Drying Fresh Herbs

Picture of Drying Fresh Herbs
Drying herbs is a simple and quick way to store your summer herbs and enjoy their flavor year round. 

I've often found that by the end of the summer I've eaten enough pesto to feed an army, and my garden is still producing a plethora of herbs! Which has led me to drying them so that I can enjoy their flavors year round.  Drying is just one method out of many to preserve herbs, but I've found it to be incredibly easy and it has a multitude of uses from seasoning your favorite dish to making lavender sachets. Just follow these few simple steps for almost* all of your herbs in your garden this spring and summer. 

*NOTE: Although most herbs dry nicely, you'll want to avoid drying herbs like Basil, Tarragon, Chives, and Mint. They of course can be dried, but tend to be a bit more fickle and require a little more attention, so go for it if you are feeling adventurous. It is usually easier to freeze them, and chives can usually only be frozen. There is also a great Instructable here for air drying basil, you'll just need some time!
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Step 1: Materials

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You'll need the following:
  • Your Favorite Fresh Herbs
  • Rubber Bands
  • Baker's Twine
  • Garden or Kitchen Shears
  • Air Tight Storage Containers
  • Dish Towel
  • Paperclips (not pictured)

Step 2: Wash Your Herbs

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Whether your herbs came from your garden, the local farmer's market, or a supermarket, it's important to wash all your herbs. Run them under cold water or submerge them in a bowl of cool water until all of the dirt has been removed. 

Step 3: Drying

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Dry your herbs by placing and patting them down with a dish towel. You can also place them in a salad spinner and dry them that way. Make sure they are absolutely dry before moving to the next step.

**If your herbs have not totally dried out you will run the risk of mildew during storage later.
june.deweever6 months ago

Thank you very much. I have lots of basil and thyme to dry. I am about to start and distribute to friends and family.

Thanks for the note on chives!
mwatson161 year ago
just done a whole rosemary bush, salad spinner was perfect. bayleaves can be left on the laurel branch to dry, and I even managed a jar of eucalyptus leaves. ;-)
kelleymarie (author)  mwatson161 year ago

Awesome! Thank you for the tip on the bay leaves--I'll have to try them out too!

greentrees1 year ago
excellent insructios, feeling inspired to dry my own herbs...thanks :-)
francomtze1 year ago
Nice and simple. Thanks for sharing

I liked your Idea of hang drying, I recently dried some basil but I left them to dry on a plate and I noticed that the some leaves turned pale or black, probably because of some left over water or moisture. Thank you so much for sharing :)