- young leaves are edible raw.
- older leaves are best when boiled in 1-2 changes of water with pinch of baking soda.
- roots of first year plants can be cooked in a soup or stir-fry.
- roots can be mashed and fried as patties.
- roots can be dried for storage.
- roots can be roasted/ground as coffee substitute.
- roots are best when shredded/sliced and soaked in water for 5-10 minutes to reduce harshness.
- white pith of young flower stalks is edible raw.
- varieties in Ontario are Great burdock (Arctium lappa), Common burdock (Arctium minus) and Woolly burdock (Arctium tomentosum).
- look for burdock on disturbed soil sites.
- do not confuse with Cocklebur (Xanthium strumarium), who's leaves are poisonous if not thoroughly cooked. Cocklbur has rough rather than velvety leaves and has more solid burs.