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How to Store Fresh, Frozen, and Dried Mushrooms
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How to Store Fresh, Frozen, and Dried Mushrooms

Maddie S.
Maddie S.
August 30, 2023
6 min

The tasty and versatile potential of mushrooms are everywhere, from adding serious flavor to all sorts of dishes to providing psychedelic mind-expanding experiences. But let’s face it; nobody likes a slimy, moldy mushroom. So, how long do mushrooms last, and what can we do to maximize their shelf life?

We’ll dive into the nitty-gritty of mushroom freshness, from how long they last on their own, to the best ways to store them, and even how to tell if you have bad mushrooms in your fridge. 

The different types of mushrooms

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The main “forms” of mushrooms you will encounter in your kitchen are fresh and dried mushrooms. While both can be great ingredients in the kitchen, their texture, flavor, and overall cooking method will differ.

Fresh mushrooms

Fresh mushrooms include any of the raw mushrooms you find in the produce aisle of your grocery store, farmers market, or growing in nature (although we only recommend ingesting those if you are experienced in identifying wild mushrooms!).

Some of the most common varieties of culinary fungi you will see are oyster mushrooms, button mushrooms, cremini, portobello, porcini, and enoki. They might come as sliced or whole mushrooms.

Psychedelic mushrooms are often consumed fresh, as they are more potent in this form. However, as we’ll discuss later, this dramatically reduces their shelf life, so some people opt to take dried shrooms instead.

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Dried mushrooms

Dried mushrooms are mushrooms that have gone through a dehydration process, removing all water from them. They are found as whole mushrooms but can also be ground and combined to create different flavors and effects.

Some of the best mushrooms to use dried are shiitake, chantarelles, porcini, and oyster, as they have a richer flavor for cooking than other varieties. Many dried mushroom powders also target amazing health benefits, including reishi, chaga, lion’s mane, and cordyceps. These functional mushroom products can help support the immune system, nervous system, and overall well-being.

Because dried mushrooms have a much lower water content, they tend to have a much longer shelf life. However, in either case, it’s important to store your mushrooms properly to avoid exposure to mold and bacteria that may be harmful to your health. Spoiled mushrooms can also lead to sickness and gastrointestinal issues. Even if you don’t get sick, eating fresher, well-preserved mushrooms can ensure you’re getting the most flavor and nutritional benefit from them!

How long do fresh mushrooms last?

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The shelf life of fresh mushrooms can depend on a few factors, including how they have been prepared and stored. Typically, whole mushrooms can last up to ten days, while sliced mushrooms have a shorter shelf life, sometimes only five days if purchased pre-sliced.

Storing your fresh mushrooms correctly can help increase the timeframe of freshness. Here are a few tips to maximize freshness:

  • Reduce water: Similar to leafy greens, the more moisture mushrooms come in contact with, the quicker they will spoil. Therefore, it’s best to wait until you are about to eat them before washing. Some recipes even suggest forgoing water rinsing altogether, as the mushrooms can absorb a high amount of water and make a recipe soggy. Instead, a paper towel wipe can be effective. When storing, you can reduce moisture by wrapping the mushrooms in a porous container and including a paper towel to soak up excess water. Paper bags and cloth is much better than plastic containers and plastic wrap.
  • Keep cold, carry on: As with many groceries, it’s best to keep mushrooms stored in the fridge, and can actually extend their shelf life by up to 3 days.
  • Plan ahead: Smaller mushrooms typically spoil faster than larger ones
  • Avoid pre-slicing if possible
  • Use cooked mushrooms ASAP: Cooked mushrooms have a shorter lifespan than one might expect and are recommended to be consumed within three days and stored in the fridge immediately. Any cooked mushrooms left out at room temperature are not recommended to eat within as few as four hours

If your mushrooms start to become soft, mushy, slimy, or shriveled, they have most likely gone bad. You might be able to salvage some of the flavor of slightly shriveled mushrooms by air frying or baking them (or any cooking method that can aid in removing some of that extra moisture). However, if your mushrooms begin smelling unpleasant or you notice any mold or discoloration, don’t eat them!

How long do dried mushrooms last?

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Dried mushrooms are great kitchen staples due to their long shelf life. If kept properly and away from moisture,  dried mushrooms can last for years! And while the dehydration removes some of their nutritional value, this forever shelf life makes them a great ingredient to have on hand in your pantry for a convenient recipe nutrition boost.

