So Many Reasons to Love Dandelion Root + 3 Ways to Use It

So many people have an unhappy reaction when they see dandelions pop up in their yard in the springtime, but these ‘weeds’ are actually a nutrient-dense food that has been used to nourish people for centuries.

The entire dandelion plant is edible– the roots, the leaves and even the flowers. Dandelion greens are delicious and full of vitamins and minerals – including A, C and K. They are a great green to use in salads, stir-fries and more. But it’s the roots that are the most powerful part of this unassuming plant. Dandelion root has been used for centuries as a tonic to improve the digestive system, and is credited with being especially helpful to the liver.

The Many Health Benefits of Dandelion Root

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In herbalist practice, the roots are mainly used to stimulate the appetite, and to aid the liver and gallbladder. The plant has also been used traditionally as a diuretic.

Dandelion root also contains inulin, a type of fiber known as a prebiotic, which can help treat and prevent digestive issues as well as support a healthy immune system.

Dandelion root is generally regarded as safe, but it is always recommended to speak with a health care practitioner or herbalist before using a new herbal preparation. There are also allergy triggers for dandelion for those allergic to ragweed, chrysanthemums, marigold, chamomile, yarrow, daisies, or iodine, you should avoid dandelion.

How to use Dandelion Root for Tea, Tinctures and Other Drinks

 

dandelion root

One of the most beneficial ways to reap the benefits of dandelion root is to make dandelion root tea. Not only do many tea companies offer a packaged dandelion root tea (often under names like ‘detox’ or ‘liver cleanse’), many natural food stores will sell dandelion root in bulk. Dandelion root can then be blended at home for customized homemade herbal tea blends. Here’s an example of how you an use dandelion in a homemade tea blend.

While raw dandelion root has a bitter, medicinal flavor, roasted dandelion root is often used as an alternative to coffee because it tastes roasty and sweet. You can roast your own dandelion root, or try some of the ready-made dandelion ‘coffees’ on the market — my favorites are Teeccino and Dandy Blend.

Teeccino makes a huge variety of teabags and loose grounds that look like coffee, are brewed like coffee, and taste like coffee– but contain no caffeine and have all the health benefits of dandelion and chicory root. I like the mocha flavor over ice, which is slightly sweetened with dates and chocolate. Add your favorite plant-based milk and it’s like a healthy latte for any time of day. Dandy Blend is another instant alternative, made from dandelion root, grains and sugar beets. It’s a fine powder that can be used to make healthy mocha smoothies, or stirred into milk or ice water for an instant coffee-like (caffeine-free) drink. You can also make homemade dandelion root coffee.

Another way to enjoy the benefits of dandelion root is to make your own tinctures. Learn how to make homemade dandelion and cacao bitters, a stimulating tonic for cocktails and sodas, and these dandelion bitters for helping digestion and supplemental nutrition.

 

Related:

How to Use Dandelion Greens
How to Make Dandelion (flower) Syrup
Cream of Dandelion (greens) Soup

 

Image credits: Dandelion flower image, dandelion root image, dandelion root (herb) from ThinkStock

70 comments

Siyus Copetallus
Siyus Copetallus3 years ago

Thank you for sharing.

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Sarah Hill
Sarah Hill3 years ago

The whole plant is good for you.

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Jim Ven
Jim Ven3 years ago

thanks for the article.

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Carol S.
Carol S3 years ago

Thanks

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Carole R.
Carole R3 years ago

Thanks for posting.

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Roxane Connor
Roxane Connor3 years ago

Not just the root. The leaves and flowers are good for you as well

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Janis K.
Janis K3 years ago

Thanks for sharing.

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Magdalen B.
Magdalen B3 years ago

That's a puny excuse for a dandelion root! the ones on my plot are huge and grow half way to Australia.

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Karey Materi
Karey Materi3 years ago

Thanks, I would have never known!

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Sen Heijkamp
Sayenne H3 years ago

Thankss :D

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