Want to know what are the most common leaves that we eat? Check out the list of the Plants with Edible Leaves that also have nutritional value!
There are many plants that produce edible leaves with distinctive flavors. They come with immense health benefits and can be consumed either raw, after stir-frying, or sautee. Have a look at the Plants with Edible Leaves that can be included in everyday meals.
Check out the fastest growing vegetables in India here
Plants with Edible Leaves
1. Spinach / Paalak
Botanical Name: Spinacia oleracea
This superfood leafy vegetable is high in health-promoting nutrients like iron, vitamin C, K, and calcium. It has deep green leaves with triangular to ovate shapes.
Have a look at the Spinach Names in Different Indian Languages here
2. Amaranth / Cholai
Botanical Name: Amaranthus
The leaves of amaranthus come in both green and red colors. This leafy vegetable is the storehouse of calcium, iron, copper, essential vitamins, magnesium, zinc, and manganese.
Botanical Name: Beta vulgaris
Beet greens are safe to eat and have a delicious mildly earthy and sweet flavor that mellows down upon cooking. You can toss it with pasta, cook it like kale, or can also be added to egg recipes.
4. Cabbage / Pattagobi
Botanical Name: Brassica oleracea
This leafy vegetable with a sweet taste needs no introduction. Mildly sweet in taste, this cabbage is mainly relished raw in salads as well. Though, you can add it in sandwiches, rolls or simply as stir-fry as well.
5. Taro / Arbi
Botanical Name: Colocasia esculenta
Taro root plays a significant role in Indian kitchens, but it is a lesser-known fact that the heart-shaped, broad leaves of taro are also edible and treated like spinach leaves in some cuisines.
Botanical Name: Tropaeolum
Nasturtium flower is well known for its role as a seasoning. Its leaves are also added to stir-fries, salads, and ground into a paste with chilies for preparing a piquant chutney.
7. Moringa / Moonga
Botanical Name: Moringa oleifera
Moringa leaves are popular for their immense medicinal properties. Rich source of antioxidants, they help to lower cholesterol, improve heart health and is recommended to lactating women as well.
8. Fenugreek / Methi
Botanical Name: Trigonella foenum-graecum
Fenugreek leaves are the star ingredient of methi ki puri and malai methi matar. You can not eat it raw as it will taste bitter, but its bitterness mellows down upon cooking, and its nutty flavor pops up magically.
Botanical Name: Chenopodium album
Bathua leaves are prepared like other saag in Indian cuisine. It is a powerhouse of anti-oxidants and Vitamins-A, B, and C. The leaves have a somewhat salty flavor and are cooked like spinach.
10. Coriander / Dhaniya
Botanical Name: Coriandrum sativum
Coriander leaves have no substitute when talking about garnishing spicy dishes. They have a flavorful mix of refreshing, tarty, and citrusy flavors that pep up the dish flavor.
11. Curry Leaf / Kadipatta
Botanical Name: Murraya koenigii
One can not miss the addition of curry leaves while making a smokey tadka. They are a great source of iron, calcium, and multiple vitamins – hence, they are a wonderful combo of nutrients and flavor.
12. Basil / Tulasi
Botanical Name: Ocimum basilicum
The Basil plant is revered in India thanks to its religious, medicinal, and culinary significance. Basil leaves have a tarty and refreshing flavor that goes well in the concoction, pasta, pizzas, and dips preparation.
Botanical Name: Apium graveolens
Both leaves and stalk play a potent role for culinary purposes. Many people use celery as a substitute for parsley. Also, its leaves are scrumptious addition to salad, soups, and dips.
14. Mint / Pudina
Botanical Name: Mentha piperita L.
The cooling aftertaste of mint leaves tastes great in Pudina chutney and mojito. Thankfully, mint can be easily propagated from cuttings in containers.
15. Dill / Soa / Shepu
Botanical Name: Anethum graveolens
This herb features aromatic and feathery leaves that have a citrus-like taste, with a subtle grassy note. You can toss them on salads and soups for rendering flavor.
Botanical Name: Thymus vulgaris
Thyme has refreshing and aromatic leaves that ginger up the taste of any spicy dish. Also, it gives out an earthy taste with peppery and sweet mix tones but is subtle enough to blend well in any recipe.
Botanical Name: Salvia officinalis
Sage has oval-shaped leaves with a crinkly appearance. It goes well with stuffings and sausage and also pairs well with poultry recipes.
Botanical Name: Salvia rosmarinus
Fragrant and needle-like leaves are an integral part of soups, salads, and stews. Besides, it is used in making essential oils for aromatherapy that have effective results in improving focus and easing stress.
19. Bay Leaves / Tej patta
Botanical Name: Laurus nobilis
Dried bay leaves are the essential part of the spice rack. However, the leaves are very stiff, so one can not eat them as a whole and they are only popular to add flavor to curries.
Botanical Name: Origanum vulgare
Pizza topping looks incomplete without the seasoning of oregano leaves. Moreover, you can sprinkle these leaves on salads as well. They have a mixed balance of sweet and spicy flavors.
Botanical Name: Cymbopogon
The grassy leaves of lemongrass play a starry role in infused tea and mouth-watering curries. Besides, the leaves are therapeutic in nature treats ailments like spasms, pain, cough, fever, and the common cold.
22. Pumpkin Leaves
Botanical Name: Cucurbita
You might have heard about the pumpkin sabzi, but surprisingly, you can munch on its leaves too after stir-fry.