Learn how to make restaurant-quality Mushroom Cream Sauce right at home with just 8 ingredients!! This easy 30-minute Mushroom Marsala Sauce is the perfect way to effortlessly elevate any dish! Luxuriously rich, creamy, slightly sweet and perfectly savory, you can serve these mushrooms over steak, chicken, pork, pasta, potatoes and MORE(!) to transform a weeknight meal into something truly special!
Are you searching for more delicious and versatile sauce recipes? Check out these family favorites: Ragu Bolognese (Slow Cooker Recipe), Easy Mushroom Spaghetti Sauce, Roasted Red Pepper Sauce, Homemade Vodka Sauce and Carolina BBQ Sauce!
Update: This post was originally published in June 2014. I made updates to the post below to include more information about mushroom cream sauce. Plus, I’ve included step-by-step photos and a recipe video to show you exactly how easy it is to make restaurant-quality mushroom marsala sauce right at home!
Hi, friends! I’m going to share a fun fact that may make some of you question my integrity as a food blogger; however, I like to be honest and open. I do not like mushrooms. Well, caveat, I do not like MOST mushrooms. I have a short list of dishes where I feel mushrooms are appropriate and a laundry list where I will hard pass on those ‘shrooms.
I say all this so you know that I’m extremely picky when it comes to edible fungi. Now, let me just say these marsala mushrooms will always have a special place in my heart, because I honestly LOVE them! If it was socially acceptable, I would face plant right into a vat of this sauce and lick the entire thing clean. This mushroom sauce is just that good.
Mushroom cream sauce: overview
This impossibly silky, deliciously smooth and unapologetically rich marsala sauce is bursting with savory, meaty mushrooms and flavored with fragrant garlic, pungent shallots, fresh parsley and earthy thyme. This classic Italian sauce is luxurious and creamy with a slightly sweet and savory flavor.
It’s ridiculously easy to make, yet versatile and can completely TRANSFORM any meal! Try serving it atop a tender piece of protein, such as steak, chicken or pork for a heavenly meal! Or, generously smother and cover oodles of al dente pasta noodles or pillowy gnocchi for a magically delicious dinner! And, turn crisp baked potatoes into an acceptable entree by bathing them in creamy mushroom sauce!
Basically, this mushroom marsala cream sauce is an equal opportunist and WILL have you swooning over its power to easily elevate ANY and EVERY meal!
Why you’ll love this recipe
- Simple ingredients! This recipe only requires 8 simple-to-find ingredients along with a couple pantry staples!
- 20 minutes! This creamy mushroom sauce is so flavorful and requires just 20 minutes of active cooking!
- Robust flavor! This luxurious marsala sauce is robust, luxurious and bursting with savory mushrooms!
- Any mushroom will do! You can use any variety of mushrooms you love in this recipe! I like to use a combination of mushrooms for layers of flavor; however, I will make use of whatever variety is in season and looks best at the market.
- So versatile! This mushroom cream sauce is insanely versatile and tastes good with literally anything and everything!!
What is mushroom sauce?
Mushroom sauce, also known as mushroom gravy, is a light brown sauce made using fresh mushrooms as the primary ingredient. Mushroom sauce is often cream-based and typically includes flour and butter (roux) as well as beef broth and various flavoring ingredients, such as onions, garlic and herbs.
Ingredients for creamy mushroom sauce
This mushroom marsala relies on 8 simple-to-find ingredients along with a couple pantry staples to create a sauce that is rich, luscious and restaurant-quality in taste!
What you need to make mushroom cream sauce from scratch
- Butter: This recipe uses unsalted butter for sautéing to provide a base of rich flavor!
- Shallot: One small shallot adds a touch of delicate, slightly sweet onion flavor!
- Mushrooms: You need eight ounces of fresh mushrooms for this sauce. You can use whatever mushrooms look best at the market, or experiment with a combination of different mushrooms, such as portobello, Cremini and oyster!
- Garlic: Two cloves of fresh garlic provide a distinctive, punchy taste. Make sure you use fresh garlic, not the minced variety sold in a jar!
- Flour: A touch (1 1/2 tablespoons) of all-purpose flour helps slightly thicken the sauce.
- Wine: Dry marsala wine adds a complex, deep layer of flavor to this sauce! You can substitute extra stock if you prefer, but your sauce will be missing that special something!
- Stock: 1/3 cup of stock helps make up the liquid base of this sauce. I typically use beef stock for its rich flavor, but you can use chicken stock or vegetable stock if you prefer a more subtle flavor. Regardless, make sure you use a low- or no-sodium stock so you can control the amount of salt in your sauce!
