One of the very first crops that appear in our garden are radishes and by the end of summer we often struggle on various ways to use them.
As the garden begins to grow, it is so exciting watching those red globes pop through the surface of the soil. We can hardly wait to pull them out of the ground.
We check the garden daily to determine whether they are ready to pick or not.
And when that moment comes when we eagerly pull out as many as we can.
The first several radishes are brought into the kitchen, washed off, and eaten whole.
You can’t beat that crispy and zesty taste of a homegrown radish. It provides immediate satisfaction that the time and effort that you have spent in your garden is well worth it!
However, over the next several days and weeks, you might be inundated with your radish crop. They all seem to come on at once.
And although we appreciate the garden producing radishes at a record rate, it is difficult to find various ways to use them.
Even though we continue to succession plant throughout the garden season, there are just sometimes that we have so many at once that we have to search for ways to use radishes that we’ve picked.
Our Top 5 Ways To Use Radishes
Eat Them Raw
As we already mentioned, our favorite way to use radishes is to eat them raw.
We eat them whole for a quick and healthy snack. However, we also love to slice them thin and put them on top of our salad and sandwiches.
And if you have never tried thinly cut strips of radishes on your tacos, you are missing out! The crunch and taste of fresh radishes as a topping for tacos is a must have, summer time treat in our house.
Serve With Butter and Salt
When I was first offered a radish that was coated in a thick tempered butter and served with sea salt for dipping I was more than hesitant to give it a try.
This was a strange concept for me and one I would have never considered when contemplating on how to use radishes.
Although the appetizer looked appealing, I was concerned that the flavors would not compliment each other to my liking.
But my curiosity was too much for me to deny them. Needless to say, with just one bite, I was hooked!
I knew then that I had found a new way to use my small Cherry Belle radishes from the garden.
And the preparation couldn’t be easier! Simply trim off the roots, leaving the the stem and a few leaves.
Then soften a stick of unsalted butter just before the point of melting. Stir the butter and then dip your radishes in ¾ of the way to the top.
Place the radishes in the refrigerator or allow the butter to set before serving.
Add a little bowl of sea salt for dipping the bottom of the radish, and that you have a delicious appetizer on hand at a moments notice!
Pickle The Radishes
You can pickle the radishes to serve as a topping for burgers, tacos, salads, and more.
The salt and pepper crunch adds another depth of flavor to almost any dish!
In fact, we love to add pickled radishes to several of our Mediterranean, Vietnamese or Korean inspired dishes.
However instead of a long pickling process, we prefer to a quick overnight pickling brine that consists simply of vinegar, water, salt and a little bit of sugar.
The ratios can be adjust to your liking. However, as a guideline we use 1 cup water, ¼ cup vinegar, and 1 tablespoon of salt and a teaspoon of sugar/honey.
You can also add in other spices that you wish. Some suggestions that go perfectly with radishes are dill, garlic, mustard and cumin.
One of our absolute favorite ways to use up radishes are to roast them with other root vegetables.
The roasting process melds out the strong flavor and the cooking process makes them so tender that you can cut them with a fork.
Even those who don’t like them raw, will love roasted radishes!
Because their taste is super mild, they will take on whatever spices that you use to season them.
We will use fresh rosemary or garlic and sprinkle them on top of the vegetables. Just roast them at 400°F until tender.
Substitute Whole Radishes for Potatoes
And you aren’t going to believe this! But radishes make a fantastic substitute for potatoes in many recipes!
However, we found this out by accident when we were having a guest over for dinner who followed a low-carb diet.
We had planned on making pot roast and vegetables which typically included potatoes. So when searching what we could use instead, radishes came up as a low-carb substitute.
We had plenty on hand, so we decided to give it a try.
They were absolutely delicious! And just like when they are roasted, their spicy flavor simply disappeared.
Since then we have used them in our Homemade Zuppa Soup recipe and we continue to use them in our Slow Cooker Pot Roast and Vegetables recipe too.
Storing Fresh Radishes
If you are like us, you may pick your radishes from the garden but don’t have any immediate plans to eat them or add them to a recipe.
However, if left out on the counter they can become soggy very quickly.
As soon as you bring them inside, wash them off to remove the dirt.
Then you can store them in a sealed plastic bag with a wet paper towel wrapped around them. This is the preferred method of storage if you want to use the greens in other recipes.
However, if you will only use the bulbs, you can store them in a container filled with cold water.
Simply cut off the roots and stem and place them in the water. We sometimes will even take it one step further and slice them into small sections for an easy snack.
Mary and Jim
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