Dried herbs have great cooking and self care uses, but they can be surprisingly expensive. Luckily, if you have herbs growing in your garden, it’s incredibly easy to dry them yourself. You will probably even get a fresher flavor from them.
To dry herbs, start by washing them and laying them out on a towel to dry completely. When dry, you can tie them into a bunch with string and hang them upside down away from direct sunlight or lay them out on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and bake them at 120 degrees Fahrenheit for one to two hours. If you have a dehydrator, these also work great for drying herbs.
Once your herbs are dried, keep them fresh by storing them in an airtight container somewhere dark. If possible, leave herbs intact during storage and crush them right before use for optimal flavor.
Now comes the exciting part: using your herbs! Your fresh dried herbs will obviously add a delicious punch of flavor to any of your favorite recipes, but you can also use them for medicinal and beauty purposes. Dry your own chamomile for its calming effects or lemon balm for a mood boost.
You can also make an herbal facial cleanser with sage, mint, or rosemary by combining one tablespoon of kaolin, green, or pink clay with crushed almonds and herbs. Combine a dab of the mixture with a few drops of water and massage into your skin for a soothing exfoliator. Store in an airtight container for up to a month.
Dried herbs have a multitude of uses around the house and drying them yourself can save you money and yield fresher ingredients. If you don’t have your own herb plants around the house, pick some from a friend or buy them fresh from the store!