Safflower in our A-Z - Cooking Index
Safflower is a highly branched, herbaceous, thistle-like annual, usually with many long sharp spines on the leaves.
Safflower oil is flavorless and colorless, and nutritionally similar to sunflower oil. It is used mainly as a cooking oil, in salad dressing, and for the production of margarine.
Safflower flowers are occasionally used in cooking as a cheaper substitute for saffron, and are thus sometimes referred to as “bastard saffron”. Safflower seed is also used quite commonly as an alternative to sunflower seed in birdfeeders, as squirrels do not like the taste of it.
Safflower oil is also used in painting in the place of linseed oil, particularly with white, as it does not have the yellow tint which linseed oil possesses.