We’re so accustomed to the belief that flowers are for display and plants are for eating. But there are many flowers that are not only edible but are extremely healthy. If you’re looking for a unique, healthy way to improve your diet, keep reading.
Edible flowers to improve your diet: Common edible flowers include lavender and chamomile which have soothing qualities to them. Nasturtiums and pansies can be used as a bright, edible garnish, and they are also a good source of vitamins and minerals. You can even make candied rose petals for a tasty and nutritious treat.
Is there any nutritional value in edible flowers?
Even though they are small and very thin in texture, edible flowers can pack a serious nutritional punch. Many are good sources of essential vitamins and minerals such as calcium and iron.
As with most foods, the more you eat of them, the more benefits you will get. Popping a few petals into your mouth won’t give you a lot of nutritional value so if you want to take full advantage of what edible flowers have to offer, you should be conscientious of how you consume them.
Still, if you regularly add edible flowers to salads or as garnishes, you will naturally eat more of them. Get in the habit of brewing some herbal tea to get even more benefits from them and your lifestyle may change for the better.
What are the benefits of edible flowers?
The benefits of edible flowers are wide-ranging. No matter what characteristics you are looking for, you can find edible flowers that fit that category.
The most obvious benefits include being a source of vitamins and minerals. Vitamins A, C, and E are the most common, as are minerals such as iron and calcium.
Other benefits include anti-inflammatory properties and antioxidants that help regulate your body’s systems. Many flowers also have calming properties, which are beneficial if you suffer from anxiety or have a hard time sleeping at night.
10 edible flowers that can improve your diet
Almost everybody has dandelions growing in their yard so instead of cursing them, take advantage of them. The edible flowers are rich in nutrients including vitamins B, C, A, E, and K, as well as iron and folate.
You can use all parts of the dandelion, not just the flowers, so get creative and use the stems in a stir fry and the flowers as a garnish or a bright addition to a salad.
Even though roses look gorgeous, they are also edible, as long as you get them from a source that can guarantee they are naturally and organically grown, as many varieties contain pesticides. Roses are a good source of vitamins C and A, as well as calcium and iron.
You can prepare roses in a number of ways including candied roses or steeped in tea.
You will find squash blossoms available from early summer to early fall and while they look pretty, they don’t have an overly strong taste. You can prepare squash blossoms including deep fried or you can stuff them full of cheese and herbs.
If you are growing squash in your backyard and want to eat the blossoms, be sure to only pick the male blossoms. You can identify the male blossoms by their long, thin stem while female blossoms have a small fruit at the base that will turn into the squash.
A well-known edible flower, nasturtiums provide a vibrant color to any dish while also containing important nutrients such as iron, phosphorus, and calcium. They are a great addition to salads and you can also stuff them with cheese or meat.
A great source of antioxidants, pansies offer a colorful look to a dish, usually as an edible garnish. You can grow pansies or find them at local health food stores, and they have a subtle, minty flavor.
Not only can you use marigolds as a topical remedy to treat wounds and skin ailments but you can also ingest them for more health benefits. Their high flavonoid content means they can promote cell health which may help prevent some cancers from forming.
There are so many benefits to lavender, it’s hard to count them all. This fragrant plant aids in relaxation and is perfect if you have trouble falling asleep. The best way to enjoy lavender is by grinding the petals into a paste to eat or by steeping the leaves and flowers into tea.
Similar to lavender, chamomile has soothing qualities so is excellent if you want to relax before bedtime. It can also help boost your immunity and reduce inflammation in your gut. You can eat chamomile flowers on their own or steep them to make tea.
There are many ways to enjoy the hibiscus flower, including steeped in tea or as a juice. This Asian flower helps lower blood pressure and can fight off bacteria thanks to its high level of antioxidants.
If you suffer from inflammation, carnations are an excellent, and pretty way, to soothe your nervous system. The flowers can also help with menstrual cramps and menopausal symptoms. Simply add the flowers or petals to salads or use them as a garnish for a spicier taste.
What are the most delicious edible flowers?
Taste is relative, so you may want to try a few edible flowers to see which ones you enjoy the most. Furthermore, how you eat them will determine their flavor profile.
Many flowers are used in tea, such as roses, lavender, and chamomile, which makes their flavor more palatable. Hibiscus flowers are also used in a refreshing drink.
Squash blossoms have a very subtle taste to them, which makes them more palatable to more people. You can stuff them, batter them, and deep fry them for a crispy texture and savory taste.
While there’s no denying flowers are pretty to look at, there are also many nutritional benefits to them. From dandelions to lavender, you can prepare these flowers to improve your diet.