I just know you are going to crave this Spicy Crunchy Oyster Mushroom Burger! It has a crispy outer that is spiked with loads of spices, while the oyster mushroom is meaty and juicy. It's kind of like a vegan version of a chicken burger, or maybe a soft-shell crab burger. It's also super easy to make in the air fryer or bake in the oven, so it's a healthier option too (or you could fry it if you wanted to! ).
There's something about a stacked burger for a delicious treat, and I often just pop a pre-made vegan burger on the grill for a quick treat meal, but these Oyster Mushroom Burgers are totally worth the small amount of extra effort to make.
Oyster mushrooms really lend themselves to being a chicken substitute, as they are mild in flavor, plus shred just like chicken and can be pan-fried, air fried or even deep-fried. The crispy coating can be customized to your tastes too (go hard on the chili, or make them mild for those who don't like spice!
And if you're craving nuggets, instead of a burger, you can pull the mushrooms apart like in my Air Fried Oyster Mushrooms recipe. Of course for the burger itself, you can choose your own adventure. I like mine with my favorite Vegan Garlic Aioli, a slice of vegan cheese, and some lettuce, but you do you!
For the Oyster Mushroom Patties
- Oyster Mushrooms: Oyster mushrooms are wild mushroom that has been more recently cultivated on a larger scale. They're great as a meaty substitute as they have a very 'chicken' like texture that shreds. With a mild flavor that can be worked into all kinds of dishes. Look out for them in organic shops, at markets, or even in larger supermarkets. You can also get grow your own kits, which is a fun project to do!.
- Panko Breadcrumbs- These create the crispy crunchy outer. I like to use these over something like cornflakes, as I prefer the texture.
- Potato or Corn Starch (corn starch is called Corn Flour in the UK). This does double duty, getting the panko to stick to the mushrooms, but also creating a barrier and providing some crispy crispy of its own.
- Neutral Oil: Such as sunflower or grape seed. If you are air frying or oven baking, you can scrunch a little oil into the panko breadcrumbs, and they will crisp and colour up just like deep fried. Alternatively, use the oil to pan or deep fry!
- Brown Sugar: Optional, but it's good for balancing the flavours.
- Flakey Sea Salt: to taste and season.
Herbs and Spices
This recipe does seem like it has a LOT of spices in it, and I'm not going to lie, they do make it extra delicious. There is more than a nod to those 'Special Herb and Spices' you find on KFC burgers. But you can mix and match, or even use a pre-made fried chicken spice mix (I won't tell) The key is to use fresh spices (no more than 6 months old) for the best flavor. Also, if you want spicy- add more chili powder!
- Black Pepper
- White Pepper
- All Spice
- Smoked Paprika
- Garlic Powder
- Celery Salt
- Chili Pepper Powder
For the Burgers:
Per Burger you will need - obviously, you do you, but this is the way I like to eat them!
- Burger Bun
- Vegan Cheese Slices
- Vegan Mayo or Aioli
- A slice of lettuce.
Follow along for how to make the crispy air-fried oyster mushroom burgers perfectly every time!
First of all, choose your oyster mushroom clumps (don't worry if some bits fall off, you can cook those too and add them on later. Or sneak them as chef's treats!). Don't wash the mushrooms, instead brush them free of any dirt or debris.
1 In one dish, combine the potato or cornstarch with the spices, plus some water.
2 Mix together well.
3. In another dish, combine the panko and the oil.
4. Using your fingers, scrunch the oil in well to the panko so it is evenly coated.
5. Put the oyster mushrooms into the spiced potato or corn starch mix, and cover well, making sure to get into all the cracks.
6. Dip the oyster mushrooms into the panko crumbs and make sure to fully coat.
7. Heat your Air Fryer to 180c/350F and place the mushrooms in the fry basket. Cook for 10-15 minutes (Check for crispyness. They should be super crunchy when done)
8. Get your burger stacked and eat immediately.
Hint: For an extra crispy crunchy coating for the oyster mushrooms, you can repeat the dipping process. Double Dipped is good here!
🍳Alternative Cooking Methods:
If you don't have an air fryer, you can choose one of these other methods of cooking the mushroom burgers!
- Oven Bake: Oven bake the mushroom burgers by placing them on a lined baking sheet and baking at 200C for 15-20 minutes (depending on your oven)
- Pan Fry: Skip the 'scrunching' the oil into the panko step. Coat a non-stick pan with a little nuetral oil and gently pan fry for 5-6 minutes on each side until crispy. Drain on paper towels.
