How to properly store and preserve fresh mushrooms

How to properly store and preserve fresh mushrooms

Pay attention to freshness when shopping

Because of their high water and protein content, all mushrooms perish quickly. For this reason, you should pay attention to freshness when shopping: Mushrooms sold in plastic packaging in particular quickly go bad. However, you can recognize fresh mushrooms by these characteristics:

  • closed or half-closed hat
  • firm, crisp fruiting body
  • no dark spots on hat and stem
  • pleasantly mushroom, aromatic-fresh smell
  • older mushrooms often have a slightly musty smell

also read

  • This is how you can preserve mushrooms
  • Freezing fresh mushrooms - this is how it's done
  • Some mushrooms can be poisonous

You can leave stained and musty-smelling mushrooms in the supermarket - even if they are prepared immediately, they will not deliver the expected mushroom aroma due to the poor quality.

Prefer young mushrooms when collecting

If you collect meadow mushrooms or other edible mushrooms, give preference to young, still closed or semi-closed specimens. The bigger a mushroom is, the older it is - and the meat is often spongy and infected by maggots. Because the protein content of mushrooms is up to 75%, they perish just as quickly as fresh meat. It often happens that hungry snails and beetles have gotten ahead of the gatherer and have already nibbled on the mushroom. You and the boarders can remove these feeding spots with a knife with a clear conscience.

Store fresh mushrooms properly

Fresh mushrooms should be prepared immediately after buying or collecting, because then they taste best. If that is not possible, you can also store the mushrooms in the refrigerator at temperatures between one and seven degrees Celsius for up to four days. You should observe the following rules:

  • Remove the outer packaging, especially plastic, from purchased mushrooms.
  • In this way you prevent the formation of condensation, which in turn promotes the formation of mold.
  • Only clean and cut the mushrooms just before they are cooked.
  • Do not wash the mushrooms.
  • Wrap the mushrooms in a dry cotton or linen cloth.
  • Keep them in the refrigerator's vegetable drawer.
  • Never leave fresh mushrooms out of the refrigerator for more than a day!

Although mushrooms should only be cleaned before preparation, this only applies to purchased specimens. You can roughly clean the field mushrooms you have collected yourself and remove damaged areas and maggots at home. Uncleaned wild mushrooms can otherwise be eaten in the refrigerator by undetected maggots.

Prepare the mushrooms for preparation

As with all mushrooms, you should always clean mushrooms with a dry cloth and never wash them, otherwise they will absorb an unnecessary amount of moisture. Otherwise you will need a kitchen board, a sharp kitchen knife, a mushroom brush (or a round brush) and kitchen paper for cleaning. First, the mushroom hats are cleaned with kitchen paper or by scraping with a knife. Often it is enough if the fungus is simply rubbed off with your fingers. Then the handle is cleaned by scraping and cutting. Carefully remove any remaining dirt with the mushroom brush or a fine paintbrush. Then cut the collected mushrooms lengthways to check for maggot damage. Finally, the mushrooms are cut into slices or coarse pieces as desired.

How to make mushrooms last longer

If you want to keep the mushrooms or even a mushroom dish prepared with them longer, you can either freeze or dry the cleaned and cut mushrooms. Mushrooms are also very suitable for canning or preserving or for preserving in vinegar or oil.


Frozen at around minus 18 degrees Celsius, fresh mushrooms can be kept for up to six months. For this purpose, however, only freeze the mushrooms in a freezer, not in the freezer compartment of the refrigerator. This does not reach the temperatures required for a longer shelf life, which is why the mushrooms stored in it must also be used within a short time. Prepared mushroom dishes must be shock-frozen fresh and immediately after cooking or frying, as they spoil very quickly and harmful bacteria can colonize. They keep in the freezer for a maximum of two to three months.


Mushrooms can be dried relatively well, which is best done in a special automatic dehydrator. If you don't have one, you can dry the thinly sliced ​​mushrooms on a baking sheet in the oven. To do this, heat the oven to 50 to a maximum of 70 ° C and clamp a wooden spoon between the door and the oven - this will allow any moisture to escape. However, the procedure takes several hours.


You can make a mushroom powder from dried mushrooms, which is wonderfully suitable as a seasoning for soups, sauces and other dishes. All you have to do is grind the dried mushrooms, for example in a coffee grinder.

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