By the Way, You Can Make Vegan Calamari Out of Mushrooms
Mushrooms stand in for seafood in this Italian classic. | Everyday Vegan Food

This vegan calamari has right texture and chewiness of the real thing thanks to oyster mushrooms!

I wanted to also include a can of hearts of palms to the recipe, just to add the round shapes since it looks more like calamari. But that would only have been for the looks because hearts of palm don’t have the right texture for this. It also would have added unnecessary efforts that wouldn’t improve the taste, nor the texture of this recipe.

I tried making this recipe using king oyster mushroom, and I didn’t find it had the right chewiness that seafood has.

I tried oyster mushroom calamari at a restaurant in Seattle a while back, and I have been craving it ever since! It was so similar to calamari, both in taste and texture! I was really impressed and I knew I would recreate something similar for the blog eventually! And this day has come, finally!

The taste is on point, the texture is on point, and it’s gluten-free!!!! You don’t have to make it gluten-free, that goes without saying! Although you may need to adjust the batter a bit! It’s more like a dredge than a batter anyway. If you decided not to use panko, just use less water to make the batter thicker and there you go! No need for panko amigo!

Bon appétit!

By the Way, You Can Make Vegan Calamari Out of Mushrooms

Category: LUNCH

By the Way, You Can Make Vegan Calamari Out of Mushrooms


  • 225 g oyster mushroom
  • [Dry Ingredients]
  • 1½ cup rice flour
  • 2 teaspoons onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon old bay seasoning
  • ½ teaspoon pepper
  • ½ teaspoon paprika
  • [Wet Ingredients]
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 tablespoon seasoned rice vinegar
  • [Other ingredients]
  • oil for frying
  • 1 cup panko (I used GF rice panko)
  • [Lemon Pepper Mayo]
  • ½ cup vegan mayo
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • ¼ teaspoon lemon zest
  • ½ teaspoon oregano
  • ¼ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ¼ teaspoon pepper
  • ⅛ teaspoon salt


  1. Trim the mushrooms. Remove any weird looking pieces. Then slice the mushrooms to have individual pieces. You are looking to have long strands of mushrooms. If they are bigger in size, you can slice them lengthwise.
  2. In a large bowl, combine the dry ingredients. Mix, then add the water and the rice vinegar. whisk until smooth.
  3. Heat a skillet on med-high heat, add oil, about ½ inch. Place the batter close by the skillet.
  4. Add the panko to a bowl, then place next to the batter. Set up a plate lined with paper towels, or do as I do, use a baking sheet line with paper towels, topped with a wire rack for the fried calamari pieces.
  5. To test out if the oil is hot enough for frying, dip a piece of mushroom in the bater, shake of the excess, then place in the bowl with the panko and coat. Drop in the oil carefully.
  6. If it sizzles, the oil is hot enough and you can start dipping the mushroom pieces in the batter, than coating with the panko, then frying.
  7. Fry on both sides for 2-3 minutes until golden brown. Monitor the heat closely. Transfer the cooked calamari pieces to the lined plate or baking sheet.
  8. Prepare the lemon mayo or any dipping sauce you would like to serve with this oyster mushroom calamari.
  9. Store in an airtight container for up to 3 days. Reheat leftovers in the oven so they can get crispy again.

Want more marvelous mushroom recipes? Try this easy fried rice with mushrooms and kimchi. It’s versatile, so you can choose whatever kind of mushrooms you have on hand while kimchi adds a spicy kick. Mushrooms also add a meaty texture to complement any greens you add to the dish.

Oyster mushrooms also shine in this fish-free seafood soup based on a classic Norwegian recipe called fiskesuppe. It’s a creamy, dairy-free (thanks to oat cream!) soup featuring mushrooms, smoked tofu, and root vegetables.

Mushrooms are also good for breakfast — yes, really. In this truffled mushroom toast, baby portobellos are served atop a dairy-free cashew sauce infused with balsamic vinegar and truffle oil. Try it on sourdough toast!

This recipe was republished with permission from Everyday Vegan Food.

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