What are Goji Berries?
Sounds ominous, but the fruits are not poisonous! In fact, they're good for the immune system and have been part of the Chinese cuisine and Korean diet for centuries.
Traditionally, Chinese & Korean people add dried wolfberries whole to soups, stews and porridge, but the berries can also be ground into powder, made into goji berry jam or blended to make juice and goji berry sauce.
In the West
In recent years, they have become an increasingly popular "superfood" in the West.
Some easy goji berry recipes are mixing with flax seeds and chia seeds to make a goji berry smoothie or energy bars. You can basically use goji berries when other dried fruits are called for in recipes!
There are 2 types- red and black goji berries. The red is more often seen and easy to find, whilst the black is more common in Central Asia and the Himalayas.
Where to Buy
Fresh berries are harder to come by unless you have your own goji berry plant!
Wolfberry is also a relatively healthy food as it has a lot of vitamin A and vitamin C, as well as antioxidant properties. In particular, they protect from damage by free radicals and alleviate oxidative stress.
NOTE: consuming goji berries has been shown to interfere with certain types of medications (e.g. ones for blood pressure or blood circulation medicine), such as warfarin, so do consult your doctor before making changes to your diet. This is for information only and not meant as health, medical or nutrition advice.
Goji berries, also known as wolf berries, have been eaten by Chinese people for centuries, both for the taste and the health benefits. They can be eaten fresh and dried- either way, the whole berry, including the seed and skin, is consumed. When eaten raw, wolfberries are a bit bitter, a bit tart and a bit chewy. Chinese & Korean goji berry recipes usually use the dried version in soups and stews, such as the ones I've included in this collection of sweet and savory wolberry recipes.
Yes. Although dried goji berries can be kept for a good period of time in a cool and dark place (best if kept in the fridge), freezing them helps to extend their shelf life for even longer.
Many goji berry recipes are in the form of Chinese soups and savory dishes such as stews. Add a handful to any soup that you want to sweeten naturally without added sugars, such as ginger coconut soup.
TIP: these berries cook quickly so you can just add them 10-15 minutes before switching off the fire.
Black Chicken Soup
Chinese Cabbage Soup
Chicken Foot Soup
Rice & Noodles
I like to add a handful of wolfberries to my tomato sauce when I make pasta, as it helps to sweeten it without adding sugar!
Thanks to their reputation as a superfood, woflberries are in all the health shops, and you can find them in health foods such as energy balls etc.
You no longer have to feel guilty about eating chocolate if you add goji berries to your truffles!
Tip: To turn your granola into Granola Bars, add in some sticky honey to bind all the ingredients together.
Another easy and tasty way to eat more wolfberries is to add a handful to whatever you're currently baking, such as brownies, cookies or muffins.
- 6 oz Dark Chocolate Fevres (I use 60%)
- ½ Cup Lightly toasted pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds and/or broken nut pieces
- ⅛ Cup dry goji berries
- Optional: raw cacao nibs
- Optional: Sprinkle of sea salt, to taste
How to Make
- Melt the chocolate in the microwave by blitzing on low in 20 second intervals. Stir in between each blitz. Once the chocolate is 90% melted, you can stop as the rest will just melt naturally.
- Place a parchment paper or Silpat on a baking tray, then spread the chocolate all over it.
- Mix the dried berries and seeds/ nuts then sprinkle them all over the chocolate. Press to make sure they stick.
- Lastly, sprinkle the sea salt all over.
- Allow to cool in the fridge for 15 minutes. (If you live somewhere temperate, it can also cool at room temperature after a few hours.)
- Break into pieces and enjoy! These make amazing Christmas food gifts!
TIP: if you want it sweeter, swirl in some maple syrup or use lower cocoa chocolate.
Bird's Nest Dessert
Goji Berry Tart
This no-bake tart owes a lot of its taste to the tart flavor of goji berries. It's also really pretty thanks to the edible flowers and is sure to impress!
Longan Red Date Tea
You can also add goji berries to your no caffeine, osmanthus tea (Gui Hua Cha).
Flu Season Smoothie
Or toss some in your papaya milkshake!
Which is your favourite in this list of sweet & savory dried goji berry recipes? Personally, I can never say no to a bowl of Chinese soup!