Coffee is a beloved drink for people in all parts of the world. The flavor, the aroma, the mind-refreshing effects—we all love coffee for either or all of its qualities. But, as much as it bums us, we also know that there are several downsides to caffeine consumption. Especially if you’re sensitive to caffeine.
But, what if someone told you that you can keep sipping on your favorite drink without worrying about all the not-so-nice stuff caffeine does to your body?
That’s where adding mushroom in coffee comes into the picture. Not only is mushroom coffee deemed as a coffee alternative, but also a highly nutritional drink.
Experts have spoken about the substantial health benefits of including mushroom in coffee, and how it could successfully replace your average cup. Plus, add a whole string of health benefits.
So, what does it mean for you?
You just might not have to give up on your go-to energy boost to kick-start the day, or the calming cup when you’re feeling stressed.
Keep reading to find out just what mushroom coffee is, why adding mushroom in coffee is so beneficial for your health, and the different brands you can try.
Table of Contents
- 1 What is mushroom coffee?
- 2 Types of mushroom coffee
- 3 How is mushroom coffee made?
- 4 What makes mushroom coffee different?
- 5 Benefits of mushroom coffee
- 6 Best mushroom coffee brands to try
- 7 So, what is our final take on mushroom coffee?
What is mushroom coffee?
If you’re thinking that this is where you brew coffee and chop up a few mushrooms and toss them into the brew… well, you’re wrong. That’d just be gross—no one wants to drink that.
Putting mushroom in coffee doesn’t work that way. The mushrooms used in coffee blends aren’t your shiitake and portobello that you’d have for dinner. They’re medicinal mushrooms. Common ones used in mushroom coffee are Chaga, Reishi, Lion’s Mane, and Cordyceps. These mushroom types have multiple health benefits and are known for their healing properties.
Types of mushroom coffee
Let’s look at what makes these mushrooms so ideal for making coffee.
Chaga mushroom is a type of fungi that is seen growing on the bark of birch trees. While it might not have much of a visual appeal, this mushroom variant not only has multiple nutritional benefits, but also a flavor profile that wonderfully complements coffee.
These mushrooms have been used for more than 500 years in Poland, Russia, and the Baltic states, to cure cardiovascular diseases, diabetes, and liver diseases. Chaga mushrooms contain a healthy dose of antioxidants that boost the immune system and protect the body from viral infections and harmful bacteria.
Chaga mushrooms have a unique earthy flavor with bitter undertones, which is highly similar to coffee. It also contains vanillin, like vanilla beans, making the flavor more approachable. The unique taste, similar composition, and a multitude of health benefits make Chaga a healthy alternative to coffee beans. Chaga coffee is a tasty blend that doesn’t taste much different from coffee!
Reishi mushroom coffee
Reishi mushrooms are large reddish brown mushrooms that stem from the trunks of large deciduous trees. They are rarely found in the wild and are almost always farmed. Used in Chinese medicine since ancient times, Reishi mushrooms have been called the ‘mushroom of immortality, for the various disease-fighting qualities they possess.
Reishi mushrooms contain beta-glucans that regulate cholesterol and glucose levels. They also have adaptogens that boost the immune system and help in the growth of white blood cells that fight cancer and other illnesses.
While reishi mushrooms might not have an appetizing taste, their health benefits are difficult to ignore. Combined with other flavors, they make a delicious coffee blend that’s full of nutritional value.
Lion’s mane coffee
Much like the name suggests, Lion’s Mane mushrooms are a sight to behold with their long white spines that grow in a shaggy clump on hardwood trees. They are especially known for their focus-inducing benefits, and Lion’s Mane coffee is perfect for folks who need their morning cup to get them energized for the day.
Lion’s mane mushroom is a well-known element of traditional Chinese medicine, specifically for the mental benefits it provides. Research shows that the compounds in Lion’s Mane reduce brain plaque associated with dementia and Alzheimer’s, and boost cognitive and memory function. Apart from being a source of Vitamin D and beta-glucans.
Lion’s Mane mushrooms taste delicate, and Lion’s Mane coffee might make a pleasant addition to your morning routine.
Hailed as a superfood, Cordyceps mushroom grows out of the brains of spiders and insects—which, er, is not-so-nice to know. But that could be overlooked in the face of the variety of health benefits it provides. These mushrooms grow on the high mountains of the Himalayas and appear dried with a yellow-gold color.
2 of the 400 are used in both medicinal compounds and coffee making. Cordyceps may promote ATP (Adenosine Triphosphate), which improves oxygen use in the body and provides stamina to muscles. It’s also rich in antioxidants that boost immunity, improve sexual drive, and stave off aging. Plus, it regulates blood-sugar levels, reduces tumor growth, and prevents cancer.
