Herbal teas are a great way to become acquainted with different herbs. If you want to incorporate herbs into your health routine, then knowing what herbs look and taste like is important. There are a few ways to make herbal tea, and they depend on the herb, which part of the herb is being used, and your preferred brewing method.
Many herbalists agree that the standard rule for dried herbal leaf teas is 1 tablespoon of herbs per cup of water. This isn't a requirement, but depending on your personal preference, you can add more or less herbs and water.
For root herbs and berries, we like to use 1/2 teaspoon of herbs per cup of water. This is because the roots of the plants are more potent and the berries can be as small as 1/4 of their original size and are much more potent as well.
For herbal powders, 1/2 teaspoon of herbs per cup of water is a standard ratio. However, this will depend on the type of herb you are using. If the herb is bitter, like Black Walnut Hull, we recommend using 1/4 teaspoon per cup of water since this herb is more potent. For other herbs, such as alfalfa, you can use as much as 1 teaspoon since you are taking this herb for its nutritional content.
Preparing your Tea
Hot Herbal Tea
In a nonaluminum pot or teapot, bring your water to a boil, then turn off. Pour in your herbs and cover with a lid. You can steep your herbal tea for 8 minutes or even up to 20 minutes. Unlike the tea plant, herbal teas do better the longer they are brewed, and they won't become bitter. The longer the herbs brew, the more medicinal properties are extracted from them.
Cold Brew Herbal Tea
This method is similar to cold brew coffee and is great for summer. Pour your water (make sure it is filtered from impurities) and herbal leaves, roots, or powder, into a clean jar or pitcher. You can keep this in the refrigerator or on your counter for 12 hours before straining and enjoying.
Herbal Sun Tea
Pour your herbs and water into a jar and place it in direct sunlight for 1 day or several hours. You can strain your tea at the end of the day and drink it right away or store it in the refrigerator.
After making your tea don't throw away the leaves, roots, or berries. The benefit of using these is that you can make another cup of tea.
*Statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration and are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. Please consult your primary healthcare physician before purchasing and using herbal teas.