9 Flowers You Can Eat And Enjoy

These edible flowers in your yard or garden have health benefits that you may not know about.

May 20, 2020
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Floral arrangements enhance any table. But did you know that there are flowers that can also go on your dinner plate?

Edible flowers have been used in cuisine since ancient times. You can add flowers to salads, make them into teas, or add to cooked dishes to enhance the flavors of your favorite dish. They are nutritious and come with added health benefits like antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties according to Healthline.

The flowers are best if you forage them or pick from your garden and then use right away if possible. Gently wash and dry the blooms before use. But be sure to avoid using flowers that have been sprayed with chemicals like pesticides. If you do not have a garden, some edible flowers – and leaves – are available in your supermarkets’ produce section.

Here are nine edible flowers that are sure to please. Bon Appetit!

Roses

These fragrant and beautiful flowers come in over 150 species and according to SF Gate, all of them are edible but they all do not taste the same. Rose petals have a slightly sweet taste and can be added to salads, desserts, and other dishes. But only eat the petals, rose leaves and stems do not taste very good. Rich in vitamin C, rose hips have been used to make tea for centuries. You can also dry rose petals to use later as a tasty seasoning.

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Dandelion

These flowers are usually thought of as pesky garden weeds but they are also a very nutritious fully edible plant that is full of vitamins and antioxidants. The leaves can be eaten in salads or cooked into stews. The flowers can be made into teas, jelly, or dandelion wine. Even the roots can be ground up to use in a hot beverage.

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Honeysuckle

The fragrant blossoms of the 200 species of honeysuckle are usually light yellow or white, and hold sweet nectar that can be eaten directly from the flower. This flower has been used in traditional Chinese medicine for centuries according to Healthline. Honeysuckle flowers are usually made into tea or syrups. You can use the nectar to flavor iced tea, lemonades, or as a sugar replacement. Do not eat the berries, only the flowers of these plants are safe to eat.

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Zucchini Blossoms

You’ve eaten zucchini and other summer squashes but if you haven’t grown it in your garden, you may not be aware that the bright yellow flowers are edible and delicious too. The flowers have a slightly sweet taste and you can eat them raw in salads or cook them. Southern Living says that you can bake them stuffed with goat cheese or put them on a pizza. Just pick the flowers off of the male plants because they do not grow fruit and let the female plants grow the fruit that is commonly thought of as a vegetable.

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Chamomile

This little yellow and white flower has a slew of health benefits. In fact, people have been consuming these edible flowers dating back to the ancient Egyptians. Full of antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties, you can drink chamomile tea to help aid digestion, lower blood sugar levels, boost your immune system, and help you sleep better at night. You can dry the flowers and leaves or use them fresh.

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Pansies

These pretty small blossomed flowers with purple, blue, and yellow petals come with some potent benefits according to Healthline. Just like chamomile, they are chock full of antioxidants and anti-inflammatory capabilities. Pansies have a mild flavor and can be added to a variety of dishes including salads and desserts.

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Lavender

This floral herb is known for its distinctive fragrance which is known for its calming benefits. Herbalists have used this purple flower for its health benefits that include calming anxiety, easing depression, lower blood pressure and other conditions for centuries according to Medical News Today. You can use lavender in teas, infused syrups, dry spice and herb rubs, or add it to desserts.

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Borage (Starflowers)

This beautiful star shaped blue, white, or pink flowers have been used to treat a variety of minor ailments in herbal medicine including sore throats and coughs according to Healthline. These slightly sweet flowers and leaves are edible and have a taste similar to cucumbers.  Use borage in salads, cooked into soups and stews, or cooked as a vegetable side dish.

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Nasturtiums

These culinary favorites have an amazingly bright colored orange, yellow, or red blossoms and a slight peppery taste. Both the flower and leaves can be eaten raw or cooked. Packed with nutrition – including vitamin C — , this plant also has antibacterial properties according to The Herbal Resource. The leaves, flowers, buds and nectar spurs can be eaten and used in salads and chopped into egg salad, or cream cheese. But use caution, this plant has a very strong taste

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BONNIE RIVA RAS, EDITOR & WRITER
Bonnie Riva Ras has dedicated her life to promoting social justice. She loves to write about empowering women, helping children, educational innovations, and advocating for the environment & sustainability.
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