't skimp on the quality of the red wine as it is a key component in the flavors! A gentle, smooth and fruity red such as merlot or pinot noir is best.
Yes you can freeze mushroom bourguignon. Put it into airtight containers and freeze for up to 3 months. You can reheat it gently from frozen.
Creamy mashed potatoes go very well with mushroom bourguignon as they soak up all the lovely red wine sauce. It's also nice to have a fresh palate cleansing salad or plate of greens to offset the richness.
More Cozy Soups and Stews
Love soups and stews? Try my other vegan recipes
Mushroom lover like me? Try these yummy mushroom recipes.
Chestnut and Mushroom Bourguignon
For accuracy, I measure all ingredients in metric as standard, then convert and test the recipe for American cup measurements etc.
(Heads up Aussie and UK readers- your measurements in cups are sometimes different, so please use metric or check you have the correct cup and spoon type!!)
For the Bourguignon
- 3 tablespoon olive oil
- 800 g (11½ cups) chestnut / button / wild mushrooms
- 400 g (2 cups) cooked chestnuts (buy pre packed, or roast your own (nicer!))
- 150 g (1 cups) banana shallots (or white onions)
- 250 g (2 cups) carrots (peeled and chopped (about 3) )
- 6 garlic cloves (crushed or minced finely)
- 2 tablespoon thyme (dried or fresh)
- 3 bay leaves
- 2 cloves (the spice, not garlic)
- 2 teaspoon smoked paprika
- 1 teaspoon liquid smoke
- 80 g dried mixed mushrooms (such as porcini or other wild mushrooms)
- 150 ml (1 cup) water
- 60 ml (¼ cup) tamari (soy sauce is also fine, but note it contains gluten)
- 120 ml (½ cup) tomato paste
- 700 ml (3 cups) Red wine (Choose a good quality smooth red.)
- Salt and pepper
- Bunch of fresh parsley (to garnish, optional)
- In a little bowl, add the dried mushrooms to 150ml boiling water. Let steep.
- Peel the carrots and chop into chunks. Peel then dice the onions/shallots.
- With a clean tea towel, brush off the mushrooms, then chop into halves or quarters.
- In a flame-proof casserole dish, heat up the olive oil.3 tablespoon olive oil
- Add the onions and carrots, and cook until they are softened. Add the tomato paste and garlic and cook it off for a minute in the oil until it sizzles.150 g banana shallots, 250 g carrots, 6 garlic cloves, 120 ml tomato paste
- Add the fresh mushrooms and sautee for a few minutes. Don't panic if they fill the dish, they will cook down quite quickly.800 g chestnut / button / wild mushrooms
- Add the cloves (the spice), pepper, bay leaves, smoked paprika and thyme. . Cook for a few minutes.2 tablespoon thyme, 3 bay leaves, 2 cloves, 2 teaspoon smoked paprika
- After about 5 minutes, once the mushrooms have cooked down a bit, add the red wine. Cook for 10 minutes, allowing it to reduce.700 ml Red wine
- Add the dried mushrooms along with their soaking liquid .80 g dried mixed mushrooms, 150 ml water
- Add the tamari/soy sauce and liquid smoke.1 teaspoon liquid smoke, 60 ml tamari
- Simmer over a low heat with the lid on for around 45 minutes. By now the liquid should be reduced and it should smell amazing. Season with salt and pepper.
- Add in the peeled, cooked chestnuts and simmer for a further 10 minutes. These will help thicken the sauce as they are quite starchy.400 g cooked chestnuts
- *If needed, keep simmering on a low heat to reduce the liquid. OR to thicken it up faster, add a little cornstarch to a spoonful of the liquid and mix it up, then add it back into the stew (see notes)Salt and pepper
- Serve hot with mashed potatoes or crusty bread. Top with fresh parsley.Bunch of fresh parsley
- Red Wine- A really good smooth red wine is essential to the overall flavour of this dish. Be sure to choose one that is rich and fruity but mellow, think Merlot or Pinot Noir. Choose a wine that is not only vegan, but is one you would be happy to drink. A sour or overpoweringly tannic wine will make the bourguignon taste sour and unpleasant.
- Cooked Chestnuts:- choose to roast your own for the best flavour! (I have a comprehensive guide to Roasting Chestnuts in the Airfryer ) or use pre-packed chestnuts which are also delicious.