If you’ve ever wondered what flowers are edible, here is the extensive list I’ve compiled.
For each flower I will go over its taste, color, and give you ideas of dishes to try with that flower.
Many flowers have similar names, and when you add their scientific names it can get even more confusing! I will try my best to clarify the differences for practical use. For example, dianthus vs. carnation, primrose vs. evening primrose, cowslip vs. primrose. (There’s many more where I had to quadruple-check the names and differences!).
This article took me a month to write, no joke. It was exhausting going through each flower and checking for factual accuracy. That said, I’ve also provided each flower’s scientific name so you can read up on it if you want more information. And if there is no scientific name, it means the scientific name is the same as the common name.
An important disclaimer: Though I have checked each flower for accuracy and edibility, some flowers can cause allergic reactions in some people. I have highlighted these warnings in italics, but it is up to the reader to research thoroughly the flower of interest. The reader consumes flowers at their own risk. Simply Self Sufficient and its authors cannot be held responsible for any adverse reaction to the flowers or their derived plant.
With that out of the way, let’s get into it!
- Banana Blossoms
- Bee Balm
- Bok Choy
- Broccoli Flowers
- Busy Lizzie
- Californian Poppy
- Cercis Canadensis
- Chive Blossoms
- Cilantro / Coriander Flowers
- Citrus blossoms
- Clary Sage
- Cosmos Sulphureus
- Courgette Blossoms
- Dame’s Rocket
- Elderberry Blossoms
- Evening Primrose
- Fennel Flowers
- Filipendula Ulmaria
- Garlic Blossoms
- Ginger Flowers
- Lemon Balm
- Lemon Bergamot
- Mint Flowers
- Onion Flowers
- Pac Choy/Pak choi
- Passion Flower
- Pea Blossoms
- Pennyroyal Mint
- Perennial Phlox
- Perilla Frutescens
- Pineapple Guava
- Pineapple Sage
- Queen Anne’s Lace
- Radish Flowers
- Red Clover
- Rocket Flowers
- Runner Bean Flower
- Squash Blossom
- Sweet Cicely
- Sweet Mace
- Sweet Woodruff
- Thyme Flowers
- Water Lily
- Zucchini Blossoms
Common name: anise hyssop
Scientific name: Agastache foeniculum
You can eat both the flowers and leaves. Use them in salads, cold drinks, cakes or as garnish. Agastache can be dried to create a licorice-mint flavored tea.
Appearance: tubular with open-mouthed flowers and square stems. Flowers are purple.
Flavor: Anise, licorice, mint
Common name: leeks, chives, garlic, garlic chives
Alliums are a family of 400 species covering onions, garlic, shallots and chives. Every part of these plants, including the flowers, are edible.
The flowers have a strong flavor and you can use them along with their leaves, in salads.
Common name: sweet alyssum
Scientific name: Lobularia maritima
Sweet alyssum flowers and leaves are edible. They have a peppery, pungent flavor that smells a bit like honey. Use them in salads, omelets, and cold soups. They come in a variety of species and colors.
Amaranth grain is well known for its health benefits. But did you know you can eat the flowers too? The grain or seed can be used to make flour, the leaves are great in salads as they are very high in nutrition. And the flowers can be steamed or sautéed. Here are more ways to prepare amaranth.
The anchusa flower is bright blue and can be used as garnish.
Scientific name: Angelica archangelica
The stems and seeds are used in liqueurs, and the leaves are used in salads. The flowers are not used as much but can be added to salads to add a licorice taste.
Appearance: flower colors vary from pale blue to pink.
Scientific name: Malus
Apple blossoms can be eaten. This is a variety of fruit flower that comes from, you guessed it, apple trees. Make sure you only eat flowers from trees that have not been sprayed with pesticides.
The flowers are pink to white, and taste slightly floral. Add them to fruit salads and other fruit dishes. You can use them as garnish.
Only eat a small amount as they can be dangerous due to their cyanide content.
Common name: rocket, arugula
Scientific name: Eruca sativa, Eruca vesicaria
This blossom tastes of pepper and can be added to salads to add a touch of spice. Flowers are white in color. Commonly known as rocket in some countries. The leaves are especially popular in garden salads.
