I was surprised to see a few yellow dandelions blooming close the ground just over a week ago when the days were still quite chilly. These plants are hardy! While some people may be annoyed by pesky dandelions growing in their lawns and gardens, these healthful plants are actually one of the first spring foods you can forage from the land (if picking, be sure to harvest plants that are in an unsprayed area, at least 20 feet from a road, and not near sidewalks or trails).
Dandelions are edible from root to flower. They are high in vitamins A, B complex, C, D and iron, magnesium, sodium, potassium, zinc, calcium, copper, and phosphorus (aka they are nutritional powerhouses!). Dandelions are especially helpful for liver detoxification and digestion.
You can use the tender young leaves in salads and stir-fries (the leaves get bitterer as they grow), the root in teas or soup, and the flowers can be turned into fritters or wine.