6 Maitake Mushroom Substitutes

Maitake mushrooms, if you are not familiar, are chicken of the woods. The mushrooms grow out in a sort of fan at the base of trees, but are also grown commercially. Maitake mushrooms are native to North America and parts of Europe and are very popular in Asian cuisine. Maitake mushrooms aren’t the most expensive mushroom because they are pretty common and easy to grow commercially, however it may not be the easiest to find in the grocery stores.

Luckily, there are other mushrooms that are very similar to maitake and you’ll be able to make a very similar dish using a mushroom that may be easier for you to find. Shiitake mushrooms, oyster mushrooms, chanterelle, portobello, king trumpet mushrooms and crimini mushrooms are all excellent replacements for maitake mushrooms. 

Maitake Mushroom Substitutes 

1. Shiitake Mushrooms

Shiitake mushrooms are some of the most popular mushrooms for both cooking and for medicinal purposes. They make wonderful maitake replacements. Both mushrooms have a strong nutty flavor with a little bit of a umami flavor as well. Shiitake mushrooms definitely tend to be much more flavorful than maitake, but it most likely won’t be an issue in whatever dish you are cooking.

2. Oyster Mushrooms 

When being foraged, oyster mushrooms are commonly mistaken for maitake mushrooms because they grow very similarly. Oyster mushrooms don’t have as strong a flavor as maitake, but they match the umami flavor perfectly. 

3. Chanterelle Mushrooms

Chanterelle mushrooms are highly sought after and very expensive. This is because of how hard they are to grow and how picky they are about the regions they grow in. However, they add wonderful flavor to any dish they are in and can perfectly replace maitake mushrooms especially in soups and pastas. 

4. Portobello Mushrooms 

Portobello mushrooms fall in between shiitake and maitake mushrooms. They have a more meaty flavor, but their texture is much more similar to maitake mushrooms than shiitake mushrooms are. Portobello mushrooms are popular as burgers, or stuffed because they normally are rather large. 

5. King Trumpet Mushrooms

Having the same earthy, nutty flavor as maitake mushrooms, they make a great replacement. They make wonderful additions to stir fries, or as a meat replacement. 

6. Cremini Mushrooms 

Cremini mushrooms and maitake mushrooms aren’t really the same in a lot of ways. The flavors are a bit different, the textures tend to be as well, however cremini mushrooms are delicious and taste almost like a portobello. In a pinch, cremini mushrooms will be wonderful replacements for maitake mushrooms. 

Perhaps you can’t find maitake mushrooms, or are simply looking for something else in your next meal, there are many wonderful things you can use to replace them. Shiitakes are your best choice, but each and every other mushroom listed will be a great replacement option and will bring their own unique flavor.