Scientific name: Musa paradisiaca
Banana blossoms are flowers on the banana tree. Found most often in Southeast Asian dishes, you can eat them cooked or raw.
Scientific name: Ocimum basilicum
Basil flowers are edible. They are white or lavender in color and are milder than basil leaves. You can make tea with the flowers, sprinkle them over salads and make basil flower oil.
To make basil flower oil, infuse the flowers in olive oil. Repeat with vinegar to make basil flower vinegar, which can be used as salad dressing.
Scientific name: Monarda
Part of the mint family, bee balm is a plant with red or pink flowers. Flowers have a minty taste that you can eat cooked or uncooked. There are also notes of citrus or orange.
Earl gray tea tastes similar to a cup of bee balm tea. You can use bee balm in place of oregano, in salads and with fresh fruit. Here are more ways to use bee balm in your cooking.
Also known as bergamot.
Scientific name: Begonia x tuberhybrida (tuberous), Begonia x semperflorens-cultorum (wax)
Like bee balm, begonia is another perennial flowering plant. There are two types of edible begonia: tuberous and wax. They are bright flowers with a citrus taste. Use in salads or as garnish.
Do not eat if you suffer from gout, kidney stones or rheumatism.
Other names: pak choi, pac choy
Scientific name: Brassica rapa chinensis
The tiny, yellow flowers that grow on bok choy (also called pac choy or pak choi) are tasty and can be used in salads and stir fries.
Scientific name: Borago officinalis
Also known as starflower, this plant is a herb with bright blue or purple flowers. This is one of the most beautiful flowers you can add to your food, tasting a bit like cucumber.
Add to salads, to cocktails like gin and tonic, in lemonade or sorbet, or sprinkled over a cheese platter for a refreshing taste.
Scientific name: Brassica oleracea
Usually broccoli heads are harvested before they start to flower, but if the yellow flowers have started appearing, you can use them.
Some people like broccoli flowers, and describe their taste as nutty, while others don’t and consider them bitter. You might find them being sold as a delicacy. But don’t steam them, as they could wilt.
Scientific name: Sanguisorba minor
Burnet is similar in taste to borage, and can be used interchangeably. Burnet is from the rose family, and you can use the flowers in drinks, cakes or as garnish.
Scientific name: Impatiens walleriana
This flower is red, pink or white and tastes sweet, which makes them perfect for use in desserts. Also great in drinks and salads.
Common name: pot marigold
Scientific name: Calendula officinalis
A popular flower to grow is calendula, also called pot marigold. This is different from the Tagetes marigold, which has varieties which are dangerous to eat. Here’s how to tell the difference between a calendula and a tagetes marigold.
Calendula is easy to grow and highly edible, and its color resembles a sunset – it’s a beautiful flower to have in your garden. Pot marigolds all have petals you can eat, and can taste from peppery to bitter to tangy to spicy.
Sautéing petals in olive oil will create a saffron taste. This is a versatile flower that can be added to many dishes like scrambled eggs, salads, pasta, soup, rice dishes and spreads.
This adds a nice splash of yellow to your dish!
Scientific name: Eschscholzia californica
Californian poppies have golden-orange petals that are edible. Use in garnish or salads. The leaves can be used to make a relaxing herbal tea.
Scientific names: Camellia sinensis, camellia japonica etc.
There are many types of camellia. Depending on your region, some are more popular than others. For the USA, camellia sinensis is used to make tea. In East Asia, camellia japonica is used.
Camellias of all varieties are not poisonous, so you could try making tea with all kinds.
Both camellia sinensis and japonica contain caffeine.
Common name: bellflower
This flower adds a dash of purple or blue to your dishes. Use mostly as garnish and in salads as it doesn’t have a strong taste.
Scientific name: Iberis
The flowers and leaves of candytuft taste like mustard and can be eaten raw. Colors come in pink, white and purple. Candytuft tastes bitter though, so best to use them as decoration and garnish, such as on cakes and in drinks.
Scientific name: Dianthus
Carnations are very popular in culinary dishes. Their petals are sweet but spicy. They are great in desserts, such as candies, cakes and sundaes. You could even try making wines and cocktails for an interesting flavor! A fun note: petals are a secret ingredient in chartreuse, French liqueur.
