31 Recipes Made With Weeds That Aren’t Weed, Y’Know?

Hello and welcome to a very special bonus edition of this thing we’re doing where we help you figure out what you’re gonna put in your mouth this week. Some of these are recipes we’ve tried, some of these are recipes we’re looking forward to trying, all of them are fucking delicious. Tell us what you want to put in your piehole or suggest your own recipes, and we’ll talk about which things we made, which things we loved, and which things have changed us irreversibly as people.


Hello, calling Eventides Bodhran! Remember when I got way too high and wrote that food list full of weed edibles for 420 that had only 240 recipes because I had overestimated my capabilities and you were all, ugh but what about the not-weed weed recipes I’ve been looking for all my life. Here! They’re here! These recipes are made with weeds that are most definitely not weed, and are sometimes flowers that grow right outside my home and I had no idea I could be putting them in my mouth. I dedicate this fondly to you and also to all the dandelions I wasted by not eating when I used to pick them serially on the side of the highway like a crazy person. Remember coming out?

1. Eggs ala Goldenrod


2. Japanese Sesame Spinach Salad with Dandelion Greens (Goma-ae)

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3. Tempura Edible Flowers


4. Grilled Brie, Fig Jam and Dandelion Greens Sandwiches


5. Dandelion Greens with Mustard Vinaigrette


6. Chickpeas & Dandelion Greens


7. A Forager’s Feast

8. Chickweed Chimichurri


9. Chickweed Pakoras


10. Pici Pasta with Ramps and Dandelion Greens

Photo by Karen Tedesco

11. Chickweed Mushrooms


12. Dandelion Bread Pudding with Sundried Tomatoes and Gruyere Cheese

13. Alaskan Fireweed and Lavender Crème’ Brulee


14. Immunity Boosting Elderberry Gummies


15. Sweet Potato and Dandelion Loaf


16. Chickweed Pesto Pasta


17. Elderflower delight


18. Golden Dandelion Fritters


19. Wild Alaskan Salmon Tartines with Grilled Leeks, Shaved Fennel, Chickweed and Crispy Spring Garlic


20. Dandelion Chips


21. Chickweed and Violet Salad


22. Cauliflower and Dandelion Soup


23. Flatbread with Sorrel Pesto and Edible-Weed Salad


24. Wild Edible Mini-Frittatas with Garlic Mustard, Chickweed, Leek & Pancetta


25. Fireweed Honey French Toast with Powdered Sugar & Lime


26. Chickweed and Bourbon Salad


27. Pistachio, Yogurt, and Elderflower Cake


28. Elderberry Pie


29. Dandelion Macarons


30. Winter Squash Salad with Quinoa, Dandelion Greens, & Whole Grain Mustard Vinaigrette


31. Dandelion Greens With Bacon And Sherry Vinegar


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Carmen spent six years at Autostraddle, ultimately serving as Straddleverse Director, Feminism Editor and Social Media Co-Director. She is now the Consulting Digital Editor at Ms. and writes regularly for DAME, the Women’s Media Center, the National Women’s History Museum and other prominent feminist platforms; her work has also been published in print and online by outlets like BuzzFeed, Bitch, Bust, CityLab, ElixHER, Feministing, Feminist Formations, GirlBoss, GrokNation, MEL, Mic and SIGNS, and she is a co-founder of Argot Magazine. You can find Carmen on Twitter, Instagram and Tumblr or in the drive-thru line at the nearest In-N-Out.

Carmen has written 919 articles for us.


  1. This is like, straight out of a Francesca Lia Block cookbook (which is going to exist!!!), I really dig it, especially the tempura edible flowers.

  2. Seeking practical guidance for eating dandelions:

    1) How much of that goopy white sap-like substance is involved in actually eating raw dandelion leaves? Is there a trick to de-gooping them before adding them to salad? I grew up in Oregon with a big veggie garden and tasted all kinds of random plant things growing in the forest out back (bark? lol) but I was too wary of the white sap and slippery texture of the inside of the flower stem to try and eat dandelions.

    2) On a scale from spinach to kale, how bitter are they, raw and cooked? What do they taste like? I’m guessing similar-ish to arugula?

    3) How awesome would it be to eat these things; they are a cool and dapper flower full of nostalgic childhood associations.

    4) Dandelion wine y/n?

    • 1) Younger leaves are more tender (and not mucilaginous). Generally, if there are flowers, you have to be one bitters lover to enjoy them. Less spiky leaves are also generally less bitter than more spiky leaves (measure of age, I think).

      2) Yeah, argula is probably a better comparison than either spinach or kale. Again, depends on the age and conditions of the plant. I think of them as mostly on the more bitter side but have had some cultivated ones that were not so bitter.

      3) Flowers can go in muffins (just the part!) or pancakes! Yes!

      4) If you make it, I’ll taste it…

      • Does cooking temper the bitterness much? I’ve only ever had them raw, and I find even the young leaves a bit too much…

  3. I actually love this whole list, but I feel like my friends and family would judge me harshly if I tried to feed them any of this. #mealforone

    • serve it to them first and then tell them what it is after they ask for seconds? :^D

    • Normally I’m very anti-lying about food because some assholes think allergies, insensitivities and abstaining from meat are bunk things that need correcting, but in this case lie, lie, lie your pants off.
      Further the Big Herb Agenda!
      HAIL HERB! Cut a head off and eat it!

  4. I was legit just reading about edible weeds in a magazine yesterday. Such a yummy coincidence!

  5. I feel like we have already forgotten about edible weeds. But I have distinct memories of eating some of these as a child! beautiful list :)

  6. Ohhh man this list is making me hungry, especially the french toast and the violet/chickweed salad. Plus, BONUS: serve the violet/chickweed salad to your lady crush to subtly tell her “heeey I’m into you” ala Sappho! YESSS.

  7. This just made my Monday. Seriously. There were totally (garden) weeds in my salad with supper but these are beautiful and inspiring.

  8. I was hoping for some stinging nettle recipes! It’s like a tastier version of spinach with ADDED DANGER

    The company I buy my hippie produce box from sells nettles and dandelions for super cheap. I’ve bought nettles from them (they’re great in soup), but I might have to experiment with dandelions next!

  9. I wish I had a yard. That grilled brie/fig/dandelion sandwich looks so good.

  10. The chickpeas & dandelion weeds recipe looks sooo good. Bonus points for being simple too!


    50 ft away from roads or highways is the rule of thumb. Smog from cars is toxic.

    Be careful when foraging on public lands. If they use pesticides or herbicides, chances are your plants have toxic chemicals in/on them.

    *Be absolutely certain that the plant you are picking is edible!!!* Dandelion and stinging nettle are pretty safe (relatively speaking), but chickweed and elderberry have some poisonous lookalikes. Key your plants properly and don’t assume that because a plant fits MOST of the characteristics that your ID is correct.

    Poisonous plants may not immediately cause toxic effects. The danger is that poisons will build up in your liver and cause organ failure as much as fifteen to twenty years down the line. It’s similar to lead poisoning or skin exposure to resin epoxies: the effects are cumulative rather than upon initial exposure.

    That being said, purslane is a super common weed that is high in omega-3 fatty acids. Use it in relish, salsa, stir-fries or pickled. Miner’s lettuce has a relatively short season as one of the first plants of Spring, but is like a sweeter version of spinach and one of my favorites! Plaintain is another incredibly common weed that is good for the skin in salves and in salads.

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