- Cream: Heavy cream delivers rich flavor and a decadent mouthfeel! Use the cream to your taste! You can use a 50/50 combination of heavy cream and half-and-half if you would like to shave off a few calories without sacrificing much flavor. Or you can simply substitute all the cream for half-and-half, light cream or whole milk; however, the lighter the cream, the less creamy and rich your sauce will be!
- Fresh Herbs: A combination of thyme and parsley add a pop of herbaceous, bright flavor! I don’t recommend skipping the fresh herbs as they really bring the sauce to life!
Mushroom sauce variations
Want to make a few changes or additions to this creamy marsala sauce? Wonderful – I encourage you to make this recipe your own! Get creative or simply eliminate the ingredients you don’t like and substitute the ones you love! Below are a few easy ideas to get you started!
- Leeks: Prefer a slightly sweeter onion flavor? Substitute the shallots for leeks!
- Soy Sauce: Want to add a subtle touch of umami flavor? Try adding a splash or two of soy sauce or Tamari!
- Mustard: It may sound a little odd, but mustard and mushrooms pair together fabulously! For a delicious depth of flavor, add a small dollop of good-quality dijon or grainy mustard to your sauce!
- Cheese: Do you love cheese, because let’s face it – who doesn’t? Try finishing your sauce with a generous sprinkle of freshly grated parmesan, asiago or pecorino cheese!
- Feeding a crowd: This recipe can easily be doubled, tripled or even quadrupled!
Marsala sauce FAQ
What is marsala wine?
Marsala wine is a fortified wine produced in the region surrounding the Italian city of Marsala in Sicily.
Dry marsala is deep in color with an unmistakable flavor. It’s typically used to create rich sauces, such as marsala sauce, or in this case, marsala cream sauce.
What marsala wine to cook with?
There are two different styles, or varieties, of marsala for cooking – dry and sweet. Since this recipe is for a savory mushroom cream sauce, it utilizes dry marsala wine. While sweet marsala wines are delicious and have their place in your kitchen, you should reserve them for baking and using in your desserts!
Where is marsala wine in stores?
Most major grocery stores carry marsala wine. You can usually locate them in the condiment aisle with the vinegars and other cooking wines (sherry, white wine, etc.)
What is a good substitute for marsala wine?
Since marsala is one of the main components of this sauce, it is best if you don’t use a substitute.
However, if you are in pinch, Madeira wine contains many identical flavor characteristics as marsala. While Madeira won’t taste identical to marsala, it will taste similar.
How to make mushroom cream sauce from scratch?
This easy and creamy mushroom marsala sauce is so simple and quick to prepare!
- Saute Shallots: Melt butter in a saute pan over medium heat. Add in the shallot and sauté 1-2 minutes, or until soft.
- Add mushrooms: Add the mushrooms to pan. Sauté until liquid is evaporated and mushrooms are lightly golden, about 3 minutes.
- Add aromatic: Add in the garlic and season with salt and pepper. Sauté until fragrant, about 30 seconds.
- Add flour: Sprinkle the flour over mushrooms and cook, stirring, for 1 minute.
- Deglaze with wine: Whisk in the Marsala wine and cook until slightly reduced, about 4 – 6 minutes, scraping up browned bits off bottom of the pan.
- Add stock: Whisk in the stock and continue to cook until slightly reduced again, about 4-5 minutes.
- Add Cream: Stir in the thyme and heavy cream. Reduce heat to low and cook for 1-2 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Serve: Taste the sauce and adjust with salt and pepper. Add parmesan cheese if you would like! Serve and enjoy!
How to make mushroom sauce step by step photos
(Scroll down for the detailed instructions in the printable recipe at the bottom of the page.)
Expert tips for making marsala sauce
This sauce is pretty fool-proof and easy to prepare; however, below are a few simple tips and tricks to ensure you make the best mushroom sauce from scratch!
Tips for the best sauce
- Mushrooms: Make sure you saute the mushrooms over moderate (medium) heat and cook them until they are just golden in color! Also, avoid seasoning the mushrooms with salt until after they are sautéed! Salt draws moisture out of the mushrooms which will prevent them from becoming golden brown. Therefore, it’s important you refrain from seasoning them until after they are sautéed!
- Doubling the recipe: If you are doubling the recipe, you will need to brown the mushrooms in batches! Adding too many mushrooms at once will overcrowd the pan, causing the mushrooms to steam instead of brown!
- Deglazing: Make sure you use your whisk to scrape up and release any brown bits stuck to the bottom of the pan when you add the wine! Deglazing releases all the flavorful bits from the bottom of the pan!