Scientific name: Nepeta cataria
Not just for cats, the flowers and leaves of catmint are used to make tea. The tea is herbal, slightly minty and has medicinal benefits. Some of these benefits include soothing respiratory symptoms as well as easing upset stomachs.
Common name: eastern redbud
Eat the flowers raw or pickled. The petals are high in vitamin C and taste a bit sour.
Scientific name: Matricaria chamomilla
Both the flowers and leaves of chamomile are edible. You can use them in a range of dishes. Take note that if you’re allergic to ragweed, chamomile can trigger a reaction.
Chamomile is versatile – you can make a calming tea, flavor jams and ice creams, cocktails and liqueurs. You can add petals to salad, cakes, risotto, cookies or whatever you want!
This is a good one to experiment with. Of course, you can simply use it for decoration, too.
Scientific name: Anthriscus cerefolium
Chervil leaves are common to use in cooking, but the flowers and seeds are also edible. They have an anise-like, licorice flavor. You can substitute the flowers for leaves.
Use the flowers in teas and juices. If you cook them, add them last as the flavor can disappear quickly. Or else sprinkle them raw onto salads.
Scientific name: Cichorium intybus
Chicory flowers are blue and bitter. Because of their strong taste you need to dilute them when making tea. The color is nice and looks great on salads.
You can also pickle the flower buds and use them in drinks and frozen in ice cubes. Their appearance helps to make a dish or drink stand out – they are also very common in the wild.
Scientific name: Allium schoenoprasum
The flowers on chives are edible. They are lavender-pink and have a mild onion taste. Use them in salads or wherever you want a mild onion flavor. Make sure to separate the florets.
They are also tasty in an omelet!
Common name: mums, chop suey greens, shungiku, garland chrysanthemum, crown daisy
Scientific names: Glebionis coronaria, previously Chrysanthemum coronarium
Also known as mums, chrysanthemums are a many petaled flower. They are widely found in Asian cuisine and have been used for centuries in traditional Chinese medicine.
Chrysanthemum tea has benefits like reducing inflammation, as found in this study. In Japan, the flower petals are used fresh or dried in salads, soups, pickles and with fish.
Cilantro / Coriander Flowers
Scientific name: Coriandrum sativum
Cilantro leaves are common in dishes from many countries around the world, but the flowers are not as well known. Cilantro leaves taste tangy and like citrus, and the flowers are a mild version of that. Some people think cilantro tastes like soap, so have a try and see what you think!
Most people enjoy the flavor though. This article covers its uses in dishes very well.
Common name: orange, lemon, lime, grapefruit, kumquat
Flowers from citrus trees like lemon trees and orange trees have a citrus taste too. You can make tea or flavored water from these blossoms.
Orange blossom water is very common in Middle Eastern dishes. You can crush the petals of orange blossoms to make orange blossom water. Then, use it to make orange blossom cake, orange blossom rice pudding, cakes, yogurts and drinks.
Here are some awesome recipes using orange blossom water.
Scientific name: Salvia sclarea
Clary sage flowers can be used as a bright garnish on salads.
Scientific name: Trifolium
You can eat clovers raw, cooked or sautéed. Red and white clovers are used in traditional medicines but there is still a lack of scientific evidence, according to this study. The taste is mildly licorice, and they can be used to make tea, iced tea, salads or just fried and eaten by itself. Avoid eating too much as it can cause bloating.
Other names: bachelor’s button
Scientific name: Centaurea cyanus
Found in colors from pink to blue to white, cornflower is great for both savory or sweet dishes. The taste is faint like mild pepper or spice. This makes it suitable for just about anything.
Add cornflower for some color to drinks, over pasta, salads and use in teas.
Only cosmos sulphureus are edible and not other cosmos. Adds a bright splash of color to salads.
See Zucchini Blossoms.
Scientific name: Primula veris
Common names: cowslip, common cowslip, cowslip primrose
Also see Primrose.
Use cowslip in fruit salads and green salads. A versatile flower that can be pickled, made into cowslip wine or tea, and used to flavor desserts like pudding and cream.
You can eat the petals and tubers. Make sure no poisons have been sprayed on them.
There are a wide range of dahlias with flavors ranging from spicy to bitter to sweet. This article explains the best dahlias for eating and the ones you can use for salads.
