why we love it
While dandelion is often considered a pesky “weed” that invades the yard come springtime, this bright yellow flowered delicacy surprisingly has some transformative health benefits too. Don’t poison it just yet. The main therapeutic component in dandelion, taraxacin, stimulates the digestive system and prompts the liver and gallbladder to release bile. And bile stimulates the detoxification and elimination of toxins. Dandelion root is full of inulin, a soluble fiber that helps maintain the healthy bacteria in your intestinal tract.
selection + storage
Dandelion greens can be plucked directly from your backyard [if you don’t spray for weeds]. Be sure and avoid areas where pesticides were used and choose the greens that don’t have yellow flowers yet. In the spring, dandelion greens can also be found at health food stores. If you’re looking to use the dandelion root, pull the whole root from the ground and wash thoroughly before use. Dandelion root can be purchased as a tincture as well; just look for a brand with minimal ingredients and fillers.
For both greens and roots, rinse them well, dry and wrap in a dry paper towel in a plastic bag. They can be stored in your refrigerator for 3-5 days.
feast on dandelion
Dandelion greens are a great substitute for other mixed greens in a salad. They can also be steamed and sauteed or used in frittatas or soups. The dandelion root is best steeped to make tea. Below are some of our other favorite ways to indulge in dandelion during the spring!