We’d like you to be aware for a moment of the associations you have with the word ‘mushroom’. Does it spark feelings of intrigue or curiosity? Hunger and excitement? Hesitation? Caution or disgust? Maybe you somehow feel all these all at once.
The fungal kingdom is incredibly diverse, with some mushrooms being perfectly edible, tasting deliciously savory and possessing healing effects, whilst others may potentially poison you.
Then, there are some that have the capability to produce blissful journeys to other worlds. Mushrooms truly are quite magical. Perhaps it is the infinite possibilities that lie within the word ‘mushroom’ that allow the term alone to elicit so many feelings at once.
Here at Psychedelic Passage, many of us are mushroom fanatics who enjoy learning about the complex nature within the mycelium networks that connect us all in nature and spirit.
In this article, we’ll dive into the most popular ways to consume psychedelic mushrooms for an intentional and therapeutic experience. How can you tell what type of mushrooms you have, determine accurate dosage, and prepare your psilocybin medicine?
How to Identify What Mushrooms You Have
Accessing quality psilocybin mushrooms can seem challenging at times, especially when you’re unsure how to choose a reputable vendor or navigate the evolving psychedelic legalities. It’s important that before we even discuss how to prepare mushrooms, you ensure that you source psychedelic medicine safely, and know whether psychedelics are right for you.
After safely acquiring the mushrooms, it’s time to determine how much psilocybin (the active compound that makes magic mushrooms magic) is actually in your possession.
Knowing what species you have and in what form, is vital, as psilocybin content can vary with the form presented (whether that be fresh, dried, or in capsules), can differ between strains, and different parts of the mushroom (cap vs. stem) contain different amounts of psilocybin.
For example, dried psilocybin truffles often contain less psilocybin than dried mushrooms, the penis envy strain can be stronger than golden teachers, and psilocybin content can also change in the different stages of development of a mushroom.
For instance, miniature pinheads that just didn’t grow bigger can be more potent than larger mushrooms per gram of weight. So if you’re unsure what exact mushroom you have and how large it typically grows to, it may pose a challenge to determine the exact amount of psilocybin you’re ingesting.
Luckily, there exists the option to grow your own mushrooms at home, which allows you to ensure the purity of your supply. If you’re interested in journeying down this route, explore the best mushroom grow kits for psychedelic therapy!
How Much ‘Shrooms Should You Take?
It’s important to do some research about proper dosing in order to ensure you have a psychedelic experience that is right for you. The recommended dosage for a psychedelic trip is 20 to 30 mg of psilocybin/70 kg of body mass (typically equates to about 3 to 5 grams of dried mushroom).
It’s important to note that much of the research involving psilocybin has involved the active chemical compound itself—not the entire mushroom, whereas recreational psilocybin use typically involves the mushroom as a whole.
There are a few calculators that can help with determining an estimated dose. This calculator allows you to choose from fresh or dried mushrooms or truffles, and this one breaks it down into different strains of mushroom and considers if you’re taking a monoamine oxidase inhibitor (MAOI) or not.
While knowing the amount of psilocybin you’re taking is important, the dosage of this medicine isn’t as simple as a math equation. These calculators can provide an estimate, but there are many other factors that can affect one’s experience.
The amount of psilocybin varies within the type of mushroom (as mentioned previously), as well as factors completely outside of the mushroom itself, like intention, how often you take shrooms, your age, and set and setting, can all have an impact.
Whether one has had previous experience with psychedelics, is taking antidepressant medications, and your intention for use, can all impact how much psilocybin will be beneficial. One’s relationship with control, openness to the experience, and willingness to surrender will also have a great impact on dosage. These are factors that only you can honestly answer for yourself.
If you’re experimenting with psilocybin for the first time, it’s essential to start low. Every individual is different. Everyone has a unique sensitivity and tolerance for every substance. Every individual reacts differently to every chemical.