Scientific name: Bellis perennis
This common flower you see everywhere is edible. Daisies taste bitter and you can add them to soups, salads, desserts and sandwiches. Avoid it if you have hayfever or asthma.
Scientific name: Hesperis matronalis
Dame’s rocket flowers taste bitter and are part of the mustard family. Flowers are mainly used in salads.
Scientific name: Taraxacum
This is your common dandelion, found everywhere. It’s a yellow weed but you can eat it in many ways. Make dandelion tea or wine, jelly, salad, or mix into your cakes. Use in syrups, fritters, fry them or eat raw. They have a honey taste. Here are five ways to eat dandelions.
Scientific name: Hemerocallis
Daylily petals are sweet and taste like melon. Their flavors are a cross between zucchini and asparagus. Use them in soups, stir fries, salads, present them on a salad splatter or use to decorate cakes. They are bright and come in a range of colors like a stunning orange.
Scientific name: Anethum graveolens
Flowers of dill are edible. Cook them with fish or eat raw in a salad. These flowers are tiny and yellow-green, so catch them when they have just opened. They have a herbal taste.
Scientific name: Sambucus
You can eat elderberry flowers. They are small and white and have medicinal uses. Don’t eat the berries uncooked. The flowers can be used in cordial, syrup, fritters and for making wine. When picking and preparing them, don’t wash the petals as they lose their flavor.
Scientific name: Oenothera biennis
Evening Primrose comes in yellow or pink, a great garnish for meals, salads and desserts. It can be eaten raw. Tastes like lettuce.
Scientific name: Feijoa sellowiana
Common name: feijoa, pineapple guava, guavasteen
This white and red-purple flower has a sweet taste, think marshmallows. It’s also musky. Add to salads and fruit salad.
Scientific name: Foeniculum vulgare
Has a mild licorice flavor and is bright yellow. Goes well in soups and stews, in sauces, and any meat, fish or vegetable dishes. You can also make fennel flower oil, and fennel flower fritters.
Common name: meadowsweet
Use meadowsweet flowers for tea, wine, beer or syrup. They are sweet and can also be added raw to salads.
Scientific name: Myosotis
A vibrant blue flower that looks good on cakes, in ice cubes and floated in cocktails and drinks.
Other names: golden bell
This bright yellow flower can be eaten raw and tastes mildly bitter. Make forsythia jelly or use as garnish. Here are nine different uses.
Fuchsia flowers look magnificent with their hot pink and red colors. They taste acidic. Use them to garnish fruit and vegetable dishes that need some color, or add them into jelly.
Scientific name: Allium sativum
Like their parent, garlic blossoms give a garlic taste, but milder. Open the florets and use where you would garlic. Flowers are white or pink. Great in salads or fried in butter.
Common name: scented geranium
Scientific name: Pelargonium
Geraniums come in all varieties. The flavor of the flower depends on the type of geranium. Flavors can be spicy, nutmeg, citrus etc. Good in drinks, desserts, jelly and ice cubes. Colors include pink, white, purple and red.
Common name: Zingiber officinale
Ginger flowers taste, you guessed it, like ginger. They are reddish pink and can be eaten raw. Use them wherever you need a ginger taste.
The flowers taste bland like lettuce. They come in all varieties of color though like cream, red, orange, pink, yellow, violet. Which means you can use them anywhere you need color, as they won’t affect the taste of the dish very much.
Scientific name: Hibiscus rosa-sinensis
Flowers of hibiscus taste like cranberries with a note of citrus. This creates an acidic, berry flavor. They are a rich red and will make an impressive-looking tea, salad or cocktail.
Scientific name: Alcea rosea
Hollyhock flowers are most commonly used in salads and tea. They taste bland, and come in pink, white and even black varieties. Remove the pollen before eating.
Scientific name: Lonicera, Lonicera japonica (Japanese honeysuckle)
Flowers taste like sweet honey. Don’t eat any part of the plant other than the flowers. The berries are poisonous.
Japanese honeysuckle is the sweetest. Use the petals to make syrup, nectar, tea, jelly or as garnish. Flower color is white to yellow.
Scientific name: Hyssopus officinalis
Not to be confused with anise hyssop or agastache. Hyssop flowers are purple or blue. Make tea, add to salads and soup.
See busy Lizzie.
