Too many herbs? Not a problem
Whether they’re from the store or your garden, sometimes you have more herbs than you can use. Don’t toss them out. Let us show you how to store your herbs to keep them fresh.
Storing Herbs in the Fridge
Many herbs can last one to two weeks in the fridge when stored properly. Most herbs can be wrapped with a damp towel and stored in a plastic bag. Cilantro, parsley and mint will last longer when placed standing in a glass of water. Loosely wrap herbs and glass in a plastic bag and change the water every few days.
Air-drying herbs is an easy and inexpensive way to preserve the flavour of your fresh herbs like oregano, rosemary or thyme.
- Trim off the healthiest branches.
- Remove any unhealthy leaves. If they look yellow or are spotted, they will have less flavour.
- Shake branches to remove any excess soil. Wash with cold water and pat dry.
- Hang or lay small bunches in a shaded area that has good air circulation to allow them to dry quickly. If they do not dry quickly, they will become mouldy or will rot. If drying herbs with tender leaves (oregano, tarragon and lemon balm), cut holes in the sides of a paper bag and label. Place herb stems in the bag so that the stems are even with the bag's open edge. Tie the bag and stems into a bundle with string and make a string loop for hanging. The bag will catch leaves or seeds that fall off during the drying process.
- Check on your herbs occasionally for about two weeks. Depending on their water content and air circulation in the room, drying time can vary.
- Once dry, bundle branches together and store in a labelled, airtight container. Alternatively, crumble the leaves and stems into an airtight container. Store in a cool pantry area.
Freezing is a quick and easy way to store extra herbs. Basil, chives and mint keep more of their flavour when they are frozen.
- Trim off the healthiest leaves, wash and gently pat dry. Roughly chop, if larger. Place whole or chopped leaves in an ice cube tray.
- Cover with water or extra-virgin olive oil and freeze. To ensure leaves are fully covered, you may need to add additional water or oil after they have partially frozen.
- Once frozen, pop them out of the ice cube tray and store them in a labelled freezer container for up to 6 months.
- Trim off the healthiest leaves, wash and gently pat dry.
- Place leaves flat in a single layer on a tray and freeze.
- Once frozen, store leaves in a labelled freezer container.