Luckily, at Psychedelic Passage, we’re experts on psychedelics, and our network of facilitators can help you honor your individuality by guiding your decisions on dosage. All in all, know your body, know your mind, know your substance, and know your Source.
Differences Between Fresh, Dried, and Stored Mushrooms
Whether you’re working with fresh or dried mushrooms will affect their potency, with fresh mushrooms being said to be more potent. The challenge when it comes to fresh mushrooms though is storage, as they can only last in the fridge for 5–10 days.
After this short time period, you increase the risk of your mushrooms decaying, which would be an unfortunate waste of a fine medicine and financial investment down the drain. So if you plan on holding onto your shrooms for more than a few days, drying them is highly recommended.
You can dry your shrooms using a simple air drying method, placing the shrooms on a thick paper towel for 72 hours or so. If you have a food dehydrator, you could also use this as well. Once you have your dried shrooms, it’s crucial that you store them properly, ideally in an airtight container, like a mason jar or ziploc bag.
If you are starting out with already dried mushrooms, we’d like you to give them a quick inspection before you embark on your journey, just to make sure they haven’t gone bad.
Just like regular mushrooms, psilocybin mushrooms have an expiration date. If they show any indications of decomposition or contamination (for example mold, black or white spots, slime), or smell off, don’t consume them.
The main concern is due to spoiled mushrooms’ ability to cause vomiting, diarrhea, or food poisoning, but there is no evidence to suggest that they would have adverse psychological effects, as mushrooms actually tend to lose potency over time, especially if they haven’t been properly stored.
Cleaning Your Shrooms
Unless you’re certain that your mushies came from a home grown sterilized setting, it’s important to make sure there is no potential harmful debris (such as dirt or dung) that is still on your mushrooms.
With this you have a few options: running them under cold water, wiping off any dirt, then setting them on a paper towel to dry, or simply wiping your shrooms off with a damp paper towel. Note that you should only do this directly prior to consuming the shrooms, as they will quickly absorb water.
Top 5 Ways to Consume Your Therapeutic Shrooms
Alrighty, now that you’ve properly sourced your mushrooms, determined how much psilocybin you’d like to ingest, checked that your shrooms haven’t gone bad, cleaned them, and most importantly, determined that you are ready for this experience, you’re now ready to ingest the magical mushrooms.
1. Eating Raw Mushrooms
The most simple and ancient practice of ingesting mushrooms is simply eating them. Some claim that consuming the mushrooms in this form helps them connect more with the medicine, as they are already accepting the fungi exactly as is in its natural form.
Depending on the type of mushroom, as well as individual sensitivity, this may be easier said than done, as some can taste quite unpleasant. With eating mushrooms, it is important not to simply choke them down, but to take the time to thoroughly chew each bite to allow all the juices to come out, as well as to help with better digestion.
If you’re not a fan of the chewing, you can also opt for a truffle grinder to make a mushroom paste for yourself. Once consumed, the psilocybin is converted to psilocin (the active psychoactive compound), so that your body may use this medicine, sending the mushrooms metabolites throughout your body.
The shrooms will take around 45 minutes (give or take roughly 15 minutes) to begin taking effect, and will last around six to eight hours. The less you have in your stomach, the more of the medicine you can absorb, so it is recommended to avoid food for a few hours prior to your experience.
2. Adding Mushrooms to Your Food
If you’d rather not eat your shrooms raw, there’s plenty of other options to choose from, so you can embark on your experience with culinary pleasure. Most simply, you can combine the mushrooms with a food of your choice. We recommended that you break up the mushrooms by grinding them into a fine powder (using a cannabis grinder or coffee grinder).
Grinding the mushrooms evenly distributes the psilocybin, as well as increases their surface area, enabling the gastrointestinal system to absorb more of the substance more quickly. It’s also best to grind your shrooms 15-30 minutes before you plan to ingest them, so the powder doesn’t float into the air when you open the grinder.
