A technique I have used in the past is to take one photo with the sun in the frame...don't worry about the sun star or flares. Take a second photo, at the same settings, but this time block out the sun with your hand. In post you can blend the two together to eliminate the flares and stars.
This works very well and is a technique I use. It also helps remove the flare spots also.
I tend to prefer the sun stars but the hand or finger block allows you to go either way.