We can’t have it all. Sometimes we need a shiitake mushrooms substitute to get dinner on the table.
Let’s take a look at 21 shiitake mushroom substitutes below.
Most people love Shiitake mushrooms because they have a nutty and buttery flavor and a pleasantly chewy texture.
These mushrooms aren’t cheap and can enrich your recipes, especially Asian ones.
Shiitake mushrooms taste best when sautéed. (Agree or disagree?)
However, you can also grill or stuff these mushrooms with your favorite filling.
If you don’t have Shiitake mushrooms at hand, don’t worry.
There are so many shiitake mushroom substitutes out there, and some aren’t even other mushrooms, either fresh or dried!
Check out #21 for another veggie choice that should work well in your recipes!
Below, I will share 21 substitutes that can deliver similar results and save your recipes, but first, let’s learn more about Shiitake mushrooms.
What’s the flavor of Shiitake Mushrooms?
Shiitake mushrooms have a unique, rich, savory flavor.
I would describe the taste of these mushrooms as meaty, woodsy, or earthy with a subtle smokiness.
Shiitake mushrooms have a great umami taste, often described as a “fifth taste” after sweet, sour, salty, and bitter; that’s why it’s part of many Asian dishes.
You can use Shiitake mushrooms in soups, stir-fries, and other dishes.
How shiitake mushrooms are used in cooking
You can use Shiitake mushrooms in various ways in cooking, from appetizers to side dishes, such as the following:
Sautéed or Stir-Fried
Shiitake mushrooms can be sliced, sautéed, or stir-fried with vegetables or meat for a rich, savory flavor.
Soups and Broths
You can mix Shiitake mushrooms substitutes into soups and broths for flavor and a meaty texture.
The traditional Japanese broth, dashi, includes Shiitake mushrooms.
So, if you’re looking for a unique recipe with these mushrooms, consider dashi.
Dried Shiitake Mushrooms
Dried Shiitake mushrooms can be rehydrated and used in soups, broths, tea, and stir-fries.
They have a more concentrated, smoky flavor than fresh mushrooms.
Shiitake mushrooms can be grilled and used as a topping for burgers, sandwiches, or as a side dish.
You can stuff Shiitake mushrooms with cheese, herbs, breadcrumbs, and more.
You can slice and sauté Shiitake mushrooms with some garlic and olive oil. Then, mix these delicious mushrooms into your pasta dishes for a better flavor.
Shiitake mushrooms can be sliced and sautéed, then added to risotto for a rich, earthy flavor.
Shiitake mushrooms work in different salads because of their meaty texture and unique flavor.
22 Best Shiitake Mushrooms Substitutes
If your recipe asks for Shiitake mushrooms, but you don’t have any at home, don’t worry.
We have curated this list of best shiitake substitutes to use at home.
Here’s a list of common and maybe not-so-common substitutes for Shiitake mushrooms:
1. Porcini Mushrooms
Porcini mushrooms, also known as cèpes, have a meaty texture and a strong, earthy, nutty, and slightly woodsy flavor, like Shiitake mushrooms.
Some meals where you can use Porcini mushrooms instead of Shiitake mushrooms include soups and broths, pasta dishes, risottos, stir-fries, burgers, sandwiches, stuffed mushroom recipes and grilled mushroom dishes, and salads.
Keep in mind that the flavor of Porcini mushrooms is stronger than Shiitake mushrooms, so it’s crucial to use them in a way that complements the flavors of other ingredients.
Therefore, you can use Porcini mushrooms as a substitute for Shiitake mushrooms in a 1:1 ratio.
Some meals where you can use Cremini mushrooms instead of Shiitake include omelets and scrambled eggs, soups and stews, pasta dishes, stir-fries, grilled mushroom dishes, stuffed mushroom dishes, and salads.
Crimini mushrooms, also known as baby bellas, have a similar texture to Shiitake and a milder, earthy flavor. They can be used as a 1:1 substitute.
3. Oyster Mushrooms
Oyster mushrooms have distinctive oyster-shaped caps.
They have a mild, earthy flavor and a tender, meaty texture similar to Shiitake mushrooms.
So, you can use these mushrooms as a substitute for Shiitake in your dishes in a 1:1 ratio.
4. Portobello Mushrooms
Portobello mushrooms have a meaty texture and a rich, earthy flavor.
Also, because of their large size, they’re often used as a meat substitute.
You can also use Portobello mushrooms instead of Shiitake in a 1:1 ratio, as they share a similar texture and flavor.
