Portobello mushrooms are one of the most versatile ingredients around. Whether you want a hearty complement to your veggie stir-fry or a healthy patty for your homemade veggie burger, you can’t go wrong with them.
They are large, meaty, and have a sumptuous smoky flavor, which is one of the main reasons gourmet chefs and home cooks all over the world covet them.
This guide explores the top Portobello mushroom nutrition facts you need to know and why these delicious fungi should be a staple in your diet.
What Are Portobello Mushrooms
Portobello mushrooms are also known by several other names, including Portabella, champignon Portobello, cultivated mushrooms, flat chestnut mushrooms, and Agaricus bisporus. They typically grow on leaf litter near conifers, manure piles, or individually in the grass.
There has been some debate over whether these mushrooms should be called “Portobello” or “Portabella.” Well, the two versions are acceptable since they were both created as part of a huge marketing campaign in the 80s.
Keep in mind that portobello, white button, and cremini mushrooms are the same mushroom, but at different stages of growth. Agaricus bisporus, at its youngest stage, is white. You can think of these white button mushrooms as the toddlers.
As they mature, white button mushrooms turn dark brown. They are then called cremini and are slightly larger than button mushrooms. You can think of them as teenagers.This is the reason why cremini mushrooms are also referred to as “Baby Bellas.”
As they continue to mature, the caps turn from dark brown to tan and develop a thick, firm, and spongy texture. The round and flat caps also expand to 3 to 5 inches in diameter.
Fun Facts About Portobello Mushrooms
Here are a couple of things you probably didn’t know about Portobello.
- They are the most widely cultivated mushroom, accounting for 90 percent of all the mushrooms grown in the US
- Portobello mushrooms have a lower moisture content compared to white button and cremini mushrooms. This makes them more flavorful than their younger counterparts
- The DNA structure of Portobello mushrooms is closer to that of humans than it is to plants
- One Portobello mushroom has a significantly higher concentration of potassium than what you would find in a single banana
Portobello Mushroom Nutrition Facts
As far as portobello mushroom nutrition goes, portobello mushrooms have a wide range of nutrients that make them the perfect complement to your diet. According to the USDA, here’s what to expect from 100 grams of Portobello mushrooms.
- Water: 92.8g
- Calories: 22
- Dietary fiber: 1.3g
- Fat: 0.35g
- Protein: 2.11g which is equivalent to 5% DV
- Carbohydrates: 3.87g
- Sugars: 2.5g
- Calcium: 3mg
- Copper: 0.286mg which is equivalent to 20% DV
- Iron: 0.31mg
- Manganese: 0.069mg
- Phosphorus: 108mg which is equivalent to 13% DV
- Potassium: 364mg which is equivalent to 14% DV
- Selenium: 18.6µg which is equivalent to 16% DV
- Sodium: 9mg
- Zinc: 0.53mg
- Vitamin B1 (Thiamin):0.059mg which is equivalent to 5% DV
- Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin): 0.13mg which is equivalent to 28% DV
- Vitamin B3 (Niacin): 4.5mg which is equivalent to 23% DV
- Vitamin B5 (Pantothenic acid): 1.14mg which is equivalent to 15% DV
- Vitamin B6: 0.148mg
- Vitamin B9 (Folate): 28µg
- Vitamin D2: 0.3µg
- Vitamin K: 1.8µg
- Omega-3 fatty acids: 1g
- Omega-6 fatty acids: 75g
Portobellos are low in calories, carbs, and sodium, and are 100% gluten-free. On the flip side, they have a high mineral (Phosphorous, Potassium, Selenium, and Copper ) and B-vitamin content. Here’s why that’s important.
Phosphorus plays an important role in the formation of healthy teeth and bones, as well as in how the body uses fats and carbohydrates. It is also used to create protein in the body, which is important for the growth, repair, and maintenance of cells and tissues.
Potassium is considered one of the seven essential macrominerals. The body needs at least 100 mg of potassium every day to carry out certain critical processes like regulating the electrical activity of the heart and other muscles and controlling the balance of fluids in the body.
It also plays an important role in managing blood pressure and promoting good bone and cardiovascular health.
Portobellos have a high amount of selenium. The mineral has powerful antioxidant properties that protect against the cell damage caused by free radicals. Selenium reduces the number of free radicals in the body, which in turn prevents the damage brought about by oxidative stress.
Moreover, studies show that selenium may boost the body’s immune system and may destroy cancer cells, effectively reducing the risk associated with certain types of cancers like that of the prostate, colon, lung, and breast. The cancer-fighting properties of Selenium are only realized when consumed through foods and not supplements.
The copper mineral concentration you get in 100 grams of Portobello mushrooms accounts for a whopping 20% of your daily nutritional requirement. Copper and iron minerals work together to allow the body to make red blood cells.
It also promotes the healthy functioning of the immune system, nerves, and blood vessels and also helps to maintain strong and healthy bones. Copper also plays an important role in the prevention of heart disease and osteoporosis.
Portobellos are also a rich source of the B-complex vitamins, particularly thiamin, riboflavin, niacin, pantothenic acid, and folate. Here are the benefits of each of them:
- Thiamin (B1): Plays a central role in metabolism by enabling the conversion of various nutrients into energy
- Riboflavin (B2): Has powerful antioxidant properties
- Niacin (B3): Promotes DNA production, metabolism, and cellular signaling
- Pantothenic acid (B5): It is involved in the production of HDL (“good”) cholesterol and hormones
- Folate (B9): Promotes the healthy formation, growth, and division of red and white blood cells
The regular consumption of these vitamins in your daily diet promotes healthy body function. So, it’s one more reason why you need to get more mushrooms in your diet.
Get the Most Out of Your Portobellos
Portobello mushrooms are the leading source of antioxidants and minerals that boost the immune system function and the body’s overall health and wellbeing. They are hearty and filling and go with just about any meal you can think of.
To preserve the Portobello mushroom nutrition value, the best way to cook them would be to broil or grill them. Then, drizzle a bit of vinegar and olive oil over them, and enjoy!
Do you like shiitake mushrooms? Check out our article on shiitakes for some interesting shiitake mushroom nutrition facts and health benefits that you’re probably not aware of.
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