From a nutrition standpoint, are all varieties of mushrooms pretty much the same?
Sometimes I see portobello mushroom steak as a vegetarian option at restaurants.
Is it higher in protein than other types?
-- Linda Ahern
Santa Ana, CA
All mushrooms are good low-calorie sources of potassium, phosphorus, and two B vitamins (riboflavin and niacin.)
A cup of chopped mushrooms also offers approximately ten percent of the selenium daily value (although oyster mushrooms come up short in this mineral.)
Portobello mushrooms are not higher in protein than other varieties.
A five-ounce serving only delivers 5 grams of protein (that same amount of tofu offers 15 grams; five ounces of seitan contribute 30 grams; half a cup of black beans adds up to 10 grams.)
Portobello mushroom "steak" as a vegetarian option on a restaurant menu strikes me as rather uninspired, particularly when it is the only meat-free choice.
I can't tell you how many times I have been at events where that is the sole vegetarian dish, and it is literally nothing but a huge, grilled portobello mushroom inside a hamburger bun. Snore!
Many chefs love it, though, because it's very easy to prepare.