If you don’t have a grinder, you can also simply chop them with a knife. Then, once the mushrooms are broken down, they’re ready to be combined with your tasty trippy treat. The real question now is what food you’re going to combine them with. This is really a personal preference, but here are some popular options:
- Nut butter toast (Variations: jam, chocolate, nutella, or all of the above)
- On a veggie taco
- In a smoothie
Now, if you’re using mushrooms to create a culinary masterpiece of your own, it is important to note that psilocybin starts to break down under excessive heat (around a temperature of 190°F) so any exposure to heat for extended periods will affect potency.
This is why we recommend adding them to sauces or toppings only after the cooking stage. If you are feeling a bit fancier and want to do more than simply sprinkle the shrooms on top of your treat, you can also opt to infuse sweets. Some like to grind up their mushrooms and infuse them in chocolate or honey, and even use this as a storing method.
3. Making Mushroom Tea
Perhaps, for one reason or another, physically eating the mushrooms may not be too up your alley, and that’s totally okay. Lucky for you there’s a multitude of ways to consume your shrooms.
Steeping them into a tea is known to be one of the best ways, and for good reason. By preparing mushrooms in a tea form, the bitter ‘mushroom flavor’ often lessens, leaving you with a more pleasant taste.
Tea can also be gentler on your digestive system, as well as making nausea less likely. So if you have a more sensitive stomach, or tend to get nauseous, tea may be a better option for you.
Mushroom tea also tends to act faster and subside quicker, as your body isn’t taking as long to digest the physical mushroom. We could go on and on about the benefits of this magical brew, so let’s just jump right into how to make it.
- Choose any herbal tea or spices (that you have already had before and know your body reacts well to) and set them aside.
The possibilities with this are endless, but some potential options are chamomile, green tea, cinnamon, peppermint or ginger (both of which help reduce nausea), adding in vanilla, or coconut milk, etc.
Note that herbs are plant medicines as well, with their own effects on the body, so it is important to know how you react to these, and if you would like said effects to be part of your trip.
For example, if you would like a calming effect, chamomile could be nice, but could also make you sleepy. If you would like to be more alert and energized, jasmine green may be more suitable, but could also have the potential to cause anxiety since it is caffeinated.
If it is your first time experimenting with mushrooms, it may be best to isolate one variable at a time and have a simple mushroom tea, to see how your body reacts to that compound alone.
- Grind your preferred dose of dried mushrooms into a fine powder using a coffee grinder or finely chopping with a sharp knife.
- Heat your water (approximately one cup of water per serving) in a teapot to about 190 degrees Fahrenheit, just below boiling. Then reduce heat to low.
- Add your mushrooms (and any herbs or spices you may want to add) into the teapot, and let the brew simmer for about 15 minutes. You can increase this to 30 minutes if you’d like to strengthen the effects.
- Now you can either strain the liquid, or leave as is. Give it a good taste and if you’d like, add a sweetener like honey.
- Sip and enjoy!
4. Lemon Tekking (Not Advised for Beginners)
A ‘Lemon Tek’ is a method that involves combining your shrooms with the juice of lemons. But why the fascination with the shroom and citrus combo? Well, many users claim that lemon tekking can be a natural way to both accelerate and concentrate the onset of psilocybin’s consciousness-expanding effects, as well as aid with nausea.
According to user accounts, lemon tekking can help bring the onset of the trip on faster (sometimes with a surprisingly abrupt start) as well as lessen the overall duration of the trip.
Lemon teks are also known for centralizing the trip, with fewer waves of intensity, but increasing overall intensity. In fact, lemon teks can feel up to two to three times stronger than if you’d taken the same weight of un-tekked mushrooms.
Experiences from tekking tend to involve less bodily and more heady sensations, such as visuals and spiritual insights, sometimes resulting in less physical exhaustion in comparison to typical trips.
