Zucchini Blossoms are hard to find due to their very short season. You may have only seen these beautiful edible flowers in a high-end grocery stores or at farmer’s markets, but these delicate blossoms are succulent and tender – and worth looking for. Commonly found in Italian and Mexican cuisine, zucchini blossoms are typically found in the late spring or early summer when zucchini plants are flowering.
How to Select Zucchini Blossoms
There are two types of blossoms: male and female. Male blossoms are softer, slightly more delicate, and grow much like a flower. Female blossoms bear fruit—the zucchini. They’ll often come along with a tiny, plump zucchini and will have the floral ovary inside (the pistils). While the female blossoms take a little extra prep than the male blossoms, some find that female blossoms are more succulent and fruitier than the male blossoms.
Look for blossoms that are fresh: the petals of the blossom should be vibrant and fresh looking, not wilted.
How to Store Zucchini Blossoms
Zucchini blossoms are highly perishable. When you buy them, try to purchase them early in the day, as they tend to wilt very quickly. You can store them in the fridge for a day or two in a plastic bag, but they are best enjoyed as soon as possible. Be sure to check the flowers for any bugs prior to storage.
If you are storing them in the fridge, tie package in a plastic bag lined with some paper towel to absorb any moisture. Store in the warmest part of the fridge, closer to the door on the shelf furthest from the freezer. Enjoy within a day or two for best results.
How to Prepare Zucchini Blossoms
If preparing male blossoms, gently open the flower. Gently wash in cool water to remove any dirt, and pollen, and pat dry with a clean dishcloth. Use as directed in recipes—typically whole.
If preparing female blossoms, gently open the flower. Reach inside and pinch and twist the pistils to remove. Gently wash the flowers in cool water to remove any dirt, and pat dry with a clean dishcloth. Use as directed in recipes—typically whole, but some recipes may call for only the flower, in this case cut off the mini zucchini and reserve for another use.
How to Freeze Zucchini Blossoms
Since zucchini blossoms are very delicate, they are best enjoyed immediately. However, some people have found that they can freeze zucchini blossoms fresh. Check out this tutorial to see how they did it. Cooked zucchini blossoms will store longer—about 6-8 months, keeping in mind that they are delicate and only need to be cooked briefly (say blanching for a short amount of time) since they are so delicate.
What Goes Well with Zucchini Blossoms?
Produce: beets, capers, celery, peppers, corn, scallions, shallots lemon, olives, potatoes, spinach, zucchini, and tomatoes
Dairy: Italian cheeses like goat, mozzarella, parmesan, ricotta, or other soft cheeses like feta
Savoury: beans, eggs, grains, and rice
Herbs & Spices: basil, parsley, nutmeg, mint, marjoram, sage, and thyme
Zucchini Blossoms are traditionally enjoyed dipped in a light batter and fried. They are also wonderful stuffed with rice and nuts and baked or fried, added to pizzas or quiche, stuffed in quesadillas, or added to soups!