Can you eat Raw Shiitake Mushrooms?

In this article, we will answer the question, “Can you eat Raw Shiitake Mushrooms?.  We will discuss the nutrients present in raw shiitake mushrooms and the benefits that are provided by them. 

Can you eat Raw Shiitake Mushrooms?

Yes, shiitake mushrooms can be eaten raw. However, you need to cleanse them completely to keep yourself safe from harmful bacteria. You can also cook these to enhance the taste. When cooked, shiitake mushrooms have a deep, meaty, and buttery flavor. Although shiitakes can be eaten raw, their flavor is considerably more prominent and developed when cooked.

Shiitake mushrooms are popular in Asian cuisine and are enjoyed by both vegetarians and non-vegans. Their dense, meaty texture makes them a good meat alternative in some meals, and their distinct flavor gives simple dishes like grilled steak more depth. Shiitake mushrooms can be found in high-end grocery stores and health food stores, both fresh and dried. They’re also available dry at Asian supermarkets.

Although fresh shiitake mushrooms can be eaten raw, many people believe they can’t because they’re usually marketed dried. While dried shiitake mushrooms are nutritionally comparable to fresh shiitake mushrooms, their flavor is stronger, and they must be soaked before eating. Fresh shiitake mushrooms have a more delicate texture than dried shiitake mushrooms, and their flavor is milder.

To use raw shiitake mushrooms, you must first clear them of debris and dirt. Place the mushrooms under running water and gently brush off the dirt with a paper towel or soft brush. The lower part of the shiitake mushroom stem — or the entire stem — can be chopped off to make the mushrooms simpler to consume. For added nutrition and flavour, slice the mushrooms into thin strips and spread them over a salad or a platter of fresh nachos.

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How to store and clean raw shiitake mushrooms

Shiitake mushrooms grow on trees, specifically rotting wooden logs. They don’t generally come with a lot of dirt in them, but you can give them a quick clean before using them. The following are the best ways to store and clean shiitake mushrooms:

Keep the mushrooms refrigerated in a paper bag (not the produce drawer). You can keep shiitake mushrooms in their original packaging, but the ideal way to store them is in a paper bag. Why? They can breathe because of the paper. To ensure adequate airflow, place them in the refrigerator’s main compartment rather than the produce drawer.

Rinse the mushrooms quickly to remove any dirt. Contrary to popular belief, it is actually fine to rinse your mushrooms.. This is the most effective method for cleaning mushrooms.

Read: How to cook shiitake mushrooms to perfection

Is it healthier to eat mushrooms raw or cooked?

Mushrooms that have been cooked are healthier. Anti-cancer effects are found in mushrooms. These nutrients become more absorbable for the body when the mushrooms are cooked. However, because they lose a lot of water mass when cooked, some of those nutrients are lost as well, so you’ll need to eat more. 

Some mushrooms can be eaten raw or cooked, as we’ve established. It’s critical to consider which of these two solutions is better for you. That’s exactly what we’ll be looking at in this part. To give you a heads up, the answer may be contradictory.

Health Benefits of Shiitake mushrooms

Shiitake mushrooms are abundant in copper, which is a mineral that aids the blood vessels and controls the functions of the immune system. Moreover, half a cup of shiitake mushrooms covers almost 72% of your daily recommended intake. The mushrooms are especially high in selenium, giving 33% of your daily recommended intake.

Shiitake mushrooms also have the following health benefits:

Improve your cardiovascular health.

Eritadenine, a chemical found in shiitake mushrooms, has been found to lessen the cholesterol level in blood. Moreover, they include beta-glucans, which assist in the reduction of inflammation and limit cholesterol absorption in the intestines.

Boost your immune system.

Lentinans and other beta-glucans are abundant in shiitake mushrooms. These substances protect cells from harm, aid the immune system, and increase the synthesis of white blood cells in the battle against microorganisms. Anti-inflammatory effects are also found in polysaccharides.

Nutritional profile of raw shiitake mushrooms

A ½ cup containing shiitake mushrooms includes the following nutrients:

  • 34 calories
  • Proteins constitute 2.5gm
  • 0.5gm are taken up by fats
  • Carbohydrates are 7gm
  • 3 grams of carbs
  • 2 g sugar
  • Na is present around 9mg

Vitamins and Minerals

Shiitake mushrooms are high in important vitamins and minerals, including:

  • Copper
  • Selenium
  • Thiamin
  • Riboflavin
  • Niacin
  • Vitamin B6 & Folate
  • Vitamin D
  • Potassium
  • Manganese

Other FAQs about Mushrooms that you may be interested in.

Can you eat shiitake raw?

Can you eat Raw White Mushrooms?

Can you eat button mushroom raw?


In this article, we answered the question, “Can you eat Raw Shiitake Mushrooms?.  We also discussed the nutrients present in raw shiitake mushrooms and the benefits that are provided by them. 


Hi, I am Charlotte, I love cooking and in my previous life, I was a chef. I bring some of my experience to the recipes on this hub and answer your food questions.