10 Unusual Vegetables to Grow in the UK – Must Try!

Last Updated on April 3, 2024 by Real Men Sow

These are some of the unusual vegetables to grow in the UK. If you are bored with our money-saving vegetable lists for beginners, here are 10 unusual vegetables you must try growing in your garden! This is especially useful for parents with kids who don’t like healthy food. Some of these creations make the vegetable look more like a fruit or something sweeter.


10 Unusual Vegetables To Grow In The UK


It has an intricate spiral pattern of many buds, each with a different size making it one of the most fascinating. It is native to Italy and can be also called Romanesco Broccoli (or Roman Cauliflower), as it belongs to the same edible flower family, which includes Broccoli, Cauliflower and Brussel Sprouts.

You can prepare it in the same manner as Broccoli or Cauliflower for your recipes, but it will have a stronger, earthier, nutty, mildly sweeter flavour.


This is also known as the Oxalis Tuberosa or the New Zealand Yam. It is a popular substitute for potatoes.

It is a native of the central and southern Andes. It has a low tolerance for drought, poor soil, altitude, and harsh climates. Many varieties of Oca are available around the globe. Human intervention during cultivation has created a variety of flavours and colours.

These versatile tubers can also be eaten raw, without the need to peel, or cooked in much the same manner as potatoes: boiled, baked or grilled. This can be added to soups, stews, salads, and even Oca mash.


Celeriac is a root vegetable, also known as turnip-rooted celery, stump-rooted celery, or knob celery is a variety that grows large edible spherical leaves, roots, and stems.

It is a product of the Mediterranean Basin. It was created from wild celery roots that have a small edible root. It is oddly shaped, but it has a delicate flavour and subtle parsley, celery, and nuttiness. You can eat it raw or cooked. It can also be roasted or stewed, blanched, mashed or added to soups or casseroles. You can also use the leaves as garnish.

Brussel Berry sprouts

Brussel sprouts are like marmite in the vegetable world, they’re either loved or hated. An innovative British farmer has come up with an alternative.

Brussel Berry Sprouts have a reddish-purple colour and a milder, sweeter taste than regular sprouts. They are growing in popularity and can be an excellent addition to any Christmas meal.


It is also known as a Yam Bean, Mexican potato or a bulbous root vegetable. It’s a member of the legume family and grows on vines. It is native to Mexico, but it can be grown in warmer climates.

Although it has the same texture as a turnip, it has a more apple-like taste. The thick, papery skin must be removed before it can be eaten, raw or cooked. Jicama’s versatility and many uses in cooking is its greatest asset.

It can be eaten raw as a carrot stick or apple, or in a salad. You can make a sauce, or salsa, or add it to soups and stir-fries.


Kohlrabi, which translates to Turnip Cabbage, is another variation of the Cabbage vegetable family.

Its taste can be described as a cross between a turnip or a water chestnut. It has a mildly sweet flavour and a crisp, crunchy texture. It is a native of Northern Europe but is most often consumed in India as an ingredient in the Kashmiri diet. You can make fries with the roots, or use the leaves to make a salad. Or you can eat the stem raw as a low-calorie snack.

Yard-long beans

These green beans can grow up to 75cm long. These beans can also be known as Asparagus Beans (Chinese Long Beans), and Snake beans, and they will grow in pairs.

The annual climbing vine is most suited for tropical climates. It is therefore widely grown in South America, Africa, South China and South America. They can be used in the exact same way as green beans and can be eaten fresh or in many different dishes.


These are the paddle-shaped leaves of the Opuntia cactus plant, which is native to Mexico but can also be found in other parts of America and Europe.

Before you eat them, clean and remove the spines. Then slice as necessary depending on what dish you are adding to it. Nopales is a popular Mexican ingredient and can be either cooked or eaten raw. They can be grilled, boiled, or added to stews or salads as a side dish. Prickly Pear is another well-known edible part of this Cactus.


They are sometimes called Jerusalem Artichokes even though they do not have any connection to Artichokes or Jerusalem. The name Girasole is thought to derive from an Italian word that means sunflower. This is because the plant looks like a garden sunflower and falls under the same plant group.

They are native to North America. You can find them being grown in many American states. These are used primarily as an alternative to potatoes but can also be fermented to make alcoholic beverages.


Yucca and Cassava are the most popular names for this root vegetable. It is a South American root vegetable, but it is widely grown in Africa and Asia because of its drought resistance.

There are two types of sweeteners: one is bitter and the other is sweet. Both require slightly different cooking techniques. The vegetable contains different amounts of cyanide. It is a vital food source for the developing world. Over half a million people eat it as a daily meal. Tapioca is its dried and powdered form. You can steam, bake, bake, fry, or mash the sweet version and add it to other dishes.

These are just some of the many inventions farmers are creating and distributing. There are many others available. Have a look around your local farmers’ market to discover new varieties of healthy unusual vegetables to grow in the UK.

Real Men Sow
Real Men Sow

Hello, I’m Pete and I’m currently based in the west of Scotland, in a small place called Rosneath, where I’m exploring my garden adventures. I personally started gardening around 6 years ago and initially, I started out by growing my favorite fruits and berries, such as strawberries, Raspberries & Gooseberries. Since then I’ve added a lot of vegetables and working closely with my neighbor, it’s been a lot of fun.