15 Types of Edible Mushrooms (w/ Pictures & Recipes)
For a growing number of people, mushrooms are a specialty. Boasting a meaty texture and a unique earthiness that makes them stand out in every meal, mushrooms are becoming a go-to ingredient for those who enjoy chewy bites that carry intense, rich flavors.
However, there are more than 14,000 mushroom types. Now, the big question is, which ones are edible? And secondly, which are the most popular edible mushroom types around the world.
In this detailed guide, we provide you with the answer and a bunch of mushroom recipes to try out.
15 Edible Mushrooms You Will Want to Try at Least Once
1. Button Mushrooms
This is one of the most common mushrooms. Walk to the grocery store and there is every chance you will find this mushroom on sale.
We will not lie saying these mushrooms have the most standout flavor – they do not. However, you will want to use them in your dishes for their texture.
Add button mushrooms to a salad raw and you will enjoy their chewy, rugged texture. Prefer to eat them cooked? Well, grill or sauté these mushrooms to make the flavor more affluent and profound.
If you still think button mushrooms are bland, you haven’t added spices. The mushrooms pair well with herbs and spices for a more exciting taste.
Try this recipe: Stuffed figs with button mushrooms
2. Cremini Mushrooms
Don’t be surprised when someone calls these mushrooms baby Bella – this is another name for them. Cremini mushrooms sit in the same category as button mushrooms, though they take a little longer than button mushrooms to mature.
Cremini mushrooms pack a better punch with their flavor and are more savory and meatier than button mushrooms. Cremini mushrooms are also more versatile than button mushrooms, making a good addition to various recipes.
They can be eaten raw if you want to add them to a salad. But when you grill, roast, or sauté them, you create a whole new level of taste.
Try this recipe: Port wine mushrooms gravy
3. Portobello Mushrooms
Button, cremini, and now portobello are all of the same species. Portobello, however, take the longest to mature, explaining why they are much bigger than cremini and button mushrooms.
Portobello mushrooms boast a more intense and robust flavor. You can remove their stems and cook the cap to enjoy this flavor.
Slice the cap and sauté it. Alternatively, you can throw the entire cap in a grill and combine it with other ingredients to prepare what most mushroom lovers call a portobello mushroom burger.
Try this recipe: Portobello mushrooms with red wine
4. Brown Beech
Brown beech dominates Asian cuisines. However, they are versatile and can work for many dishes. Their pleasant texture and mild flavor mean they go with all cuisines.
Brown beech mushrooms grow together in bunches. You can, however, separate them pretty quickly and use them as an ingredient when making your pasta, risotto, or stir-fries.
Brown beech boasts a buttery and nutty flavor. In the kitchen, keep things simple by sauteing or steaming your brown beech mushrooms. You can also eat these mushrooms raw; their nice crunchy texture makes them an ideal addition to salads.
Brown beech are ideal if you branch out from the regular edible mushrooms and try something new. The mushroom has a pleasant and light flavor, and its texture is not intimidating.
Try this recipe: Sautéed beech mushrooms in chili oil
5. Black Trumpet
These mushrooms look exactly as their name suggests. They resemble a trumpet and have a blackish color. You will love these mushrooms for their concentrated rich taste.
You can find black trumpets dried in the grocery store. However, you will enjoy much more flavor if you can get your hands on the fresh version.
The black trumpet makes some nice stir-fries. However, when cooking your black trumpet, keep its delicate nature in mind; you don’t want to apply intense heat for a long time.
Black trumpet shows up in the late summer and prefers the Midwest and eastern climate. Therefore, watch out for this unique mushroom when hiking in September and August.
Try this recipe: Black trumpet mushroom pasta
Chanterelles impress even before taking the first bite. These mushrooms feature an attractive yellow-orange color that is bright and eye-catching. You will most likely find the fresh version of chanterelles in the wild, although you can also find them in the grocery store.
But you may need to part with a good amount of money as chanterelles are not the most common fungus. However, they are worth every pretty penny you pay for them.
Biting into them acquaints your tongue with the mushroom’s unique deep, woodsy flavor. Although the mushrooms are tasty, you may want to make them more interesting by sautéing them in butter to make a side dish.
Try this recipe: Seabass with cauliflower puree and chanterelles
7. King Oyster
Though odd-looking, do not let the appearance of king oysters deceive you. Their flavor is everything but odd and gives a ton of flavor with each bite. They have a nice meaty texture similar to seafood such as calamari and scallops.
While mushrooms are mostly commonly served as a side, king oysters make a delectable main. Because of their striking appearance and texture, you can use these mushrooms to prepare a perfect main course.
These mushrooms are fantastic when you grill or sear them and then generously season them with oil and salt. Treat this fungus as meat if you want to prepare a standout dish.
Try this recipe: Sea bream with king oysters and leek cream
8. Oyster Mushrooms
This fungus gets its name from its cap, which resembles the shape and color of oysters. You will find oyster mushrooms growing in clusters. The thin edge on every mushroom gets crunchy when cooked right.
Like the king oyster, oyster mushrooms also have a seafood taste. However, in oyster mushrooms, the flavor tends to be mild and delicate, although it can be more complex than other mushrooms.
