These Mushroom Muffuletta Sandwiches are a great vegetarian option with tons of flavor from the toasted ciabatta buns, delicious pesto, creamy provolone cheese, briny homemade muffuletta mix with meaty shiitake mushrooms and topped with arugula!
Choosing the Right Buns for the Mushroom Muffuletta Sandwiches
Is the most important part of a sandwich the buns or the filling?! It’s an age old debate that I’m not here to solve, but I would have to say it’s BOTH. In this case, the crusty ciabatta buns are perfect for holding up to the delicious fillings in these Mushroom Muffuletta Sandwiches.
I also love the size that these sandwiches end up being when made on ciabatta rolls, but you can definitely feel free to choose any bread of your liking. I would suggest opting for a heartier option, as the filling may be too heavy for a light, soft bread.
Which Type of Cheese to Use
If you prefer to keep these Mushroom Muffuletta Sandwiches vegan, you can certainly leave off the cheese or use a vegan version of your favorite cheese. I would recommend sticking with a more mild cheese, like provolone, white cheddar or even a spreadable goat cheese to compliment the flavors of the sandwich.
When using a cheese that is not very meltable, you may not skip the step of sticking it under the broiler and instead toast your bread beforehand and then spread the cheese on the sandwich!
Making the Muffuletta Mix
The best part of these Mushroom Muffuletta Sandwiches just might be the homemade muffuletta mix! This recipe is adaptable based on what you have and what flavors you like. My husband doesn’t like olives (insane, I know) so I left them out of his and took the rest for me!
For convenience sake, I used the jarred roasted red peppers, but you can certainly roast your own by slicing a red pepper and sticking it under the broiler on high until you see a bit of char and the pepper is softened. Just keep an eye on it to prevent burning! I do prefer using the jarred because not only is it easier, but the flavor is more concentrated and I love the oil it comes in!
The artichoke hearts I use are marinated and also in a jar. I would recommend these over the canned artichokes because the oil they come in is so flavorful, but if the only ones you have are the canned then you can definitely use those.
How to Prepare the Mushrooms
To prepare the mushrooms, I wipe them off with a damp paper towel. If you have the time, you can wash them and let them completely dry, but you want to make sure they have enough time to dry or else they won’t get golden brown while being sautéed. It’s as easy as slicing the mushrooms into strips and sautéing them in some avocado or olive oil for a few minutes until golden brown!
Another useful tip for mushrooms is to wait to salt them until the end of cooking time. If you salt them in the beginning, the mushrooms release moisture and will not brown! Always remember that browning=flavor.
These Mushroom Muffuletta Sandwiches is a great meatless option and is so packed with flavor. It’s filling, hearty and easy to make! Just can’t beat it!
If you’re looking for another meatless option, check out my Tikka Masala Lentils. They are vegan and a huge hit! They’re perfect for meal-prep. And as always, I would love it if you come and say hi on my Instagram page and follow my Pinterest account for tons of recipe inspiration!
Mushroom Muffuletta Sandwiches
- 2 ciabatta buns
- 2 slices of provolone cheese
- 2 tbsp pesto
- 3.5 oz. shiitake mushrooms
- 1/3 cup jarred roasted red peppers
- 1/3 cup cup marinated artichoke hearts
- 1/4 cup kalamata olives
- 2 tbsp capers
- Handful of arugula
- Dice the jarred roasted red peppers, the marinated artichoke hearts and kalamata olives into small pieces and add to a bowl. Mix in the capers.
- Heat a skillet over medium heat. Slice the shiitake mushrooms.
- Add a couple tablespoons of oil to the skillet and then sauté the mushrooms until golden brown, about 4-5 minutes. Season with a pinch of salt & pepper at the end of cooking.
- Slice the ciabatta buns and add the provolone cheese slices to one side. If preferred, toast in a toaster oven or under a broiler for a couple minutes until the cheese is melted.
- Smear 1 tbsp of pesto on the top of the ciabatta.
- Layer the muffuletta mix, mushrooms and arugula on the bun. Slice using a serrated knife and enjoy!