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Magic Mushroom Edibles: Everything to Know, from Chocolates to Drops

Whether you’re nibbling in the club or full on astral projecting in the woods.



Everyone and their dog is at it with the mushroom edibles these days. It’s not like you have to be a Timothy Leary or Hunter S. Thompson character anymore to show up to the festival with a trippy chocolate bar tucked among the perishables and the underwear. And that’s the thing about mushies: They’re ready to be used, in whichever way and for whatever activity. You can even microdose those bad boys

Let’s be frank for a sec: Actual magic mushrooms taste a bit fucked. Like, incredibly bad at times. Tea’s also an option, but are you really going to be carrying a thermos into the rave? Edibles, on the other hand, can be delicious – so whether it be microdosing, party vibes or big-time psychonauting, they’re increasingly the way forward for a lot of people when it comes to consuming shrooms.

But we have questions: Like, how do you know you’re getting a high-quality edible? Does it matter how they’re made? And does the high differ if you’re chomping on a chocolate or pipetting some mushie extract on your tongue?

Dr. K Mandrake holds a Ph.D. in mushroom botany and, along with writer and photographer Virginia Haze, co-authored two psychedelic mushroom cookbooks: The Psilocybin Mushroom Bible and The Psilocybin Chef. They also have a Substack, which has previews of the second edition of their grow book, out later this year. We chatted to K to find out how he got into all this, to understand the science behind mushy edibles and to help you make some of your own at home. 

VICE: Hi K! What's your background in mushrooms, and how did you come to write the cookbooks with Virginia?
Dr. K Mandrake:
I started growing magic mushrooms shortly after the UK government banned them in 2005, as a way to ensure a continuous supply in the post-prohibition era we find ourselves in today. Virgina and I met a few years after that while I was living in Thailand, and we first took mushrooms together at a full moon party with some friends. We went our separate ways after this, but always kept in touch. I started studying environmental science towards my PhD, putting my lab skills to work in doing more than just growing shrooms, and she was bouncing around the globe working as a writer and editor in a bunch of places, including for our publisher Green Candy Press. 

Around 2015, we both found ourselves in the same city, and as I'd promised to teach her how to grow mushrooms, we decided to write our first book together The Psilocybin Mushroom Bible. After a few years of consuming nasty little dried shrooms like most people do, we decided there must be a better way to consume them. We're both heavily into cooking and baking, so a few years later we released The Psilocybin Chef in 2020.

Could you take me through the steps of one of one of your favourite mushroom edibles recipes from the cookbook? How do you make them taste nice? 
Our lime ginger and dark chocolate truffles (recipe below) are probably my favourite, and they were also the first edible I ever made my own recipe for. As magic mushrooms are far from the best in terms of culinary properties, most of the time when designing recipes we're trying to distract the taste buds with strong complementary or contrasting flavours. We're big fans of [food writer] Niki Segnit's Flavour Thesaurus and took some inspiration for our recipes from that. 

In the case of the truffles, the dark chocolate is our strong earthy flavour that complements the mushrooms, whereas lime and ginger are bright contrasting notes. We also use some of these ingredients that have interesting cultural ties to the now decades-old psychedelic mushroom community. Ginger is a favourite to stave off nausea, and strong citrus juice is a hat tip to "lemon tekking" – the unproven idea that acids begin breaking down the mushrooms, and converting the psilocybin into biologically active psilocin, resulting in a trip with a higher intensity/faster onset. 

How do you ensure consistency, i.e. would eating half of a chocolate lead to an inconsistent result? Or is it possible to make sure the mushrooms are evenly distributed in a single edible?
That's a great question. I know the cannabis edible industry struggled with inconsistent dosing in the past, and it's definitely a risk for large-scale production of magic mushroom edibles. On a smaller, home scale though, we've never had any huge issues with this as we're pretty thorough about making sure ingredients are well mixed. We also mostly work with dried mushrooms in the book, as we figured it's what most folks will have access to. Dried mushrooms are easy to turn to powder with a spice blender, which helps distribute them evenly through a dish. We also do a few liquid extraction recipes, which can be trickier to master, but are also useful to help with consistent dosing.

Does subjecting mushrooms to heat and cooking actually degrade or alter the quality of the mushrooms and the experience of the trip?
Every time we get asked this question, we always ask one or two back ourselves: "How much heat, and how long for?" The best science we have, which isn't a lot thanks to decades of psilocybin prohibition, says that dried mushrooms only start losing significant amounts of their potency after a 30-minute heating to 125-150°C. Most of our recipes don't go anywhere near that, and we encourage people to add their mushrooms into a dish that requires heat as late as possible, just to be safe. By keeping this in mind, we don't notice too many complaints about weaker-than-normal trips.

Does the high differ depending on how these edibles are created vs consuming them the traditional way, like eating them dry or steeped in tea?
On a chemical level, I wouldn't say so. But with all psychedelics, set and setting is a huge component of the experience, beyond what's going on with the chemicals in your brain and body. Some people might prefer the traditional way, and we fully support that. However, we know many others who gag at dried mushrooms – I don't think Virginia will mind me saying I'm thinking of her here. If you're one of this latter group, feeling nauseous and all the bad vibes that brings might not be the best mindset to be in as you begin tripping, so the recipes in our book are aimed at those people especially. My last trip started with a magic mushroom hot chocolate, and it was so delicious I almost forgot I'd made it to get high.

Lime ginger and dark chocolate truffles from "Psilocybin Chef". Photo: courtesy of Dr. K Mandrake

Ginger Lime Chocolate Truffles With Magic Mushrooms

Servings: 12 (one chocolate = 0.5g dose)
Cooking time: 50 minutes (20 minutes prep, 30 minutes to set)


  • 50g dark chocolate
  • 65g crystalized ginger
  • 6g dried shrooms, powdered
  • zest of ½ a lime
  • juice of ¼ lime


  1. Slowly melt the chocolate in a bain-marie or double boiler.
  2. Using a food processor blitz the crystallized ginger almost to a paste.
  3. Add in the lime zest, lime juice and blend again.
  4. Tip into a bowl, add the powdered mushrooms and stir to combine. It will look like goblin poo at this point.
  5. With damp hands, quick the mixture together and roll it out into a long thin log.
  6. Cut into 12 equal size pieces then roll each one into a ball.
  7. Either roll each ball in the melted chocolate or, if using truffle moulds, cover the bottom of the mould with melted chocolate, add the ball of mixture then top with more chocolate to cover completely.
  8. Place into the fridge to set for 30 minutes.
  9. Consume immediately for best effects, or refrigerate for up to a week.

In terms of dosage, we always dose our recipes low to be safe (essentially these are the high end of what some might consider a microdose), and recommend you only take one to begin with and keep an eye on how you're feeling for the next hour or so. Mushroom potency can vary wildly depending on the source (eg. species/strain), so keeping the per-truffle dose low helps minimise this variability.

The general side effects of psilocybin are similar to any psychedelic – anxiety, disorientation and paranoia being the main ones. The most important thing for people experiencing these is to know that these feelings will pass, and they might alleviate them by changing their set and setting.

This might include moving to a space where they feel more safe, changing the music or lighting, or practising meditative breathing to list just a few examples. Psilocybin has an incredibly low toxicity, so the physical effects are minimal – besides maybe some nausea or a transient headache – so the main thing is to allow yourself to process any difficult feelings in a space where you feel safest. — Dr. K Mandrake

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