- Whisk it: To keep your sauce smooth and creamy, make sure you whisk and combine the ingredients well when adding liquids, especially when you add the wine to the sauce!
- Seasoning: Cream sauces require quite a bit of seasoning (salt and pepper) to make the flavors really shine! Make sure you are seasoning your sauce in layers (i.e., season the mushrooms after they are golden, season the broth and taste the sauce after adding the cream, adjusting for seasoning right before serving!
- Make it your own: This mushroom sauce is incredibly flexible, so I encourage you to make it your own! Use whatever fresh herbs you love and try adding a generous sprinkling of freshly grated parmesan! Please see above for more variations and ideas on how to put your own twist on this marsala sauce!
Are you looking for new and exciting ways to serve your marsala sauce? Below are a few of my family’s favorite ways to serve and enjoy this recipe!
What to serve with mushroom sauce?
This sauce is so incredibly versatile and you can use it in a myriad of ways! It’s such a simple and flavorful sauce – hopefully you find yourself making and enjoying it endless ways!
10 ways to use mushroom cream sauce
- Bread: Honestly, I could eat this silky marsala sauce with just some good-quality crusty bread for dunking and sopping!
- Eggs: Fancy up your next brunch by covering your omelette (and breakfast potatoes) with a generous amount of mushroom sauce!
- Baked Potatoes: Give your potatoes an easy upgrade by stuffing them with plenty of this luscious sauce!
- Mashed Potatoes: Generously ladle creamy mushroom sauce over mash potatoes for a delicious twist on gravy and mash!
- Pasta: Toss your favorite variety of pasta with this creamy mushrooms sauce for a luxurious, yet easy weeknight dinner!
- Steak or Steak Bites: This mushroom sauce is so delicious with steaks or steak tips! Make sure you season your steak plainly (just a little salt and pepper) so the sauce really has a chance to shine!
- Chicken: Chicken marsala is a classic for a good reason! Pairing chicken breasts or thighs with mushroom marsala makes for an easy weeknight meal!
- Meatballs: If you love Swedish meatballs, you have to try smothering your favorite meatballs in marsala sauce!!
- Pork: Hearty pork chops and mushroom sauce are a match made in heaven!
- Roasts: Are you looking for an easy crowd pleaser? This sauce is delicious with all types of roasts: chicken, turkey, pork and beef!
When it comes to food storage and storing leftovers, safety is of the utmost importance! Make sure you follow the simple tips below for properly storing and reheating this mushroom sauce!
How to store mushroom cream sauce?
This mushroom sauce recipe only makes 1 1/2 cups, so you likely won’t have leftovers unless you double the recipe! However, if you happen to find yourself with a little leftover sauce, it does keep beautifully!
To store creamy mushroom sauce, first allow the sauce to cool completely to room temperature; however, don’t leave the sauce out on the counter for more than 1 hour to ensure food safety and prevent growth of bacteria. Once the sauce is cool, transfer it to an airtight container and store in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.
Can you freeze it?
Freezing is the best way to further extend the shelf life of your homemade sauce! Plus, freezing is a great way to save time during the week by batch cooking and preparing a large amount of sauce to always have on hand! To preserve the quality of this creamy sauce, I recommend using freezer-safe glass container or a double layer of heavy-duty freezer bags!
This mushroom sauce stores beautifully in the freezer; however it does require one super simple modification – just leave out the cream and fresh herbs!
To freeze creamy mushroom sauce
- Prepare the sauce, omitting cream and herbs: Prepare the sauce according to the recipe instructions; however, omit adding the heavy cream and fresh herbs in the second to last step.
- Cool the sauce: The first real step in freezing mushroom sauce is to allow the sauce cool completely to room temperature. However, make sure you do not leave the sauce out on the counter for more than two hours as that’s when bacteria will start to form (I wouldn’t leave it longer than 1 hour just to be safe!).
- Transfer sauce to containers: Once the sauce is cool, divide the sauce into storage containers, making sure to leave enough room (headspace) for the sauce to expand.
- Store it: Stash the sauce in the freezer. Homemade mushroom sauce will keep up to 3 months, depending upon how airtight your storage container or bag is.
- To use: When ready to use, you can reheat the sauce using one of the methods below. Stir the heavy cream and herbs into the sauce during the last few minutes of reheating!
How to reheat mushroom cream sauce?
This sauce is incredibly easy to reheat, making quick and easy work for weeknight dinners! Depending upon your preference, you can reheat this sauce directly from the freezer, or you can thaw it overnight in the refrigerator for quicker reheating the next day!
