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I’m having a moment. I can’t decide what I love MOST about the holidays. Is it the twinkling lights and cheery decorations? Or the warm + fuzzy feeling I get from family and friends? OR…is it the glorious food and wine? The combination of all the things makes the winter holidays a truly special time. In this post, get a food + wine pairing to make your party moments spectacular: Goat Cheese Stuffed Mushrooms. Baby portabellas stuffed with tangy goat cheese, sweet cranberries, walnuts and more, this appetizer recipe is an easy gourmet addition to your holiday table.
Goat Cheese Stuffed Mushrooms
Holiday parties are my favorite. Everyone brings a dish, a snack, an appetizer. From mild to wild, you really get a taste of everything. From indulgent dips to simple appetizers to elegant bites, this is by far my favorite way to entertain.
Of course, no party is complete without a delicious selection of wines. For our celebrations, we picked a trio of wines from Constellation Brands. Each of these wines is unique in flavor. Here is more information about each of these wines I LOVE to help you in your holiday celebrations.
- Meiomi Pinot Noir – If you are looking for a rich Pinot Noir red, Meiomi is a wine worth sharing with those you love.
- Clos du Bois Chardonnay – A delicious Chardonnay is a must-have at any party, and Clos du Bois is my go-to. Perfectly paired with simple and elegant appetizers, it makes entertaining easy.
- Kim Crawford Sauvignon Blanc – I was first introduced to Kim Crawford by one of my best friends, and I’ve loved it since. Whether served alone or for entertaining friends, it is the ideal choice to elevate any holiday occasion.
Ingredients needed for Goat Cheese Stuffed Mushrooms
To make this recipe for Goat Cheese Stuffed Mushrooms, you need a few simple ingredients. That’s one of my favorite parts about this recipe. It requires few ingredients and simple preparation to achieve complex flavor. Here’s what you will need to add to your shopping list:
- Baby portabella mushrooms – These will vary in size. We grabbed large ones, although you can opt for small ones for tiny bites. This recipe using large mushrooms makes 24 stuffed mushrooms. You can also use small cremini or white mushrooms if preferred. But the texture of the portabella mushrooms is excellent with the goat cheese.
- Extra virgin olive oil – We use just a little to drizzle over the mushrooms prior to stuffing.
- Goat cheese – Pick a good quality cheese for this recipe. We used a log for the moisture content. Feel free to add in crumbled goat cheese as desired.
- Dried cranberries – I love the concentrated sweet flavor of dried cranberries. For this recipe, we chopped them into smaller pieces. The bite of goat cheese with tart cranberries is my favorite.
- Walnuts – For texture, we stirred in a few chopped walnut pieces. You can also use almonds or pecans.
- Panko bread crumbs – Sprinkled over the top, panko adds a golden crunch.
- Chives – The mild onion flavor of fresh, chopped chives is added to the goat cheese filling.
- Honey – A touch of sweetness balances out the goat cheese. This is optional.
- Garlic – Was there ever any doubt? We used one clove of fresh garlic for this recipe. We did not want to over power the flavors of cranberries and goat cheese.
- Black Pepper – A pinch or two will do.
The first step in preparing goat cheese stuffed mushrooms is to prepare the baby portabellas. Wash them to remove any dirt and pat them completely dry. Twist and pull out the stem of each mushroom cap. Next, gently scrape out the inside of each mushroom with a small spoon.
This is another reason why I love baby portabellas for this recipe. They are a meatier mushroom and hold up well.
Once you have cleaned and scooped out all of the mushrooms, toss them in a bowl with the olive oil. Don’t use too much, just a couple of teaspoons. I do this to keep the mushrooms from drying out. Then arrange them in a single layer on a baking sheet, rounded side down. (I like to spritz my baking pan lightly with non-stick spray first to make sure the mushrooms don’t stick.)
At this point of the recipe, it is 100% acceptable (and encouraged) to open a bottle of wine. Whether you are preparing this appetizer alone or with friends, a glass of Kim Crawford, Meiomi, or Clos du Bois makes it more enjoyable.
Now that the portabellas are ready and waiting, time to mix up the nom nom filling. If you love goat cheese (also known as chevre), you are going to adore these stuffed mushrooms. You can also use feta cheese blended with cream cheese for this recipe, but the taste and texture won’t be quite the same as using authentic cheese made from goat’s milk.
More Holiday Inspiration:
In a bowl, mash together the goat cheese, garlic, honey and black pepper. The mixture will be very thick, but should come together easily when mashed with a fork. For a lighter, creamier texture, you can also process the cheese in a food processor (I like the ease of combining with a fork).
