Black Trumpet Mushrooms: Facts, Finding, Identification & Recipes

In forests all around North America, Europe, and Asia, the esteemed and tasty Black Trumpet mushroom, also known as Horn of Plenty or Craterellus cornucopioides, grows.

These mushrooms are highly sought after by chefs and mushroom enthusiasts for their distinct funnel shape, velvety texture, and earthy, nutty flavor that intensifies when cooked.

Black Trumpet mushrooms are a dark, almost black color on the exterior, and the interior is a rich, smoky grey. They often sprout in groups on the forest floor in the late summer and early fall. Despite their popularity, Black Trumpet mushrooms can be difficult to find in the wild, as they blend in seamlessly with the forest floor and are often hidden under leaves or debris.

Black Trumpet mushrooms are used in food preparation and may have health advantages. They have been demonstrated to have anti-inflammatory and immune-boosting qualities and are abundant in antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals.

lack Trumpet Mushrooms

Whether you are an experienced forager or a curious foodie, Black Trumpet mushrooms are a unique and delicious addition to any dish. From pasta and risotto to soups and sauces, these versatile mushrooms add depth and complexity to any recipe. So next time you venture into the forest, keep an eye out for the elusive and prized Black Trumpet mushroom.

RECOMMENDED: Oyster Mushroom Foraging, Identification & Cooking

Basic Black Trumpet Key Facts

Sure, here are some basic black trumpet facts in points:

  1. The black trumpet (Craterellus cornucopioides) is a type of edible mushroom.
  2. It is also known as the trumpet of death, horn of plenty, and the black chanterelle.
  3. Temperate regions of North America, Europe, and Asia are where one can find black trumpets in the wild.
  4. They grow in forests, particularly near oak and beech trees.
  5. Black trumpets are characterized by their funnel-like form and dark brown to black colour.
  6. The cap of the black trumpet is funnel-shaped and can range from 2-10 cm in diameter.
  7. The stem of the black trumpet is thin and can range from 3-8 cm in length.
  8. The underside of the black trumpet is smooth and has deep ridges that run down the length of the mushroom.
  9. The flesh of the black trumpet is thin and delicate, with a mild, sweet, and nutty flavour.
  10. Black trumpets are high in antioxidants, protein, and vitamins B and D.
  11. They contain little energy, fat, and carbs.
  12. You can consume raw or cooked black trumpets.
  13. They are often sautéed or used in soups, stews, sauces, and risottos.
  14. Black trumpets pair well with garlic, shallots, thyme, and other herbs.
  15. Black trumpets can also be dried and rehydrated for later use.
  16. Dried black trumpets have a stronger flavor than fresh ones.
  17. Black trumpets can be foraged in the wild, but caution should be taken to avoid poisonous lookalikes.
  18. The black trumpet is a choice edible mushroom and is highly prized by chefs and home cooks alike.
  19. In French cuisine, black trumpets are frequently used, especially in dishes with game meats.
  20. Asian cuisine also makes use of black trumpets, especially in stir-fries and soups.
  21. 21. Farmers markets, specialized food stores and online retailers all have fresh or dried black trumpets.
  22. When buying fresh black trumpets, look for mushrooms that are firm and dry, with no signs of mold or decay.
  23. When buying dried black trumpets, look for mushrooms that are dark in color and have a strong aroma.
  24. Black trumpets can be kept for up to a week in the refrigerator.
  25. Use a soft brush or cloth to delicately remove any dirt or debris from black trumpets.
  26. Avoid soaking black trumpets in water since they will soak up the moisture and becoming mushy.
  27. Black trumpets can be blanched or parboiled before cooking to remove any bitterness.
  28. Black trumpets should be cooked thoroughly before eating.
  29. The spores of the black trumpet are brown.
  30. The black trumpet is a saprophytic mushroom, meaning it feeds on dead plant material.
  31. The black trumpet is part of the Cantharellaceae family.
  32. The black trumpet is closely related to the golden chanterelle (Cantharellus cibarius).
  33. The black trumpet is an ectomycorrhizal mushroom, which means that it interacts symbiotically with tree roots.
  34. The black trumpet is often found growing in the same areas as the golden chanterelle.
  35. The black trumpet is a slow-growing mushroom and can take several years to mature.
  36. Several species of animals, such as deer, squirrels, and bears, depend on the black trumpet as a major source of food.
  37. The black trumpet is not known to be toxic or poisonous, but caution should be taken when foraging.
lack Trumpet Mushrooms

Finding Black Trumpets

The following advice will help you locate black trumpet mushrooms:

Look in the right environment

Black trumpets grow in deciduous forests, especially those with oak and beech trees. Locate regions with lots of leaf litter and rich, moist soil.

Timing is everything

Black trumpets typically bloom in the late summer or early fall, following a heavy downpour. Look for them during this time, but keep in mind that their appearance can vary depending on weather conditions.

Look for the right colour

Black trumpets are usually black or dark grey, with a slightly wrinkled or wavy cap that can be up to 4 inches in diameter. They have a hollow stem that is also black or dark grey.

Pay attention to smell

Black trumpets have a distinct, fruity aroma that can help you identify them. The aroma is frequently compared to a mixture of apricots and black cherries.

Use a basket or mesh bag

To avoid damaging the delicate mushrooms, it’s best to use a basket or mesh bag for collecting them. This allows air to circulate and prevents the mushrooms from getting soggy.