Dried mushrooms can be whole, sliced, and even ground. They are sold as individual mushroom varieties, which are great for recipes when you want a specific flavor. They can also be sold as mushroom blends, providing a rich, umami blend of flavors and health benefits. Some dried mushroom powders are also paired with coffee and other drink mixes to make them convenient to incorporate into your wake-up and wind-down routines.

Storing dried mushrooms

Unlike fresh mushrooms, you want to store your dried mushrooms in as airtight of a container as possible. The main focus here is to keep moisture out of the container as much as possible. An airtight container or plastic bag can work great for this.

You also want to store the container in a dark, cool place, such as the back of your pantry or even your freezer. This is because you want to prevent the possibility of any mold growing inside the container, which thrives on light, warmth, and moisture.

If you see any mold growing on your dried mushrooms, notice any color changes and dark spots, or notice clumping or moisture buildup in the container, your mushrooms have most likely gone bad. It’s best to throw the entire amount away, as the mold and moisture may have spread to other parts of the dried mushrooms, even if it isn’t visible.

How to freeze mushrooms

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Frozen mushrooms are another excellent option for preserving mushrooms for longer, as they can last a few months in the freezer and maintain much of the nutritional value and flavor. Just as with fresh and dried mushrooms, it’s essential to follow the steps to freeze them properly to avoid a build-up of moisture and contaminants.

If you plan to freeze your mushrooms, it’s best to use cooked mushrooms instead of fresh ones. Cooking them first will allow them to keep flavor and texture throughout the freezing process rather than turning into a soggy mess from the moisture in the freezer. 

There are a couple of ways to cook mushrooms before freezing. The easiest and best are to steam and sauté them.

Steaming mushrooms before freezing

To steam mushrooms, let them soak in lemon water for 10 minutes. Lemon juice is great for preventing discoloration (pro tip: squirt some lemon juice over your packed salad or apple slices next time to prevent them from going bad before lunch!). You can then transfer the mushrooms to a pot, and cook with the lid on for 3-5 minutes until they are tender.

Sautéing mushrooms before freezing

To sauté, simply add the mushrooms to a pan with a small amount of oil. As mushrooms already can maintain a lot of moisture, less oil is more.

Once you’re ready to use your mushrooms, you can add them directly to your favorite recipes. Since the mushrooms are already cooked, there’s no need to thaw them. Thawing them might allow them to absorb too much moisture and get soggy.

Mushrooms are such a versatile food, adding rich, complex flavors to so many delicious recipes. As you experiment with these savory ingredients, storing fresh mushrooms away from moisture can help prevent spoilage for as long as possible. If you’re looking for even more convenience, dried and frozen mushrooms are another great option, as they can last months and even years if stored properly.

Storing and microdosing psychedelic mushrooms

If your mushrooms are fresh, frozen, or dry, the above steps still apply. For guides on magic mushrooms, or those that contain psilocybin, check out our guides on the individual species of psilocybin mushrooms. It’s important to note that hallucinogenic mushrooms, along with other psychedelic drugs like LSD, have been illegal in the United States since the 1970s. To learn more about preparing for a psychedelic experience or a mushroom trip, check out our guide to lemon tekking.

While there are more research studies on the effects of shrooms, from [treating anorexia](<Storing and microdosing psychedelic mushrooms Depending on your species and if it’s fresh or frozen, the above steps still apply. For guides on magic mushrooms, or those that contain psilocybin, check out our guides on the individual species of psilocybin mushrooms. It’s important to note that hallucinogenic mushrooms, along with other psychedelic drugs like LSD, have been illegal in the United States since the 1970s. To learn more about preparing for a psychedelic experience or a mushroom trip, check out our guide to lemon tekking.

While there are more research studies on the effects of shrooms, from treating anorexia to microdosing bringing a sense of peace to users, it’s important to apply a safe scene and setting to usage to prevent a bad trip. Approach your trip with positive mental health conditions to exercise gratitude, and be aware of the lingering effects.>) to microdosing bringing a sense of peace to users, it’s important to apply a safe scene and setting to usage to prevent a bad trip. Approach your trip with positive mental health conditions to exercise gratitude, and be aware of the lingering effects.


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Maddie S.

Maddie S.

Content Writer

Table Of Contents

1
The different types of mushrooms
2
How long do fresh mushrooms last?
3
How long do dried mushrooms last?
4
How to freeze mushrooms
5
Storing and microdosing psychedelic mushrooms

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