Penny Bun – Boletus edulis

Fungi of the Week

8th May 2020 | Info

Common name: Penny Bun 

Scientific name: Boletus edulis 

Introduction: The Penny Bun (Boletus edulis) is a sought-after UK-native fungus that is known for its range of health benefits.  


Cap: When young, the caps of a Penny Bun are white and bulbous. As they mature, they become a warm-brown/ochre colour and have paler edges, giving them a baked-roll/bun-like appearance – hence the name! They are also quite weighty and chunky, averagely ranging between 8-25cm wide. Some caps can have a greasy-like sheen.  

Gills: White and found underneath the cap. 

Pores: The pores of a Penny Bun are very fine and change in colour as the fruiting body matures. Initially, they turn to yellow and then green while also turning spongy. 

Stem: Penny Bun stems are thick and swollen-like in appearance, varying in shape from barrel-like to clavate. They have a pale-brown colouring and a faint white netted pattern. When cut open, the flesh of the stem is white and solid. 

Spores: Spores of a Penny bun are subfusiform and have an olive-brown spore print. 

Flesh: The flesh of a Penny Bun is white and remains white when cut. However, as the fungus matures, it begins to yellow. 


Most Penny Buns in the UK are ectomycorrhizal. They can commonly be found in broadleaved and coniferous woodlands, woodland edges and grassy clearings. They mainly prefer woodland with Oak, Beech, Birch or Pine Trees alongside coniferous trees and areas of open ground.  

Ecological Importance

Penny Buns are not just favoured by humans, but also help to provide a preferred food source for Red Squirrels, a range of slugs and many species of mushroom flies.  

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