Why You Should Eat this Garden Weed: Chickweed Provides Tasty Nutrition

Stop tearing out those weeds! Instead, get edible benefits from this wild green

Credit: Carol Pope

Eating chickweed gives new meaning to “weed and feed”

Chow down some chickweed for good health and great taste

Faster than the speed of light – or so it seems – chickweed sprouts and spreads in my garden. In years past I’ve rolled up thick mats of it like grass turf, ripping out the roots, and used it to fill up my compost bin.

Now, though, I’ve realized there is a much more delicious use for this super-nutritious and abundant wild green.

Edible Chickweed

Tender and slightly crunchy when freshly picked, chickweed is wonderful in salads, sandwiches and wraps. If you have masses of it, freeze the excess for soup stock, blend it into a pesto or whip it into a dip or smoothie.

Naturally, when foraging it’s important to know what you’re eating. Check out this page stellaria guide for more on the identification of chickweed (Stellaria media; stella is the Latin word for star and refers to its tiny star-like white blossoms). And, of course, it’s imperative that you pick only from organic garden areas where there is no danger of pesticide poisoning.

Herbal “wise woman” Susun Weed writes extensively about the value of consuming chickweed in her classic volume Healing Wise, giving this “little star lady” full points for relieving inflammation, cleansing the liver, improving hepatic circulation, boosting digestion, and cooling and alkalinizing the body.