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Fried Enoki Mushrooms with Chili Aioli

How fun are these golden Fried Enoki Mushrooms?? They are crispy, snacky, and so delicious, especially when drizzled with lemon juice and served with the easy 2-minute chili aioli sauce for dipping.

Look for enoki mushrooms at your local Asian grocery store or farmer's market, and give this awesome appetizer a try!

Plate of fried enoki mushrooms and dipping sauce
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More fun mushroom recipes to try: Lion's Mane Mushroom Soup

Enoki mushroom tempura

I am OBSESSED with how cute these little enoki mushroom "trees" are! At least that's the shape they remind me of when they are fried. It's so awesome watching the battered enoki mushrooms go from straight to tree-shaped in just a few seconds as soon as they touch the hot oil! 

But the best part of these fried enoki mushrooms is how crispy and flavorful they are.

Crispy fried enoki mushroom piece dipped into garlic aioli sauce

The batter for this enoki tempura is super simple to make. It's a thin, fairly runny egg-free batter, so the mushrooms turn out light, crispy, and delicious without their flavor being overpowered by the batter. 

Dip the fried enoki mushrooms into the chili aioli sauce and enjoy!

This recipe makes about 4 appetizer servings and is best enjoyed fresh while the mushrooms are hot and crispy.

Serving board with crispy fried enoki mushrooms

More enoki mushroom recipes to try: Enoki Mushroom and Noodle Soup

Enoki mushroom recipe

If you've never cooked with enoki mushrooms, I really hope you give this recipe a try! It takes just a few minutes from start to finish, and you can scale it up or down as needed.

Enoki mushrooms are pretty mild in flavor and not too "earthy" or "mushroomy." Because of this, they are a great "beginner" mushroom to try, especially when coated with a super crispy delicious coating! 

More fried mushroom recipes to try: Pan-Fried Lion's Mane Mushrooms

Close up of enoki mushrooms on a plate

More unique mushroom recipes to try: Lion's Mane Steak

Enoki mushrooms and where to find them

Enoki mushrooms are popular in Japanese cuisine. They're long and very thin, and they grow in bunches. In the US, they're typically sold in 8-oz bags, where each bag holds 1 large bunch or 2 smaller bunches that are connected at the bottom.

You can find fresh enoki mushrooms at most Asian grocery stores (look for an H-Mart, a 99 Ranch Market, or a non-chain store), at some farmer's markets, and at some health food stores in the produce aisle.

At the time I am publishing this recipe, enoki mushrooms in my area cost about $4 for ½ lb, which is actually quite cheap compared to other mushrooms, such as oyster mushrooms or lion's mane mushrooms. And considering that ½ lb makes about 4 appetizer servings, they're actually a pretty inexpensive "fancy" appetizer!

Give this recipe a try!

Ingredients for fried enoki mushrooms

Ingredients

For the fried mushrooms:

  • 8 oz fresh enoki mushrooms, rinsed and thoroughly patted dry
  • ½ cup all-purpose flour
  • ¼ cup cornstarch
  • ½ - ¾ teaspoon table salt - use ½ teaspoon if sprinkling the cooked enoki mushrooms with flaky salt, otherwise use ¾ teaspoons for the batter
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ½ teaspoon paprika
  • ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • ¾ cup cold water
  • ~2-3 cups vegetable oil for cooking - use enough to have at least 1.5 inches of oil in your pan
  • optional: flaky sea salt, diced chives or scallions, and lemon wedges for serving

For the chili aioli:

  • ¼ cup mayonnaise
  • 1-2 teaspoons Thai red chili paste, to taste - I use this stuff in my dip for avocado tempura, in my kielbasa bites appetizer, and chicken vegetable stir fry sauce, so don't worry about buying it for one recipe and not using it again!
  • 1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice or lime juice
  • 1 small garlic clove, finely minced or grated - you can use a generous pinch of garlic powder instead, but I really recommend the fresh garlic
  • pinch of salt, optional - I thought the aioli was fine without it, but it might depend on your mayo, chili paste, and your personal preferences
  • 1-2 teaspoons water, optional - use it if you want a thinner more spreadable sauce

By the way, this dipping sauce is so good for all kinds of veggies and appetizers! I use it for my crispy roasted cauliflower leaf recipe and pretty much any roasted veggie I make!

