Whether you want to harvest flowers or seeds, sunflowers are abundant producers. For flowers you can display in a vase, cut the stems at a 45-degree angle, however long you’d like. Snip off the leaves, place the stems in a water-filled vase, and you’ve got yourself a sunny bouquet.

You’ll want to harvest seeds before the birds and squirrels start harvesting them first. Wait until the flowers’ petals dry out and start to fall off and the seeds look well-formed and plump. Then, cut the heads off and rub the seeds with your hand, allowing them to fall into a container for collection.


While all parts of a sunflower are edible, seeds are the most commonly eaten part. When you grow sunflowers, you can enjoy fresh roasted seeds, steamed buds, and even grilled sunflower heads. Here are a few recipes you can try after the harvest!

Roasted Sunflower Seeds

Sunflower seeds are a common and popular snack – why not give them a try with sunflower seeds you grew yourself? Roast your sunflower seeds and enjoy them as a standalone snack or add them to trail mix.


  • 2 cups of sunflower seeds in shells
  • 2 cups of water
  • ¼ cup of salt

In a pot, combine water, seeds, and salt. Bring to a boil and reduce to a simmer for about twenty minutes. Pour into a strainer, and leave the seeds to sit and continue draining for another twenty minutes. Lay the seeds out onto a baking tray and put them in the oven (preheated to 400 degrees). Roast the seeds for ten to fifteen minutes. Allow them to cool, and pour into a container for storage or enjoy them right away!

Mexican Street Style Grilled Sunflower Head

You may not think of sunflower heads as a savoury dish, or as a meal at all. But prepared correctly and seasoned well, grilled sunflower heads are a delectable homegrown treat. This recipe, inspired by Mexican street corn, is an unexpected treat. Serve these up as a barbecue side dish or as an appetizer.


  • underripe sunflower head
  • olive oil
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • ¼ cup of mayonnaise
  • 2 teaspoons of chili powder
  • 2 teaspoons of fresh lime juice
  • 1 teaspoon of garlic powder

Remove inner and outer petals from the sunflower head. Set sunflower head on the grill, face down, and cover. Allow it to cook for six to eight minutes. Mix the rest of the ingredients, and spread across the sunflower head right after you take it off the grill. Use a fork to pull seeds from the head, and enjoy!



Growing Sunflowers in Pots