Rosehips are one of those beautiful hedgerow berries that appear in the late autumn, and sometimes still glow on the bushes even into winter! Did you know that these little fruits are an absolute powerhouse of goodness, that you can harness to keep yourself and your family healthy? Read on for our best tips on how to eat rosehips.
What You'll Learn Today
How To Eat Rosehips
These beautiful little berries are edible and very good for the body, and there are a great many different things you can do with them.
- Make syrup. This is high in vitamin C and is very good at boosting the immune system, especially during cold and flu season.
- Make jelly. Rosehip jelly is a recipe that has been enjoyed for hundreds of years, and it is simple and easy to make.
- Make tea. A really easy way of getting the benefits from your rosehips – simply steep them in boiling water.
- Make oil. Expensive to buy, cheap and easy to make at home, rosehip oil is good for many conditions.
- Make beauty products. Rosehips are a celebrated part of many beauty and skincare regimes, and you will be amazed at how much they can improve yours!
Once you have decided what deliciousness you are going to make with your rosehip harvest, you should know how to gather them.
Do this after the first frost, and preferably you should wait until after a hard frost. This will make the flesh sweeter.
Cut the stems right off the bush (don’t worry, this will only encourage it to come back bushier next year!)
Always remember to remove the seeds as much as you possibly can, to avoid the possibility of irritation.
How To Identify Rosehips?
Rosehips grow on thorny branches of the rosehip bush. In the spring and summer you will see pretty pale pink flowers, that give way to the classic berries.
Rosehips are generally oblong in shape, though there are some ornamental varieties that are more round.
A ripe rosehip will be bright red or slightly orange colored, and the skin should be firm and almost hard.
Every rosehip has little wisps protruding from the bottom; this is one of the best ways to identify them.
Of course, you can always remove a berry and break it in half, checking for those characteristic hairy seeds and red flesh.
It is not recommended that you “taste test” a wild plant unless you are certain of its ID, just in case you get it wrong!
Here is a good video that shows you exactly what a rosehip looks like, and how to identify them, along with a few good ideas on how to use them:
Are Rosehips Edible Raw?
There is nothing at all to stop you from eating a raw rosehip! The flavor won’t be as strong, but it certainly won’t do you any harm.
However, it is recommended that you take some care with the seeds inside – these are covered with tiny hairs which can be irritating.
You may notice a tingling or stinging in your mouth if you accidentally get a seed, and if you swallow one you could end up with some GI distress.
Don’t panic though! There is nothing in this plant which can seriously harm you, so munch away.
What Happens If You Eat Raw Rosehips?
What happens if you eat raw rosehips? Well, nothing much really! It won’t do you any harm – but there are some things to watch out for.
- If you are going to eat rosehips raw, avoid the seeds. These can be very irritating for both the mouth and the digestive system.
- They don’t have a very strong taste – they are slightly fruity and have a mildly sharp taste.
- The health benefits are still there, though possibly not in such strong quantities as if they are processed.
- Leaving them until after the first frost will make the taste of a raw rosehip sweeter, and slightly fruitier.
- You should only eat a ripe rosehip – any that are starting to turn brown or go mushy will not be very pleasant.
Are Rosehips A Superfood?
A superfood is defined as “A nutrient rich food considered to be especially beneficial for health and wellbeing.” Rosehips definitely fit into this category!
These little berries are high in a lot of compounds that are exceptionally good for the body, and taking rosehips in just about any form will help improve your health.
They are high in vitamin C, which is a really good boost for the immune system and can improve your overall health.
Vitamin A is another big part of rosehips, which can benefit the skin and all the cells in the body, whether ingested or applied topically.
Rosehips contain bioflavanoids, a fancy word for vitamins, which can benefit your overall health.
You can use rosehip syrup to combat colds and flu, as they contain so much vitamin C that they can help stave off the winter sniffles.
Hips can help to lower blood pressure in a completely natural way, without the need for medications (though you should, obviously, still consult your doctor).
If you suffer from osteoarthritis pain, rosehips can help to alleviate some of your symptoms.
Rosehips are also considered useful in reducing cholesterol, which is great news for those who have been diagnosed with high levels.
In short, rosehips are definitely a superfood, and one that you should definitely be using on a daily basis!
If you didn’t believe that rosehips are a superfood, check out this detailed article explaining why they definitely are.
As you can see, rosehips are a really great source of a lot of nutrients, and they are so widely available at this time of year that you can have a huge harvest at your fingertips!
You can use your garden rosehips if you have them, or take yourself off on a foraging walk to harness the goodness of these delicious little fruits.