Once the goat cheese is blended, fold in the color and flavor of the dried cranberries, crumbled walnuts, and chopped chives. You can actually use this goat cheese combination as a delicious holiday spread for crackers, pita chips, or crostini. So yummy and hard to resist snacking.
Once the ingredients are incorporated into the goat cheese mixture, evenly spoon the filling into each prepared mushroom cap. To make sure you have enough, start by filling each with 1 tablespoon. Then, go back and fill the rest.
Top each goat cheese stuffed mushroom with a generous pinch of crunchy panko and bake to golden perfection.
Stunning and delicious, this mushroom appetizer takes about 12 – 15 minutes to bake. The mushrooms become tender but still firm, the goat cheese warms and melts into a heavenly bite filled with the pop of cranberry and walnut crunch.
This is one of my favorite holiday recipes, and we can’t wait for you to try it!
For the perfect party pairing, match up Goat Cheese Stuffed Mushrooms with these wines.
Tips for Party-Perfect Goat Cheese Stuffed Mushrooms:
- Start with the freshest ingredients you can find. This will make a difference in taste.
- Pat the mushrooms completely dry after cleaning. You don’t want them to steam in the oven or they will be watery.
- Take the extra time to scoop out the mushroom caps. This prevents the mushrooms from getting soggy, plus it makes room for more goat cheese filling. Yum!
- Pick a quality goat cheese that has relatively high moisture (log form). If you like the crumbles, you can add them in after you have combined the cheese with the garlic and honey. The reason is that you need a sticky mixture for the cranberries, walnuts, and chives to bind to.
- Make these ahead of time and refrigerate until time to bake. Add the panko right before baking to keep them golden and crunchy. This is especially important if you make a double or triple batch.
- Cook them in stages, because they are best served hot.
- Serve goat cheese stuffed mushrooms (and all of your party food) with a quality selection of wine and beverages for a fun holiday setting.
- Oven cooking times can vary. We prepared this recipe in a 425 degree oven with the oven rack in the center. You want a hot (but not scorching) oven temperature for even cooking and browning. Our mushrooms were finished in 14 minutes. Adjust your cooking time as needed for perfect results. You’ll know they are done when the mushrooms are tender and brown, the cheese is melty, and the panko is golden on top.
- Serve on beautiful plates. It is the holidays!
More flavor variations for Goat Cheese Stuffed Mushrooms:
- Goat cheese + cranberry + bacon + sage
- Goat cheese + pecan + fig + rosemary
- Goat cheese + almond + pomegranate + parsley
What combo will you be serving this holiday season? We would love to hear, so leave us a message in the comments below.
No matter what type of food you are serving, pair with wines from Constellation for the ultimate celebration. Here’s how our stuffed mushroom recipe pairs with each of these delicious wines:
Goat Cheese Stuffed Mushrooms
Tender baby portabella mushrooms are filled with tangy goat cheese with bites of sweet cranberry, walnuts, and fresh chive. Simply seasoned with garlic, honey and black pepper, this appetizer is a hit at parties.
- 24 baby portabella mushrooms washed and thoroughly dried
- 3 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil
- 8 ounces goat cheese log form preferred
- 1 clove garlic finely minced or crushed
- 2 teaspoons honey optional
- 1/4 teaspoon black pepper more to taste
- 3 tablespoons dried cranberries chopped
- 2 tablespoons walnuts chopped
- 1 tablespoon chives finely chopped
- 3 tablespoons panko bread crumbs
Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Place rack in center of oven. Lightly spray a baking sheet with non-stick spray and set aside.
Wash and thoroughly dry the baby portabella mushrooms. Twist and pull the stem out of each mushroom. Gently scoop out the gills from inside each mushroom cap using a small spoon.
Toss the prepared mushroom caps in a bowl with the olive oil. Arrange the mushrooms round side DOWN on the baking sheet.
In a medium bowl, mash together the goat cheese, garlic, honey, and black pepper with a fork. (You can also process in a food processor.)
Fold in the chopped cranberries, walnuts, and chives.
Evenly spoon the goat cheese mixture into the prepared mushrooms. Generously sprinkle each mushroom with panko bread crumbs.
Bake for 12 - 15 minutes until the mushrooms are tender, the cheese is hot and melted, and the bread crumbs are golden brown. Serve hot.
This recipe can be made ahead of time and refrigerated until time to bake. Add the panko bread crumbs JUST before baking.