Are Truffles a Fungus?

When you bite into an amazing truffle dish at a fancy restaurant are you eating fungus?

When you bite into an amazing truffle dish at a fancy restaurant are you eating fungus?

The Short Answer:

Yes, truffles are a form of fungus.

The Long Answer:

Truffles are the height of class when it comes to cuisine. They aren’t cheap, and they add a delightful flavor to everything from filet mignon to macaroni and cheese. But, what most high-class diners forget is that when they’re eating truffles, they’re eating fungus.

To be more specific, they’re eating the fruiting body of Ascomycete, a form of subterranean fungus from which truffles are made. They tend to grow around tree roots and disperse spores through various animals who feed on fungi. Sounds appetizing, right?

While both are edible fungi, truffles are far rarer than their common cousin, the mushroom. They are no more alike than apples and oranges, despite sharing a classification (to use a rather cliché comparison).

The next time you’re at a fancy steakhouse and you see the high-priced truffle offerings practically leaping off the menu at you, remember as you take that first bite, truffles are a fungus among us, but that doesn’t make them any less tasty!

Are Truffles a Fungus?
Are Truffles a Fungus?

Kevin Kessler

Kevin J. Kessler is an experienced professional writer and published author living in Orlando, Florida. With a lifelong passion for food, this sandwich loving Italian boy enjoys exploring unanswered questions about the foods we all know and love so well. Kevin’s foodie lifestyle was born through his love of Walt Disney World and the Epcot International Food and Wine Festival. A lover of stories, he enjoys trying new dishes from all over the world and learning everything there is to know about where food comes from, how its prepared, and what variations on it exist.