A Guide To Wild Edible Greens That Grow Around Us
Image Credit: Rural Sprout

Whether you’re looking to add some variety to your next meal or go on a little food adventure around the neighbourhood, we might miss seeing the variety of delicious ingredients that surround us on little street corners or home gardens. These edible wild greens are pretty safe for human consumption and grow pretty much everywhere; however, it is important that one is able to identify them so that familiarity is easier. Bringing wild greens to the kitchen and adding them to your food might seem odd at first, but it is by far, one of the most sustainable and hyperlocal ways of eating and being self-sufficient to a large extent. Here are some commonly found wild greens that are delicious, edible and can be eaten with things you would typically throw together.

Fiddlehead Fern

Image Credits: Farmer's Almanac

These coiled shoots produced by several species of fern is a plant variety that grows in the wild around regions of Assam, Uttarakhand and Himachal Pradesh. With its grassy-nutty flavour profile, it tastes similar to green beans or asparagus and is used in an array of regional Indian dishes like Dheki Shaag (a Bengali delicacy of fiddleheads cooked in mustard oil and spices) and Pork Dekhia Haak (a North-Eastern preparation of pork and fiddleheads). Fiddlehead ferns are best eaten once cooking or stir-fried lightly, before consumption.


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Native to the Asian continent, purslane or kulfa ka shaak, it is commonly found in states like Mumbai around monsoon season. Once of the most common way of foraging greens, the flavours of the stems are a juicy sweet flavour with a sour tang. Use it in cooking by chopping up a handful of leaves and adding it to pakora batter or tossing the leaves in a side salad. Purslane is also commonly used in Middle Eastern cuisine.

Dandelion Greens

Image Credits: Rural Sprout

The tiny yellow flowers that look like little polka dots in your garden are also accompanied by pointy-edged flat leaves. Known to provide a range of health benefits, adding them to everyday dishes like salads, omelettes and sandwiches are a creative way to use them up as well as familiarise yourself with the vegetal flavours.


Image Credits: Tarique Sani

Also known as saphed musli, these wild onion greens are a member of the allium family. Commonly also known as wild leeks, this edible wild green has strong garlicky notes and tastes like a cross between a scallion and white onion. Eat these raw or cook them into a stir-fry before enjoying them with rice or noodles. Ramps also enhance the flavours of other Asian dishes.


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A common name given to many different species of plants around the world, this disc-shaped leaves of the Indian pennywort are popularly used in South Indian cooking to make chutneys. Known more famously by its desi reference – gotukola – the pennywort’s dark green leaves are nutritious and have a grassy aftertaste. Pennywort can be eaten raw or cooking along with other greens to make soups or curry sauces.