Pickling Mushrooms: A Delicious Way to Preserve Your Foraging Finds

Pickling Mushrooms: A Delicious Way to Preserve Your Foraging Finds

For many foragers and culinary enthusiasts, preserving mushrooms through pickling is not just a means to extend their shelf life but a way to add a flavorful twist to meals year-round. Pickling is an ancient food preservation technique that not only maintains the mushroom's texture and nutritional value but also enhances its taste with spices and brines.

Why Pickle Mushrooms?

Mushrooms are seasonal delights, often abundant in fall but scarce at other times of the year. Pickling allows you to enjoy the earthy flavors of mushrooms like chanterelles, morels, and porcinis well beyond their natural harvesting season. Additionally, pickled mushrooms are versatile in the kitchen, serving as a perfect accompaniment to salads, sandwiches, and charcuterie boards.

Choosing the Right Mushrooms for Pickling

While most mushrooms can be pickled, the best candidates are those with firm textures and mild flavors, such as button mushrooms, creminis, and oysters. These varieties absorb the pickling brines well and retain their crispness. It's crucial to use fresh mushrooms for pickling to ensure the best flavor and texture in the finished product.

Preparing Your Mushrooms

Before pickling, clean the mushrooms thoroughly to remove any dirt or debris. It’s important to avoid washing them under a running tap as they absorb water; instead, wipe them with a damp cloth. If the mushrooms are large, you can slice them into smaller pieces to ensure even flavor absorption.

The Pickling Process


  • Fresh mushrooms
  • Water
  • White vinegar or apple cider vinegar
  • Salt
  • Sugar (optional, for a sweeter brine)
  • Spices (e.g., garlic, dill, peppercorns, mustard seeds)


  1. Sterilize Your Jars: Begin by sterilizing the jars and lids in boiling water to prevent contamination and ensure the longevity of your pickled mushrooms.
  2. Prepare the Brine: In a pot, combine equal parts of water and vinegar. Add salt and sugar to taste. Bring the mixture to a boil, ensuring the salt and sugar dissolve completely.
  3. Add Spices: Add your chosen spices to the jars. Classic pickling spices include garlic, dill, and peppercorns for a traditional flavor.
  4. Blanch the Mushrooms: Blanch the mushrooms in boiling water for two minutes to soften them slightly. This step is crucial for enhancing the mushrooms' ability to absorb the brine.
  5. Pack the Jars: Place the blanched mushrooms in the sterilized jars.
  6. Cover with Brine: Pour the hot brine over the mushrooms, ensuring they are completely submerged. Leave about half an inch of headspace at the top of the jar.
  7. Seal and Store: Tighten the lids and let the jars cool to room temperature. Store them in the refrigerator for at least one week before consuming. This waiting period allows the flavors to develop fully.

Serving and Enjoying Pickled Mushrooms

Pickled mushrooms are a delightful addition to many dishes. You can serve them as a garnish for hearty roasts, add them to pasta for a tangy twist, or simply enjoy them straight from the jar as a low-calorie snack.


Pickling is a straightforward and satisfying way to preserve the bounty of your mushroom foraging. It not only extends the shelf life of these fungi but also offers a new way to enjoy their unique flavors all year round. Whether you're a seasoned forager or a novice in the kitchen, pickling mushrooms is a rewarding endeavor that adds a gourmet touch to your culinary creations.

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