The theory behind why this may work all comes down to the citric acid in the lemon juice, which helps break down the tough cell walls of the mushrooms, making the psychoactive compounds more readily available to the body.
Let it be made clear that there is a lack of research on lemon tekking. There’s a lack of consensus on why and how it may or may not work for each individual, along with what the potential risks may be.
Anecdotal reports find that lemon tekking is a great experience for some people, whilst for others, it can be too intense, and for some, it simply doesn’t intensify their trip at all. Every individual is different, with effects varying greatly from person to person. This is why we highly advise that lemon teks be a concoction reserved for more well-traveled psychonauts.
If you’ve never taken shrooms before, you still don’t have a baseline of how much psilocybin is right for you. It’s important to know this baseline prior to lemon tekking, so that you can reduce the dosage accordingly.
When first experimenting with lemon tekking, it’s recommended to start with a weight approximately half what your typical dosage would be. So, if you’ve got your reduced dosage, and you’re by no means a beginner, then you’re ready to prepare your lemon tek. Limes can also work (since they have similar pH levels).
The process is fairly simple, start by grinding your shrooms and allow them to settle for 15-30 minutes. If you don’t have access to a grinder, again you can chop them finely with a knife.
Then carefully pour your ground mushrooms into a shot glass, cocktail shaker or container of your choice. Next, squeeze juice of 1-2 lemons or limes over the mushrooms so that they are completely covered. Let the shroom and juice concoction sit for 15-20 minutes, occasionally stirring or shaking your mixture.
A final option if you’re not a fan of mushroom bits, or are looking to further reduce nausea, is to strain the bits of dried mushrooms and squeeze out all their juice through a cheesecloth or coffee filter. Now you’re all done and ready to drink the concoction as a fun shroom shot.
5. Dosing With Vegetable or Gelatin Capsules
If the thought of any mushroom flavors touching your tongue really skeeves you out, capsules may be a good option. They’re also a lot stealthy in nature, meaning it is a lot easier and less suspicious to carry around some capsules than it is bags of whole or ground mushrooms.
Capsules also are a great choice if you’re planning on taking a microdose, as they can help divide the mushrooms into smaller, manageable doses. To make psilocybin capsules, you can first purchase empty gelatin or plant-based capsules depending on your preference.
Then, make sure to measure out the amount of mushrooms and estimated psilocybin that you have on hand, prior to grinding up your shrooms and filling your capsules.
You want to make sure that you grind the mushrooms as much as you can, to create an evenly distributed powder. Then, using a capsule filling machine or simply by hand, you can add the desired amount of mushrooms to the capsules.
Microdosing typically involves taking between 0.1g to 0.3 g of psilocybin. It’s always best to start small if microdosing for the first time, and if you’re curious about learning more about microdosing, feel free to check out our complete microdosing guide.
Capsules can also be used for larger dosages and psychedelic experiences, just make sure that you have marked down the strain, weight, and estimated amount of psilocybin per capsule so that you can accurately consume a dose that is right for you.
As mushrooms gain more and more popularity, the ways to ‘consume yo shrooms’ continue to expand, offering the user a plethora of choices on how to begin their mushroom journeys.
Perhaps, if you’re like me, after seeing all the various ways that mushrooms can be taken into the body, your attitude toward them has shifted, and any anxiety has lessened, as you now know that ingesting shrooms has the possibility to be a very pleasurable experience.
While preparing for a psychedelic experience includes much more than simply physically preparing the medicine, we hope that this article has empowered you with the knowledge of what methods are out there, and which may work the best for you.
If you’re still unsure of what exactly feels right for you, it can be helpful to talk to an experienced expert who can offer even more guidance. Lucky for you, we have a pre-vetted network of psychedelic facilitators located around the country, ready to service your psychedelic journey from preparation to integration.
Have any other shroom-related queries? Feel free to check out our resource page or contact us for more information. As always, safe and peaceful travels my friends