Many flowers are edible – some are not. Check out our guide for some delicious, and beautiful, ideas
WILD AND GARDEN FLOWERS
- Wild Bergamot (Monardia) – The flowers and the young leaves have an intense flavour of mint
- Calendula (Calendula officinalis) – The flowers have a peppery taste useful in soups, stews and puddings. Petals can be dried or pickled in vinegar or added to oil or butter
- Carnation (Dianthus) – The bright red and pink petals have a mild clove flavour and are great for salads, for adding to cakes or as flavoured sugar, oils and vinegars
- Chrysanthemum (Chrysanthemum) – petals can be used to flavour and colour cream soups, fish chowder and egg dishes in the same way as calendula
- Daisy (Bellis perennis) – not a strong flavour but petals make a cheery addition to salads
- Day Lily (Hemerocallis) – add the buds and flowers to stir fry, salads and soups. Crunchy with a peppery after taste
- Elderflower (Sambucus nigra) – used to make wine and cordials. Flowerheads can be placed in a muslin bag to flavour tarts and jellies. Flowerheads can be deep fried in batter
- Hibiscus (H. rosa-sinensis) – The bright red flowers can be used to make a refreshing citrus-flavoured tea
- Lavender (Lavandula augustifolia) – used to flavoured sugar, honey or vinegar, Flowers can be used directly in cakes and biscuits. Lavender sprigs can be used like Rosemary in roast pork, lamb and chicken
- Nasturtium (Tropaeolum majus) – The whole brightly-coloured flowers are a fantastic, peppery addition to salads and pasta dishes.
- Rose (Rosa) – all roses are edible with the more fragrant roses being the best. Petals can be crystallized or used directly to flavour drinks and sugar
- Scented geraniums (Pelagonium) – The flowers can be frozen in ice cubes to brighten up summer cordials
- Sunflower (Helianthus annuus) – Sunflower petals can be used in salads or stir fries. For the more adventurous, blanch the whole buds and serve with garlic butter.
- Sweet violet (Viola odorata) – Petals taste like Parma Violets! A delicate flavour suitable for sweet or savoury dishes and petals make a light, floral tea.
- Borage (Borago offincinalis) – the blue flowers have a cucumber flavour which works well in salads. Try some of the flowers in a gin & tonic!
- Basil (Ocimum basilicum) – the flowers have a sweet, clover-like flavour which, like the leaves, are particularly good with tomato dishes
- Chervil (Anthriscus cerefolium) both the leaves and the flowers have a mild liquorice taste
- Chicory (Cichorium endivia) the petals can be pulled off and added to salads and the unopened flower buds can also be pickled like capers
- Coriander (Coriandrum sativum) plants tend to bolt in the summer but the flowers have the same intense flavour as the rest of the plant and can be used in the same ways
- Dandelion (Taxacum officinalis) the flowers, when picked small, and unopened, have a sweetness like honey.
- Dill (Anethum graveolens) – the flowers, like the herb itself, have a mild aniseed flavour. Add flowers to mayonnaise or white sauce for fish dishes
- Chives (Allium schoenoprasum) – the flowers have a mild onion flavour which is good in salads and egg dishes
- Clover (Trifolium pratense) – both red and white clover flowers can be used to garnish green salads and you can make wine from whole red flowers
- Courgette flowers – can be eaten hot or cold stuffed with cooked rice, cous cous etc. Dip in batter and deep fry for a tempura dish
- Fennel (Foeniculum vulgare) – All parts of the plant can be eaten. The flowers can be preserved in oil or vinegar can be used in winter
- Garden pea (Pisum sativum) – The flowers and young shoots are great added to salad for a fresh pea taste
- Garlic (Allium sativum) – florets can be separated and used in salads for a mild garlic taste. Or cut the flowers stems before they open and blitz with pine nuts, olive oil and parmesan for a light pesto
- Mint (Mentha sp) –Flowers of all types of mint are edible and attractive in salads. They can all be used in oil, vinegar and butter for both sweet and savoury dishes
- Rosemary (Rosmarinus officinalis) – a sweet flavour like the leaves can be used fresh to garnish salads and tomato dishes
- Salad rocket (Eruca vescaria) – adds sharp, peppery-citrus flavour to salads
|NOT ALL FLOWERS ARE EDIBLE, SOME ARE POISONOUS |
IF YOU ARE NOT SURE YOU HAVE IDENTIFIED THE PLANT CORRECTLY, DO NOT EAT IT
DON’T EAT FLOWERS IF YOU THINK THEY MIGHT HAVE BEEN SPRAYED WITH PESTICIDE
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