- Magic mushroom chocolate products include bars, drinks, and edibles.
- Some contain psilocybin, while others contain ‘functional’ mushrooms.
- Research suggests psilocybin can have beneficial effects on mental health issues such as depression and anxiety.
- Legality varies by the type of mushroom and state, so check local laws before buying.
You’re deep in an Insta scroll when you see an ad for magic mushroom chocolate bars. That’s when you ask yourself, “Am I trippin’? Are people openly selling psilocybin these days?”
Well … yes and no. Some brands are selling psilocybin-infused chocolate bars, while other mushroom chocolate products contain functional mushrooms like lion’s mane or reishi. Some buyers are chasing psychedelic effects, and others are looking for health perks, like improved mood, clarity, and focus. Knowing what you’re buying is key so that you only get the ingredients that benefit you—without anything sketchy that doesn’t.
As the author of a book on psilocybin, I’m here to be your virtual trip-sitter, your sober guide for navigating this magical Wonka world.
Magic Mushrooms in Chocolate
Mushroom chocolate products contain various mushroom ingredients responsible for the candy’s potential effects. Here’s how to tell if they’re good for you—not to mention safe, and legal.
Psilocybin is a psychedelic compound found in magic mushrooms that causes trippy effects (1). More than 100 species of mushrooms contain psilocybin, and many with multiple strains, like the popular “penis envy,” a strain of Psilocybe cubensis (2).
In the briefest of summaries, psilocybin activates serotonin receptors (located all over your body, with most in the gut). Serotonin is a neurotransmitter that affects mood, digestion, sleep, and sexual health. Psilocybin is a copycat for this neurotransmitter, according to psychedelic researchers.
What are the benefits?
If the dose is high enough, psilocybin drops you into an altered state of consciousness that has been shown to have beneficial effects on PTSD, depression, and anxiety (1).
Research is still ongoing, with studies at various clinical trial stages. Psilocybin has also been investigated for helping with cluster headaches, which, when it comes to enjoying a chocolate bar as a fix, could be pretty sweet (3).
Is it legal?
The Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) lists psilocybin as a Schedule I substance, placing it in the same category as heroin as ‘easy to abuse’ (4). But some states (like California and Colorado) and municipalities have either legalized psilocybin or decriminalized it (meaning that, in most cases, its use is not something police are prosecuting). The list of states and their respective involvement with legalizing psilocybin is evolving, so check your local laws before you buy (5).
Is it safe?
For the most part, psilocybin is safe. In fact, it has a low toxicity. That said, some fungi could be poisonous, so it’s important to know what you’re getting when buying any type of shroom candy, let alone a magic mushroom chocolate bar. Derek Chase, founder of Psilouette, an entheogenic wellness company dedicated to sharing the healing powers of psychedelics, recommends testing products you purchase. You can buy kits from DanceSafe to ensure they contain what you want—and not what you don’t.
If you have an underlying medical condition or take medications, consult your doctor before using psilocybin—even in chocolate form. It may temporarily elevate heart rate or blood pressure. If you have a mental health condition or are taking related medications and are interested in psilocybin’s benefits, you might want to consider working with a medical professional who administers psychedelic assisted therapy, rather than doing a DIY chocolate journey (6).
This mushroom, also called fly agaric, matches the mushroom emoji on your smartphone—and the one in Super Mario Bros. Amanita muscaria is psychoactive, but it’s different from psilocybin.
What are the benefits?
Amanita muscaria has two main psychoactive compounds that are copycats for the neurotransmitters gamma-aminobutyric acid, aka GABA (which is known for its mellowing and anti-anxiety effects), and glutamic acid (known for helping memory) (7).
Research suggests Amanita muscaria could help ease chronic pain and certain autoimmune responses, along with its potentially trippy effects (8).
Is it legal?
For the most part, yes. Amanita muscaria is legal at the federal level in the United States, and according to state laws, is only banned in Louisiana (9).
Is it safe?
Yes, generally. One big consideration regarding Amanita is that it is poisonous in high doses (7). Accidental poisonings are rare, however.
For safety, stick to products which list the amounts of active ingredients. As mentioned above, anyone with underlying medical conditions or taking medications should consult their healthcare provider before using Amanita.
These fungi are nearly everywhere, and include lion’s mane, turkey tail, maitake, reishi, and cordyceps—mushrooms you might see in nutrition beverages as well as those chocolate candy bars. They’re called “functional” or “medicinal” because they have some health-boosting benefits.
What are the benefits?
Functional mushrooms reportedly have varying potential benefits, depending on which you consume. In the case of cordyceps, for example, you could see boosted energy and perhaps even testosterone. And lions mane is an adaptogen, scientifically proven to enhance cognitive function. Reishi, found in Real Mushrooms Mushroom Hot Chocolate Mix (and other products) may regulate the immune system (among other benefits) (10). These magical mushrooms aren’t intended to treat or cure any disease but may support overall health.
Are they legal?
Yup. These mushrooms are completely legal, as they’re considered food.
Are they safe?
Functional mushrooms have a long history of use and are generally considered safe (barring any allergies an individual might have) (11).
MORE PSYCHEDELICS FOR YOUR PSYCHE
Buying Magic Mushroom Chocolate
Here’s how to get the best and safest magic mushroom chocolates.
As noted, Amanita muscaria and functional mushrooms are broadly legal in the United States. While it might be possible to buy products containing it online, psilocybin is still broadly illegal across the country, so you’re taking a risk.
Some companies claim their products contain psilocybin, but according to Chase, many don’t. “You see brands that will do the synthetic,” he says. “It’s actually not synthetic psilocybin.” Ultimately, it’s unclear what’s actually in these synthetic versions.
Are gas-station and smoke-shop shroom chocolates safe?
Products containing Amanita muscaria are likely what you’re seeing in most stores, at least where psilocybin isn’t fully legal.
Keep in mind that just because Amanita muscaria is generally legal does not mean the Food and Drug Administration regulates products that contain it.
What about mushroom chocolates containing only functional shrooms?
You can find functional mushroom chocolates at health food stores or online from brands like Glow Superfood or Moksha.
Know Your Magic Mushroom Chocolate Doses
You’ve perhaps heard of the terms “macrodosing” and “microdosing” in the psychedelic industry. Macrodosing involves taking a moderate to large dose to produce a “trip,” while microdosing involves taking a minuscule amount that does not produce a trip but may still have beneficial effects, such as easing anxiety. Most microdoses are about 0.1 to 0.5 grams.
It’s important to note, though, that there’s no ‘regulated’ dose for magic mushroom chocolate bars, so check what you’re buying to monitor what and how much you’re getting. Checking the dosage will help you understand if you might just be scoring some health benefits or are about to embark on a chocolatey trip.