An unfavored weed by many, the dandelion is an incredible edible plant, from its flowers to its roots.
One can begin to derive the benefits of this golden weed in the early spring, as soon as signs of the dandelion’s leaves come about. The reason being is that the roots in the early spring, as with the late fall, house an enormous amount of minerals and essential nutrients, these properties are especially beneficial for cleansing the liver.
As long as the steam for the dandelion flower has not yet sprouted the roots will still hold in most of the nutrients, however, as the steam grows and especially after the flower has bloomed, most of the minerals and nutrients will be within the leaves, stem, and flower of the dandelion. During this period dandelion can be used in other ways.
In terms of the root, it is best to obtain in after rain has fallen, as the soil will be moist and easier to work with. Using either a gardening knife or a weed puller outer (a long rod you stab –in a way– over the weed, pulling out the root). This may take quite some time as you are going to need a fairly large amount of root, so take your time, spacing out this venture over a few days is best. Also, be knowledgeable of where you are collecting the roots, do not collect them close to a road, pick a place that is rather clean, and don’t worry about dogs, the rain should clean that off.
Now, after collecting the dandelion roots, clean them off of all the dirt ( the leaves you can eat, or compost—-you may end up with such a large amount you won’t want to eat them all).
If you happen to have a dehydrator go ahead and throw in the roots, if not, don’t fret, an oven will do just fine ( a convection oven is best). I prefer to do this for a few days, it usually takes two, ( it takes a lot of power to heat the oven). The best way is to heat the oven at a low temperature, about 150F-200F for about an hour and hour and a half, and let the dandelion roots hang out in the warm oven (if you crank it up to 375F and turn it off as soon as it gets there and let the roots stay in that is also good. Do this again the next day ( or a few hours later, depending on when you start). You will be able to tell if the roots are dehydrated when the center is not squishy. Roast them up a bit, don’t burn them but give them a dark color.
Now all is done with the roots when you want some dandelion coffee simple ground them up in a coffee grinder. Don’t grind everything up at once as it will cause the roots to go bad.
- Reduces water weight
- Promotes Liver Health
- Being a Bitter Dandelion stimulates digestion
- Relieves constipation
- Anti-Cancer Benefits
- Aids in the Prevention of UTI
- Balances cholesterol
- Rich in Antioxidant
- 1 cup Organic Cashew Milk or Nut Milk
- 1-2 tbsp Ground Dandelion Root
- 1 tbsp Maple Syrup
- 1 tsp Cinnamon
- a pinch or two Ground Nutmeg
- 1-2 tsp Vanilla extract
- Throw everything into a pot and heat it up on medium.
- Let the dandelion root steep for at least 15 minutes.
- Before serving you can use a tea strainer to remove any small root pieces.
- Garnish with Nutmeg.
Amanda Filipowicz is a certified nutritional practitioner (CNP) with a bachelor in environmental studies (BES) from York University. She also has certification in clinical detoxification, prenatal and postnatal care as well as nutrition for mental health. She has been working as a nutritionist since 2013 and is a lifelong proponent of eating healthy.