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Mushrooms: Feed’s All You Need Guide

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Mushrooms are an incredibly versatile ingredient. As a naturally-growing plant, mushrooms are chock-full of vitamins and nutrients to help your body stay healthy and balanced, and they taste delicious as well. Of course, there are always going to be species of mushrooms that are dangerous to consume, so be careful on your next camping trip! The mushrooms you’ll find at your local specialty store or supermarket, though, can help transform any meal into a healthier heartier treat! If you’re interested in learning more about the different types of mushrooms you can enjoy as well as some ways you can use them in your daily cooking, then this Pop’s Guide to Mushrooms is for you!

Mushrooms — What makes them so special

Mushrooms, a type of fungus typically found in damp, dark places such as forest floors, have been consumed in meals, medicines, and through other uses for thousands of years! While considered a vegetable, the mushroom contains a variety of substances that make for great substitutes for your typical burger or steak if you’re looking to eat a little less meat! Mushrooms have an umami flavor (rich, savory flavors) comparable to meats, cheeses, and soups. This magic is highly regarded within the culinary world, and many chefs utilize this within their cooking to build strong flavor profiles for their foods without having to compromise on the health and nutritious aspects of their meals.

Fun fact: did you know that the difference between popular varieties of mushrooms is just age? The older and more mature the mushroom gets, the more delicious and meaty its texture and flavor are! Talk about nature at its finest.

Types of Mushrooms and Ways to Use Them

There are hundreds of different mushrooms that are safe and delicious to eat! While we don’t have space to list all of them out, we wanted to name a few of our favorites and how you can use them to create delectable dishes you’ll keep wanting to come back to!

Button (White) Mushrooms

One, if not the most popular mushroom species, is the button (or white) mushroom! Button mushrooms are easy-to-find, easy-to-cook mushrooms that are versatile and yummy to eat. Whether you like to enjoy them in a traditional style with some butter, salt, and pepper or you enjoy a little more flare, button mushrooms make a great side for so many meals. Some great recipes you can enjoy with button mushrooms are these garlic mushrooms, button mushroom and prawn Japanese pancake, fried mushrooms, and this 15-minute mushroom teriyaki! Additionally, button mushrooms have only 21 calories per 1 cup and have 3 grams of protein, 2.9mg of calcium, 8.6mg of magnesium, and 305mg of potassium to name a few of their nutritious benefits.

Mushrooms, CookedMushrooms, Meal, ButtonMushrooms

Cremini (Italian Brown) Mushrooms

Another extremely popular and versatile mushroom is the cremini mushroom. Its distinctive brown top makes for a firmer and more flavorful texture and taste than that of its button mushroom cousin and its uses are tenfold as well. These mushrooms work best in soups as their texture holds up better in liquid than that of their counterpart, the button mushroom. Additionally, cremini mushrooms are considered baby portobellos as they are quite close in flavor and consistency, making them a great way to make your eggs, pasta, and other dishes more interesting without having the heaviness of portobello mushrooms. Some yummy ways to enjoy cremini mushrooms include this cremini mushroom pasta, this vegetarian mushroom pizza with fresh herbs, or even these mouth-watering stuffed mushroom recipe.

Portobello mushrooms

Portobello mushrooms are a staple within the mushroom world. As fully grown cremini mushrooms, portobellos are large with a meaty texture and full of rich flavor. Additionally, portobellos are typically in season from December through March, but you’ll be able to find them in your local grocery store year-round. With only 15 calories and more than 200mg of potassium with 1.7g of protein per serving, these mushrooms can help make great substitutes for vegan and vegetarian diets and make for a great burger substitute as well! Enjoy this stuffed portobello mushroom recipe, these portobello mushroom tacos, and this portobello mushroom burger!

Shiitake mushrooms

These mushrooms, typically found in east Asia, are another delicious and nutritious species of mushrooms that are quite easy to find and cook. Considered to have the ability to create the most umami, these mushrooms are the perfect addition for stir-frys, a side dish to complement a steak, or even pasta and risottos. Additionally, they are low in calories with the ability to help boost immunity and support heart health, making them a great addition to your dietary needs. Some great ways to enjoy shiitake mushrooms include this green bean and shiitake mushroom stir fry, this shiitake mushroom and soba noodle recipe, and fettuccine with shiitake mushroom and basil recipe.

Oyster mushrooms

Last but certainly not least, oyster mushrooms are another delicacy within the mushroom family. With a delicate texture and savory flavor, these mushrooms are commonly found in Chinese, Japanese, and Korean cooking but are also enjoyed in cuisines all around the world. They are best served fried, roasted, grilled, or sauteed and make for a great addition to soups and stews as well! Oyster mushrooms have 28 calories, and 3g of protein, and include high amounts of potassium, iron, and niacin, making them a great addition to your diet to help you get the nutrients you need. Some great ways to enjoy oyster mushrooms include this vegan pho, this teriyaki oyster mushroom steak, and these pan-fried oyster mushrooms.

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