Can You Eat Baby Bella Mushrooms Raw?

If you have an inquisitive mind like me, you might have wondered why a mushroom must have been named Baby Bella. Well, it is called a baby because that is what it is, a young Portobello mushroom.

Baby Bella mushroom, white button mushroom, and the Italian Portobello are different Agaricus Bisporus Fungus Species growth stages. It is a smooth brown-capped fungus with a deep and mouthwatering savory flavor.

The white button is picked at the earliest stage, the baby Bella is picked at a maturity stage ahead white button, and the Portobello is picked at a maturity stage ahead of the baby Bella.

Therefore, we can refer to these mushrooms as siblings, The Italian Portobello being the first and eldest child, the baby Bella being the second and middle child, and the white button being the youngest.

This article will answer important questions concerning baby Bella mushrooms ranging from how edible it is to whether they can be freezed or not.

Can you eat Baby Bella Mushrooms raw?

Mushrooms contain a very strong compound known as Chitin. It is also found in lobsters and mollusk shells. Unfortunately, 90% of people cannot break down chitin through digestion. So when mushroom is eaten raw, one cannot access any of its nutrients because of the failure to get beyond the chitin wall.

Cooking also prevents harmful bacteria that may have been contaminated from the soil, insect pest, rodents, or handling through processing.

However, Agaratine is destroyed while cooking because it cannot survive under heat.

Is it safe to eat raw baby Bella mushrooms?

No, it is not. As stated earlier, harmful bacteria are largely present in raw baby Bella mushrooms.

Baby Bella mushroom is healthier, tastier, and even has a beefy flavor, serving as a supplement to meat, vegetables, and rich sauces. It can also withstand high temperatures; thus, it can be cooked using roasting, grilling, and baking methods.

Utilizing these cooking methods renders baby Bella mushrooms safe to eat.

Can baby Bella mushroom make you sick?

While it possesses a good number of essential nutrients, it can make you sick if it is eaten raw, if it is not properly cooked or if the mushroom has gone bad. So how can you tell if a baby Bella mushroom has gone bad?

  1. It becomes oozy. When your mushroom becomes oozy or slimy, discard it!
  2. It begins to have dark spots all over.
  3. The mushroom begins to emit an offensive odor.
  4. It begins to shrink
  5. If it has been around for two weeks or more

If your mushroom begins to exhibit all or any of these features, it becomes toxic and can make you sick. Therefore, purchasing your baby Bella from a certified retail store or a local farmer is also advised.

Going to the wild to handpick baby Bella might be life-threatening as not all mushrooms are edible, and these mushrooms share common physical features with baby Bella.

Are baby Bella mushrooms toxic?

When properly cooked, baby Bella mushrooms are very healthy to consume. They only become toxic when eaten raw or when it has gone bad.

Which is better – Baby Bella or White Mushrooms?

Can You Eat Baby Bella Mushrooms Raw?

As mentioned earlier, the baby Bella and white button mushrooms are of the same variety but picked at different stages of maturation.

The white button is plucked at an earlier stage of maturation than the baby Bella. The white button is usually light brown before cultivation but soon turns white after it has been cultivated.

The baby Bella is harvested after a growth count of 40 days; thus, they are bigger and firmer than the white button.

A serving of 2 to 3 white buttons contains 9 calories and 1.5 grams of carbohydrates, while the same serving of baby Bella has 11 calories and 2 grams. Thus, we can deduce that baby Bella is more nutritious than white button mushrooms.

The white button mushroom is the most readily available and consumed mushroom of all other varieties worldwide. Its greatest strength is its mild and bland taste, making it adaptable. It can be easily mixed with different recipes and dishes.

Baby Bella mushroom nutritional facts

The Baby Bella mushroom is rich in vitamins, potassium, iron, protein, carbohydrates, minerals, and lipids. It also contains Vitamins like vitamins A, B12, B16, D, E, and K. It is widely consumed for its rich nutrients and medicinal values.

According to the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) nutrient database, 50g of mushroom contains the following nutrient component:

NutrientValue per 50g
Water46.81g
Carbohydrates1.94g
Protein1.05g
Calcium1.5mg
Energy11g
Lipids0.18mg
Phosphorus54mg
Sodium4.5mg
Iron0.16mg
Potassium182mg
Fiber0.65g
Sugar1.25g

The best ways to cook baby Bella mushroom

Certain delicious salads contain raw sliced mushrooms; however, you are strongly advised to eat only cooked mushrooms. Why? For two reasons.

First, many nutrients in the mushroom are more accessible after they have been cooked, including some powerful antioxidants and ferulic acid. Second, cooking mushrooms destroys any toxic or carcinogenic compounds in the mushroom.

Here are the best ways to cook baby Bella mushrooms:

Grilled baby Bella mushroom

You definitely cannot stop at one bite. Toss with olive oil, lemon juice, and herbs, then grill until soft and tender.

Baby Bella mushroom pizza with fresh herbs

You can make this with any cheese of your choice and mushrooms, sautéed with a lemon squeeze and fresh herbs. As soon as it is ready, dig into it sumptuously

Baby Bella pasta and parmesan

This is baby Bella pasta with goat cheese. It compliments savory mushrooms with bright lemon, garlic, ginger, butter, and parmesan cheese.

Baby Bella mushroom and onion

This is an exceptional recipe. Baby Bella mushroom, onion, a little butter, and sauce are all you need to create this.

Roasted baby Bella mushroom

Roasting baby Bella can indeed transform the minds of people that do not like mushrooms. It is beefy, tasty, soft, and topped with herbs; you’ll keep wanting more.

Creamy mushroom soup

For some, soup is a language of the heart, so this is the best option. Baby Bella mushroom gives the soup a tasty umami flavor that creates a lasting impression on the mind. It can be served with toasted gingerbread.

Sautéed mushroom

Cook with little olive oil over heat. Sautéed mushroom is a sensational dish that leaves you mouthwatering. This buttery mushroom can be served over pasta, streak, or even on its own.

Mushroom stuffing

Do you have unexpected vegans to feed? Mushroom stuffing is a lifesaver. It is easy, full of savory flavor, and pleases vegans and meat eaters.

Brown butter mushroom pasta

This, like others, will leave your guests asking for more, so do well to prepare enough of this delicious dish.

Mushroom and peas

Mushrooms and peas are full of protein, fiber, minerals, and vitamins essential for good health. In addition, a hearty bite can keep you warm even on the coldest days.

Read also: What To Eat With Tzatziki: Delicious Recipes For A Mediterranean Feast

Can you freeze baby Bella mushrooms raw?

Yes. Baby Bella mushroom, like other mushrooms, can be freezed either as fresh mushroom or cooked mushroom.

It should be noted that freezing baby Bella affects their texture. Freezing tends to render it light and mushy, unlike the firm texture of fresh baby Bella mushrooms. This is because many mushroom types naturally contain water, so they tend to be mushy after defrosting.

Pre-freezing methods can preserve the firm texture, namely sautéing, steaming, and blanching. These processes aid in reducing the water content of the baby Bella mushroom and thus minimizes the texture change.