Scientific name: Jasminum officinale
This is your common jasmine tea kind of jasmine. Not all types of jasmine are edible, but jasminum officinale is one you can eat.
As you may know, jasmine is very fragrant. It tastes sweet and floral but also bitter. It’s best for tea, but you can use it as a garnish too. Jasmine flowers are tubular and white.
Scientific name: Viola tricolor
Common names: wild pansy, Johnny jump up, heartsease, heart’s ease, heart’s delight
This is a special, multi-color flower that simply looks astonishing. Some petals are purple-blue, others are white and others are yellow, all on the same flower. As garnish, they will make your salads and sweet dishes super attractive.
Scientific name: Lavandula angustifolia, Lavandula x intermedia
You can’t just use any lavender for cooking. Species of edible lavender include lavandula angustifolia and lavandula x intermedia.
Lavender flowers can be used to create lavender flavoring for many baked goods. Turn lavender into lavender butter to make cakes and cookies. Make lavender tea. Use lavender to marinade meat or use in veggie dishes.
Lavender has a strong perfume-like, floral taste.
Scientific name: Melissa officinalis
Lemon balm flowers are white but very small. Use in soups and salad dressings.
Common name: lemon bee balm
Scientific name: Monarda citriodora
Has a strong citrus taste. Use sparingly as garnishing, drinks and tea.
Scientific name: Syringa vulgaris
Lilac blossoms are very strong with their perfume-like taste. They are similar to lavender. Use a little in drinks and dishes. You can make interesting ingredients like lilac sugar, lilac syrup and lilac infused honey, which in turn can be used to make baked goods.
Try lilac cakes, rice pudding, ice-cream, cocktails, even yogurts and dips! This article has dozens of foods you can make with lilac!
Scientific name: Tilia
Linden flowers are mainly used for tea, but you can eat them raw. They are white with a honey flavor.
Scientific name: Levisticum officinale
Lovage flowers are white and taste like celery. Use in soup and salads.
Flowers taste like mild ginger. You can eat them raw in salad or pickle them.
Scientific name: Mahonia aquifolium
The flowers are yellow though they taste bitter.
Scientific name: Tagetes patula, Tagetes tenuifolia, Tagetes signata, Tagetes erecta, Tagetes lucida
Marigolds are different from ‘pot marigold’, which we covered under Calendula.
Note that not all marigolds are edible. Varieties that you can eat include French marigold (tagetes patula), the gems (tagetes tenuifolia) such as lemon gem, tangerine gem, red gem and Mexican mint (tagetes lucida).
Marigolds taste bitter and citrus. Petals are golden, orange-yellow. The different marigolds mentioned above have slightly different tastes. French marigolds and African marigolds (tagetes erecta) are bitter. Gems are citrus, lemony, and spicy.
Use marigolds in tea and salads. The citrusy ones are good for drinks, sandwiches and desserts like pancakes and ice-cream. Try marigolds in stir fries, smoothies, ice cubes and quiche!
Also known as ‘poor man’s saffron’ as it can be used as a substitute for saffron.
Scientific name: Origanum majorana
These pink and white flowers taste like the leaves but milder. Marjoram tastes earthy and a bit bitter. Flowers and the leaves are good for making tea.
Scientific name: Althaea
Flowers from the marshmallow plant are edible. Petals are pink, red and white.
Common name: monkey flower
Flowers look a bit like a monkey’s face. Taste is subtle and refreshing, like lettuce, though a bit bitter. Goes great with salads.
Scientific name: Mentha
Mint flowers can be eaten and taste like mint. Use the flowers where you would mint, such as in lamb dishes, sauces and tea. There are many kinds of mint and some have hints of flavors like chocolate or lemon.
Scientific name: Brassica
Flowers from mustard plants are edible. Note that some people are allergic to mustard. Mustard flowers are small and yellow and taste like honey and horseradish.
Scientific name: Tropaeolum
The flavor of nasturtiums is peppery, and thus makes this flower extremely versatile. You can add them to many dishes like stir fry, soups, casseroles, steaks, sandwiches and salads. They can be used as garnishing or as an ingredient.
Nasturtiums come in a whole range of colors – yellow, red, purple, pink, white, orange. This is a very popular edible flower.
Common name: love-in-a-mist
A blue-white flower that is good for cake-decorating.
