8 Best Wood Ear Mushroom Substitute Will Make You Surprised

The recipe you are cooking requires wood ear mushrooms, which you do not have in the kitchen? No worries, since you can use other wood ear mushroom alternatives in the kitchen for the recipe that requires this mushroom! 

Scroll down to our list and pick out your best wood ear mushroom substitute now! 

Brief Introduction About Wood Ear Mushroom

Wood Ear Mushroom Substitute
Wood Ear Mushroom

Wood ear mushroom is a consumable ear jelly fungus, which belongs to the Auricularia Ceae family. The mushrooms commonly come with the name, such as Cloud Ear, Tree Ear, Jelly Ear, and Black Fungus, grow in damp, moderate woodlands.

Appearance And Taste

Wood ear mushrooms have a tiny to medium in dimension, with a diameter ranging from 4 to 8 centimeters featuring a curled and undulating ear-shaped or cup-like form. 

Moreover, they are brownish to dark brown and have a slick or viscous feel with smooth, curved borders or a lot of wrinkles and creases with speckles. The stemless and gill-less mushroom blackens with time, and the spores might be yellowish, creamy, or white. Wood ear mushrooms are crisp and flavorsome when cooked and have a subtle, musty taste!


Boiling, sauteing, and stir-frying Earwood mushrooms are the finest ways to serve them. The mushroom should always be washed and trimmed away any rough spots before cooking. They may be an ideal ingredient to put in salads, wood ear soups, and stir-fries because of their crunchy and savory feel, in addition to their ability to absorb seasonings quickly.

Recommended Wood Ear Mushroom Substitute

Here are some kinds of mushrooms that can replace wood ear mushrooms in several recipes. Let’s see what they are!

1. Dried Wood Ear Mushroom

Dried Wood Ear Mushroom
Dried Wood Ear Mushroom

The flattened and wide form of dried wood ear mushrooms makes them a good wood ear mushroom replacement. Specifically, they have a pleasant woodland scent and a dense and chewy mouthfeel. 

These mushrooms are common in Chinese, Japanese, and Vietnamese cuisine. In Asian dishes that require spicy and sour flavors, dried wood ear mushrooms are inevitable ingredients. 

The dried mushrooms must be immersed in water for 30 minutes before cooking in the recipe. They have that wide, wavy look after immersing into the water. Before putting the stems into the mixture, you can clip them. You should put the mushrooms in at the final stage of cooking to maintain their chewiness. 

2. Cloud Ear Mushrooms

Cloud Ear Mushrooms
Cloud Ear Mushrooms

The only thing to distinguish a cloud ear mushroom from a wood ear mushroom is the type of fungus. The formers are most commonly seen in the springtime; they’re also suitable for allergy sufferers since they don’t contain any toxic allergens.

On the other hand, cloud ear fungus is stiffer than wood ear mushrooms. When it comes to cooking, cloud ears preparation is identical to that of wood ear mushroom preparation. Cloud ear mushrooms may be consumed raw or cooked in stir-fried dishes, such as fried vegetables, fried chicken.

To have the best quality, you should soak cloud ear fungus in water overnight to soften them up and give them a cloud-like shape.

3. Enoki Mushrooms

Enoki Mushrooms
Enoki Mushrooms

Enoki fungus, often known as velvety shanks, are popular in Asian cuisines. Hackberry, ash, mulberry, and persimmon plants are all home to such mushrooms.

In detail, the structure of this fungus is soft but solid (not as crispy as a tree wood mushroom).

They have whiteheads and stems with a delicious yet gentle taste. Salads, soups, stir-fries, and noodle dishes may all be dishes using these mushrooms. You can use both cooked or uncooked enoki mushrooms, as they are not toxic.

4. Oyster Mushrooms

Oyster Mushrooms
Oyster Mushrooms

Oyster mushrooms get a delicious anise taste. They fit nicely in various recipes since their aroma is moderate and lacks the distinct earthy taste of certain mushroom species. When cooked, oyster mushrooms obtain a delicate, pleasant texture.

