Looking for an edible flowers list? Edible flowers are fun to grow, and, of course, to eat in salads or use as a garnish for plates or festive desserts.
An Edible Flowers List
There are actually many different kinds of flowers that can safely be eaten. Here is an edible flowers list, with some ideas on how the flowers taste, to get you started:
- Angelica: tastes like licorice
- Anise hyssop: anise or licorice flavor
- Apple blossoms: like apples
- Chive flowers: taste like chives
- Bee Balm: tastes somewhat like oregano or mint
- Borage: somewhat cucumber-like
- Carnation: sweet flavor, good for desserts
- Chamomile: somewhat like apples
- Chervil: anise
- Chrysanthemums: tangy, bitter
- Citrus blossoms: taste like the fruit
- Clover: sweet, somewhat anise
- Cornflower: usually spicy, somewhat like cloves
- Dandelion: sweet, honey-like
- Day Lily: somewhat sweet, reminiscent of vegetables
- Garden Sorrel: tart, lemony
- Gladiolas: lettuce-like, mild, but pretty as a serving vessel
- Hibiscus: tart, like cranberries
- Honeysuckle: sweet
- Hyacinth: nutty
- Jasmine: strong, good for use in tea
- Johnny Jump-Ups: mild, wintergreen
- Lavender: sweet, floral
- Lemon verbena: lemon
- Lilac: flowery, a little bitter
- Linden: similar to honeysuckle
- Marigold: usually peppery, can be somewhat bitter
- Nasturtium: peppery, good in salads
- Okra: nutty, somewhat like asparagus when cooked
- Pansy: mild, slightly sweet
- Pineapple Guava: sweet, melon-like
- Primrose: slightly sweet
- Queen Anne's Lace: light, like a carrot
- Rose: different varieties have different flavors, but mostly sweet; even if you do not want to eat them, consider using them to decorate cakes and pastries
- Squash blossoms: taste like the squash they would have grown into
- Sunflower: young flowers taste like artichokes, older flowers are bitter
- Sweet Woodruff: sweet, somewhat nutty
- Tulip: mild lettuce or cucumber flavor
Using Edible Flowers
This edible flower list gives you some ideas about the wide variety of flowers that can safely be consumed. Most flowers taste better when used raw, but others, such as okra and sunflowers, are delicious cooked as well. When cooking flowers or adding them to a finished dish, remember that most flowers are delicate and excessive heat will cause them to lose their flavor.
Edible flowers make a wonderful garnish floated in soups, on salads, at the side of a plate or on desserts. Consider "sugaring" edible flowers when you use them to decorate pastries.
Warnings About Using Flowers
First, don't use flowers that aren't edible on or near food. If you aren't sure if a flower is edible, don't use it. Use the edible flowers list above as a guide when making your choices. People will assume that a flower is edible by virtue of its being placed on a plate.
Always know where your flowers are coming from. Growing them yourself is the best possible way to get your flowers because you know that nothing has been sprayed on them.
If you can't grow your own edible flowers or just need to buy some extras, make sure they were organically grown and had no pesticides used on them. Flowers can be difficult to clean so this is really the best option.
Cleaning Edible Flowers
Before using any flowers from the edible flowers list, shake them gently while holding them upside down to make sure there are no bugs in them. Remove the stamen and rinse them gently in a sink or bowl of water.
Allow them to dry outside of direct sunlight. The faster they dry, the more flavor will be retained.
Edible flowers may be stored tightly sealed in a container or wrapped in plastic. You can also keep flowers on their stems stored in the refrigerator in a glass or jar of water.
If your flowers have wilted before you want to use them, place them in a bowl of ice water for a few seconds.