Edible Flowers

Edible Flower Chart

Name Botanical Name Blossom Color Flavor
Anise hyssop Agastache foeniculum light lavender sweet, anise-like, licorice
Apple blossom Malus spp. pale pink delicate floral
Arugula Eruca sativa white nutty, spicy
Basil Ocimum basilicum white, blue, pink, lavender varies by breed
Bee balm Monarda didyma red, pink lemony, minty
Begonia, tuberous Begonia X tuberhybrida red, yellow, pink, orange, white crisp, sour, lemony
Borage Borage officinalis bluish-lavender cucumber-like
Calendula Calendula officinalis orange, yellow spicy, tangy, peppery
Carnation Dianthus spp. pink, red, lavender spicy, peppery, clove-like
Chive Allium spp. lavender onion-like
Chrysanthemum Chrysanthemum spp. yellow, white slightly to very bitter
Cornflower Centaurea cyanus blue, pink sweet to spicy, clove-like
Daisy, English Bellis perennis white, pastels tangy, leafy
Day Lily (Lily Buds) Hemerocallis spp. yellow, orange, red sweet, crunchy
Dianthus (pinks) Dianthus spp. pink, many colors clove-like
Fennel Foeniculum vulgare yellow sweet, licorice
Fuschia Fuschia X hybrida bi-colors, varied acidic
Garlic Chives Allium white, pink garlic-like
Geranium Pelargonium spp. pink, red, white, peach varies by breed
Hollyhock Althaea rosea pink, white, lavender, red bland
Impatiens Impatiens wallerana pink, many colors bland
Johnny-jump-ups Viola tricolor purple, white, yellow, bi-colors sweet to bland
Lavender Lavandula angustifolia purple floral
Lilac Syringa vulgaris lavender lemony, floral, pungent
Mallow, malva Malva spp. purple, pink, white delicate, sweet
Marigold Tagetes spp. orange, yellow spicy to bitter
Nasturtium Tropaeolum majus red, orange, yellow peppery
Orchids purple/white crisp, warm and soft
Pansy Viola X Wittrockiana purple, white, yellow, bi-colors sweet to tart
Parrot-beak Clianthus puniceus yellow, red, bi-colors crisp, leafy
Petunia Petunia X hybrida many colors leafy
Pineapple Sage Salvia elegans red sweet, pineapple
Primrose Primula vulgaris many colors sweet to bland
Rose Rosa spp. many colors sweet, aromatic
Rosemary Rosemarinus officinalis light blue sweet, pine-like
Sage Salvia officinalis many colors varies by breed
Scarlet Runner Beans Phaseolus coccineus scarlet nectar, bean-like
Snapdragon Antirrhinum majus pink, yellow, white, bi-color bland to bitter
Squash Blossom Cucurbita spp. yellow nectar, sweet
Stock Matthiola spp. purple, white, pink, yellow spicy to sweet, aromatic
Sunflower Helianthus annus gold, yellow leafy
Tansy Tanacetun vulgare rust, gold bitter
Thyme Thymus vulgaris white, purple lemony
Tulip Tulipa spp. many colors crisp, cucumber-like
Violet/Viola Viola odorata white, purple sweet, nectar
Petal Confetti Many Varieties multi-colored eclectic

Where To Buy Edible Flowers

The best source is your home garden if possible.  You'll be able to grow you favorite varieties and you can keep them "organic".   You may also find pesticide-free flowers at your favorite produce market.  We also have a good online source:

Nature's Best Garden - growers of edible flowers, herbs, herb tips, tiny vegetables and more for the home and professional chef.

Tips And Cautions

  1. Not all flowers are edible, don't eat any flower you are unsure of.
  2. Don't eat flowers purchased from nurseries unless you know they are organically grown
  3. People with allergies should not eat flowers
  4. Only the flower petals should be eaten, not the pistils or stamens.
  5. Grow your own flowers for eating or purchase only from sources that grow flowers for food.

Barbara Bowman graduated with degree in Foods and Nutrition from San Jose State University. As CEO of GourmetSleuth.com she spends most waking hours writing, cooking, eating, gardening and traveling.