White truffles are a type of subterranean mushroom that is considered one of the few gems of the world of fine dining. They are known for their sweet and savory aroma, coming with a very deep nutty mushroom flavor that has just a hint of shallots.
These are harvested in Italy alone and only between October and December. They are either used as a garnish or consumer raw.
How much do white truffles cost?
White truffles cost, on average, between $200 and $1,300 per ounce, which means about $3,000 to $9,000+ per pound, when in season. These costs will usually depend on factors like where you purchase them from, their size, and the harvest, and the time of the year. Usually, larger truffles will cost more per ounce. Depending on the available supply, you will probably be able to buy white truffles only between October and January.
But what makes white truffles so expensive? The prices of this product are this high and unpredictable especially because it can’t be controlled or cultivated. This makes it a delicacy with one of the highest prices in the food world. Although a lot of people have tried over time to farm truffles, no one was successful.
To get an idea of how expensive these truffles can get, an auction in 2014 had a winning bid of $61,250. The bidder was from China and placed their bid by phone. This isn’t even the highest price one of these mushrooms has ever pulled. In 2010, for example, a 3.3-pound white truffle that was found in Pisa, Italy, was sold for $330,000.
According to an article in CNN Money, you will likely find prices between $6,000 and $10,000 per pound, but the season will dictate the costs most of the time.
White truffles are on top of the chart when it comes to food prices, according to MentalFloss.com, with a price of about $170 per ounce.
Refer to our table below to see what each size may cost per ounce. These costs can greatly vary from one retailer to another and when you plan on purchasing them.
|Size||Price (Per Ounce)|
|Colossal (0.17 – 0.22 lb. ea.)||$750|
|Extra Large (0.11 – 0.16 lb. ea.)||$650|
|Large (0.08 – 0.11 oz. ea.)||$600|
|Medium (0.04 – 0.06 lb. ea.)||$350|
|Small (0.05 – 0.07 lb. ea.)||$300|
When in season, you can even find retailers that sell them by the ounce on Amazon.com. Checking the pricing history data from Amazon, we noticed that costs ranged between as low as $128 and as high as $300 and more per ounce.
One popular online retailer called Alma Gourmet has white truffles listed on its website, with prices between $125 and $1,890, and you will find specific information on truffle prices depending on their size in the table below.
|$124.95||½ oz (14g)|
|$249.95||1 oz (28g)|
|$489.95||2 oz (56g)|
|$974.95||4 oz (113g)|
|$1,889.95||8 oz (230g)|
What are the extra costs?
You will probably need a truffle slicer when working with Italian white truffles. This will help you produce truffle slices with ease, regardless of whether you want them thick or thin. You will likely spend between $20 and $50 on a good stainless steel slicer.
If you order your white truffles online, you will have to get them shipped to your location overnight, as they have a very short lifespan. This means an additional $20 to $60 for shipping.
Important things about fresh white truffles
When you buy fresh truffles locally or online, you will get them in their raw form. They are often sold as is and the sensitivity of the product will require overnight shipping.
Experts explain the taste of white truffles as a combination of a musky-like aroma and a garlicky taste.
The white truffle, also called the alba truffle, isn’t meant to be consumed when prepared, in its natural form. What you do instead is add it to food like pasta after you have shaved it paper thin. You can also serve them on bread after gently sauteeing them in oil with butter.
You should consume fresh white truffles as soon as you get them. If you want to store them instead, they can be kept in your refrigerator for about four days.