What are courgette flowers?

The edible flower of the courgette, or zucchini, bush. There are two types of flower: the flower with the immature vegetable attached is the female, and the more eye-catching flower on the long stalk is the male. It's the male flower that is sold in bunches and used in Italian cooking.

When are courgette flowers in season?

If you see courgette flowers, snap them up – some supermarkets and most greengrocers stock them over the summer.

Choose the best courgette flowers

Look for courgettes with flowers still attached (a sign of youth) and cook them like that. Ideally, you should use them as soon after picking as possible, as the flowers will close within hours of picking.

How to store courgette flowers

Store picked flowers in a sealed food bag in the vegetable drawer of the fridge to avoid wilting, and eat within three days.

How to cook courgette flowers

Two stuffed courgette flowers on a plate with dressing

Stuff courgette flowers with herbs and cheese and fry briefly, dip in light batter and deep-fry, or toss in olive oil until just wilted to stir through risottos. Try our recipe for stunning stuffed courgette flowers filled with ricotta cream and a fresh tomato dressing.

Buy and cook flowers on the same day for the best results. They go best with cheese, cream, pancetta, pasta and batter.

Alternatives to courgette flowers

Try courgette.