Lamb's Quarter - Chenopodium album

Lamb's Quarter - Chenopodium album

Caught Unaware

To act without awareness, is to be human, and so it was for us, as we battled this unknown 'weed' that loved to show up in our garden. What we didn't know was that this 'weed' was a nutritional powerhouse that was simply trying to get our attention. And so from this experience we set ourselves on a course to start acting with more awareness, which is also a part of the process of being human.

"O, happy the soul that saw its own faults"

Lamb's Quarter is a rapidly growing, self-seeding annual that has many aliases. These include wild spinach, goosefoot, pigweed, fat hen, mealweed, baconweed, and frost-bite, which is probably so named for the white mealy coating that covers the leaves. Lamb's Quarter comes from the prestigious line of Chenopodium, whose family members include other nutritional giants like quinoa, swiss chards, beets, and spinach.

This plant is a hero of the plant world because it takes our abuses, yet comes back. It does not ask for special coddling, and requires no special care, and yet year after year, from spring till fall, it graces us with a healthy alternative to our mass produced and transited spinach. You would do well to give Lamb's Quarter a try.

"It may be then that form serves us best when it works as an obstruction, to baffle us and deflect our intended course. It may be that when we no longer know what to do, we have come to our real work and when we no longer know which way to go, we have begun our real journey. The mind that is not baffled is not employed. the impeded stream is the one that sings."


The leaves, flowers, and seeds are all edible on this plant, but like its cousin spinach, it too contains some oxalic acid. Which means, practice diversity in what you eat, and don't just eat Lamb's Quarter, or you may find yourself with some unwanted stones to pass. It is said that cooking the greens lessens the amount of oxalic acid.

We pick the leaves starting in late spring/early summer all the way until late July when the plants start to go to seed. We also like to freeze the leaves that we don't use in order to have them available throughout the winter months. The seeds too are also said to have many uses, and even though they are small they are easy to harvest.

Lamb's Quarter tastes very similar to spinach, and if chopped up and used in any cooked dish, very few would be able to distinguish it from spinach.


Because Lamb's Quarter is such a nutritious and tasty food, it is not hard to find a place for it in our dishes. We have found that any recipe that calls for spinach, can easily be substituted with Lamb's Quarter. Here are some of the ways we eat it:


Though we will sometimes add it to our salads, one of the best ways to eat it raw is to put it in a smoothie. Even the kids love this one.

Lamb's Quarter Lasange

Add a cup of finely chopped Lamb's Quarter to your finished sauce. Let it cook in the oven with your favorite lasagna recipe and it will be ready to go.