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Recipes || Mushroom Bourguignon aka Vegetarian “Beef” Bourguignon

When I set my mind to something, I nearly always follow through with it. It’s not because I’m an extremely dedicated person, but because I’m an extremely stubborn person. In happy times, Sam would say it’s one of my most admirable traits, in an argument I know he’d say it’s one of my worst. So when we decided to reduce our meat consumption and try to eat vegetarian throughout the week, I really meant it. 

People don’t even need to go entirely vegetarian to have a positive impact on the environment: they just need to reduce their consumption. As a foodie, I don’t think I could ever entirely give up meat, but I don’t mind relegating it to be a special treat. There are some marvellous statistics on what would happen if we reduced the amount of meat we ate. 

Here are some of my favourites: 

    • According to Environmental Defense, if every American skipped one meal of chicken per week and substituted vegetarian foods instead, the carbon dioxide savings would be the same as taking more than half a million cars off of U.S. roads.
    • If everyone in America went vegetarian for just one day, the US would reduce greenhouse gas emissions equivalent to 1.2 million tons of CO2, as much as produced by all of France.
    • If everyone in America went vegetarian for just one day, the US would save 100 billion gallons of water, enough to supply all the homes in New England for almost 4 months.
    • If everyone in America went vegetarian for just one day, the US would save 70 million gallons of gas —enough to fuel all the cars of Canada and Mexico combined with plenty to spare.
    • If everyone in America went vegetarian for just one day, the US would save 1.5 billion pounds of crops otherwise fed to livestock, enough to feed the state of New Mexico for more than a year. (Holla at my home state for popping up in some statistics!)
    • If everyone in America went vegetarian for just one day, the US would prevent 3 million tons of soil erosion and $70 million in resulting economic damages. 

Basically, it would have a pretty amazing effect. That said, pretty much as soon as I’d set my mind to it, I started having wicked cravings for beef bourguignon. It’s probably one of my favourite “classic” dishes that I make. Sam might argue that it’s the best dish that I make. But with a few simple adjustments, I found that I could get all of the same rich flavour and joy out of an entirely vegetarian dish instead. It is mushroom heavy, and I tend to not love mushrooms, but these cook in the rich gravy for so long that they just reduce down and become tender morsels of deep, dark wine capsules. 

Mushroom Bourguignon
Serves 8
1289 calories
108 g
122 g
50 g
36 g
30 g
2406 g
2214 g
46 g
2 g
16 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
Amount Per Serving
Calories 1289
Calories from Fat 439
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 50g
Saturated Fat 30g
Trans Fat 2g
Polyunsaturated Fat 4g
Monounsaturated Fat 12g
Cholesterol 122mg
Sodium 2214mg
Total Carbohydrates 108g
Dietary Fiber 20g
Sugars 46g
Protein 36g
Vitamin A
Vitamin C
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
  1. 4 tablespoons of unsalted butter
  2. 3 cloves of garlic, chopped
  3. 3 chopped onions
  4. 2 carrots, diced
  5. 900 g of mushrooms
  6. 3 bay leaves
  7. thyme
  8. 2 cups of full-bodied, dry red wine
  9. 2 tablespoons of tomato puree
  10. 2 cups of vegetable stock
  11. salt and pepper to taste
  12. 1 1/2 tablespoons of flour
  1. In a large caserole pot, melt 3 tablespoons of your butter (reserving 1 for later), and sauté the onions for 5 minutes. Then add the garlic for another minute. Don't fret too much if you get any caramelised sticky bits - they'll just make your flavour more rich. Scrape down the sides and bottom of your pot and then add in your carrots for 5 minutes. Then add in your mushrooms and get them throughly browned.
  2. Once everything has been sautéd, add in your red wine, salt and pepper, and thyme sprigs. Cook over high heat for around 5 minutes, or until the wine juice has reduced in half. Then turn the heat down to a low simmer and add in your tomato puree, bay leaves and vegetable stock. I like to let it simmer for around 40 minutes on a really low heat. Shortly before taking it off the heat, whisk in the remaining tablespoon of butter and your flour.
  3. This is one of the dishes that I think really needs to sit to have its flavours really develop. I recommend making it the night before to reheat and serve the next day; or if you're cooking on a weekend, make it in the morning let it sit all day and then warm and serve in the evening.
  1. I always serve bourguignon with a side of garden peas. I have no idea why! It's just tradition.
Rhyme & Ribbons

 What are your favourite meatless dishes? 

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  • I actually really enjoy vegetarian food – it’s lighter and (now) so full of flavour!

