Make The Most Out Of Fresh Herbs By Infusing Them Into Honey

Whether you find yourself staring down batches of mint taken from your garden or leftover rosemary from your last recipe, you have options for those extra herbs. While you can infuse olive oil with the herbs you have collected, we have a sweeter alternative. When kept in a cool, dry area, herbal-infused honey has a long shelf life, so you can enjoy your favorite herbs all year long. Drizzle over ricotta for a sweet treat, and enjoy your infusions with tea or spruce up salad vinaigrettes with your creations. 

Plus, jars of honey infusions make excellent gifts to share with friends. Because there are many different types of honey to choose from, pick a honey that is mild in taste, so as to not overpower the herbs make you infusion with. Delicate herbs have a tough time standing up to darker honey, while lighter honey plays well with extra ingredients. Once you have your honey picked out, it's time to assemble the herbs.

Sweet infusions

Choose a single herb to infuse honey or set out to make unique blends. Rosemary, sage, thyme, mint, lavender, and chamomile are crowd-pleasers, but pine, rose, and lemon balm also makes delicious infusions. For more flavorful aromas, consider warming spices like cinnamon and star anise. When using fresh herbs, be sure to dry them to reduce the potential risk of Clostridium botulinum, per PennState Extension. Chopped herbs can lead to a more quickly infused honey, but whole pieces are easier to dry and strain. Generally, one or two tablespoons of herbs can effectively infuse one cup of honey. 

To make your own honey infusions, simply place your choice of herbs in the bottom of a jar and fill it with honey. Gently stir the contents and let the herbs rest for a week. It can be helpful to label jars with the herbs you've used and the date you assembled each infusion so you can keep track of your creations. The longer the herbs are left in the honey, the stronger the flavor will be. When you're satisfied with the taste, strain the honey to remove the herbs and use the filtered, infused honey in your recipes.