More fried treats: Fried Jalapeños

Equipment

  • Small whisk - this is helpful for making sure the batter doesn't have any lumps
  • Long wide container or bowl wide enough to fit the whole length of the enoki mushroom
  • Small-medium pot or pan, wide enough to fit the whole enoki mushroom for frying
  • Tongs
  • Paper towels on a large plate - for absorbing extra oil after frying

More fried recipes: Fried Brie

Instructions

Step 1: Cut the brown part off the bottom of the enoki mushroom bunch. Slice or separate the mushroom bunch into thin pieces, about 1-inch long and ½-inch wide at the base. I did this by hand where the mushrooms fell apart naturally, but some pieces did not naturally separate so I used a knife. Take the time to make small bundles of mushrooms, because if they're too thick, the mushrooms won't get as crispy when fried.

Enoki mushrooms cut into small bunches

Step 2In a long shallow container, mix together the flour, cornstarch, salt, paprika, garlic powder, and pepper. Add the water and whisk together until no lumps remain.

Tempura batter in a container

Step 3Heat the cooking oil over medium heat. You'll want at least 1.5 inches of oil at the bottom of the pan. The oil is ready when it starts to bubble when you insert the tip of a toothpick.

Step 4Use tongs to dip the enoki pieces in the batter on both sides and on the bottom. Pick up the enoki pieces by the bottom and let excess batter drip off. You can prep a few pieces at a time and let them sit on a plate:

Enoki mushroom pieces dipped into tempura batter and resting on a plate to let excess batter drip off

Step 5Carefully place the battered enoki mushroom into the hot oil. It should start bubbling immediately. If not, the oil is not hot enough yet. Fry for 1 minute, use tongs to carefully flip, then fry for another minute, or until the mushroom is golden brown. Carefully transfer to large plate lined with paper towels. Repeat step 4 and 5 until all the mushrooms are fried.

Important cooking tip: If the mushrooms don't separate into individual strands, then your batter is probably too thick. Thin it out with some water before frying the next piece.

Collage of 2 pictures showing enoki mushrooms frying

Step 6Allow to cool for a few minutes, then enjoy warm, sprinkling with flaky sea salt, fresh chives, and a drizzle of lemon juice. Dip into the garlic aioli.

Fried enoki mushrooms draining on paper towel

Step 7Prepare the garlic aioli while the mushrooms cook: In a small bowl, mix together all the ingredients. Adjust the flavor to your liking. Enjoy!

Dipping crispy enoki mushroom tempura into chili aioli sauce

More crispy fried recipes: Fried Chicken Hearts

Tips for frying enoki mushrooms

→ Go for smaller pieces of enoki mushrooms instead of larger pieces. They spread out a lot while frying. If your mushroom pieces are too large, they'll clump together while frying and stay mushy inside.

Make sure the batter is thin enough, otherwise the fried mushrooms will be too mushy inside. If the mushrooms are not separating into individual strands while frying, then thin your batter out with a tablespoon of water or two before dipping and frying the next piece.

→ Do not overcrowd the pan while frying. I used a small pan and fried one piece at a time. If you use a large pan, you'll need a LOT more oil but you can fry 2-3 pieces at a time.

→ If you are coordinated and quick in the kitchen, you can make the dipping sauce while the mushrooms are frying. If you typically work slower, make the sauce first so it's ready by the time the mushrooms are fried.

→ Make sure to serve these fresh right after frying!

→ You can save the tempura batter in the fridge for up to 2 days, so you don't have to fry all the mushrooms at once if you won't eat them all right away. Just whisk is back together if it separates into 2 layers in the fridge and it'll be ready to use anytime you want to fry more mushrooms. You might need to add a tablespoon or two of water if the batter gets too thick in the fridge.

→ Don't try to air fry these enoki mushrooms! The batter will continue dripping off the mushrooms before it crisps up, and it doesn't turn out that good.

More crispy fried recipes: Fried Anchovies

Leftover fried enoki mushrooms

This mushroom appetizer is best served fresh—that's when it's crispy, warm, and most delicious. Leftover enoki mushrooms get a little chewy at the base. Not bad, but not as good. If you do want to reheat them, pop them in the air fryer at 375F for 1-2 minutes, or until crispy but not burned.

Leftover chili aioli can be used as a dip for veggies or a spread for sandwiches... so good!!

More delicious mushroom recipes to try: Chicken of the Woods "Wings"

If you enjoyed this recipe, let me know with a comment and a star rating below. And don't forget to share it on Facebook and save it on Pinterest for later!

