D.I.Y. Herb Oils-thrifty and tasty

These yummy oils are easy to do, and add nice kisses of flavour to your food.

Something simple like pasta tastes great with a dash of home-made basil, chilli or garlic oil. The herbal oils can be easily prepared in the morning and left out on a sunny counter all day. This is a great investment in future flavour.


1/2 c good quality oil (see note below)

1 cup of unwashed fresh herb


Chop up herbs into small pieces. Put into a mortar and pestle and grind. If you don’t have that, place the herbs in a ziplock and pound with a hammer covered by a dishcloth. The goal is to pulverize the herb so the oils will be released. Put herbs into a non metal bowl. Pour oil over. Place in the sun for 24 hours. Once done, pour the oil through a sieve to separate the herbs. Keep in a glass container in the fridge. Lasts a year in the fridge.


On flavour– Depending on the type of herb that you are using you should use different oils. For strong herbs such as garlic, chilli, rosemary or oregano, olive oil works well. For a milder herb, or those that are delicate, try using a more neutral tasting herb, such as safflower or almond oil. This works well for basil, tarragon, mint, and fennel.

On washing- It is important not to wash your herbs as adding water them tends to introduce micro-organisms and can spoil your oil. If you must wash your herbs, shake them out after, pat with a towel and spread them out to dry before commencing the processing. You can also use dried herbs for this procedure.