5. Maitake Mushrooms
Also known as “hen of the woods,” Maitake mushrooms have a distinctive frilly, ruffled appearance and a delicate, meaty texture.
These mushrooms resemble Shiitake in texture and flavor. So, if you don’t have Shiitake at hand, you can use maitake in your recipe in a 1:1 ratio.
6. White Button Mushrooms
White button mushrooms, also known as Agaricus bisporus, have a mild, earthy flavor and a firm texture that becomes slightly chewy when cooked.
You can consume these mushrooms raw, cooked, or canned.
They taste great in soups, stews, sandwiches, pizzas, and pasta dishes.
The White Button mushrooms have a milder flavor than Shiitake.
However, you can still use these mushrooms instead of Shiitake in a 1:1 ratio and yield similar results.
7. Enoki Mushrooms
Enoki mushrooms, also known as Enokitake or “golden needle mushrooms,” have long, thin stems with small, delicate caps and a slightly crunchy texture.
They have a slightly sweet and fruity flavor and taste lovely in soups, salads, and stir-fries.
Lastly, Enoki mushrooms look unique, so they make a beautiful garnish.
You can also use Enoki mushrooms in recipes that call for Shiitake because they share a similar delicate texture and flavor. Use half the amount as a substitute for Shiitake.
These mushrooms have a concentrated, smoky flavor and can be used as a substitute for fresh Shiitake mushrooms.
Use about 1/4 of dried Shiitake mushrooms (1:4) and reconstitute them in water before using, then use cup for cup.
9. Dried Porcini Mushrooms
You can use dried Porcini mushrooms as a substitute for fresh Shiitake mushrooms, as they have a strong, earthy flavor.
Use about 1:4 dried Porcini mushrooms and reconstitute them in water before using. Then use them cup for cup.
10. King Oyster Mushrooms
King oyster mushrooms, also known as Pleurotus eryngii, have a thick, meaty stem and a small cap.
These mushrooms have a slightly sweet, nutty, earthy flavor and a tender but firm texture.
So, they will blend well in pizzas, pasta dishes, sandwiches, stews, soups, etc.
They’re also a traditional ingredient in some Mediterranean and Asian cuisines.
King Oyster mushrooms and Shiitake have a similar texture. Therefore, you can use these mushrooms instead of Shiitake in your recipes in a 1:1 ratio.
11. Pioppino Mushrooms
Pioppino mushrooms, also known as Agrocybe aegerita, have a dark brown cap and a white stem, and they have a meaty texture and a nutty, earthy flavor.
They taste amazing in soups, stews, pasta dishes, and pizzas. Therefore, you can use these mushrooms instead of Shiitake in your recipes in a 1:1 ratio.
12. Chanterelle Mushrooms
Chanterelle mushrooms, also known as Cantharellus cibarius, have a distinctive shape with a trumpet-like cap.
They have a rich, earthy, slightly fruity flavor and a meaty texture.
They’re common in sautés, stews, soups, and pasta dishes.
You can use these mushrooms instead of Shiitake in a 1: 1 ratio because they share a similar texture and flavor.
13. Black Trumpet Mushrooms
Black trumpet mushrooms, also known as Craterellus cornucopioides or horn of plenty, have a dark, funnel-shaped cap with a wrinkled texture and a thin, black stem.
They have a strong, rich, earthy flavor and a delicate, meaty texture, so they blend well in soups, sauces, and stuffings.
You can also use these delicious mushrooms as a garnish or a substitute for Shiitake in a 1:1 ratio because they share a similar texture and flavor.
14. Hedgehog Mushrooms
Hedgehog mushrooms, also known as Hydnum repandum, have small spines or “teeth” underneath and a thick stem.
They also have a slightly nutty, sweet, and delicate flavor and a meaty texture, making them a great addition to soups, pasta dishes, stews, risotto, omelets, etc.
Hedgehog mushrooms have a similar taste and flavor to Shiitaki. So, you can use these mushrooms instead of Shiitaki in a 1:1 ratio and yield similar results.
15. Trumpet Royale Mushrooms
Trumpet Royale mushrooms, also known as Craterellus tubaeformis or trumpet des morts, have a dark, funnel-shaped cap with a wrinkled texture.
They have a strong, rich, earthy flavor and a meaty texture, so they work well in soups, sauces, and stuffings.
You can also use these mushrooms as a beautiful garnish or substitute for other mushrooms in dishes, such as Shiitake, in a 1:1 ratio.
