Magic truffles, also known by the name psilocybin truffles, are very similar to magic mushrooms in their chemistry and effects. However, not so much in form—they are clumps of mycelial strands that, rather than penetrating to the surface like mushrooms, harden and stay underground instead.
These clumps are called sclerotia, and they are dormant forms of the organism that only a few mushrooms species can produce. Clumping underground is supposed to keep them protected from conditions that can stifle or endanger their growth. These conditions, which include temperature, light, and humidity, can be intentionally adjusted to produce truffles rather than mushrooms.
This plays to the advantage of the main global producer of magic truffles—the Netherlands. In this country, magic mushrooms used to be legal to produce, market, and consume. However, in 2008 the Dutch government banned psilocybin mushrooms in response to a few incidents that were connected with their use. This ban did not include magic truffles, though, so the market reoriented to the joy of psilocybin-loving visitors from around the world. Presently, aside from being able to purchase magic truffles physically in Amsterdam, they can also be ordered from online grow shops such as Elephantos.
Magic truffles are chemically quite similar to magic mushrooms, in that they both contain the same psychoactive alkaloids: psilocybin, psilocin, baeocystin, and norbaeocystin. Aside from the way they look and the way they are grown, the different concentrations of these active compounds are what makes magic mushrooms and magic truffles distinct from one another. Their effects are, however, comparable at relatively similar dosages (meaning when several times higher weights of truffles are consumed compared to mushrooms).
If you would like to learn more about the differences between magic mushrooms and magic truffles, read our full guide here .
Although browsing the diverse offer available in magic truffle shops can lead to the conclusion that there are dozens of different kinds, the vast majority of them actually come from only a handful of original strains. So far we know of just a few mushroom species able to produce truffles; it’s possible that some are yet to be discovered due to growing out of sight.
The psilocybin mushrooms able to produce truffles are:
Other magic truffle varieties come from cloning, selective breeding and cross-breeding of the above species. These efforts have resulted in a sizeable variety of strains available. The following section will describe the most commonly marketed magic truffles, their potency and effects. Their combined score (potency+effects) will be marked with a number from one to five in parenthesis next to the strain name.
Psilocybe tampanensis (3) – one of the few original magic truffle strains, the tampanensis are well-known and well-loved globally for the highly insightful trips they offer. Also called ‘Philosopher’s Stones’, these little nuggets are pure wisdom in physical form. The visuals are present, but not intense, leaving ample space for deep inner work. These truffles are best experienced in quiet, natural settings, without distracting social interaction. A full portion is recommended to anyone but first-timers, as it provides an effective dose for significant spiritual growth.
Psilocybe mexicana (2.5) – stemming from the original mushroom species bearing the same name, these truffles boast similar effects as their counterparts. They induce weak visuals and moderate levels of introspection, but excel in creating positive emotional states followed by euphoria and bliss. They also heavily boost divergent thinking ability and, due to their generally mild effects, are great for practicing art or engaging in any creative activities. Perfect for beginners, a full portion is suitable for anyone.
Psilocybe atlantis (4) – these close relatives of Psilocybe mexicana are one of the few original magic truffle species as well, meaning that they can be found in the wild. Also called ‘Fruits of Utopia’, they are intensely visual, and the trips are accompanied by boosts in creativity and mood. Insightful thinking and feelings of connection to nature and friends make thes truffles a perfectly balanced psychedelic—powerful but not overwhelming. As an added bonus, they reportedly have a more pleasant taste than many other strains. Half portions are suitable for anyone, while more experienced trippers will get what they need with a full dose.
Psilocybe hollandia (5) – this is a relatively recent addition to the magic truffle lineup, but one that has quickly become the hallmark of the entire offer. It is a supreme strain, developed by the country’s top breeders, and it offers vivid and colorful visions, intense introspection, and high levels of creativity. Only advanced psychonauts are advised to go for the full portion, while others should start with a third or half portion.