When you get your hands on oyster mushrooms, consider sautéing them as a side dish. However, do not stop there; go ahead and use them for risotto or pasta, as they add an interesting texture. Oyster mushrooms are versatile; think of anything to pair with them, and chances are, you will be correct.
Try this recipe: Stuffed figs
9. Porcini Mushrooms
Italian and French cuisine fans have probably come across the porcini mushrooms, though chances are, you didn’t know you were chewing on a porcini. These mushrooms are a perfect meat replacement that works every time.
Porcini mushrooms are meaty, hearty, and thick, making them a perfect choice for vegans who enjoy a meat texture and a woodsy flavor. The mushroom is generally ideal for meals that need more cooking time. Therefore, if you want to reduce the cooking time, try one of the other options we have on this list.
You will never run out of ideas for cooking porcini. These mushrooms are an excellent addition to risotto as they hold their texture and shape more than less thick mushrooms. Porcini mushrooms are also an ideal addition to stews and soups.
If you do not have access to fresh porcini, don’t dismiss the dried version. You can reconstitute these in dishes such as braised brisket.
Try this recipe: Porcini mushroom risotto
10. Enoki Mushrooms
Enoki have such a distinct appearance people often dismiss them. They have long, thin stalks branching together in bunches. The stalks terminate at the top with a button-like cap.
Enoki is one of the most common mushrooms in Asian food. These mushrooms are so versatile you can cook them in various ways. However, if you have a veggie dish or a salad and want to incorporate a nice touch of crunchiness, you can eat enoki raw.
Enoki mushrooms are delicious in soups. Cook them until they become tender and add them to your bowl of brothy noodles. Prefer cooking your enokis on a skillet? Then consider getting this fungus brown with plenty of crunchy edges.
Try this recipe: Mushroom Risotto
11. Maitake Mushrooms
Nicknamed “hen of the woods”, maitake mushrooms grow well in the United States, Canada, and Europe. In Asia, maitake mushrooms are common in Japan and China. Maitake mushrooms grow in clusters; the feature that identifies them is the top, which forms a feathery pattern.
You are more likely to find maitake in the wild than in the grocery store. However, remember that mushrooms can be poisonous, therefore, if you are foraging for maitake, ensure you have a mushroom expert by your side.
Maitake is a delicious mushroom with a subtle yet lovely meaty quality that makes it ideal for pairing with different foods. The hen of the woods tastes excellent sautéed. However, you can always add it to your stir-fries when you need a meat-free alternative.
Try this recipe: maitake mushrooms with garlic sauce
Morels are among the most sought-after mushrooms due to their unique spongy texture and deep, nutty flavor. You cannot cultivate these mushrooms domestically. The only way to access them is to go out into the wild, explaining why you may have to pay a premium price if you find them at the grocery store.
Turning morels into a meal is not too complicated. You can keep things simple and sauté your morels in butter, bringing out their natural, nutty flavor.
If you want a more detailed preparation, you can pair morels with asparagus for a morel-asparagus risotto. For those of you happy to eat meat, a wild morel mushroom sauce is ideal with grilled meats.
Try this recipe: poached lobster with peas and morels
Shiitake are common in East Asian cuisines. These mushrooms carry some medicinal properties, which is why they are a common ingredient in healthy soups.
Shiitake does not have a strong flavor, making them an excellent option for people getting started with mushrooms. Shiitake carries an earthy, woodsy taste when you eat them raw. However, cook them, and you bring out their rich umami flavor that tastes great in various dishes.
You can sauté these mushrooms. Alternatively, you can add the mushrooms to your soups. If soups are not your thing, you can roast or fry them. Adding them to your pizza will take it to the next level.
Try this recipe: Mushroom consommé
14. Lion’s Mane Mushrooms
Think of a weeping willow and you’ll get an idea of what lion’s mane mushrooms looks like. Lion’s mane is easy to recognize and finds the climates in Asia, Europe, and North America favorable for growth.
This edible mushroom delivers a subtle, seafood-like taste. Its insides have a meaty texture, which makes it a perfect meat substitute for vegans and vegetarians. The long, white strands resembling the mane of a lion are also edible; they get nice and crispy when sautéed.
Additionally, according to Nature’s Rise, you can use lion’s mane in many recipes. It works well with many spices, meaning you can tailor-make it to suit your palate.
Try this recipe: Lion’s Mane Steak Recipe
Fresh truffles come in three distinct varieties: burgundy, black, and white. These varieties feature varying flavors and grow in different seasons.
You will only find fresh truffles in the wild, which explains why they may be expensive if you find them at the grocery store. However, if you get your hands on fresh truffles, you will understand why people consider them a high-end mushroom.
Truffles are different, especially compared to the other mushrooms on this list. While you may want to cook most mushrooms, you won’t want be doing that with truffles as cooking ruins their delicate taste. Instead, shave this unique fungus on top of your favorite dishes to enjoy its rich flavor.
Try this recipe: Pavlova with Tangerine and Black Truffles
Edible mushrooms pack a nutritional punch. Mushrooms are low in fat and carbs, high in fiber, and provide many vitamins, including A, C, B12, B6, and selenium. Interestingly, mushrooms are the only veggies that deliver vitamin D.
This article discusses 15 popular edible mushrooms. Try these mushrooms alone or combine them with your favorite dishes. Whatever route you take, we are sure you will enjoy their unique flavor and texture.