Hearing about hot chocolate with mushrooms might confuse you. After all, this combination does not seem to be a match made in heaven. However, you might be wrong about shroom hot chocolate since this warming beverage is tasty, nutritious, and soothing to the soul.
Now that functional mushrooms have become so popular in the supplement industry, health and wellness fanatics are seeking new ways to consume them. Most of them, including chaga, do not have a pleasant taste when eaten raw. It's easy to consume them in capsule form, which provides a tasteless and straightforward method you can incorporate into everyday life.
That said, it can also be fun to use mushroom powders to create delicious recipes. This hot cocoa recipe, infused with mushroom powder, is the perfect way to get your dose of functional mushrooms in the fall and winter – or whenever you need a pick-me-up.
Read this article for a low-down on mushroom hot chocolate and its benefits, as well as a straightforward recipe.
Hot Chocolate with Mushrooms Benefits
The health benefits of hot chocolate with mushrooms depend on the specific mushroom powder you use. Some people use reishi or turkey tail in their hot cocoa, but the most common is chaga. This mushroom's earthy flavor blends well into hot drinks like coffee and hot chocolate, making it a great choice.
That said, the chocolate powder generally masks the taste of the mushrooms, so the flavor of the powder itself does not matter too much.
Since chaga is a popular option, this section primarily covers the benefits of chaga hot chocolate.
The Benefit of Mushrooms in Hot Chocolate
Chaga mushrooms (Inonotus obliquus) are native to Siberia and grow on dead birch wood. They are not technically a mushroom but a parasitic fungus, growing in thick clumps. The dark, coal-like appearance of this fungus has led to its alternative nickname, black mass.
Traditional practitioners of Siberian medicine have used chaga for centuries. It was originally employed to combat illnesses such as tuberculosis, diabetes, and more. Recently, Western science has begun to study chaga for its effects on the human body.
Scientific trials on animal models and in test tubes have largely supported chaga's traditional uses. Research has discovered that this fungus is loaded with beneficial compounds, including polysaccharides, polyphenols, betulinic acid, and triterpenes. Each of these compounds, all common in mushrooms, has its own unique benefits.
PubMed currently has 192 published studies on chaga. However, none of them are human clinical trials. Hopefully, more scientific studies on humans will emerge in the future to explain the realistic benefits of chaga mushrooms.
For now, other research has suggested that chaga could help to ward off infection, lower blood sugar, reduce cholesterol, and more. These are all promising effects that could be very useful if they work as effectively in humans as they do in animal models.
Another common mushroom to use in hot chocolate is reishi. This mushroom is popular in Eastern medicine and has been used to improve immunity and fight fatigue. Once again, there are limited human studies on this mushroom.
No matter what mushroom type you use, the general benefit of mushroom hot chocolate is overall wellness. Many people consume mushroom extracts and supplements to support a healthy lifestyle, and that's exactly how these products should be used.
Now that you know some of the potential benefits of chaga hot chocolate, keep reading to learn how to make it.
How Do You Drink Chaga Mushroom Hot Chocolate?
Consuming a chaga hot chocolate is really straightforward. Since one mug-full contains one dose of chaga extract, you will need to finish the cup to reap all of the benefits.
Mushroom hot chocolates can be enjoyed in the morning or evening, or whenever you would normally sip a hot drink.
The basic mushroom hot chocolate only requires hot water or milk, cacao powder, and mushroom powder. However, there are plenty of methods for mixing it up. Those wanting to cut down on coffee but retain a caffeine boost can add a shot of strongly-brewed black tea to the mix. Alternatively, some people like to use sweeteners and flavors like vanilla extract, honey, or cane sugar.
One of the most familiar ways to enjoy it is by topping it with whipped cream and cinnamon. You can also decorate the beverage with edible flowers or dried lavender to make an Instagram-worthy treat.
First, try our chaga mushroom hot chocolate recipe below.
Chaga Mushroom Hot Chocolate Recipe
|Recipe Ingredient||Chaga powder|
|Recipe Instructions||Heat all recipe ingredients in a saucepan until boiling, then blend together.|
|Suitable For Diet||Vegetarian|
- ¾ cup water
- ¼ milk (or plant-based alternative)
- 1 tsp mushroom powder such as chaga
- 1 tsp cacao powder
- Add all ingredients to a saucepan over medium-high heat and steep until boiling. Alternatively, use a kettle to boil water and pour it over the other ingredients, adding the milk at the end.
- Stir to mix the ingredients well. Remove from heat and briefly allow to cool for a minute or two.
- Transfer to a blender and blitz for thirty seconds until well-combined and slightly foamy.
- Decant into your favorite mug and add your toppings of choice.
Can You Mix Chaga and Reishi Together?
You may be wondering: can you mix chaga and reishi together? The answer is yes. If you happen to have both mushroom powders to hand, you can combine them by using half a teaspoon of each.
Doing so can combine the benefits of chaga and reishi to make a nutritional powerhouse. Combined, they might produce a synergistic effect that could benefit the body. More importantly, there is no danger in combining the two.
That said, there is some risk of side effects when using concentrated mushroom extracts every day. When using mushroom supplements, it's vital to consult with a doctor or physician. This is especially true for individuals who are pregnant, breastfeeding, or have a long-term condition and are taking medications.
Final Thoughts About Hot Chocolate with Mushrooms
Mushroom hot chocolate is certainly an interesting beverage that most people will not be familiar with. But for those who enjoy a frequent cup of warming cocoa, a mushroom-infused version could be a perfect choice. It offers a way to reap the benefits of functional mushrooms with ease, without having to cook the mushrooms.
Although mushroom capsules are an excellent choice for daily use, recipes like this one provide a more fun and exciting way to consume functional fungi.
Before you leave, check out the other recipes here on the VidaCap site and explore our range of mushroom products.
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