We are independent & ad-supported. We may earn a commission for purchases made through our links.

Advertiser Disclosure

Our website is an independent, advertising-supported platform. We provide our content free of charge to our readers, and to keep it that way, we rely on revenue generated through advertisements and affiliate partnerships. This means that when you click on certain links on our site and make a purchase, we may earn a commission. Learn more.

How We Make Money

We sustain our operations through affiliate commissions and advertising. If you click on an affiliate link and make a purchase, we may receive a commission from the merchant at no additional cost to you. We also display advertisements on our website, which help generate revenue to support our work and keep our content free for readers. Our editorial team operates independently from our advertising and affiliate partnerships to ensure that our content remains unbiased and focused on providing you with the best information and recommendations based on thorough research and honest evaluations. To remain transparent, we’ve provided a list of our current affiliate partners here.

What is a Nameko Mushroom?

Mary McMahon
Updated May 16, 2024
Our promise to you
DelightedCooking is dedicated to creating trustworthy, high-quality content that always prioritizes transparency, integrity, and inclusivity above all else. Our ensure that our content creation and review process includes rigorous fact-checking, evidence-based, and continual updates to ensure accuracy and reliability.

Our Promise to you

Founded in 2002, our company has been a trusted resource for readers seeking informative and engaging content. Our dedication to quality remains unwavering—and will never change. We follow a strict editorial policy, ensuring that our content is authored by highly qualified professionals and edited by subject matter experts. This guarantees that everything we publish is objective, accurate, and trustworthy.

Over the years, we've refined our approach to cover a wide range of topics, providing readers with reliable and practical advice to enhance their knowledge and skills. That's why millions of readers turn to us each year. Join us in celebrating the joy of learning, guided by standards you can trust.

Editorial Standards

At DelightedCooking, we are committed to creating content that you can trust. Our editorial process is designed to ensure that every piece of content we publish is accurate, reliable, and informative.

Our team of experienced writers and editors follows a strict set of guidelines to ensure the highest quality content. We conduct thorough research, fact-check all information, and rely on credible sources to back up our claims. Our content is reviewed by subject matter experts to ensure accuracy and clarity.

We believe in transparency and maintain editorial independence from our advertisers. Our team does not receive direct compensation from advertisers, allowing us to create unbiased content that prioritizes your interests.

A nameko or butterscotch mushroom is a variety of mushroom with a bright orange cap and a mild flavor. Nameko mushrooms are cultivated in Japan, where they are very popular, and they are exported to various regions of the world to meet consumer demand. Some Japanese restaurants have dishes with nameko mushrooms, and these mushrooms are also popular in Japanese home cooking. If you have a recipe which calls for nameko mushrooms and you can't find any in your area, you can try using shiitakes as a substitute.

The nameko mushroom grows in tight clusters of white stems, and the caps tend to be crowded together as a result of the crowded growth habit of the stems. When fresh, the caps have a shiny appearance, and a slightly gelatinous feel. As the mushrooms are cooked, they develop a jellylike texture which can surprise some consumers; this trait makes them ideally suited for certain stir fries and traditional Japanese soups.

You may also hear the nameko mushroom called a butterscotch mushroom, or Pholiota nameko, by people in a more formal mood. Because the bulk of these mushrooms are cultivated, it is sometimes possible to purchase nameko mushroom starter, if you're interested in growing your own mushrooms. These mild and slimy mushrooms tend to be an acquired taste, but some people find the texture enjoyable and suitable with cuisine from regions outside of Japan as well as in it.

Fresh nameko mushrooms are typically available from around October to February. When picking out mushrooms in the market, look for shiny caps with a fresh appearance and no serious stains or discolorations. Avoid mushrooms with a pitted or cracked surface appearance. Wrap the mushrooms in paper and store them in the fridge; they generally keep around three to four days. It is also possible to find nameko mushrooms in canned form in Asian markets year round.

One common use of these mushrooms is in miso soup, if you've been gifted with a nameko mushroom and you don't know what to do with it. You can also trying using the mushrooms in Japanese stir fry recipes; be aware that they turn slimy and sticky if cooked for too long, however. Some Japanese consumers also enjoy the mushrooms cooked with rice and a little bit of rice vinegar. If you want to experiment with the nameko mushroom in cuisine from other regions, consider the texture before adding it into familiar dishes, as the sliminess does not complement all foods.

DelightedCooking is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.
Mary McMahon
By Mary McMahon

Ever since she began contributing to the site several years ago, Mary has embraced the exciting challenge of being a DelightedCooking researcher and writer. Mary has a liberal arts degree from Goddard College and spends her free time reading, cooking, and exploring the great outdoors.

Discussion Comments

By anon195052 — On Jul 10, 2011

Pleats there is a new place that opened up called The Mushroom Shack they have Nameko Mushroom kits that grow very well. Mine is doing great. I would suggest checking them out online. They will ship them to you if you call the store and place a special order.

By googlefanz — On Oct 04, 2010

I've been growing morel mushrooms for quite some time now, and I was wondering if the same principles applied for namekos. Does anybody know?

By naturesgurl3 — On Oct 04, 2010

Nameko mushrooms are fantastic, but I would remind people that when you buy nameko mushrooms, do keep your common sense. So many people think that mushrooms look weird anyway, so they don't look at their mushrooms before they buy them.

When you buy nameko mushrooms, the first thing you need to look at is color. It they're kind of brown/gold, then you're good. If they're very dark or very light, then you might did better to find another source of mushrooms.

Also, although mushrooms are going to be a little slimy if they get wet, you shouldn't buy any nameko mushrooms that are overly slimy or mushy. This is usually a sign that they got wet, and will turn into mush when you cook them. Unfortunately, some produce sections still haven't caught on to the fact that you have to keep your mushrooms away from those little freshener sprayers.

Finally, I would urge you to buy organic nameko mushrooms, and of course as much organic produce as you can. It's not only better for the environment, but you don't have to worry about feeding yourself pesticides like you would with other foods. Just "food" for thought.

By pleats — On Oct 04, 2010

I was wondering how to grow nameko mushrooms. I have a shiitake mushroom log, and I've really gotten into growing mushrooms -- it's a surprisingly addictive habit.

So what kind of mushroom supplies do I need? Obviously the mushroom log for shiitake mushrooms won't work for namekas, but what should I get?

Any information would be greatly appreciated.

Mary McMahon

Mary McMahon

Ever since she began contributing to the site several years ago, Mary has embraced the exciting challenge of being a...

Read more
DelightedCooking, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.

DelightedCooking, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.