Mushroom Foraging Season Is Here

Interested in mushroom foraging? We asked fungi expert Kevin Sadlier where you can find some species in Marin as well as the best times to go out. Just remember: many mushrooms are poisonous. Before consuming anything you find, consult an expert or bring your haul to the Mill Valley Public Library on the third Wednesday of the month when the Mycological Society of Marin meets. Once they’re deemed safe, here is what you might do with your finds.


Porcini Boletus edulis

Season: October through late November

Grows Near: Bishop pine

Culinary Uses: Cook the stems slowly, in soups or braises, but sauté the caps in duck fat or butter. Great in pasta, risotto and gravies.


Matsutake Tricholoma matsutake

Season: Mid-November to early January

Grows Near: Tan oak

Culinary Uses: Cook in simple preparations such as soups, chowders or rice, or marinate it in soy sauce and grill to showcase the unusual flavor and aroma.


Chanterelle Cantharellus cibarius

Season: Almost year-round with enough precipitation

Grows Near: Fir, tan oak

Culinary Uses: Complements pork, chicken, rabbit, veal and quail, either in a stuffing or with a sauce.


Candy cap Lactarius camphoratus

Season: December to late January

Grows Near: Tan oak, pine (often near chanterelles)

Culinary Uses: Include in savory dishes that feature pork, squash, sweet potatoes or risotto or in curries.


Black trumpet Craterellus cornucopioides

Season: January to early March

Grows Near: Oak, mossy areas

Culinary Uses: Great with fish, in egg dishes or in soups.


Hedgehog Hydnum repandumHedgehog Mushroom

Season: March to early April

Grows Near: Bishop pine

Culinary Uses: Hedgehog mushrooms are excellent with meat, fish, poultry and game bird entrees. They also work in sauces, soups and sautés.


Morel Morchella esculenta

Season: April and May

Grows Near: Mulch piles and recently burned areas

Culinary Uses: Complemented by butter and cream. Great with chicken, veal or pork. Foraging Season