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How to Dry Mushrooms | NourishingJoy.com
 

Whether you grow mushrooms yourself, love to forage them (either in the deep woods or at your local farmer's market!), or just take delight in discovering a good sale on brown creminis at your local supermarket, there comes a time when it's super-de-duper handy to know how to dry mushrooms.

Now, I love fresh mushrooms. They're absolutely lovely in beef stroganoff, they're an essential part of some lasagnas, and, being the mushroom lover that I am, I even love them sautéed all by themselves in a bit of butter and garlic.

And except for the last one, dried mushrooms can perform just as well in those culinary capers, with the added benefit of being able to be stored for at least a year in a cool, dry place AND not having to worry about keeping fresh mushrooms on hand for those times when you've got a hankering for something shroom-y.

(Oh, and there's also the benefit of being able to eat them year-round, whether they're in season or not!)

Thus, I consider dried mushrooms a pantry staple!

 

How to Dry Mushrooms (and how to use them!)

 

How to Dry Mushrooms

So, let's take a look at two easy ways to dry mushrooms – in the oven and in the dehydrator.

In both methods, start by cleaning the mushrooms. You want them to stay as dry as possible, so just rub them with a dry cloth if possible. However, if you need to use a wet cloth to get loose some stubborn bit of dirt or manure, make sure it's as wrung-out as possible before scrubbing the mushroom clean.

Next, slice the mushrooms thinly – aim for the thickness of about two pennies (about 1/8″) if you can. If not, don't sweat it – thicker slices just take a little bit longer to dry. Also, some varieties that don't have a very wide cap dehydrate well whole or slice just once lengthwise.

How to Dry Mushrooms in the Oven

Preheat the oven to 150F.

Place the sliced mushrooms on a parchment-lined baking sheet in a single layer. No overlapping, no layering, just laid out simply.

Dry for one hour. If you don't have young children or pets running around, you may want to leave the oven door slightly ajar to let moisture escape.

After that first hour, flip each mushroom slice over and blot up any moisture with a kitchen towel.

Return to the oven for at least one more hour, flipping and blotting again if necessary.

The mushrooms are fully dried when they're hard to the touch and have no spongy feel at all. They should snap easily and break apart like a dry cracker.

Store in a dry, air-tight container. Dried mushrooms will last for AT LEAST one year if stored away from moisture and direct light.

 

How to Dry Mushrooms in a Food Dehydrator

Place the sliced mushrooms on the dehydrator's trays in a single layer. Set temperature to approximately 110F. (You may certainly go higher if you want to speed up the process, but the nutrients in the mushrooms will remain more intact if you dry at a lower temperature.)

Dry for 4-6 hours, then check for doneness. Continue dehydrating until the mushrooms are bone-dry, usually 6-10 hours, depending on the thickness of the mushrooms, the dehydrating temperature, and the relative humidity of the air.

The mushrooms are fully dried when they're hard to the touch and have no spongy feel at all. They should snap easily and break apart like a dry cracker.

Store in a dry, air-tight container. Dried mushrooms will last for AT LEAST one year if stored away from moisture and direct light.

 

How to Use Dried Mushrooms

To reconstitute dried mushrooms, it's best to rehydrate them, then use them in your dishes.

I KNOW it's tempting to toss them into soups, stews, and pasta sauces as is, since they'll be rehydrating during the cooking process anyways, but by reconstituting them first, you'll be sure to remove any renegade grit that showed up during the drying process (e.g. specks of dirt that emerged from the gills while the gills shriveled).

To reconstitute, simply place the dried mushrooms in a bowl and completely cover with boiling water. Let sit for 10-20 minutes, then drain, saving the soaking liquid, as it's a fabulous way to add flavor to your dishes when a bit more liquid is needed (obviously, check for the aforementioned grit first, if it's present – it tends to sink to the bottom).

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5 thoughts on “How to Dry Mushrooms

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  5. deadhead420 says:

    thanks for the great info ill be tripping balls in no time 😉 got some fresh shrooms from the forest floor but wanted to get them dried out before i munch em all and lose my mind haha

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