Beat the summer heat in a beautiful way with these edible flower ice cubes! Find out how easy they are to make in this quick-prep recipe, and how to choose safe florals to make your cool drinks sparkle!
If you've hung around here much (or on my Instagram account) you've probably seen my flavored water recipes and know that I love finding ways to jazz up plain water with fresh fruit, veggies, herbs, and edible flowers to help me drink more of it. This is basically done by adding them to a pitcher or glass, muddling for added flavor, and adding the water.
This recipe is similar, only instead of placing fresh ingredients in water, we're placing them in ice cubes to enjoy in any drink.
Note: These ice cubes are more decorative than flavorful or edible, even with edible flowers. The texture of the flowers is affected by the freezing process, making them not as pleasant to eat after freezing - just beautiful to look at. Sturdier blooms work better for consuming in this situation. Plus, the flavor of edible flowers is usually pretty faint, and doesn't tend to show up much once the ice thaws.
We just need enough edible flowers to fill the ice cubes. That's it!
Edible Flowers vs Un-edible Flowers
It's important to use flowers that are meant to be eaten for these ice cubes, even though, as mentioned above, we won't be eating them. There are plenty of toxic blooms out there that wouldn't be so great to put in a drink.
Edible flowers come from fresh herbs, fruits, and veggies (in other words, edible ingredients) while un-edible flowers are the showy kind you put in a vase. They are grown very differently, and un-edible flowers can be toxic. For that reason, make sure you know that a flower is edible before adding it to food or drink, even as a garnish.
Varieties of Edible Flowers Best Suited for Ice Cubes
Important: Make sure your flowers are non-toxic varieties and sources. We want the kind that you would find in the produce department - not the floral department, where flowers can be toxic and usually have lots of chemicals on them to preserve their appearance!
Some varieties of one flower can be edible while others are not. Look for flowers marked for culinary use.
You can grow your own in a pot, or buy them at a produce stand at your local farmers market.
Here are my favorite flowers for making ice cubes:
Calendula: These are the red-orange blooms pictured above. They're a nice, sturdy flower that are nice and showy in ice cubes.
Herbs: Rosemary, thyme (pictured above), sage, and lavender have lovely blooms. I like having some of the herb attached to the flower when possible. Of course, adding non-flowering herbs like mint and basil are nice for ice cubes, too. The image above shows an orange-mint from our garden.
These are also great edible flowers to use, though they are more delicate. This means the floral texture will be more affected by the freezing process and likely less pleasant to consume once melted:
Borage: A deep blue-periwinkle color to add to drinks.
Dianthus: These come in a variety of beautiful deep pinks with white and have a spicy-clove-like flavor that may be strong enough to help flavor your drink after the ice melts.
Violet: We call them pansies; they're often multi-colored and lovely.
Nasturtium: These come in a variety of colors and give ice cubes a delicate beauty (pictured above).
Squash blossoms: Similar to nasturtiums but larger - you'll need a bigger boat, er, ice cube tray! Or, you can pull the petals off and use them, though they're still pretty big.
Scented geranium: Both the leaves and flowers are edible and have a lovely scent that may be detectable once the ice melts. Again, make sure your source is non-toxic.
In addition to your chosen blooms, you'll just need fresh drinking water for this recipe.
You just need the following for this recipe:
Ice tray: A covered tray is ideal. Choose edible blooms that will fit in the ice tray you have. These days, there are lots of different sizes and shapes of ice trays, so have fun with it. I like large-cube ice trays (shown below in the instructions) so that my calendula blooms will fit in them nicely.
You'll also need a freezer, of course!
Note: If your bloom is too big for your ice tray, try placing just the petals in the cube tray. This works well for sturdy larger flowers, like calendula (pictured below).
It's very easy to make these ice cubes.
Collect enough flowers to fit in your ice tray.
Soak the blooms in a bowl of water for a few minutes to remove debris, then rinse them off.
Place each bloom in a cube of the ice tray.
Alternate how the blooms face, if you wish. Then, add water to each cube. Freeze for a few hours or more, depending on the size of your cubes.
Tip: These ice cubes take most drinks from nice to wow! Keep in mind, though, that the darker your drink, the less you'll be able to see your beautiful ice cubes.
Store in your freezer as you would other ice cubes and use within two months. Best stored in a covered ice cube tray.
Any edible flowers can be used for making ice cubes; however, sturdier types like calendula hold up best once melted.
It's best to use your floral ice cubes within two months, especially if they are in open (uncovered) ice cube trays in the freezer.
Try using just the petals! Pull petals from the flower and place the petals in the tray. You should end up with a pretty cube with lovely scattered petals.
Looking for other icy recipes like this, or drinks to put your floral ice cubes in? Try these:
Try adding your edible flower ice cubes to these flavored waters:
Edible Flower Ice Cubes Recipe
- ice tray preferably covered, any size to suit your flowers
- 6-24 edible flowers depending on ice tray/flower size
- Collect enough flowers to fit in your ice tray. Soak the blooms in a bowl of water for a few minutes to remove debris, then rinse them off.
- Place each bloom in a cube of the ice tray.Alternate how the blooms face, if you wish. Then, add water to each cube. Freeze for a few hours or more, depending on the size of your cubes.