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13 Types Of Mushrooms

November 24, 2021
Mushrooms

Mushrooms can be an acquired taste and texture for some, but the meaty veggies are full of health benefits. Depending on the variety, mushrooms are rich in vitamins and minerals, like vitamin D, potassium, selenium, and copper, says culinary and integrative dietitian Marisa Moore, MBA, RDN, L.D. Plus, they’re incredibly versatile.

“They can take on any flavor or texture,” registered dietitian Aja Gyimah, MHSc, R.D., tells mbg, “it just depends on how you cook them.”

So while you may keep only a few types of mushrooms in your cooking rotation, there are plenty out there to choose from. These 13 popular varieties offer a range of uses and health benefits:

1. Shiitake mushrooms

Shiitake mushrooms are native to East Asia and commonly found in Asian cuisines. These earthy-tasting mushrooms are distinguishable by their rounded brown tops, resembling an umbrella. They are high in fiber, which can help support digestion and heart health, registered dietitian Brenna Wallace, M.S., RDN, LDN, says. 

Best for: Sautés, stir-friesramen. “They can also be found in medicinal mushroom blends in tinctures and dried products,” integrated immunologist Heather Moday, M.D., says. However, the best way to get the benefits is by eating them.

2. Portobello mushrooms

Portobello are large in size with a flat cap. They have a dense, meaty texture and are commonly used in Italian dishes or as a plant-based substitute to meat. According to Wallace, they’re a great source of potassium, which can help manage high blood pressure.

Best for: Hamburgers (they can replace the bun for a gluten-free burger, or the patty for a plant-based burger), tacos, or other hearty “meat” dishes, like pot roast.

3. Maitake (Hen of the Woods)

Maitake are also called hen of the woods mushrooms. They grow in a cluster at the bottom of trees and offer a rich umami flavor.

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