Don’t worry about the insect-brain part—modern-day cordyceps are grown in labs and have an approachable taste. Rich in health benefits, cordyceps coffee is a worthwhile addition to your daily nutrition.
How is mushroom coffee made?
The mushrooms are dried and extracted of their medicinal elements and made into a fine powder, which is then blended with coffee beans.
The ratio of mixing coffee beans and the extracted mushroom powder is usually 1:1. Mushroom coffee can be consumed as an instant powder, ground coffee blends, or coffee pods. And you can use it to make all the regular coffee drinks like lattes and mochas.
Mushroom coffee doesn’t taste that different from your normal cup of Joe’s, because it’s just coffee with mushroom extract.
However, there are slight differences—like, a darker color, a smoother blend, and a nutty taste. These are the characteristics of mushroom coffee.
What makes mushroom coffee different?
Putting mushroom in coffee not only subtly changes the consistency and taste, but makes it much healthier than your ordinary cup of coffee.
Mushroom coffee might be a current trend, but the world is no stranger to the medicinal qualities of certain mushrooms. Especially in Eastern Asia and China, where mushrooms have been traditionally used for their medicinal and nutritional benefits.
More recently, during the Second World War, due to a lack of coffee beans, mushrooms were used as a replacement in Finland.
Using mushroom in coffee can help you balance the effects of caffeine and cut back on coffee if it’s something you’re working on. We all like a no-fuss cup of bold coffee. But once in a while trying something different—that has several health benefits and a refreshing taste—can be gratifying. And that’s where mushroom coffee comes into the picture.
Benefits of mushroom coffee
Here’s some detailed information on how mushroom coffee benefits your health.
Balances the caffeine in coffee
We all know that excessive coffee consumption can cause a lot of problems—from headaches and dehydration to insomnia and anxiety, to name a few.
If you like the taste of coffee and like drinking it, but want to avoid all the side effects caused by caffeine, then mushroom coffee is a wonderful alternative for you.
Most mushroom coffee contains very little caffeine, except some variants that have about half the amount present in your normal cup. It tastes similar to coffee without all the jitters and the crash. So, you can enjoy your favorite drink without worrying about your caffeine consumption.
Helps with stress management
A cup of bold, warm coffee is the go-to drink for most of us to destress—replacing that with mushroom coffee will have the same effect while providing many more health benefits.
Mushroom species that contain adaptogens help maintain the equilibrium of the body and improve the immune system. Thus, they help to counter stress symptoms.
Reishi mushroom is one such example. Drinking a cup of Reishi mushroom coffee before bed will help you destress and prepare for a restful night of sleep.
Enhances the cognitive function of the brain
Mushrooms like Lion’s Mane contain compounds that improve nerve and brain health and help counter brain diseases like Alzheimer’s and dementia. The bioactives in mushrooms help regulate mood, increase alertness, support memory, and healthy brain functioning.
Drinking a cup in the morning will help you focus and get you motivated for the day.
Improves gut health
A healthy gut is a secret to a healthy body and mind. Mushrooms promote the growth of beneficial bacteria that keep your gut in good health. Adding a spoonful of mushroom coffee to your daily diet can increase your prebiotic fiber consumption—which helps to keep your gut nourished and healthy.
Regulates blood sugar and cholesterol
Mushroom coffee contains beta-glucans which are soluble fiber that help improve your cholesterol levels and boost heart health. They also help to regulate your body’s blood sugar level, which reduces the risk of type 2 diabetes. Reishi and Lion’s Mane mushrooms are rich in beta-glucans.
Inflammation causes many diseases and health conditions in your body. Mushrooms contain anti-inflammatory compounds like mycosteroids, carotenoids, and metabolites. These help to support your body’s response to inflammation.
Prevents the risk of diseases like cancer
Mushrooms are rich in antioxidants, nutrients, vitamins, and amino acids. By boosting white blood cells, they help fight cancer and other illnesses. The anti-inflammatory properties of mushrooms help in destroying cancer cells, and the ergothioneine found in them acts as a potent cellular protector.
Including mushrooms in your daily diet—and what better way to do it than consuming them with your daily cup of coffee—reduces the risk of cancers like breast cancer, leukemia, and colon cancer.
Best mushroom coffee brands to try
Daily Harvest – Chaga + Chocolate Latte
The Chaga + Chocolate Latte pods by Daily Harvest are a delicious blend of Maple Syrup, Coconut, Cacao, Vanilla Bean, and our star ingredients: Reishi and Chaga mushrooms.
