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Storing Herbs

There are many different ways to store fresh herbs from your garden from drying to freezing. Using these various methods allows you to have fresh herbs the whole year through. It’s and easy task for any method I’ll show you how!!

DRYING…

Drying herbs has been my go to method for years. All you need is paper towel and an air tight container. Easy enough right? Some people probably have a dehydrator and that would speed up the process, but what’s the fun in that? I’ve heard of people using their air fryer, but the herbs get blown all over…

I had an ancient dehydrator that last year nearly burnt the joint down. Whenever I get around to replacing it I plan on getting the Cabella’s ten tray dehydrator. My folks have one and love it, and it’s under 200$ so that wouldn’t really break the bank after a month of saving….

For drying herbs I simply harvest from the garden, wash, and blot dry on paper towels. From there I get fresh dry paper towels and fold the herbs within and place in a safe place to dry. I use the top of my microwave for safe keeping,, but you’ll find your spot.

You can repeat blotting dry until the herbs aren’t dripping wet. You don’t want mold to develop. So repeat as necessary!

Check back on your safely stored herbs weekly to make sure mold hasn’t developed and that they are drying nicely.

How do you know they are dry? Herbs should have a definitive crunch to them. They should not be “chewy” or bendable. They should most definitely crunch between your fingers. If they’re not ready, or if you’re in doubt simply leave them another couple of days and check them again.

When dry and crunchy you are ready to store in an air tight container.

I prefer to use jelly sized mason jars for storage.

FREEZING

Freezing is definitely the closest to fresh from the garden in my opinion. I follow the same process as drying by washing the herbs of choice and blotting them on a paper towel.

I wash and throw the herbs on a sheet pan until I’m ready to blot dry…
Basil ready to freeze for fresh pesto this winter

When I’ve blotted the leaves a couple of times to ensure they are dry I place them in a ziplock bag. Make sure to get the most air out as possible as air leads to freezer burn, and you don’t want to ruin your precious herbs with that!

Once stuffed into the ziplock I make sure to label the bag. Usually with the name of the herb and the date I threw them in the freezer. The date helps me rotate through my stock pile to be sure to use the oldest first.

Future pesto

And there you have it folks! Two methods that I use to store fresh herbs from the garden. I usually analyze what herbs I need or want dried for different applications. Dried works in those lovely winter stews just as well and frozen. So it’s really up to you and whatever suits your needs.

Remember whichever method you use… live a simple life!

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