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10 Common Flowers You Should Eat

10 Common Flowers You Should Eat

When most people think of flowers, eating them isnt usually the first thing that comes to mind. However, many of these beautiful plants can be eaten and can add color and texture to a raw salad or even a cooked meal. Some are sweet and yummy by themselves while others need a little extra love to make them enjoyable. So make sure to check before just chomping on the first flower you recognize! Unfortunately, no flower is really safe unless it was grown organically without the use of pesticides or chemicals. In lieu of this, always make sure to use organically grown species. Also, make sure to thoroughly wash your flowers before eating.

It’s also important to remove pistils and stamens from flowers before eating. Sometimes these parts of the flower are not as tasty as the rest. You may want to separate the flower petals from the rest of the flower just prior to use to keep wilting to a minimum.

Violets

The flowers, along with the heart-shaped leaves of the wild violet, are edible. Both can be used to add color and complexity to salads. The flower is often used to make jellies and teas and can also be candied and used as a decorative garnish.

Rose Hips

These circular buds have played an essential role in the Native American diet for a long time., Rose Hips contain vitamin C and store well when dried properly. For a refreshing twist try making rosebud ice cubes.

 

 

Dandelion

This common weed does not get the credit it deserves. The greens of the plant are packed with antioxidants and minerals containing a high level of potassium. Although the plant can be a bit bitter, for those who don’t mind (think arugula), it can be a wonderful addition to any salad. To satisfy the sweeter taste buds, check out this awesome recipe for Dandelion syrup.

For more on eating dandelions, click here.

Day Lily

This flower has a sweet taste and can be eaten raw. The tubers of the roots can be boiled and eaten like mini potatoes. Just remove the stalks and hairs and, of course, the dirt. The flower buds are a good source of vitamin C and carotene. But be careful — lilies are deadly to cats.

Image Credit: Wikimedia Commons

 

Squash Blossoms

The orange, yellow blossom found at the top of the squash can be cooked or eaten raw. Be careful, though — the flower perishes fast;  if you want to use them try to pick them right before you cook. Like quesadillas? Like flowers in your quesadillas? Try this quirky recipe.

Calendula

This flower has been coined the “Poor Man’s Saffron.” Its flavor ranges from tangy to spicy with a bit of a peppery aftertaste. It’s a great complement to rice dishes, soups and pasta. The flower can also be used as a great herbal remedy.

 

Hibiscus

The flowers can be eaten, but the best way to use hibiscus is to make an infused tea. Just take ten or so flowers and soak them in hot water. Add lime for flavor and enjoy. Drinking it cold is just as delicious as hot, so for a nice summer day, put it on ice!

Honeysuckle

The base of the flower holds a sweet tasting nectar that can be eaten, and the entire flower makes a great addition to any spring or summer salad.

 

Lilac

You guessed it –the beautiful smelling lilac tastes how it smells, but is delicate and not overwhelming. Lilac is best used as a garnish. For something different try mixing it in vanilla frozen yogurt for an interesting treat.

Carnations

As sweet as they are beautiful, Carnations can be steeped in wine or eaten plain. If you’re the baking type think about creating a beautiful design on top of a cake using these flowers or some of the others mentioned above.

by Lauren Howland, Planet Green

Related:
Use Edible Flowers for Extra Elegance
Edible and Fragrant Lilacs
Cooking With Wild Plants

 

 

Read more: All recipes, Appetizers & Snacks, Basics, Desserts, Drinks, Eating for Health, Entrees, Food, Green, Lawns & Gardens, Nature, Raw, Soups & Salads, Vegan, Vegetarian, ,

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Megan, selected from Planet Green

Planet Green is the multi-platform media destination devoted to the environment and dedicated to helping people understand how humans impact the planet and how to live a more environmentally sustainable lifestyle. Its two robust websites, PlanetGreen.com and TreeHugger.com, offer original, inspiring, and entertaining content related to how we can evolve to live a better, brighter future. Planet Green is a division of Discovery Communications.

315 comments

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11:36PM PDT on Apr 19, 2014

Thank you

11:04PM PDT on Apr 19, 2014

good to know ! Thanks

1:36PM PDT on Apr 19, 2014

tls

1:25PM PDT on Apr 19, 2014

thanks :)

12:31PM PDT on Apr 19, 2014

We used to make fried Acacia tree (Robinia) blossoms. Basicly you just dip them in batter and fry. http://traditionalandwild.eu/si/images/akacija_3.jpg
Some people prepare Black Elder blossoms the same way. http://zdravje.blog.siol.net/files/2007/09/bezeg.JPG Its also good for syrup.

12:00PM PDT on Apr 19, 2014

Hmm .. such a beautiful salad!!

11:55AM PDT on Apr 19, 2014

I prefer looking at flowers rather than eating them. They do add some nice colour.

10:44AM PDT on Apr 19, 2014

But be careful. Lots of very beautiful flowers are also very toxic. Read up carefully before eating any flowers.

1:12AM PDT on Apr 19, 2014

yummmy

9:26PM PDT on Apr 18, 2014

Yums

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