Smoky and packed with umami flavor, this easy Vegan Mushroom Pâté is the perfect appetizer or snack (it’s gluten-free too with one easy substitution!). Vegan pâté is a great feels-fancy dish but is simple and easy to make.
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Hey Internet, ever need a really delicious snack that’s healthy but doesn’t taste like it? This delicious mushroom pâté is packed with protein and veggies, but it’s so delicious.
If you know me, you know I LOVE mushrooms. I've made vegan stuffed mushrooms, vegan cream of mushroom soup, creamy vegan mushroom pasta, vegan mushroom risotto, vegan lentil mushroom loaf, vegan mushroom gravy, vegan chicken teriyaki with oyster mushrooms, kale mushroom pasta, creamy mushroom lasagna soup (trust me, it's good!), and more. I'm a big mushroom fan!
Pâté is a fancy word that refers to a paste or loaf. Traditional pâté contains liver or some other ground meat, but obviously this recipe does not.
My real obsession with pâté began though when my mom started making a pâté out of our leftover turkey from Thanksgiving. My mom was pretty inventive in the kitchen; a trait I'm pleased to have received.
Mushrooms are actually the perfect addition to lentils to make this pâté taste meaty and flavorful. And it is seriously amazing with crusty bread (with a drizzle of truffle oil or a dusting of vegan parmesan cheese? YUM!) or your favorite crackers.
If you’ve ever had chopped liver pate, it does taste like it, but if you haven’t and that idea grosses you out, don’t worry. It doesn’t taste weird or anything. It’s kind of like a smoky hummus.
Anyway this vegan pâté (or vegan chopped liver, if you will) is delicious and easy and it’s also one of the recipes in my e-book: Plant Based Jewish Recipes. This e-book is packed full of 50+ Jewish comfort food recipes including appetizers, entrees, and desserts—even a few condiments.
This recipe is just a “taste” of what’s in the book, and it’s a great way to sample the recipes since this one is quick and tasty.
Why You'll Love This Vegan Pâté Recipe
- Quick and Easy: This mushroom vegan pâté recipe is really fast and very easy to make. It only requires 5 minutes of prep time and 10 minutes of cook time! Everything else it just setting in the fridge so you can go about your day (or allow to set overnight!).
- Simple Ingredients: You'll love the short list of wholesome ingredients (and zero animal products), and you'll likely have most of them already. Many of them are pantry ingredients too!
- Perfect Party Appetizer: Vegans and non-vegans, adults and kids… everyone will love this delicious vegan mushroom pâté and it's a great dinner party starter or enjoy it as part of a big spread for New Year's Eve. I'd serve it on this vegan charcuterie board! This is an easy appetizer with a creamy texture that is packed with flavor and goodness.
- Versatile Delicious Spread: This vegan pate recipe is as versatile as a meat-based pâté! It's great to use as a sandwich spread, like on a vegan bánh mì (coming soon!) or enjoy it on toasted bread or on a vegan bagel instead of (or in addition to) vegan cream cheese.
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Grab these simple ingredients the next you’re at the grocery store, but check your pantry first to see what you're missing. See the recipe card at the bottom of this post for full ingredients, instructions, and nutritional information.
- 16 Ounces Baby Bella brown Mushrooms, Cremini Mushrooms, or White Button Mushrooms: This type of mushrooms is the easiest to find and I think they provide great flavor for this vegan pâté recipe.
- 3-4 Cloves Garlic, Minced: Fresh garlic adds a ton of flavor here.
- 2 Teaspoons Dried Thyme: Dried or fresh thyme is the best herb for vegan mushroom pâté. If using fresh thyme, use 2 tablespoons of the leaves (discard the stems).
- 1 Tablespoon Reduced Sodium Soy Sauce: For a little salty umami flavor.
- ⅓ Cup Raw Sunflower Seeds: These give our vegan pâté some of richness of a traditional pate as well as some structure. Without it, it might be too soft.
- 1 Tablespoon Apple Cider Vinegar: This adds acidity for balance.
- ½ Teaspoon Smoked Paprika: This adds a very nice flavor.
