Common Name: Oyster Mushroom (Looks like an oyster and has a fishy smell)

Scientific Name: Pleurotis ostreatus (from Greek pleura - Side and otos - ear and            Latin ostreatus "rough like and oyster shell" )


The oyster mushroom grows throughout the year in clusters on trees, stumps, and dead logs. It is characterized by a stem, or stipe, that grows out of the side and a “wing-like” fruiting body with widely spaced gills.  It is usually white in the summer months and tan to brown in the winter months. It is an excellent edible and is one of the main specialty mushrooms among the 1 billon pounds of mushrooms grown commercially in the United States every year (80% of which are button mushrooms,  Agaricus bisporus).


Potpourri:  The oyster mushroom, like most of the other edible fungi, is highly nutritious. One large oyster mushroom contains 6 grams of protein (12% of MDR) and 4 grams of dietary fiber (14% of MDR).  It is also an excellent source of B-vitamins, particularly Riboflavin, important for good vision, and Niacin, important for digestive and neurological function.  It has twice the amount of Riboflavin as 8 ounces of yogurt.


A single oyster mushroom has more potassium (764mg - 22 % MDR) than a banana (467mg). It also has almost one third of the MDR for selenium (27 micrograms), an essential mineral that works closely with vitamin E to reduce antioxidants and is believed to play an important role in preventing prostate cancer.  There are no vegetable sources of selenium so vegetarians must either take a mineral supplement or eat mushrooms.

Website Home Page