- Deep Fry: Skip the 'scrunching' the oil into the panko step. Heat your oil until when you put a piece of bread into it, it browns up. Gently lower the nuggets into the oil and cook until crispy and brown. Drain on paper towels.
Want a less spicy mushroom burger? Need it to be gluten-free? I gotcha:
- Low or no Spice: Choose to season your burger coating with just some smoked paprika (which isn't spicy) and some garlic powder. If you like a little spice, use all the spices but omit the chili powder.
- No Garlic: If you can't have garlic, you can leave out the garlic powder. It will still taste delicious.
- Gluten Free: Choose gluten-free breadcrumbs or crushed up gluten-free cornflakes to make the crispy outer, and gluten-free rolls to assemble the burger.
- Other burger topping ideas: This type of burger really likes something sharp and vinegary to offset the rich mushrooms. Why not try vegan kimchi, sauerkraut or a lightly pickled carrot salad.
I find that this crispy oyster mushroom burger recipe is best cooked in an air fryer, in terms of speed and easyness to clean up. I love my Ninja Foodie Grill and Air fryer, so can personally recommend that!
Ideally, eat this burger as soon as you can! The crispy outer is best served hot, and will lose its super crunchy cronchy outer on cooling.
If however, you want to make this recipe ahead of time, you can half cook it, or just get it to the point where it is coated, then refrigerate for up to a day, and air fry or fry as needed.
Just before air frying, spray a little oil across the burgers for an extra crispy outer.
Oyster mushrooms come in clusters. For this burger recipe, you should aim to keep the cluster pretty intact, however if you can, carefully cut off the harder base of the mushrooms.
Do not wash mushrooms as they absorb the water. Instead use a brush or damp towel to brush off any debris and wipe the gills (underside of the mushrooms) clean.
Love mushrooms? Me too! Why not try my other mushroom recipes!
Air Fryer Recipes:
The air fryer is one of my favourite pieces of kitchen equipment...
Spicy Crunchy Oyster Mushroom Burger
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!!)
- 150 g (5.29 oz) Oyster Mushrooms
- 1 teaspoon vegetable oil (in a spray bottle if you can.)
For the Potato Starch slurry
For the Panko Coating
- 65 g (1 cups) panko bread crumbs
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 teaspoon flakey sea salt
To assemble the burgers
- 2 burger buns
- 4 pickled cucumbers
- 2 slices vegan cheese
- hot sauce (to taste)
- 2 leaves lettuce
- 1 tablespoon vegan mayo (or aoli)
- In a large bowl, mix together the potato starch, water and spices to form a slurry. You might need to add more water as you go.3 tablespoon potato starch, 125 ml water, 1 teaspoon dried thyme, 1 teaspoon oregano, 1 teaspoon smoked paprika, ½ teaspoon white pepper, ½ teaspoon black pepper, ½ teaspoon chili powder, 1 teaspoon garlic powder, 1 teaspoon allspice, 1 teaspoon celery salt
- In another bowl, add all the panko crust ingredients.65 g panko bread crumbs, 1 tablespoon olive oil, 1 teaspoon flakey sea salt
- Mix the panko crumbs with the olive oil. Scrunch well with your fingers to coat the panko in the oil. This creates the lovely golden colour.
- Pre-heat your air fryer to 180c/ 356F and put 15 minutes on the timer.
- Try to keep the mushrooms in 2 burger sized pieces. Wipe with a damp paper towel if needed, but do not wash!150 g Oyster Mushrooms
- Coat the mushrooms in the spiced potato starch slurry, make sure they are all covered.
- Then coat the mushrooms in the panko mixture.
- Repeat by coating the mushrooms in the potato starch slurry, then coating with the panko (this makes for an EXTRA crispy outer shell)
- Add the mushrooms in a single layer into your air fryer basket and spritz with a little extra oil.1 teaspoon vegetable oil
- Put your mushrooms into the air fryer and cook for 7-8 minutes. Check, on them then if needed, cook for up to 12-15 minutes. The mushrooms are done when the coating is golden and turning slightly brown.
- Serve on burger buns with all your favourite trimmings.2 burger buns, 4 pickled cucumbers, 2 slices vegan cheese, hot sauce, 2 leaves lettuce, 1 tablespoon vegan mayo
- Don't miss out on scronching the oil into the Panko breadcrumbs, otherwise they don't colour up into that lovely appetizing golden 'fried' effect.
- Air fryer baskets vary in size, so be sure not to overcrowd the basket for the best result.
- Check the mushrooms after 7-8 minutes, as air fryers vary in how quickly they cook.