Psilocybe valhalla (5+) – specifically bred to maximize active compound content, these truffles are not stocked by many distributors, but are worth a mention as possibly the most potent strain out there. With outlandish open- and closed-eyed visuals, profound insight, intense euphoria, diverse associative thinking, and strong feelings of unity with nature and people, these magic truffles offer a uniquely powerful experience resembling that of high doses of mushrooms. A fifth or third of a portion is enough for a moderate trip, a half for an intense one, and a full portion should be consumed only by expert navigators of psychedelic realms.
Psilocybe utopia (5) – as per their name, these highly potent truffles are known for creating utterly different, sublime realities. The effects are highly subjective, but they are commonly intense with wild visuals, time displacement, profound insights, heightened creativity, and sudden fits of euphoria. Geared toward more experienced users, this strain should be approached with reverence. A third or half portion can create quite a trip for most users, while a full one is advised only to experienced psychonauts.
Psilocybe pandora (4.5) – among the most potent strains, these truffles induce wild and unpredictable trips that are never like any other. Both closed-eyed and open-eyed visuals are intense and strange, thoughts are disorganized but profound and often in long sequences, while creativity and sociability are also boosted. Half of a portion should suffice for a moderate trip, whereas a full portion should only be taken by experienced users.
Psilocybe tampelandia (4.5) – also known as ‘High Hawaiians’, these truffles offer some of the most intense trips available to experience. They are heavily visual, opening up completely new realities. They are not well-suited for combining with other activities—a peaceful place with nature or one where it’s possible to observe some activity from afar are the best choices. Starting with a half portion is a good idea for most users, while a full one is only advised to expert psychonauts.
Psilocybe pajateros (4.5) – these truffles are a strain of Psilocybe tampanensis originating in Guatemala. They are also called ‘giants’ or ‘Dragon Dynamite’, and these names are indicative of their effects. They can give the user an immense sensation of power and energy, followed with intense visuals and deep insight, all bundled in a pleasant bodily state, and feelings of peace and unity. Full portions should be consumed only by well-versed trippers, while half or two-thirds should suffice for a solid experience for most.
Psilocybe cyanescens (4.5) – although not grown from actual Psilocybe cyanescens mushrooms, these truffles get their name due to the trips resembling experiences with Panaeolus cyanescens. This mushroom species is highly potent and known for causing glorious, intricate visuals, deep insights, and profound feelings of unity with the universe. Likewise, these truffles can induce powerful transcending of ordinary reality and should be taken with great respect and caution. Only expert psychonauts should consume an entire portion.
Psilocybe mokum (4) – a local Amsterdam breed, these magic truffles create a light, but stimulating trip, with the visual aspect turned down so the user can easily focus on profound introspective work or deep philosophical conversations with friends. Divergent thinking is boosted, and social interaction is easy and enjoyable with a consistent storm of incoming ideas. Expert psychonauts are advised a full portion, while novices and apprentices should stick to half.
Psilocybe fantasia (3.5) – as their name indicates, these magic truffles are highly effective boosters of imagination. This goes both for visuals and intricate philosophical thoughts, and talks (in case of tripping in company). Open-eyed visuals feature intensified colors and distorted objects, while closed-eyed ones connect with thoughts to display a strange array of mystical content. These truffles are not highly intense and are good to take in a range of settings, be they social or solitary. Full portions are good for experienced users, while two-thirds or half is recommended to most users, including first-timers.
Psilocybe pajaritos (3) – translated as “little birds”, pajaritos got their name after the small size sclerotia that’s produced. Accordingly, these tiny truffles are not the strongest out there, with mild visuals and a pleasant, vibrant bodily experience. They are good for tripping with friends, with bursts of laughter and chains of creative ideas to discuss. A full portion is suited for most people, even first timers.
Abraxas gigas (4) – a truffle strain sold exclusively by Elephantos, these sclerotia were bred specifically for inducing spectacular visions. Other aspects of the trip are attenuated, leaving the user free to marvel at the fractal show, which can resemble LSD visuals. These truffles are highly recommended to those who just want to get away from reality without having to indulge into deep ponderings of the fabric of the universe. The extra large portions are suited for advanced users, while regular trippers should be content with half.
