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Creamy Garlic Mushroom Pasta makes a quick and easy weeknight dinner. The rich and creamy sauce is layered with meaty mushrooms and freshly pressed garlic.
This dish is a delicious and satisfying dish that can be enjoyed in a variety of ways. Whether you are looking for a comforting meal on a cold night or a side dish for a summer barbecue, this dish is sure to become a family favorite.
Origins of Creamy Garlic Mushroom Pasta
The origins of creamy garlic mushroom pasta are somewhat unclear, but it is believed to have originated in Italy, where it is commonly known as “pasta ai funghi”. This dish has been enjoyed by Italians for many generations, with variations depending on the region and the cook. However, it was only in the 20th century that the dish started to gain popularity outside of Italy, particularly in the United States.
Traditional Italian Ingredients
In the true Italian version of this dish, the main ingredients are pasta, garlic, mushrooms, cream, and Parmesan cheese. The type of pasta used can vary, with some people preferring spaghetti, while others opt for fettuccine or linguine. Garlic and mushrooms are a must, and the cream is what gives the Italian version its creaminess. Parmesan cheese is usually used to add flavor and thicken the sauce.
However, around here we try to make things a bit more heart-healthy. So I’ve created this version that is much easier on the waistline.
In this version, you’ll still use pasta, garlic, and mushrooms. But instead of the heavy cream and cheese, you’ll be using plain yogurt.
Now, before you freak out on me, I promise. This is very good. It’s actually a bit similar to a stroganoff. And if you really want cheese, you can always add some grated parmesan for garnish. But this dish stands alone on its own without any added cheeses.
What Type Of Mushrooms To Use For Creamy Garlic Mushroom Pasta
While the recipe calls for white mushrooms, you can also use brown (or cremini) mushrooms. Portobello mushrooms would also be a good option here.
Can I Make This Ahead Of Time?
As long as you keep the sauce separate from the pasta, you can store both in the fridge for up to 3 days. But keep in mind, you’ll need to eat it all on day 3.
Recipe Variations And Additions
Other ingredients that can enhance the flavor of this dish include butter, olive oil, white wine, broth, and a variety of herbs such as thyme, rosemary, and parsley. Some people even add bacon or pancetta to give the dish a salty, meaty flavor. But again, it’s really not necessary here, and it’s much healthier without butter, bacon, or wine!
- One popular variation is to add chicken to the dish. This adds protein and makes the dish more filling. Simply cook the chicken in a separate pan until it is browned and cooked through, and then add it to the sauce along with the pasta.
- Another option is to use different types of mushrooms or a mix of mushrooms.
- You can also add other vegetables such as broccoli or asparagus.
- Garnish with fresh herbs such as fresh thyme or basil.
- Drizzle on a dash of extra virgin olive oil at serving.
- Garnish with a bit of freshly ground black pepper.
Vegan – Use a plant-based yogurt and vegetable broth.
Dairy-Free – See the vegan suggestion.
Gluten-Free – Make this with gluten-free pasta and make sure the yogurt and broth are gluten-safe.
Sugar-Free – This recipe has no added sugar.
About The Ingredients
Pasta – You can use any type you want to use. I love rotini with this, but any shape is fine. I used Cavatappi pasta in the photos. You can also use gluten-free pasta if you prefer. I used Banza pasta (not paid to promote them, just sharing what I used).
Oil – I used coconut oil, but you can use any oil you normally cook with.
White mushrooms – I just picked up a 24-ounce package of whole mushrooms at the store. You can use brown mushrooms if you prefer them. Either will work. Simply clean and slice them. Mine look a little haphazard in the video below because I used my food processor to slice them. But it really doesn’t matter too much how you chop or slice them.
Garlic cloves – I used the biggest cloves I could find from the outside layer of a large bulb. If you have smaller cloves, use 2 in place of the single larger one. You want plenty of fresh garlic in this recipe!
Salt – I used pink Himalayan salt, but any type you normally cook with will work fine.
Chicken broth – If you want this to be vegan, you can use vegetable broth instead. But in either case, make sure there is no added sugar/dextrose.
Plain yogurt – You can use either regular, plain yogurt, or plain Greek yogurt. The choice is yours. I’m dairy-free, so I used Kite Hill almond yogurt. (not paid to promote them).
Salt – To taste at serving. Depending on how much salt you are used to, you may want more than what’s in the recipe. I will say that a little extra touch of salt at the end really does bring out the flavors. But to each his own!
How To Make Creamy Garlic Mushroom Pasta; Step-By-Step Instructions
Cook the pasta to package directions in salted water.
In a large skillet, warm the oil.
Add the mushrooms and cook until they are completely wilted.
Press the garlic into the skillet and cook for 1 minute.
Quickly stir in the salt and remove the skillet from the heat. Allow it to cool for at least 10 minutes.
Once the mushrooms are a bit cooled, add the chicken broth and finally, the yogurt.
Stir well to combine.
Pour the sauce over the finished pasta and toss.
Season with salt to taste and serve while still warm.
Because this has chicken broth in it, you only want to keep leftovers for up to 3 days. If you use vegetable broth and dairy-free yogurt, this will keep fine for up to 5 days in the fridge in an airtight container.
Do not freeze. This dish is not recommended for the freezer.
To reheat, you can warm this in a microwave for 1-2 minutes, or warm it on the stovetop in a pot. In either case, you’ll want to stir in some extra broth first to loosen things up again and get the creaminess back to its original state.
Creamy garlic mushroom pasta can be served in a variety of ways. It can be served as a main course or as a side dish, depending on the occasion. It is often garnished with chopped parsley or basil to add a pop of color and freshness. Some people also like to sprinkle some Parmesan cheese on top for added flavor.
This dish pairs well with crusty garlic bread, a green salad, or roasted vegetables.
Recipe Supplies For Creamy Garlic Mushroom Pasta
For this recipe, you’ll need a pasta pot, a skillet, and a wooden spoon or spatula. You’ll also want a cutting board and knife to slice your mushrooms if you buy them whole. A garlic press is also helpful. Click any image here to be taken to that product on Amazon. (Affiliate links)
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Creamy Garlic Mushroom Pasta Recipe Card + Video
Creamy Garlic Mushroom Pasta
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- 1 pasta pot
- 1 Large Skillet
- 1 lb. pasta
- 2 tbsp. oil
- 24 oz. white mushrooms
- 8 large garlic cloves
- 1 tsp. salt
- 1 cup chicken broth
- 16 oz. plain yogurt
- salt to taste at serving
- Cook the pasta to package directions in salted water.
- In a large skillet, warm the oil.
- Add the mushrooms and cook until they are completely wilted.
- Press the garlic into the skillet and cook for 1 minute.
- Quickly stir in the salt and remove the skillet from the heat. Allow it to cool for at least 10 minutes.
- Once the mushrooms are a bit cooled, add the chicken broth.
- Then finally, add the yogurt.
- Stir well to combine into a creamy sauce.
- Pour the sauce over the finished pasta and stir well.
- Season with salt to taste and serve while still warm.