Crown-Tipped Coral Mushroom Soup

Crown-Tipped Coral Mushroom Soup | Recipe by FUNGIWOMAN

Flavored with sweet paprika, caraway, garlic, and marjoram, this hearty goulash-based soup features crown-tipped coral mushrooms.

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Crown-Tipped Coral (Artomyces pyxidatus)

Artomyces pycidatus / Crown-Tipped Coral

Mostly growing in the spring, but also summer and fall, the edible crown-tipped coral fungus is a widely distributed mushroom on the East Coast of the United States, but it's rare on the West Coast. It also grows in Europe, though I have never found it there.

The crown-tipped coral (Artomyces pyxidatus) is one of the few coral fungi that fruit on wood, which makes it fairly easy to identify. In eastern Northern America and Europe, you can encounter this coral fungus on decaying hardwood logs from late May to August. It has delicate fruit bodies that are highly branched and look like tiny candelabras.

While it is considered edible raw, you should never eat uncooked mushrooms. If you taste it raw (spit it out after), it's pretty mild at first, but then develops a peppery hot flavor after a minute or so. Apparently the peppery flavor can remain in some specimens when cooked, but I have never experienced that.

To learn more about this mushroom, see the Artomyces pyxidatus mushroom profile.

Crown-Tipped Coral Mushroom Soup

 Crown-Tipped Coral Mushroom Soup | Recipe by FUNGIWOMAN

This soup is inspired by the traditional Czech tripe soup that dates back to the 17th century. Known as Dršťková in Czech, it consists of beef tripe (cow stomach) braised in broth flavored with sweet paprika, caraway, garlic, and marjoram, resulting in very distinct goulash-like flavor. 

Tripe has a chewy texture and a mild taste, taking on the flavor of other ingredients it’s cooked with—crown-tipped coral mushrooms have a similar texture to tripe, making them an excellent substitute for it. 

I use oat flour instead of all purpose to make the soup gluten-free. The soup is furthered thickened by the grated potato.


Please be extremely careful cooking and eating foraged mushrooms. Never eat a mushroom that you are not 100% sure of its ID. The best way to learn how to identify and forage for edible mushrooms in your area is to join a local mushroom club or go with a trusted mushroom identifier or a mycologist. Then, even if you are 100% sure of its ID and know it's an edible mushroom, always try small quantities of a new mushroom first before eating a large batch to make sure it sits with you well. 

  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 45 minutes


  • 11-12 inch nonstick skillet
  • medium soup pot


  • 6 oz / 170 g crown-tipped coral mushrooms
  • 1 tbsp butter
  • 1 tbsp canola oil
  • 1 medium onion, finely chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves, finely chopped or pressed
  • 2 tbsp oat flour
  • 2 tbsp sweet paprika
  • 6 cups / 1.5 l beef stock
  • ½ tsp ground caraway
  • ½ tsp caraway seeds
  • 1 medium yellow potato, finely grated
  • 1 tbsp butter
  • 2 tbsp dried marjoram
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • bread for serving
  • green onions for garnish


    Crown-Tipped Coral Mushroom Soup | Recipe by FUNGIWOMAN

    I first sauté the crown-tipped coral mushrooms for about 4-5 minutes and then add them to the soup. 

    1. Clean the mushrooms. Soak the crown-tipped coral fungus in water to get rid of dirt and potentially other things they might be hiding. Dry them off on a paper towel.  

    2. Heat 1 tbsp butter and 1 tbsp canola oil in the pot. Add onion and sauté until golden brown, about 5-7 minutes. 

    3. While stirring, add garlic, 2 tbsp sweet paprika, and 2 tbsp oat flour to the pot with onion. Sauté for about 30 seconds only—garlic and paprika burn easily and become bitter. Pour in beef stock and add grated potato, ½ tsp ground caraway and ½ tsp caraway seeds. Bring to a boil and simmer for 30 minutes.  

    4. Meanwhile, sauté the crown-tipped coral mushrooms. Dry sauté first, then after the water from the mushrooms has evaporated, add 1 tbsp butter. Sauté for about 4-5 mins and then add to the soup.

    5. After simmering the soup for 30 minutes, turn off heat and add 2 tbsp dried marjoram (rub it in your hands to release flavor) and add salt and pepper to taste.

    6. Pour into a bowl, add some green onions and serve with some delicious rustic bread!

     Crown-Tipped Coral Mushroom Soup | Recipe by FUNGIWOMAN

    Crown-Tipped Coral Mushroom Soup | Recipe by FUNGIWOMAN

    Crown-Tipped Coral Mushroom Soup | Recipe by FUNGIWOMAN

    Let me know what you think in the comments! I'd love to hear from you. Head to my Instagram account @fungiwoman for daily posts about my mushroom adventures. Also, check out my shop for some mushroom-inspired products and sign up for the newsletter to get updates. 



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