  • Gary hates mushrooms with a passion, but I LOVE them so I’m definitely going to make a batch of this for my lunch. I’m trying to cut down on meat as well. Like Emma said, I think vegetarian food is sometimes much more flavorful than “regular” version! xx

    Little Miss Katy

    • You know what- I don’t hugely like mushrooms either, but here the just melt away on you tongue and taste like everything else they’ve soaked up. If there’s any recipe a non-mushroom fan might be converted to, it’s probably a bourguignon 😉 xx

  • Wow this sounds delicious! I love mushrooms and would love to try this for myself! I can’t believe the statistics when it comes to changing up your diet for just one day and how much of a difference it would make!! Very shocked… In all honesty I’ve wanted to give up meat but can’t as it’s delicious but I do try and opt for organic or free range when I do and don’t eat meat everyday! Maybe 2-3 times a week to lower my consumption xx

    Jenny | Krystel Couture

    • I totally hear you. I really like eating meat so have tried to make it a treat for rare occasions (but I’d really struggle to cut it out completely!) x

  • Yum bet that would be a good one for the slow cooker! delicious! Alice xxx

  • Yum, this sounds delicious! We’ve definitely added more veggie meals to our diet over the last couple of years and have almost completely cut out red meat (apart from the odd occasion when it’s served at dinner parties etc). This would be a lovely warming dinner while it’s still cold out! xx

    • That’s exactly what we’ve done too. If we have meat we are way more likely to have chicken and fish and red meat is just a really rare treat. X

  • Hmm…I wonder if there’s a way I could replace the mushrooms with something (I’m not a fan unfortunately!), as I’m currently trying to improve my non-meat recipe arsenal. It’s a lot cheaper than eating meat all the time for a start – and I like the idea of the positive impact from cutting down!

    • I don’t really like mushrooms that much either- but they cook down for so long here they just king of taste like butter, wine and onions and melt on your tongue. But it’s a lot of effort to cook for something you might not like! I bet you could do something similar with lentils though! X

  • I don’t like mushrooms or onion so don’t think I would like this

    • By the end the mushrooms don’t taste like mushrooms any more but you can definitely still taste the onions unfortunately! X

  • This looks wonderful! Since I eat about 90% vegetarian I will definitely have to give it a try. I recently tried a bolognese sauce with a mostly lentil base which was great, but I do love a good (well-simmered) mushroom sauce! I agree with you though – I hate limiting (or labeling) myself so I don’t think I would ever go 100%, but there are countless benefits to transitioning to a plant-based diet.

    • Totally! I really enjoy meat but I am happy limiting my consumption to as little as possible for long term benefits! X

  • saving this for a cold winter night! I’ve been veggie for almost 4 years and sometimes crave this kind of meal but have never really thought about making a veggie version! Excited to try it soon!

  • yes yes yes I love this! Adding to my recipe cards 🙂

  • Corinne C

    This looks so good! I’m very similar on the stubborn front. I went veggie for 2 years because someone said I couldn’t do it!

    Corinne x

  • I will definitely try this!! Yum Yum….also I just love anything that included wine in the recipe. xx

  • bee.

    This looks incredible!

  • I love mushrooms. This would be a fun thing to try when I visit my dad (since Dan won’t eat this).

    Favorite vegetarian meal? A good veggie stir-fry. A plate full of little snacks (cheese, crackers, olives, fruit, nuts). Vegetarian chili, loaded up with different beans! Also a million years ago, I made these really good black bean quesadillas from a recipe on Budget Bytes. I need to make them again.

  • This looks brill – do you think you could make it in a slow cooker too? Yum!


    • Hi Mary! Great question! Someone asked me this below. I don’t have a slow cooker but I think you could! I’d just recommend checking the liquid level periodically. Xx

  • I mentioned to Milly below, but I don’t really like mushrooms that much either- but they cook down for so long here they just king of taste like butter, wine and onions and melt on your tongue. But it’s a lot of effort to cook for something your other half might not like! I bet you could do something similar with lentils though! X

  • This post makes me so happy because since Summer I’ve been liming my meat intake for once a week just to appease my guilt because of the environment. I know for fact I wouldn’t be able to quit meet for good because it’s a very cultural food where I come from and I do enjoy it. From this post, knowing that simply reducing the consumption already has a good impact makes me super proud of myself for deciding to do so! I also limited my ‘burger cheat days’ to one a month. Makes me look forward it more 🙂

    • It’s amazing that if everyone did so little the impact would be massive! I’ve transitioned into mostly being a vegan eater since the summer but I completely understand how that wouldn’t work for everyone. I think the steps you’ve taken are amazing! xxx