Common names: ladies’ fingers, ochro, gumbo
Scientific name: Abelmoschus esculentus
Okra flowers have a thick mucilage and can be used to thicken soups and stews. They are also excellent for frying in batter or sautéing. Eat them alone or add to another dish. This article has more about how to prepare okra flowers.
Scientific name: Allium fistulosum
Common names: Welsh onion, spring onion
Onion flowers have an onion flavor but are milder. They can be eaten raw in salads.
Scientific name: Origanum vulgare
The flowers from oregano can be used just like oregano. Add to pizza, bread, pasta and other Italian dishes.
Pac Choy/Pak choi
See Bok choy.
Common name: garden pansy
Scientific name: Viola × wittrockiana
The common garden pansy is different from the wild pansy (see Johnny-Jump-Up, also called viola tricolor). Garden pansies have a grassy, mint, wintergreen flavor. The petals taste milder compared to the whole flower. They are perfect for fruit salads, cocktails, dessert and as a garnish.
Scientific name: Passiflora
These purple-white flowers are absolutely beautiful. The flower is white with a characteristic purple ring across the petals. They make a nice herbal tea with a mild and grassy flavor.
Scientific name: Pisum sativum
Common name: garden pea
Only vegetable or garden pea flowers can be eaten. Do not eat sweet pea flowers as they are poisonous.
Garden pea flowers taste sweet and like peas. Use in salads and cakes.
Scientific name: Mentha pulegium
These flowers are very strong and are best used for fruit salads, green salads, chocolate desserts and lamb dishes.
This big, pink flower looks fantastic in gardens but is also edible. It tastes like strawberry or peach. Float in drinks, add to salads, or make jam.
Scientific name: Phlox paniculata
The perennial phlox is edible, do not eat the annual phlox. This flower is pink and white with five petals. The flowers are small and colorful and are excellent for decorating cakes. The flavor is peppery or spicy. Great for fruit salads.
Common name: perilla
Young flowers from the perilla plant can be used for garnish in soups. Older flowers can be fried and eaten.
Scientific name: Salvia elegans
Pineapple sage flowers are bright red which makes them attractive – add to salads and use as garnish. Flowers taste fruity and sweet with mint and spice undertones.
Scientific name: Agave amica (formerly: Polianthes tuberosa)
Tuberose flowers can be cooked and used in soups.
Scientific name: Primula vulgaris
Common name: common primrose
Primrose flowers are colorful and good for salads, tea, or making primrose wine. Flowers can be eaten raw. Also see Cowslip.
Scientific name: Prunella vulgaris
Common name: self-heal
Self-heal or prunella flowers are purple, white and tubular. Flavor is bitter and sweet. Use in salads and tea.
Queen Anne’s Lace
Scientific name: Daucus carota
Flowers of wild carrot are known as queen anne’s lace. They are white and can be eaten either raw or battered and fried.
Scientific name: Raphanus sativus
Radish flowers are pink, purple, white or yellow. They taste like a milder version of radish, peppery with a bit of spice. They do well in dishes like salads and stir fries when you need extra bite. They can be eaten raw or cooked. Try adding to butter, sour cream, cheeses and cold soups.
Scientific name: Trifolium pratense
The red clover is a healthy weed that is both attractive and a tasty clover. It’s high in protein, vitamins A, B, C and various minerals. Eat fresh or dried in salads, soups, stew and tea.
Scientific name: Robinia pseudoacacia
Common names: robinia, black locust, locust tree
This white, pea-like flower is fragrant, like a sweet perfume. Use to make robinia flower cake and robinia flower fritters. Great for flavoring drinks, jams and making pancakes. Robinia also has medicinal uses, covered further in this article.
Scientific name: Rosa
Roses are one of the most popular flowers to cook with. It has a sweet and floral but soft flavor. Undertones are fruity like strawberry or apple.
There are many things you can do with rose petals. Some examples include using them in drinks like cocktails, liqueurs and cordial. You can use them in desserts like cake, cookies and ice cream.
Rose tea is a favorite worldwide. Less known recipes include rose milk and adding rose petals to sauces for meat and fish. Here are more rose petal recipe ideas.
Darker roses have a stronger flavor. Of course, you can use roses like any other flower on this list. In salads, as garnish, floated in drinks. And jams, jellies and frozen in ice cubes.
