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How to Cook with Zucchini Blossoms

By Steve Dunn Published

Delicate, faintly sweet zucchini blossoms are now seasonally available in many farmers’ markets and specialty grocers. Here are tips for how to prep and use them.

Once accessible mainly to restaurant chefs and cooks with vegetable gardens, vibrant, yellow-orange zucchini blossoms are now widely available at farmers’ markets and specialty grocers when they’re in season. There are many ways to enjoy the blossoms’ delicate texture and faintly sweet flavor, which our tasters likened to the sweetness of “corn” with a hint of “squash essence.” Here are tips to get you started—including how to harvest the blossoms if you grow zucchini at home.

Harvesting Zucchini Blossoms

When harvesting zucchini blossoms, it’s helpful to know the difference between the male and female flowers. The male blossoms are attached to the plant on long, thin stems, while the female blossoms lie close to the ground and are attached to the immature fruit. To encourage an abundant crop, leave most of the female blossoms and pick the male flowers (but leave several to ensure cross-pollination). Male blossoms are more abundant and are typically what you’ll find sold at markets.

Buying Zucchini Blossoms

Choose blossoms that look fresh and are tightly closed.

Storing Zucchini Blossoms

Wrap in damp paper towels and store in a partially open zipper-lock bag in the refrigerator for up to three days.

Prepping Zucchini Blossoms

Trim the stem to about 1 inch and remove any spiny leaves (sepals) at the blossom’s base. Gently peel open the petals and remove the stamen (and any bugs or dirt) inside, rinse briefly under cold water, and dry on clean paper towels.

Simple Uses for Zucchini Blossoms

  • Scatter whole blossoms over uncooked pizza and bake
  • Stir chopped blossoms into risotto off heat
  • Add chopped blossoms to omelets and frittatas
  • Add torn blossoms to soups and salads

Recipe Fried Cheese-Stuffed Zucchini Blossoms

For a fried zucchini blossom recipe that would produce plump, delicate flowers covered in a light, crisp coating, we started with the filling. 

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JOHN C.
16 days

Absolutely the best chicken ever, even the breast meat was moist! It's the only way I'll cook a whole chicken again. Simple, easy, quick, no mess - perfect every time. I've used both stainless steel and cast iron pans. great and easy technique for “roasted” chicken. I will say there were no pan juices, just fat in the skillet. Will add to the recipe rotation. Good for family and company dinners too. I've done this using a rimmed sheet pan instead of a skillet and put veggies and potatoes around the chicken for a one-pan meal. Broccoli gets nicely browned and yummy!

Absolutely the best chicken ever, even the breast meat was moist! It's the only way I'll cook a whole chicken again. Simple, easy, quick, no mess - perfect every time. I've used both stainless steel and cast iron pans. great and easy technique for “roasted” chicken. I will say there were no pan juices, just fat in the skillet. Will add to the recipe rotation. Good for family and company dinners too.

MD
MILES D.
JOHN C.
9 days

Amazed this recipe works out as well as it does. Would not have thought that the amount of time under the broiler would have produced a very juicy and favorable chicken with a very crispy crust. Used my 12" Lodge Cast Iron skillet (which can withstand 1000 degree temps to respond to those who wondered if it would work) and it turned out great. A "make again" as my family rates things. This is a great recipe, and I will definitely make it again. My butcher gladly butterflied the chicken for me, therefore I found it to be a fast and easy prep. I used my cast iron skillet- marvellous!

CM
CHARLES M.
11 days

John, wasn't it just amazing chicken? So much better than your typical oven baked chicken and on par if not better than gas or even charcoal grilled. It gets that smokey charcoal tasted and overnight koshering definitely helps, something I do when time permits. First-time I've pierced a whole chicken minus the times I make jerk chicken on the grill. Yup, the cast iron was not an issue.