A Batch of Mushroom Gravy

Reminder: This blog for people who are eating, or who want to eat, a whole food, plant based diet, as described by Dr. Caldwell Esselstyn in the documentary “Forks Over Knives,” and his book Prevent and Reverse Heart Disease.  The food is from these categories: all vegetables except avocado, all legumes, all whole grains and products made from 100% whole grains (no added fats), and all fruits.

I described in a previous post how it’s useful to make certain foods in batches, and which foods work well as batches for me. Hopefully, you will create your own batchmaking process, for foods you like which are amenable to it. 

This recipe is not for every day, or even every week. It has a fair amount of salt, but it is gravy, so you’re not going to have a soup bowl of it all by itself. This recipe makes about one and one-half quarts, or six cups, and will keep for a week in a Mason jar in the refrigerator.


•2 cups chopped onion (1 medium to large onion)

•several garlic cloves, sliced thin

•2 pkgs (about 4 cups in all) sliced mushrooms (300 grams)*

1/2 cup nutritional yeast

•1/2 cup tamari (San-J organic Tamari recommended)

•about 3/4 to 1 cup whole wheat flour (it takes more whole wheat flour to thicken gravy than white flour)

•about 1 quart (4 cups) veg. broth— low sodium recommended as the tamari provides the salt

Two stage cooking allows you to prep the mushrooms, cooking them within a day after you buy them, storing them in the fridge in a Mason jar. For supper the next day or so, it will be quick (about 20 minutes) to make the gravy.  


Day 1  

In  a large heated pot with a cover, place chopped onions, sliced mushrooms (I like to use baby bella and/or shiitake), garlic, and enough water to almost cover the mushrooms.  Bring to a simmer on medium-high heat, and keep them at a simmer until the mushrooms are cooked. I read online the other day that mushrooms are cooked when they get to half their original size.  Stir occasionally.  Spoon into the jar, and close it (I use a single piece white plastic lid and a wide mouth stainless steel funnel.) Store in the fridge till you want to make gravy for a meal.   

Day 2 or Next:

In a bowl or 1-quart measuring cup, place about 2 cups of room temperature or cold vegetable broth (you can use water, but the flavor is better with vegetable broth.) Now put in the whole wheat flour, and whisk it until no lumps remain.   No cooking yet, till after you…

…pour the flour and water mixture into a large pot.  Add the pre-cooked mushrooms, or if you’re making it all in one day, just leave the mushrooms in the large pot you cooked them in, and add the flour and water mixture to the mushrooms.  Either way, get the broth mixture combined with the cooked mushrooms, and add the Tamari and nutritional yeast. Bring the pot to a simmer, whisking  almost continuously until thickened. If it gets too thick make a note to self to use less flour next time, but just add more vegetable broth this time. Be sure to simmer long enough to allow the thickening to finish. You will have, most likely, enough gravy for at least two meals.  The closed Mason jars will keep well in the fridge for a week.

Serve the mushroom gravy on mashed potatoes, rice, other grain, or on a slice of multigrain or whole grain bread, or whatever you like.  This year it was really good on Thanksgiving baked dressing made with Ezekiel (no oil) bread cubes, celery, onion,  sage, thyme and veggie broth. 

I am a 75 year old retired M.D. radiologist, always interested in staying healthy by eating natural foods and avoiding pharmaceuticals, four years ago converted to the Whole Food Plant Based diet and lifestyle by watching Forks Over Knives and Fed Up. This blog follows my path in sticking with this rather extreme program and keeping it simple, hopefully useful to others who want to live long and prosper without open heart surgery and chemotherapy.

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