Add Savory Richness To Your Next Steak With Red Wine Mushrooms

Quality steak deserves a quality sauce and side, and nothing fills that bill better than red wine mushrooms. Mushrooms help elevate the savory flavor of a steak with its underlying umami notes, particularly varieties like cremini, also known as baby bellas. Meanwhile, the tannins in red wine help soften the fatty molecules in beef, aiding in the release of a particularly rich beefy flavor. Together, these two ingredients create the ideal accompaniment to a well-seared steak.

In her Steak With Red Wine Mushrooms recipe, Tasting Table recipe developer Michelle McGlinn features ribeye steak, aromatic compound butter, and a decadent red wine mushroom topping for an extravagant dinner that is simple to execute but special in every other way. The real star of the show is the epic sauce, comprised of a combination of pan drippings, wine, and seared mushrooms. This saucy mushroom topping will work with any steak you fancy, from New York strip to hanger steak. Plus, if you time it right, you can make everything in one pan, and build in flavors every step of the way. 

The perfect compliment to red meat

First, let's discuss your options for ingredients. For the mushrooms, try to find something outside the usual white and baby Bella mushroom wheelhouse. Chanterelles, King Trumpet, Oyster, and maitake mushrooms would all be welcome — the fancier the better. You'll need about 8 ounces of mushrooms total, so use about 2 ounces per mushroom variety. As for the wine choice, McGlinn suggests locating "something dry with notes of wood, tobacco, spice, and dark berries, like a cabernet." If you'd like something a little less rich, McGlinn recommends a Zinfandel. You'll also need a bit of butter and beef stock to thin things out, so have those on hand as well.

To build the sauce, you'll first sear off your mushrooms, then cook your steak in the leftover mushroom liquid, imparting a generous umami flavor directly to the steak's surface. After you've cooked and basted your steak in plenty of butter, you'll move to the sauce. You'll deglaze these pan drippings with a generous bit of red wine followed by some beef stock. A pat or two of compound butter will make the sauce glossy, and extra decadent. Finally, you'll add back in the mushrooms to meld the two epic elements together. The result is perhaps the fastest and most elegant steak sauce in the world.