- Stovetop (from freezer or refrigerator): Transfer leftover sauce to a saucepan. Place the saucepan on the stove and reheat gently over low to medium-low heat, stirring occasionally. Cook the sauce until it’s warm throughout. Serve and enjoy while it’s still warm!
- Microwave (from refrigerator only): Transfer the sauce to a microwave-safe container. Place a lid on the container to prevent splatter, leaving the lid slightly cracked at the side to form a vent. Reheat on 50-60% power, in one-minute intervals, stirring in between, until the sauce is just warm throughout.
Tips when reheating
- If you are reheating sauce you stored in the freezer, don’t forget to stir the heavy cream and herbs into the sauce during the last few minutes of cooking!
- If the sauce thickened up during storage, stir in a tablespoon or two of stock, cream or water to loosen it up!
If you make this sauce, I hope you find yourself coming back to it as much as we do! Seriously, we love putting this creamy mushroom sauce on ALL the things and we think you will to! If you try it, be sure to come back and let me know how it went over!
Until next week, cheers!
Looking for more mushroom recipes?
If you love this marsala sauce with mushrooms, try one of these delicious recipes next:
Recipe testimonials – What people are saying about this recipe
See below to find out what readers are saying about this tried and true Mushroom Cream Sauce with Marsala Wine recipe!
- “I made this recipe twice this month and it’s so good. My girlfriend and I are vegetarian so I make this with veggie broth instead of beef broth. It tastes amazing served on orzo (and even just plain rice). I pair it with a green salad or sautéed kale on the side and it’s the ultimate weeknight comfort food.” – Maurine
- “This was so yummy! It’s a keeper recipe for sure!” – Pam
- “Wow! Just wow! I rarely comment on recipes I try but I just had to say this is so delicious! I made it today for my husbands birthday to have with steak (beef tenderloin) and he absolutely loved it and is already asking when I will make it again. So thank you for sharing it and I already sent it to all my family to try.” – Ana
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How to make Easy Mushroom Marsala Cream Sauce Recipe and Video👇
Mushroom Cream Sauce (Easy Marsala Sauce for Steaks, Chicken, Pasta & MORE!)
- 2 TBS Unsalted Butter
- 1 Small Shallot – Fine Dice
- 8 oz Cremini Mushrooms (or Baby Bella, White Button Mushrooms OR a Combination of each) – Thinly Sliced
- 2 Cloves Garlic – Minced
- 1 1/2 TBS All Purpose Flour
- 1 1/4 Cup Dry Marsala Cooking Wine (SEE NOTES)
- 1/3 Cup Unsalted Beef Stock
- 2-3 TBS Heavy Cream - or more to taste (SEE NOTES)
- 1 1/2 tsp Fresh Thyme - chopped (can substitute 1/4 tsp ground thyme)
- 1 1/2 tsp Fresh Parsley – Chopped
- Kosher Salt and Ground Black Pepper – To Taste
- Saute Shallots: Melt butter in a saute pan over Medium Heat. Add in the Shallot and sauté 1-2 minutes, or until softened.
- Add mushrooms: Add the Mushrooms to pan. Sauté until liquid is evaporated and mushrooms are barely cooked through, about 3 minutes.
- Add aromatic: Add in the Garlic, ¼ tsp Salt and 1/8 tsp Pepper. Sauté until fragrant, about 30 seconds.
- Add flour: Sprinkle the Flour over mushrooms and cook, stirring, for 1 minute.
- Add wine: Reduce heat to Medium/Medium-Low and whisk in the Marsala Wine. Cook until slightly reduced, about 4 - 6 minutes, scraping up browned bits off bottom of the pan.
- Add stock: Whisk in the Beef Stock and continue to cook until slightly reduced again, about 4-5 minutes.
- Add Cream: Stir in the Thyme and Heavy Cream (SEE NOTES). Reduce heat to low and cook, stirring occasionally, for 1-2 minutes, or until heated through
- Adjust for taste & Serve: Add in the Parsley. Taste and adjust for seasoning with salt and pepper. Serve over steak, chicken, pork or pasta. Enjoy!
- Marsala Wine: There are two different varieties of marsala for cooking – dry and sweet. Since this recipe is for a savory mushroom cream sauce, it utilizes dry marsala wine. Sweet marsala wines should be reserved for using in your desserts!!
- Heavy Cream: Use 2 tablespoons of heavy cream if you are looking for a slightly creamy sauce, and 3 tablespoons for a creamier sauce! (I used 2 1/2 tablespoons)
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