A recipe for Pearl Couscous with Mushrooms! Tender and chewy pearl couscous is tossed with sautéed mushrooms for an easy side dish ready in only 30 minutes.
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This Pearl Couscous with Mushrooms is such a quick and easy dish perfect as a side or even for a light lunch alongside a salad.
Pearl couscous is simmered in water until tender. As it cooks, the shallots are softened in butter or olive oil followed by the garlic. Stir in the mushrooms and continue to cook until most of the liquid has evaporated. Toss in the cooked couscous and season with lemon juice, salt, pepper, and parsley.
Serve the couscous immediately optionally topped with a sprinkling of freshly grated Parmesan.
A Few Tips
Pearl couscous (Ptitim, Jersusalem couscous, Israeli couscous) are small pasta in the shape of beads made from toasted semolina and wheat. It has a wonderful, chewy texture and cooks quickly on the stove. I have been able to find pearl couscous in larger grocery stores near the rice section, but it is also available on Amazon for a higher price: Pearl Couscous (Pack of 4).
I used Cremini mushrooms, but feel free to swap for what is available or another favorite. A combination of different mushrooms for a variety of flavors and textures would also be perfect.
This recipe can easily be doubled for more people. Just take care to not overcrowd the mushrooms when cooking. If the pan is too small, sauté them in batches.
To make this Pearl Couscous with Mushrooms vegan, use all olive oil in place of the butter and omit the Parmesan topping.
Looking for more recipes with mushrooms?
- Chicken and Mushroom Orzo
- Mushroom Fontina Crostini
- Spätzle mit Pilzen (German Spaetzle with Mushrooms)
This recipe was originally posted in February 2014 and updated October 2021.
Pearl Couscous with Mushrooms Recipe
Adapted from Sauce and Sensibility
Pearl Couscous with Mushrooms
- 1 1/2 cups (355 milliliters) water
- 1 teaspoon salt divided
- 1 cup (150 grams) Pearl Couscous
- 2 tablespoons (30 grams) unsalted butter divided
- 1 tablespoon (15 milliliters) olive oil
- 1 large shallot peeled and finely chopped
- 8 ounces (227 grams) fresh mushrooms Cremini or a mixture of other favorites
- 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1 tablespoon (15 milliliters) freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 1/4 cup (6 grams) fresh parsley chopped
- Freshly grated Parmesan cheese for garnish, optional
- In a medium saucepan, bring the water and 1/2 teaspoon of the salt to a boil.
- Add the pearl couscous, reduce heat to a simmer, cover, and cook until water is absorbed, 10-15 minutes. Remove from heat and set aside.
While the pearl couscous is cooking:
- In a large skillet, melt 1 tablespoon of the butter and the olive oil over medium heat. Add the shallots. Cook, stirring often, until beginning to soften.
- Stir in the garlic and cook until just fragrant, 30 seconds to 1 minute.
- Add the mushrooms and dried thyme. Cook, stirring often until mushrooms begin to darken and the liquid has evaporated. Season with the remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt and pepper.
- Gently toss in the cooked couscous to fully coat. Stir in the remaining 1 tablespoon butter, lemon juice and parsley. Adjust seasonings to taste.
- Serve immediately topped with Parmesan.