- ½ Teaspoon Each Sea Salt and Fresh Cracked Black Pepper: Add a pinch of salt and pepper to taste.
- 16 Ounces Baby Bella brown Mushrooms, Cremini Mushrooms, or Standard Button Mushrooms: Any kind of mushrooms you like should work well for this vegan mushroom pâté recipe. Try fresh portobello mushrooms, shiitake mushrooms, chestnut mushrooms, or even a mixture of wild mushrooms (goes without saying that they should all be edible!). I do recommend fresh mushrooms over dried mushrooms. Porcini mushrooms would be lovely but I've only ever seen them dried. If you'd like to try dried, rehydrate them and drain the excess liquid. Briefly cook them to get a little color on them.
- 3-4 Cloves Garlic, Minced: Use 1-2 teaspoons of granulated garlic (or a little less garlic powder) if you don't have fresh garlic.
- 2 Teaspoons Dried Thyme: You can try other herbs for a different flavor profile, like Italian seasoning blend for a more Italian flavor profile. The thyme lends a bit of a nod to French cuisine, as this recipe tastes similar to foie gras. Fresh herbs are nice too like fresh parsley or thyme.
- 1 Tablespoon Reduced Sodium Soy Sauce: I prefer the flavor of reduced sodium but use what you like. Use gluten-free tamari if you cannot have gluten. If you cannot have soy, try a brand called No Soy. I do not recommend coconut aminos as it has more of a sweet flavor that I don't think contrasts well with the savory mushroom flavor.
- ⅓ Cup Raw Sunflower Seeds: Raw cashews will also work fine, as will walnuts for a walnut pâté. Note that many vegetarian pâté recipes are walnut-based. I even had a vegetarian pate made from walnuts at a Passover seder long ago and it was very good.
- 1 Tablespoon Apple Cider Vinegar: Lemon juice or any other vinegar like white wine vinegar or sherry vinegar are also good options. Balsamic vinegar has a stronger flavor but can still work.
- ½ Teaspoon Smoked Paprika: Feel free to use any other spices you prefer here. If you don't have smoked paprika, a drop or two of liquid smoke could also work.
- ½ Teaspoon Each Sea Salt and Fresh Cracked Black Pepper: Add salt and pepper to taste.
- Other Ingredients: Many recipes will have you cook the mushrooms in vegan butter or a tablespoon of olive oil (you really only need enough olive oil so it doesn't stick to the pan). However I use a good nonstick pan so I often cook without oil or vegan butter (I dislike the "layer of fat" that it creates on my food). Some recipes might have you deglaze your frying pan with dry sherry or white wine, but that isn't necessary in this recipe. You can deglaze with a tablespoon or two of water or vegetable stock. In this recipe, I use a little soy sauce to both deglaze and add more umami flavors! You can also add a little Chinese five-spice or a little white or yellow miso paste for a different flavor. For a more Italian flavor, try adding a tablespoon or two of tomato paste and some Italian seasoning blend.
How to Make Vegan Mushroom Pâté
- Cook mushrooms, garlic, and thyme: Heat a large skillet (nonstick preferred, or use a tablespoon of olive oil if not nonstick) over medium-high heat. When hot, add mushrooms, garlic, and dried thyme. Let cook, uncovered, for 10 minutes, stirring every 2-3 minutes.
- Deglaze the pan: It shouldn’t stick too much since mushrooms release their own liquid, but use the reduced sodium soy sauce or tamari to deglaze the pan once while cooking. (Deglaze just means when you pour a little liquid on the pan and stir it around so that all the flavor that’s sticking to the bottom of the pan just goes back onto the food. Use a silicone spatula to scrape any stuff sticking to the pan back into the food… that's flavor!). If needed, you can add a tablespoon or two of water, but the mushrooms should release some of their own liquid.
- Drain: When cooked, drain off any remaining liquid from the mushroom mixture and add to a food processor or blender with remaining ingredients.
- Blend: Process or blend until smooth.