Crispy fried enoki mushrooms on a plate with chili aioli dipping sauce
Print Recipe
4.95 from 20 votes

Fried Enoki Mushrooms with Chili Aioli

So crispy, so pretty, and so delicious! The batter for this crispy fried enoki mushroom tempura is light, letting the mushrooms shine!
Prep Time10 minutes
Cook Time15 minutes
Total Time25 minutes
Course: Appetizer
Cuisine: American, Asian
Diet: Vegan, Vegetarian
Servings: 4
Author: Kate

Ingredients

For the fried mushrooms:
  • 8 oz fresh enoki mushrooms - rinsed and thoroughly patted dry
  • ½ cup all-purpose flour
  • ¼ cup cornstarch
  • ½ - ¾ teaspoon table salt
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ½ teaspoon paprika
  • ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • ¾ cup cold water
  • 2-3 cups vegetable oil - for cooking, use enough to have at least 1.5 inches of oil in your pan
  • optional: flaky sea salt, diced chives or scallions, lemon wedges - for serving
For the chili aioli:
  • ¼ cup mayonnaise
  • 1-2 teaspoons Thai red chili paste - to taste
  • 1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice - or lime juice
  • 1 small garlic clove - finely grated or minced
  • pinch salt - optional
  • 1-2 teaspoons water - optional

Special equipment

  • Flat container for the batter
  • Small-medium pot or pan for frying
  • Paper towels on a large plate

Instructions

  • Cut the brown part off the bottom of the enoki mushroom bunch. Slice or separate the mushroom bunch into thin bunches, about 1-inch long and ½-inch wide at the base. When in doubt, go for smaller bunches instead of larger ones.
    Enoki mushrooms cut into small bunches
  • In a long shallow flat container, mix together the flour, cornstarch, salt, paprika, garlic powder, and pepper. Add the water and whisk together until no lumps remain.
    ½ cup all-purpose flour, ¼ cup cornstarch, ½ - ¾ teaspoon table salt, ½ teaspoon garlic powder, ½ teaspoon paprika, ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, ¾ cup cold water
  • Heat the cooking oil over medium heat. You'll want at least 1.5 inches of oil at the bottom of the pan. The oil is ready when it starts to bubble when you insert the tip of a toothpick.
  • Use tongs to dip the enoki pieces in the batter on both sides and on the bottom. Pick up the enoki pieces by the bottom and let excess batter drip off.
  • Carefully place the battered enoki mushroom into the hot oil. It should start bubbling immediately. If not, the oil is not hot enough yet. Fry for 1 minute, use tongs to carefully flip, then fry for another minute, or until the mushroom is golden brown. Carefully transfer to large plate lined with paper towels. Repeat step 4 and 5 until all the mushrooms are fried.
    Cooking tip: If your mushrooms don't separate into individual strands while frying, then your batter is too thick. Whisk in 1-2 tablespoons water before dipping and frying the next mushroom piece. If the batter is too thick, the mushrooms will be mushy inside, not crispy.
    Collage of 2 pictures showing enoki mushrooms frying
  • Allow to cool for a minute, then enjoy warm, sprinkling with flaky sea salt, fresh chives, and a drizzle of lemon juice. Dip into the garlic aioli.
  • Prepare the garlic aioli while the mushrooms cook: In a small bowl, mix together all the ingredients. Adjust the flavor to your liking. Enjoy!
    ¼ cup mayonnaise, 1-2 teaspoons Thai red chili paste, 1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice, 1 small garlic clove, pinch salt, 1-2 teaspoons water

Notes

→ Make smaller pieces of enoki mushrooms instead of larger pieces. They spread out a lot while frying. Do not overcrowd the pan while frying. I used a small pan and fried one piece at a time. If you use a large pan, you'll need a lot more oil but you can fry 2-3 pieces at a time.
→ Make sure to serve these fresh right after frying! They get a little chewy when reheated. If reheating, reheat in an air fryer or oven to crisp them up.
→ Leftover chili aioli can be used as a spread for sandwiches... so good!!
→ Nutrition facts: Enoki mushrooms are super low in calories, so any calories and fat will depend on the amount of batter and oil that each piece has on it, and will vary from piece to piece.

Nutrition

Calories: 190kcal (10%)

The nutritional information displayed is an estimate and not to be used as dietary or nutritional advice. Consult a nutritionist or dietician for nutritional info based on the exact ingredients you use.

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