The mushrooms are suitable for sauteed, stir-fried, stewed, grilled, fried, or toasted once they are clean. You can cook the dish with the entire mushrooms, sliced, or even separated mushrooms into decent size portions.

While oyster mushrooms may be eaten raw and are attractive when served with salads, they have a metal taste when undercooked. Cooking pulls out their unique taste and transforms their squishy structure into something special. It would be best to use oyster mushrooms in cooked meals, whereas button mushrooms are most suitable in salads and other raw recipes.

Dried oyster mushrooms do not have to be water-bathed like another dried fungus; instead, put them in the food, and they’ll absorb up the water straight away.

5. Chestnut Mushrooms

Chestnut Mushrooms
Chestnut Mushrooms

Chestnut Mushrooms have a savory, creamy, and somewhat sweeter flavor, fleshy mouthfeel, and forestry fragrance. They originated from European beech.

The outer layer of the delectable mushrooms cracks when heated, but the deliciously crispy texture lingers, enough to liven up even the most mundane meal.

The nicest part about utilizing chestnut mushrooms in heated or uncooked cuisine is that they blend in well with other ingredients. In particular, they enhance and improve the entire taste that contributes to the aroma of the meals.

6. Shiitake Mushrooms

Shiitake Mushrooms
Shiitake Mushrooms

In Chinese cooking, black mushrooms, often known as shiitake mushrooms, are a common component. The term “black” is a misunderstanding because the fungus may be lighter colored or brown, and even grayish when dried. Both dried and fresh black fungus mushrooms are available, but the dried ones are more common.

For more than a century, people in Asian countries have used mushroom as a traditional medicinal ingredient due to their health benefits. Shiitake relates to the shii tree where these mushrooms were first found, whereas “take” denotes mushroom in Japanese. 

Those fungi are more costly than “white button” and crimini mushrooms, but they’re worth it for their delicious, savory flavor and fleshy texture. Black ear mushroom is present in Sautés, stuffing dishes, soups, and risottos.

7. White Button Mushrooms

White Button Mushrooms
White Button Mushrooms

Farmed white mushrooms are among the most popular mushrooms seen in supermarkets. The heads come in different sizes from 0.5 to 3.5 inches in diameter, although only the tiniest examples are referred to as “button mushrooms.”

The flavor of white mushrooms is moderate and earthy. When fresh, their flavor is quite bland, yet, once you cook them, they will become incredibly delicious. Those mushrooms grow all year, although they are most abundant in the autumn and winter.

How do you pick the best ones? Look for mushrooms that are solid, undamaged, and evenly colored, with firmly closed tops. Once all of a mushroom’s gills are visible, you know it’s passed its peak.

8. Bamboo Fungus

Bamboo Fungus
Bamboo Fungus

The bamboo fungus has extended stems linked to the caps, distinguishing them from other mushroom forms. This implies the stems’ ends aren’t as wide or puffy as those of wood ears.

However, this has little effect on the taste or texture of the finished product since they resemble wood ears when cooked properly. Bamboo fungus is prepared in the same way you serve wood ear mushrooms.

Cooking bamboo mushrooms with fish is the most popular and favorite cooking recipe. The easiest way to cook the mushrooms is to stir-fry the ingredients until they are cooked over in a saucepan or a pan with enough plant oils ( 3-5 minutes).


Wood ear mushrooms are present in many Asian dishes, including soup, stir-fried vegetables, etc. Even if your kitchen is out of them, you can surely prepare a recipe that demands them using the wood ear mushroom substitute we’ve mentioned above. After reading this post, we hope you can find wood ear mushrooms substitution when needed.

Kevin Richard

Hi all! I’m Kevin. I spend plenty of time in the kitchen every day because I love cooking healthy and delicious foods for my family and friends. Cooking gives me a chance to be creative and fun. It’s also one of the most meaningful ways to express my love and take care of my little family.

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