- Add to container: Pack into whatever container you'd like your Pâté to take the shape of. Really pack it in there, pushing it down and smoothing it with a spatula. I’ve had best results with ceramic and silicone containers as the mold, but glass has worked for me too (just a little bit more finessing to get it out). I highly recommend greasing the inside of the container with a small amount of oil, vegan butter, or coconut cream (the thick stuff in a can of full fat coconut milk) to help you get it out easier. The other option is to line the bowl with plastic cling wrap.then you can use that to remove the set pate and peel it off afterward. I have not tried this with a plastic container but it would probably be fine, maybe just requiring that extra bit of effort to release.
- Set the pâté: Cover and refrigerate your vegan lentil pâté for at least 4-5 hours or overnight. I think overnight produces the best texture the next day.
- Release the pâté: To release the vegan mushroom pâté, run a butter knife around the edges, place a plate upside down on top of the open container and flip like a cake onto a cooling rack. You may have to wiggle it a little or hit the bottom of the container a few times. You should hear it slide out. Tip: before doing this, I like to cut a small circle of parchment the diameter of the bowl and press it lightly onto the pâté. After it's flipped and released, it makes it easier to move it around on your serving board or plate.
- Decorate: Clean up the edges if you need to and decorate the top with extra herbs and spices if you wish.
- Serve the pâté: Serve chilled or room temperature (I prefer chilled) with crackers or toasted slices of a baguette. Enjoy!
- Make This Recipe Gluten-Free: To make this vegan mushroom pate recipe gluten-free, simply use a gluten-free tamari instead of the soy sauce.
- Double The Recipe: If you'd like two batches of vegan mushroom pâté, you can simply double the recipe and divide it between two bowls after it's blended.
- Change The Flavor Profile: If you prefer even more umami flavors, try adding a little miso paste, black garlic, or using mushrooms with a stronger umami flavor (like shiitake mushrooms). I love this French-inspired flavor profile so that's why I wrote the recipe this way.
- Clean Your Mushrooms: Make sure to clean your mushrooms before cooking. Remove any "crusty" parts of the stems.
- Decorate Your Pate: I highly recommend adding a few fresh herbs to the top of your vegan pâté, or even a sprinkle of smoked paprika or grated vegan parmesan cheese. Use whatever you like!
Vegan mushroom pâté is great with toasted slices of a French baguette or sourdough! It's also delicious with crackers (I love this vegan pate with some cracked pepper water crackers!), and maybe an assortment of vegan cheeses, olives, grapes, etc. to make a vegan charcuterie board.
Vegan pâté is also a necessity for vegan bánh mì (coming soon!), but it's completely delicious on any sandwich or at the bottom of a savory tart.
If you'd like to plan a whole dinner with this mushroom vegan pâté as a starter, try also making my vegan steak, vegan roasted potatoes or vegan creamy pasta, and a vegan flourless chocolate cake for dessert!
- Refrigerating: Store vegan mushroom pâté in an airtight container for 3-4 days.
- Freezing: Wrap the vegan lentil pâté in plastic wrap and then freezer paper, then place in a freezer-safe container and freeze for up to 3 months. Place unwrapped on a parchment covered tray or plate to thaw so that excess water evaporates.
Frequently Asked Questions
Absolutely! I've even seen pate served this way sometimes.
This one is! This vegan pâté is loaded with mushrooms, garlic, and herbs, all of which are great for you. The raw sunflower seeds have vitamins and minerals as well as healthy fats. Not all pate recipes may be healthy, but this recipe is definitely good for you and totally delicious!
Yes, cashews or walnuts will work well in place of the sunflower seeds.
Sure, swap the sunflower seeds for drained chickpeas or white beans. It might be a little softer but it will still be delicious
More Vegan Appetizer Recipes
- Vegan Stuffed Mushrooms
- Vegan Kale Artichoke Dip
- Air Fryer Gnocchi
- Vegan Brie or Vegan Baked Brie in Puff Pastry with Cranberry Sauce or Jam
- Vegan Camembert
- Spinach Artichoke Vegan Pinwheels
- Vegan Pierogi with Potato and Leek
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