is a mushroom a vegetable

is a mushroom a vegetable

Are Mushrooms Vegetables?

When trying to figure out what is and isn’t a vegetable, it is easy to get confused. What about mushrooms? Are mushrooms vegetables?

The Mushy Details

Mushrooms are a type of fungi, and as such, having a strict definition as a vegetable isn’t quite as simple to determine. The bottom line, however, is that mushrooms are commonly but not technically considered vegetables. Here’s why:

  • Mushrooms are not grown from seeds: Plants that are regarded as vegetables typically grow from seeds. Mushrooms begin as spores, propagated by another mushroom.
  • Mushrooms are not obtained from plants: To be a vegetable, a plant must be obtained directly from another plant, but mushrooms are obtained from fungi.
  • Mushrooms are not as nutrient-dense as vegetables: Vegetables are packed with essential vitamins and minerals, unlike their fungi counterparts.
  • Mushrooms are not listed with the USDA: The United States Department of Agriculture considers mushrooms to be part of the “Miscellaneous” food group, meaning they are not classified as either fruits nor vegetables.

Nature’s Mystery

No matter how mushrooms are classified, they are certainly a culinary favorite! When cooked in recipes, this fungi can be easily incorporated into many traditional vegetable dishes.

Ultimately, mushrooms are an entity unto their own. Of course, you are free to include them in your vegetable-centered meals!

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