Dandelion Flower Recipe: Make a Quick & Easy Spring Tuna Salad
Dandelion greens aren’t the only edible part of this backyard plant. Enjoy the blossoms with this tasty dandelion flower recipe that comes together in minutes!
If you’re savvy in the backyard, you know that dandelion greens can be used like spinach. If you’re extra savvy, you know that they pack a bitter punch and can even temper that bitterness by a 10-minute gentle simmer before serving.
Yes, you’re welcome for that bonus tip.
But did you know that you can eat dandelion blossoms?
You can, and they’re delicious. With a sweet taste that’s reminiscent of carrots (thanks, beta carotene!), you can add them to all sorts of recipes for a fun spring-time twist.
If you’re not sure how to eat the blossoms, try this dandelion flower recipe that adds the sunny petals and zesty chives to your basic tuna salad. It comes together in minutes and is delicious on bread, lettuce leaves, baked potatoes, and more!
Tips for Harvesting Dandelion Flowers
In order to eat dandelion flowers, you’ll need to have a few basic harvesting guidelines down.
While you can harvest dandelion herb during most of the growing season, you’ll have the best results foraging for dandelion flowers in the spring and fall. You’ll find flowers here and there during the summer, but they are more sporadic.
Dandelion flowers quickly turn into puffballs, which are fun for children but not as tasty for cooking. When you see your yard or a growing space covered in yellow blossoms, don’t wait too long to harvest!
One last foraging tip: make sure you only harvest dandelions from unsprayed areas that are free from industrial waste and away from roadsides. This ensures your dandelion flowers aren’t contaminated with pesticides and heavy metals. And, of course, if you aren’t foraging on land you own, get permission from the property owner.
How to Prepare Dandelion Blossoms
After harvesting your dandelion blossoms, check for little bugs or any debris. You can simply gently shake the flowers and lay them out on a towel. It’s best to not wash them since that will leave the petals wilted and soggy.
Some recipes call for whole flower heads (think dandelion flower fritters), but you’ll need to pull out the petals for other recipes, like this one.
Here’s another bonus tidbit for you: dandelion petals are actually individual flowers, making the whole blossom a composite flower. If you need to remove the petals for a recipe, try carefully pulling out one individual flower.
God’s intricate creation is amazing. Always.
At the base of the flower head, you’ll find sepals, the green coverings that enclosed the flower before it bloomed. These can be bitter and are best left out of your recipes, but don’t worry about a few getting in. You won’t notice them.
For this Dandelion Petal Tuna Salad, you only need a few flower heads and can easily pull out the petals by hand. Just hold the base of the blossom in one hand, then pinch and pull the petals out, starting at the center of the flower head.
But if you ever need a lot of petals, it’s easier to cut off the base of the flower head with clean kitchen scissors and let the petals fall out.
More Ways to Use Dandelion Flowers
There are countless ways to use dandelion flowers, so let these ideas and the following recipe be a jumping board for your own creations!
You can easily mix dandelion petals into foods like
- Muffins, like these Morning Glory Sourdough Muffins
- Cookies and cakes
- Biscuits, like these Sourdough Drop Biscuits
- Rice or quinoa
- Potato salad
- Lettuce salads (sprinkled on top)
Some folk herbalists like to use dandelion petals and flowers in infused oils for skincare recipes, too.
Spring Herb Tuna Salad: A Dandelion Flower Recipe
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You’ll only need a handful of ingredients for this quick tuna salad. It’s perfect for lunch or busy-day suppers and can be served on lettuce leaves, baked potatoes, crackers, or your favorite bread. You can even add it to stuffing tomatoes or sweet peppers!
If tuna isn’t your thing, you can easily swap it out for cooked chicken.
To reduce your exposure to mercury, choose slipjack or light tuna. It’s best for pregnant women to avoid tuna entirely or only consume it on occasion, so opt for a Dandelion Flower Chicken Salad if you’re expecting or preparing this for someone who is.
Scroll down for a printable recipe card.
- 2 4.5 oz cans tuna in water or extra virgin olive oil, drained
- 1/3 cup dandelion petals, loosely packed (about 3 large flower heads)
- 1/4 cup freshly snipped chives
- 3-4 tablespoons sour cream, plain whole milk yogurt, or avocado oil mayonnaise
- 2 teaspoons lemon juice
- salt and pepper to taste (I recommend Redmond Real Salt)
- Place all of the ingredients into a medium bowl, except salt and pepper. Blend together with a fork until combined. Use more or less sour cream, yogurt, or mayo according to your family’s preferences for texture.
- Season to taste with salt and pepper. Use more salt if your tuna was in plain water.
- Serve as you prefer and enjoy an easy meal.
And now you know that dandelions are good for a lot more than pretty flower braids and puffball wishes.
You can eat dandelion flowers in all sorts of recipes and use the greens like you would spinach.
Just follow my basic foraging guidelines and let your imagination go. But don’t forget to simmer the greens!
Dandelion Blossom Tuna Salad Printable Recipe Card
Quick & Easy Spring Tuna Salad with Dandelion Flowers
- 2 cans tuna in water or olive oil, drained
- 3-4 tablespoons sour cream, whole plain yogurt, or avocado oil mayonnaise
- 1/3 cup dandelion petals (about 3 large blossoms, petals removed)
- 1/4 cup snipped fresh chives
- 2 teaspoons lemon juice
- pinch salt and pepper to taste
- Combine all of the ingredients in a bowl, adding enough salt and pepper to fit your preferences.
- Serve immediately on bread, lettuce leaves, baked potatoes, or similar foods. Alternatively, refrigerate a few hours before serving to let the flavors blend.
Oh my goodness, tuna salad – of course! Now I can’t wait for dandelion season again. And thanks for including my syrup recipe in your list! 🙂
Such a fun addition, isn’t it? And glad to include your syrup. I love finding new ways to use herbs, especially the ones I can find the backyard!
Thanks, Kristen! I’ve been wanting to incorporate dandelions into our meals, but hadn’t looked up any recipes yet. Thanks so much for saving me time! These look great!
I’m glad some of these will be useful for you, Cecilia!