It’s like a healthier, creamier version of your favorite hot cocoa drink. It’s extremely easy to make—just pop one pod into a glass and add in a cup of your preferred milk and mix. You can drink it hot or cold, as you like it best.
The icing on the cake is that the packaging of this creamy, healthy drink is 100% biodegradable and compostable. We totally recommend this drink!
Get more info, and try it here.
Mud/Wtr is an amazing alternative coffee brand that creates tasty coffee blends. They promise to deliver “focus, energy, and immunity without the jitters, crash, and dependency” with their healthy mushroom coffees.
They offer two ritual kits, based on the time of the day: Morning Kit and Evening Kit.
The Morning Kit contains a blend of Masala Chai and Cocoa, among other ingredients plus all the four medicinal mushrooms we’ve discussed above. In their words, it tastes like “Masala Chai and Cocoa had a healthy baby.” If that doesn’t intrigue you, we don’t know what will. Jk, Jk.
It contains 100% organic ingredients and no sugar. Plus, it comes in 100% compostable packaging. Check it out here.
Rheal Superfoods: Shroom Coffee
Rheal Superfoods is a healthy organic food brand that aims to make superfoods accessible to everyone across the planet.
Their Shroom Coffee is a healthy mixture of Chaga, Cordyceps, and Lion’s Mane mushrooms, with organic Columbian Arabic Coffee.
Each serving contains about half the amount of coffee an ordinary cup would contain. So, it’s higher in caffeine compared to other mushroom coffees on this list. If you’re looking for a healthy coffee alternative, without wanting to give up on a healthy dose of caffeine, then Rheal Shroom Coffee is something you have got to try. Check it out here.
Four Sigmatic has been involved in the mushroom coffee game for a long time. It’s probably one of the first brands that introduced mushroom coffee to the mainstream market. They make all their mushroom coffees with part mushroom extract and part coffee beans. So, if you’re still hesitant about trying the whole mushroom coffee thing, Four Sigmatic might be a good place to start.
They offer a lot of mushroom coffee variants like “Chill” Decaf blend, “Think” Caffeinated blend, and “Defend” Prebiotic enhanced blend. All these variants are available as coffee grounds, whole beans, and in K-Cup forms, so you can choose whichever suits you best. Since they use 50% coffee in all their blends, you’ll taste the earthy flavor of mushrooms, but most of it will taste like coffee. Try Four Sigmatic’s exciting blends here.
Renude’s Chagaccino tastes as amazing as a cup of mocha but provides the added health benefits of mushrooms. The unique thing about this blend is that you can mix it with your normal cup of coffee to instantly healthify it. This makes it beginner friendly.
Chaga mushrooms, cacao, monk fruit, and cinnamon are the primary ingredients in this drink. They transform your morning coffee into a powerful blend of superfoods. The single-serving pouches make it easy to use and bring it along wherever you go. Plus, it’s keto-friendly, sugar free, vegan, and clean—suitable for all palettes and diets. Try Renude Chagaccino here.
On a mission to make coffee ‘wunderful’, Wunderground creates healthy, refreshing mushroom coffee drinks that everyone will like. According to Wunderground, a cup of coffee tastes best when tailored to your needs of the moment. And that’s what they aim to offer with their blends.
Their three unique mushroom coffee drinks are called Brainchild, Hocus Pocus, and Dream Supply. Those names alone could make anyone want to try them, hehe. These coffees are a blend of Chaga, Reishi, and Lion’s Mane mushrooms, and come in two varieties: instant powder and ground beans. Try these wunderful drinks here.
Rasa is here to change our coffee-drinking game with “delicious, adaptogen-packed herbal coffee alternatives”. Their super-functional blends support nourishing energy, decreased stress, a balanced mood, and better sleep. Plus, their products are sustainably sourced, quality tested, and fair trade.
Rasa mushroom coffees are 100% caffeine-free, so if you’re looking to switch to no-caffeine but still want that boost of energy, then Rasa is the brand for you. All their blends contain carefully selected herbs and spices, and medicinal mushrooms for an energetic start or a calming end to any day. Adaptogens are awesome! Try Rasa here.
So, what is our final take on mushroom coffee?
It’s something you must try.
The energizing effects and awesome taste of mushroom coffee might help you successfully replace your daily coffee. Plus, it comes with a multitude of proven health benefits.
The only thing you need to take care of is that the mushrooms are carefully sourced and of high quality. The type of mushroom in your coffee will directly affect your health. But, you don’t have to worry, all the brands we’ve listed are safe, and of the highest quality.
We hope you find something you like ^^. Enjoy your mushroom coffee!