edible flowers

Edible Flowers – Not Just a Modern Food Trend

Edible flowers are not just a modern food trend. People have been using flowers in foods for millennia. Not only do they look pretty, but they are also tasty and nutritional too.

Edible Flowers Add Nutritional Value:

There has not been an extensive amount of studies done to date on edible flowers. But the research there is shows edible flowers provide vitamins A, C, B2, B3 and minerals calcium, phosphorus, iron, and potassium.

The pigments that give them their lovely flower colors are polyphenols. These antioxidants can prevent chronic illnesses like cancer and heart disease. (source 1, and source 2)

Not All Flowers Are Edible

Some flower varieties are poisonous to humans. Some flowers that could be edible are sprayed with pesticides making them toxic.

Always be sure your flowers are from a reputable source and labeled “edible” or “culinary” or “for human consumption.”

If you choose to grow your own, research to make sure they are safe to eat and never spray anything on them or use herbicides around them.

I have several lavender and rosemary plants, as well as a few roses and plenty of yarrow in my yard. Not to mention the dandelions that like to pop up uninvited. All are attractive, edible, and easy to grow with minimal care where I live.

What Flowers Can Be Eaten?

Some edible flowers that can be eaten:

Calendula

edible flower Calendula


Citrus blossom

citrus blossom


Daisies

Daisies


Dandelions

Dandelions


Hibiscus (often labeled as Jamaica in the Mexican food aisle)

Hibiscus


Honeysuckle (depending on species the berries may be poisonous)

edible flowers Honeysuckle


Lavender

edible flowers Lavender


Lilac

edible flowers Lilac


Nasturtium

edible flowers Nasturtium


Pansies/Violets

edible flowers Pansies and Violets


Rosemary

edible flowers Rosemary


Roses, both the petals and hips (the round ball below the flower)

edible flowers Roses


Squash

edible flowers Squash


Sunflowers

edible flowers Sunflowers


Yarrow

edible flowers Yarrow

What Do Edible Flowers Taste Like?

It depends on the flower.

Intense smelling flowers like lavender and roses taste like they smell. Squash blossoms taste faintly like the squash.

Calendula has a peppery or bitter taste. Hibiscus is tart.

Though most people mainly use just the rosemary leaves in cooking, the flowers are edible as well, offering a faint taste of rosemary.

How to Serve Flowers

  • Use fresh flowers in salads, cheese spreads, compound kinds of butter, or salad dressings.
  • Freeze them in ice cubes to dress up cold beverages.
  • Brew dried flowers into tea and serve hot or cold.
  • Decorate cakes and cupcakes. Add to baked goods.
  • Flavor homemade jams and jellies.
  • Make a simple syrup. Add equal parts sugar (or sugar-free alternative) and water to a saucepan with some flowers. Bring to a boil, stir to dissolve the sugar, then strain. Use to flavor teas, lemonades, and other drinks.

Edible Flower Recipes

Always use organic fruits and vegetables in your recipes.

Do you live in one of these Southern California Cities? Aguanga, Fallbrook, Hemet, Homeland, Lake Elsinore, Menifee, Murrieta, Temecula, Wildomar, or Winchester.  If you do, you can use the local organic fruits and vegetables in our harvest deliveries for these recipes.

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About Audrey Humaciu

Audrey is the Editor in Chef at That Recipe and VP of Creativity and Sarcasm at Munofore. When she’s not blogging about her eclectic interests from cooking and crafting to ornamental horticulture and the idiosyncrasies of the American language, she’s just your typical 40 something mom livin’ the life in the California burbs… without the minivan and overpriced coffee.

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