Saffron Flower Sauce

Hi!  Do you like saffron spice or is it too expensive for your budget?  Here’s an inexpensive alternative:  Saffron flowers.

If you can’t find or afford high quality saffron threads to make a sauce for your seafood dish, you can use the flowers.  It costs $3 per 20 oz. and it’s available at Asian grocers.  The taste and aroma may not be as pungent as the high-quality saffron threads and the color differentiate itself when it is placed in liquid, but you can make it  as tasty and colorful.  Here’s a super easy sauce recipe using the saffron flowers that I have been making for seafood dishes when high-quality saffron threads are not available.

Recipe Yields:  2 servings


  • 1 tablespoon Extra Virgin Olive oil or butter
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons minced garlic
  • 1 tablespoon chopped onions
  • 1 tablespoon plus 1/2 teaspoon organic unbromated, unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup water (see notes)
  • 1 teaspoon chicken bouillon powder
  • 2 teaspoonful saffron flowers


  1. In a skillet over medium heat, add the oil or butter when hot.
  2. Add the minced garlic and saute until lightly brown then add the onions and saute until translucent.
  3. Add the chicken bouillon and flour and immediately stir using a whisk to form a roux then slowly add the water while stirring; mix well until free of lumps.*
  4. Add the saffron flowers and let it come to a boil. Stir constantly until the sauce thickens about 3-5 minutes. (see notes)
  5. Pour over seafood such as fish, shrimp, scallops, and even lobster.  Enjoy!

Oven-baked panko crusted tilapia over couscous with saffron flower sauce.


  • You can use chicken stock as substitute for water and chicken bouillon if you prefer.  Adjust seasoning to taste.
  • Stirring constantly when adding the flour and water and/or until the sauce thickens is important to achieve smooth sauce.
  • The longer you boil the sauce, the better.  You are extracting the flavor out of the saffron flowers this way. I let mine boiled for at least 5 minutes.
  • If you want a thicker consistency, add another 1/2 teaspoon of flour.

That is all for today.  Until next time.  If you like this post or my blog, don’t forget to Subscribe or Follow to get the latest recipes.  Please  link back to source if you use or share any of my recipes.  Thank you and have a blessed day!


10 thoughts on “Saffron Flower Sauce

  1. Thanks for introducing me to saffron flowers. I shall try to see if I can find some in little India in Toronto. I never knew there was this alternative. Thanks for sharing!

  2. Pingback: Roasted Garlic and Saffron Greek Yogurt Creamcheese Spread « Anna's Cuisine

    • You’re quite welcome, John. It’s great to know there’s an inexpensive alternative for saffron and I wanted to share it. I appreciate your frequent visit. Thanks so much. Enjoy your day.

    • 🙂 Oh, thank you sweet Shanna. I agree with you. It’s good for someone like me who are on a tight budget.
      I love your quinoa bars by the way. They’re healthy and look very delicious! Viewers should really visit your amazing blog and try your delicious recipes. I have to browse through your old posts again one of these days and try one out. 🙂 Have a lovely day, PRCCSS. 🙂

  3. Well, in Italy we produce saffron in many Regions, so I know it very well. There is a famous Italian dish: risotto alla Milanese, made with this precious spice. I love it and often prepare.
    Ciao Anna, have a good week.

    • I love saffron spice, but everyone’s tastes varies. You should try it to see if you like it using the flowers instead of the high-quality ones. It is the perfect way to find out because it’s inexpensive. You can make it tasty, but then again nothing compares to the flavor of the highest quality saffron spice. I’ve read that the reason why they are expensive is because it takes 75,000 saffron blossoms to produce 1 pound of saffron spice. That’s a lot of flowers. I hope you’ll try it though. Restaurants use saffron in their seafood dishes. It’s quite delicious!
      Thanks for stopping by, Cinta. Have a great day. 🙂

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