Can You Eat Moringa Flowers?

flower of moringa plant
Moringa Olifiera has so much to offer and so many benefits, that it is easy to overlook some parts of the plant. Much attention is given to the seeds and leaves to the detriment of the rest of the plant.

That’s why this article focuses on the moringa flower. Most people who are aware of moringa will know that the powdered form of moringa has many health benefits. Fewer people, it seems, are aware that the fresh flower (as well as the freeze-dried version) is also a delicious addition to many meals.

Read on and we’ll tell you all about the uses of the flower, how to eat and prepare the flower properly, and even some recipe ideas so you can try cooking with this delicious superfood yourself.

What Are Moringa Flowers Good for?

As we know, the moringa Oleifera tree is an extremely fast-growing tree, and after just eight months will see it’s first bloom. The moringa flowers themselves are approximately one inch in diameter and are a creamy white colour. They can be harvested from the tree at any time, but younger flowers are considered better.
Like all parts of the moringa tree, the leaves are extremely rich in nutrients and amino acids. They are an excellent source of calcium and potassium, and traditionally they have been used as a valuable supplement for nursing mothers.
blossoming moringa tree

They are most commonly used to make tea. The flowers are steeped in hot water for at least five minutes, which is enough to release the natural flavour of the plant. If the taste is too sour, it can be sweetened with honey or sugar.

They are also great to eat, and are considered a delicacy in some cultures. Generally, people seem to agree that they taste like mushrooms. Moringa flowers can be used in salad, or on the other end of the health scale, fried in oil.

How Can Moringa Flowers Be Used?

Moringa Flower and Medicine

Traditionally the flowers have been used to reduce inflammation, and even today are suggested for nursing mothers. They would be brewed into a strong medicinal tea, or pressed for the juice they contain. The tonic produced can be used to treat urinary tract infections and the common cold. It has been thought for many years that it promotes the production of milk in new mothers.

There are recent studies which show reduced inflammation and muscle spasms when the flower is given to laboratory rats. It is thought Moringa flower can also can also be used to treat edemas, and has been shown to help with swelling.

Moringa Flower for Cooking

All of the above health benefits can be attained by working moringa flower into your diet. With a distinct but subtle flavour, moringa flower can be added to a huge range of dishes with great results. 

How to Eat Moringa Flowers

As a Snack

Traditionally, moringa flower was served fried as a snack. This couldn’t be simpler. Clean and wash the flowers, and then fry in hot oil for 2-3 minutes or until they start to crisp. To enhance the flavour, try adding some cumin, garam masala, or any combination of spices you wish.
Moringa oleifera flower benefits

Moringa Flower Recipe: Fritters

This traditional Bengali recipe is delicious! Serve as a starter, side or snack.
1 bunch moringa flowers
3-4 tbsp Rice flour
Water as required
Salt to taste
A pinch of Turmeric powder
1 tsp Nigella seeds/kalonji
Oil for shallow frying

Mix the flowers, along with the tiny buds too, with all the mentioned ingredients except the water. Mix well, and gradually add water until you find the mixture forming into a kind of paste. Once you can form a ball with the mixture that doesn’t fall apart, you’re ready. Form small round balls and lay out on a sheet.

Heat some oil in a deep pan, then drop in the balls and fry on a medium until crispy and delicious looking.

Moringa Flower Recipe: Make a Thoran

Soak the Moringa Flower in a bowl of water for 15 minutes. Create a paste from onions, grated coconut, green chillies, and curry leaves. In a kadai (a round-bottomed frying pan or wok will do), add mustard seeds to coconut oil. Add and sauté the paste for a few minutes, and at the end add the moringa flowers. Season, and serve with rice and a dal if you wish.

Stir Fry, or Add to Your Favourite Dishes

The same methods above can be used to add moringa flower to any of your favourite dishes! Use to replace mushroom and you’re on to a winner. It is also perfect added to stir fries: just wait until the last few minutes of cooking, keep it moving so it doesn’t burn, and make sure it’s thoroughly cleaned and soaked for at least 10 mins before cooking.
moringa flower dish

How to Prepare

Depending on how you intend to use the flower, the preparation will be different, as described above. However, as a general rule, the flowers will need to be soaked before cooking, to soften the flower and make it more palatable. For tea or hot tonics, of course, you need only add to water for 5-6 minutes to extract the flavour and goodness of the plant.

Can Moringa Flower Be Bad for You?

For most people, moringa flower has only positive properties. We have also discussed the potential side effects of moringa on our site. However, we need to mention here that, even though the flower is recommended for breastfeeding, it is not recommended that women take moringa during their pregnancy.

However, this is the only reason we would say someone should avoid moringa. With so many delicious and easy ways of eating or drinking moringa flower, we hope you will be inspired to give cooking with moringa flower a go!

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