Be careful not to confuse with lookalikes

Black trumpets have a distinctive shape and colour, but they can be mistaken for other mushrooms, such as chanterelles or black morels. Make sure to do your research and be confident in your identification before consuming them.

Check in the same location yearly

Once you find a good location for black trumpets, make sure to check it again in future years, as they can grow in the same spot year after year.

Bring a guidebook or knowledgeable person

If you’re new to mushroom foraging or unsure about your identification, it’s a good idea to bring a guidebook or someone who is knowledgeable about mushroom identification.

Be respectful of the environment

When foraging for mushrooms, it’s important to be respectful of the environment and not damage the surrounding vegetation or disturb wildlife. Leave some behind for others to enjoy and just take what you intend to utilize.

Cook them properly

Black trumpets have a delicate, nutty flavour and are excellent in sauces, soups, and stews. To prevent any potential health problems, they should always be boiled completely before consumption.

Identifying Black Trumpet Mushrooms


Black trumpet mushrooms are usually found growing in hardwood forests, especially in areas where the soil is moist and rich in organic matter. Additionally, they can be found flourishing in coniferous forests.


Black trumpet mushrooms have a distinctive shape and color. They are trumpet-shaped and have a dark brown to black color on the outer surface, while the inner surface is lighter. The cap is thin and delicate, and the stem is hollow and fragile.


Black trumpet mushrooms can vary in size, but they typically range from 2 to 5 inches in length and about 1 to 2 inches in diameter.


Black trumpet mushrooms have a pleasant, fruity aroma that is similar to that of apricots.

Spore print

The spore print of black trumpet mushrooms is white.


Black trumpet mushrooms do not have gills. Instead, they have a wavy, folded or wrinkled inner surface.


Black trumpet mushrooms have a delicate, sweet and nutty flavor. Chefs and mushroom lovers regard them highly for their distinctive flavor and texture.


It is important to note that there are several species of black trumpet look-alikes, some of which can be poisonous. Therefore, before consuming any mushroom, it is crucial to be totally certain of the identification.

Consult an expert

If you are not confident in your ability to identify black trumpet mushrooms, it is best to consult an expert or an experienced forager who can help you identify them safely.


Black trumpet mushrooms can be harvested in late summer or early fall. They should be gently pulled from the ground, rather than cut, to avoid damaging the delicate stem. Make sure to only harvest mature mushrooms, leaving smaller ones to grow for next year.


Black Trumpet Mushrooms Look-Alikes

There are several mushrooms that are known to be look-alikes to the Black Trumpet Mushroom. Here are some examples of mushrooms that fall into this category:

  1. Chanterelles (Cantharellus species)
  2. False Chanterelles (Hygrophoropsis aurantiaca)
  3. Jack-O-Lantern Mushrooms (Omphalotus olearius)
  4. Omphalotus illudens
  5. Pleurotus ostreatus (Oyster Mushroom)
  6. Pleurotus populinus (Aspen Oyster Mushroom)
  7. Armillaria mellea (Honey Mushroom)
  8. Agaricus species
  9. Tricholoma species
  10. Russula species

It is important to note that some of these mushrooms are edible, while others are not. Therefore, it is crucial to use caution when mushroom hunting and to seek professional assistance if you are unsure of a mushroom’s identity.

5 Best Black Trumpet Mushroom Recipes

Here are 5 black trumpet mushroom recipes for you to try out:

Black Trumpet Mushroom and Wild Rice Soup

In a large pot, sauté onions and garlic in butter until soft. Add sliced black trumpet mushrooms and cook until tender. Simmer after adding chicken or vegetable stock. Add the cooked wild rice, then taste and adjust the salt and pepper.

Black Trumpet Mushroom Risotto

In a large saucepan, sauté chopped onions and minced garlic in olive oil until soft. For 1-2 minutes, while constantly stirring, add the arborio rice. Stir in white wine and let it evaporate. A ladleful at a time, add boiling vegetable or chicken stock, and stir continuously until the liquid is absorbed. Once the rice is cooked, stir in sautéed black trumpet mushrooms and grated Parmesan cheese.

Black Trumpet Mushroom Crostini

Toast slices of baguette until crisp. In a skillet, sauté sliced black trumpet mushrooms in butter until tender. Each toasted slice of bread should have a coating of creamy goat cheese on it. The sauteed black trumpet mushrooms should then be placed on top. Use fresh herbs as garnish, like thyme or parsley.

Black Trumpet Mushroom and Gruyere Tart

Preheat the oven to 375°F. Roll out puff pastry and place it in a tart tin. Sprinkle grated Gruyere cheese over the pastry, and top with sautéed black trumpet mushrooms Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, or until the cheese is melted and the crust is golden brown.

Black Trumpet Mushroom and Spinach Frittata

Combine the eggs, milk, salt, and pepper in a large bowl. In a skillet, sauté sliced black trumpet mushrooms and chopped spinach until tender. Place the skillet over medium heat, add the egg mixture, and cook until the sides are firm. Place the skillet under a broiler for a few minutes until the top is golden brown and the eggs are set.

Final Verdict

In conclusion, the black trumpet mushroom is a highly sought-after culinary delicacy due to its unique flavour profile and meaty texture. Its distinct funnel shape and dark colour make it easily identifiable in the wild, and it can be found in forests across North America. The black trumpet is a versatile item that adds richness and complexity to any dish whether it is sautéed, braised in a sauce, or used as a garnish

1 thought on “Black Trumpet Mushrooms: Facts, Finding, Identification & Recipes”

Leave a Comment