16. Lion’s Mane Mushrooms
Lion’s Mane mushrooms, also known as Hericium erinaceus, have a unique look with long, shaggy spines resembling a lion’s mane and a white or cream-colored cap.
They have a slightly seafood-like taste and a texture similar to crab meat.
You can use these mushrooms in your soups, stews, and pasta dishes.
They have a sweet, seafood-like flavor, but you can still use Lion’s Mane instead of Shiitake in a 1:1 ratio because of their similar meaty texture.
17. Dried Seaweed
Dried seaweed such as hijiki or wakame can be reconstituted and used in dishes that call for Shiitake mushrooms.
They add a similar umami flavor and can be used in a 1:1 ratio.
Tempeh is a fermented soybean product with a meaty texture and a nutty, savory flavor.
You can use Tempeh as a substitute for Shiitake in vegetarian and vegan dishes.
Tofu has a similar texture to Shiitake mushrooms and can be flavored with soy sauce and other seasonings to mimic the savory taste of Shiitake mushrooms.
Seitan, also known as wheat gluten, has a chewy texture and can be flavored with soy sauce and other seasonings to mimic the savory taste of Shiitake mushrooms.
Eggplant has a meaty texture and can be grilled or sautéed to accomplish the texture of Shiitake mushrooms.
You can also season your eggplant with soy sauce or other savory seasonings for similar results.
What is special about shiitake mushrooms?
They’re also versatile and taste great in many dishes, such as soups, stir-fries, and stews.
You can also dry and use Shiitake mushrooms as a seasoning.
Shiitake mushrooms, also known as Lentinula edodes, have a rich, meaty flavor and a slightly chewy texture.
They’re popular for outdoor and indoor cultivation because they don’t need much care.
Lastly, these mushrooms can break down dead wood and enrich the soil.
What happens if you eat raw shiitake mushrooms?
Eating raw shiitake mushrooms can cause different digestive issues and allergic reactions.
You should always cook shiitake mushrooms thoroughly before consumption to reduce the risk of digestive issues and allergic skin reactions.
Consuming a large amount of shiitake mushrooms can result in liver toxicity.
Can I substitute fresh shiitake for dried?
You can substitute fresh shiitake mushrooms for dried mushrooms, but the flavor and texture will differ.
Fresh shiitake mushrooms have a delicate flavor and a soft texture.
On the other hand, dried shiitake mushrooms have a strong, more intense flavor and a chewy texture.
When substituting fresh shiitake mushrooms for dried ones, you will need to use more fresh mushrooms to get the same level of flavor.
A general rule of thumb is to use about three times as many fresh shiitake mushrooms as dried.
The cooking time may vary when using fresh mushrooms instead of dried ones.
So, you may need to adjust the recipe accordingly.
Do you wash shiitake mushrooms before cooking?
Mushrooms are delicate and dissolve quickly in hot water (just like in a hot pan), so you don’t want to soak them or scrub hard.
If they’re super dirty, rinse each mushroom quickly under running water and pat dry with a towel before cooking.
They’re porous and absorb water, resulting in different textures and flavors.
But, some shiitake mushrooms are really dirty, with caked on mud and dirt.
If so, clean shiitake mushrooms with a wet cloth or soft vegetable brush before using in your recipes.
Here are some of our tips for washing mushrooms!
The bottom line
If your recipe asks for Shiitake mushrooms, don’t worry because there’s a wide range of yummy substitutes with a similar texture and flavor that will provide similar results.
More Mushroom Ideas
- Best Mushroom Recipes (all kinds!)
- 18 Different Types of Edible Mushrooms (what a list!)
- Tips for washing mushrooms
- What are portobello mushrooms?
- Try these cremini mushroom recipes!
- Porcini Mushrooms
- Cremini Mushrooms
- Oyster Mushrooms
- Portobello Mushrooms
- Maitake Mushrooms
- White Button Mushrooms
- Enoki Mushrooms
- Dried Shiitake Mushrooms
- Dried Porcini Mushrooms
- King Oyster Mushrooms
- Pioppino Mushrooms
- Chanterelle Mushrooms
- Black Trumpet Mushrooms
- Hedgehog Mushrooms
- Trumpet Royale Mushrooms
- Lion’s Mane Mushrooms
- Dried Seaweed
- Choose a shiitake mushrooms substitute from our epic list!
- Try 1 cup of chopped raw cremini mushrooms instead of 1 cup of shiitake mushrooms in your next saute recipe.