Grilled Polenta, Mushrooms

Grilled polenta and mushrooms is a tasty alternative to mushrooms on toast that is suitable for Dairy Free, Gluten Free, Nut Free and Vegan diets.

This combination of polenta and mushrooms could also be considered a variation of risotto or pasta, making it a starter at a dinner party or a light meal with a side salad.

It is a very quick dish to prepare when you have pre-cooked the cornmeal. The recipe below is for unprocessed cornmeal. In many supermarkets you can buy Polenta, partially cooked cornmeal which requires only 10 minutes to cook. If this is what you use, follow the instructions provided, ensuring the quantity of water you add is for the more solid polenta as opposed to the creamy thick-porridge style of polenta. (More information on polenta can be found in a previousrecipe.)

Add cheese to the cooked polenta or when serving as a tasty option, thereby also providing protein to the dish (not Dairy Free or Vegan diets).

Diets for which Grilled Polenta, Mushrooms is suitable:

Diabetic, Diary Free, Gluten Free, Low Calorie, Low Fat, Nut Free, Vegetarian and Vegan.


Preparation: 5 + 10 mins | Cooking: 30 + 10 mins | Serves: 4

875 ml (3 1/2) cups water
1/2 tsp salt
100 gm (1 cup) cornmeal, medium

3 tbsp oil*
1 garlic clove, crushed
300 gm mushrooms, mixed selection**
6-10 leaves sage***
cheese, cheddar, soft or blue (optional, not Dairy Free or Vegan)****
cracked black pepper


BOIL the water in a heavy-based pan.
ADD the salt and pour in the cornmeal, like a slow stream, whisking the mix continuously.
REDUCE the heat.
STIR the cornmeal for 2-3 minutes as it thickens.
COOK for approximately 30 minutes. The polenta will be firm and will require regular stirring to prevent it sticking and forming lumps.)
LINE a tray with cling film and spoon the polenta onto the film.
SHAPE into a block 2cm/1/2-1 inch thick and with straight edges.

HEAT the grill.
LINE a tray with foil and grease it.
CUT slices of the polenta (oblongs or triangles).
BRUSH the polenta with oil and lay on the tray.
GRILL for 5 minutes, turn and cook for a further 5 minutes. (You can pan-fry the polenta although this will require more oil.)
HEAT 1 tbsp oil in a frying pan and gently fry the garlic.
WIPE or wash and dry the mushrooms.
SLICE the mushrooms and fry with the garlic.
COOK for 5- 8 minutes until they are the cooked as you wish.
REMOVE the mushrooms from the pan and keep warm.
HEAT 1 tbsp oil to a high temperature and fry the sage leaves.
PLATE the polenta and top with cheese (if using), mushrooms and sage.


– Warm with freshly ground pepper.


* Substitute for butter where appropriate (not Dairy Free or Vegan).
** A variety of mushrooms will give a better tasting dish.
*** Replace sage with a variety of herbs (bearing in mind that not all herbs are suitable for frying).
**** Cheese can be folded into the cooked polenta and cooled in the slab or added on top of the warm polenta when serving.

Other light meals for Gluten Free and Vegetarian diets:

Aubergine Cheesecake
Spinach Slice
Avocado Tartine

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