Gandalfino (4) – another exclusive to Elephantos, these truffles offer a unique trip, with intense, but not overpowering effects. Solid visuals accompany feelings of euphoria and a serious boost in imagination, making activities and social interaction feasible and enjoyable. Although they can be intense, full portions are suitable for most users, as this strain is not known to be overwhelming.
Although we know of more than 245 different species of psychedelic mushrooms, in reality, only a handful of types have been cultivated for commercial purposes. Since the mushroom ban of 2008, however, the truffle scene in the Netherlands has undergone immense development, resulting in a wide variety of available strains. Now, the selection is so diverse that there are strains of truffles for any kind of tripping intention.
Here are a few questions you should ask yourself before you make a choice:
Once you consider these questions, you can have a better idea of what the conditions of your trip will be like, what state you’re in, and what you’d like the experience to give you. Accordingly, here are our recommendations that take these factors into account to help you make a choice according to your level of experience with psychedelics:
You will want to go for a mild strain, or a third or half portion of a stronger strain. Best would be to stick to one of the classics, such as Psilocybe tampanensis, Psilocybe atlantis, or Psilocybe mexicana; this should provide a clean introductory trip, because these truffles are natural products of their respective mushrooms. Psilocybe fantasia and Psilocybe pajaritos are also good choices that won’t overwhelm you. A suitable setting for the first trip is a nice, quiet place in the nature, with few or no people in immediate vicinity. Tripping with one or two friends is ideal for the first experience. One should be sober and act as a sitter.
If you are already familiar with other psychedelics or psilocybin mushrooms, you may have a clearer idea of what your intentions for tripping are. If you’d like to experience an introspective journey and connect with yourself and nature, full portions of Psilocybe tampanensis or Psilocybe atlantis should do the trick, as should a half portion of Psilocybe cyanescens or Psilocybe hollandia. If you’re tripping with friends, go for two-thirds or a full portion of Psilocybe mokum or Psilocybe fantasia. If you plan some activity or event while tripping, choose Psilocybe pajaritos or Gandalfino instead. If you just want to marvel at some visuals, go for half portion of Psilocybe tampelandia or Abraxas gigas.
With more than a few experiences with psychedelics under your belt, you are probably open for experimentation. For deep introspective work, consider high doses of Psilocybe tampanensis, a full portion of Psilocybe pandora, Psilocybe pajateros, or Psilocybe cyanescens, or two-thirds of a Psilocybe hollandia portion. For incredible transformations of reality and travels to other realms of existence, try a whole portion of Psilocybe atlantis, two-thirds of Psilocybe utopia or Psilocybe tampelandia, or half of Psilocybe Valhalla. For socializing and/or attending events, go for a full portion of Psilocybe mokum, Psilocybe fantasia, or an even higher dose of Psilocybe mexicana.
You’ve tried almost everything under the sun and you’re looking for a unique, intense, and challenging experience. If anything less than a full-power trip will be underwhelming, try a full portion of Psilocybe valhalla, Psilocybe hollandia, Psilocybe tampelandia, or Psilocybe pajateros. If you want to really challenge your idea of reality, go for a full portion or more of Psilocybe pandora or Psilocybe cyanescens. And if you just want to enjoy a spectacular visual display, take the extra large portion of Abraxas gigas.
Like with all psychedelics, magic truffle experiences are highly individual and how they play out will depend on a number of factors even beyond experience, setting, and intention. It is best to approach them with an open heart, curiosity, and respect, and embrace everything that comes, even if it’s not what you want or expect.
Finally, although truffle trips are generally not as intense as mushroom trips, it’s best to start slow and work out the ideal dosage for you. The trips are cumulative, so dividing the portion and consuming part by part in a siting will work just as well, and sometimes even better than taking it all at once. Plus, it has the added benefit of more gradual liftoff and a potentially more comfortable overall experience on a more optimal dosage. Make sure to educate yourself about the effects of individual strains, to choose the one that goes well with your character, intentions, level of experience, and setting, and, of course, to always have a sober sitter present, especially if you are new to the world of psychedelics.