Eating radish seed pods


Last year, we discovered that growing radishes is very easy.

You simply toss a few seeds in the garden bed and in a few very short weeks are rewarded with lots of crisp, spicy little globes to toss in salads, eat raw (if you dare) or pickle.

We did so well with the classic red radishes that when we planted our extremely successful carrot garden bed last fall, we reserved a row for some icicle radishes. That particular strain turned out to be too spicy for anything but pickling or pureeing into a stinky, horseradish-like condiment that I love.

As we tend to with extra and imperfect vegetables, we tossed a lot of dried up radishes of both varieties into our permaculture bed to decompose. But that’s not what they did at all.

The radishes (and I’m pretty sure some turnips) came back to life. They shot up spindly green stems and branches as high as our jostaberry bushes. In the spring, pretty white flowers appeared, and soon the rogue radish plants were heavy with seed pods that resemble smooth edamame or bean pods.

I didn’t think much of the pods until a couple weeks ago when I learned in the book Endgame, Vol. 2, that my author crush Derrick Jensen prefers eating radish seed pods to digging up the radish.

The next morning, I wasted no time trying them for myself.

Turns out, radish pods taste exactly like a radish – spicy and crunchy. The pods are best when they are new. If they’ve been on too long, they remind me of stringy green beans.

Lately, after work I’ve been posting up by the jostaberry bushes and munching on the pods until I’m full. They’re also a good addition to salads, and I heard they are perfect for pickling and stir frying, as well.


For more on this topic, check out what The Historic Foodie has to say about the rather old practice of eating radish seed pods.

Do you love the incredible, edible radish? Is there anything in your garden you let go to seed?


About crystalwayward

I live with two formerly wayward dogs. I care deeply about the environment, and I think gardening is a revolutionary act.

Posted on June 13, 2012, in Gardening, Wayward Living and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 8 Comments.

  1. Rat tail radishes are so yummy. They go straight to seed pods, having no ‘bulb’ – great for rocky soil.

    • Thanks for the tip! I will have to get some of those next year!

    • We, at LotFotL, like to saute them, chop em up and eat them in salads, infsue vodka with them or pickle them for future use as bloody mary fare. In the Gudjarat region of India, they would be sauteed in clarified butter(ghee) with aromatic herbs and spices of choice, or breaded in chickpea flour ahead of pan frying. I’m still unsure as to why some are purple and some green. I don’t know of anyone else growing them, but I am very excited about pushing into the foodstream a bit more. If anyone would be interested in growing some in containers on their porch next spring, I’ll gladly supply seeds. Thanks! Tim LotFotL Community Farm

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  3. Hey! I have those same radishes grwoing on my roof! I threw a bunch of seeds in on the edges of my planters just for fun, and I’ve been blown away how quickly they grow, but disappointed with how they taste. They just aren’t crunchy enough. When I think of radishes, I think of peppery water-chestnutty crunchiness. Is it just the french breakfast variety, or are they not getting enough water? They do get pretty hot up there

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