Scientific name: Salvia rosmarinus, Rosmarinus officinalis
Rosemary flowers are versatile and serve both culinary and medicinal purposes. It acts as an anti-inflammatory, antiseptic and contains antioxidants.
Flowers taste milder than the leaf, and are a lilac or blue-purple. They taste great with meat and seafood, and in Mediterranean dishes. You can also use them in baked goods and to brew herbal tea.
Runner Bean Flower
Scientific name: Phaseolus coccineus
Common name: scarlet runner bean, runner bean
Scarlet runner bean flowers have a mild bean flavor. Its bright red color makes it eye-catching in salads.
Scientific name: Carthamus tinctorius
Safflower is orange-yellow in color and fantastic as a food dye. It is commonly used for its oil, but also makes a cheaper alternative to saffron. Use it to make safflower rice.
Saffron is a spice, and safflower is unrelated. Use safflower in place of saffron in many dishes in Indian cuisine and Italian in dishes like paella. Safflower petals have a milder taste than saffron.
Scientific name: Salvia officinalis
Common name: sage, common sage
Sage flowers have a milder taste compared to the herb and leaves. They have a lovely blue-purple color. Use them in many ways including in cocktails, salads, cake-decorating, tea, syrup, ice-cream and syrup. You can also try sage blossom jelly.
Scientific name: Tragopogon porrifolius
Simmer the flowers and eat in salads or as garnish.
Scientific name: Satureja hortensis
Related to rosemary and thyme, satureja is a spicy flower that can be used to flavor soups and teas.
Scientific name: Antirrhinum majus
A bitter tasting flower that is edible but doesn’t have a great flavor. They come in many colors though to make salads pop.
Scientific name: Rumex acetosa
Sorrel flowers are edible. They taste like a strong lemon so use wherever you would a lemon.
See Zucchini Blossom.
Scientific name: Fragaria × ananassa
Flowers from the strawberry plant have a mild strawberry flavor. Add to drinks, salads and use in cake decorating.
Scientific name: Helianthus annuus
Sunflowers are a bit bitter and can be added to salads, soups and stir fries. They have a slight nutty flavor and are yellow in color.
Scientific name: Myrrhis odorata
Flowers are edible and can be added to tarts.
Scientific name: Tagetes lucida
A pretty flower that you can use in soups, stews and salads.
Scientific name: Galium odoratum
This flower is sweet and nutty. Note that it acts as a blood thinner.
Scientific name: Thymus
Has a milder flavor than thyme. Use in salads and soups and as garnish. White in color. Use where you would the herb.
Scientific name: Tulipa
Be careful as some people have strong allergic reactions to this flower. Do not eat if unsure.
Petals have a sweet flavor and taste like peas, lettuce or cucumber. Add to salads and sandwiches.
Scientific name: Viola
Violets taste floral and sweet with a range of bright colors. Add to drinks, salads, cakes and desserts. Also try making violet tea.
Scientific name: Erysimum
This flower is edible though bitter. Comes in many colors.
Scientific name: Nymphaea
Water lily flowers are also edible. Boil and eat unopened flower buds.
A beautiful flower to add to drinks. Make wisteria flower cordial, lemonade and wine from the petals. The rest of the plant is poisonous.
Scientific name: Achillea millefolium
A white flower that is great in salads, soups, stews and as garnish. Tastes like anise. Flavor is bitter. Also try yarrow tea.
The sap is mildly poisonous so boil the flower before eating to be safe. Add to soup and stew. Has a sweet taste.
Scientific name: Cucurbita pepo
Common name: squash blossom, zucchini blossom, courgette blossom
Zucchini or squash blossoms taste like sweet nectar. You can stuff them with fillings and bake or fry them. They taste like mild squash. Add to egg dishes like scrambled eggs, use in soups and sprinkle over salads for some color.
Flowers are bright yellow. Make stuffed zucchini flowers!
That is the complete list! I hope you got some exciting ideas out of it.
But why not take it to the next level? A lot of these flowers are hard to come by. Your best chance may be to plant your own.
If you’re new to gardening or fancy having pots of some of these lying around, check out our guides on how to begin gardening or vegetable container gardens for beginners. You can even plant vegetables and flowers in the same container!