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Making Herbal Glycerites


3 min read

Jun 3



Herbal glycerites are a wonderful way to preserve the beneficial qualities of some herbs without using grain alcohol (although, it is technically a tri-atomic alcohol). They are gentle, effective, and particularly useful for children or those who cannot use grain alcohol. Glycerine does not affect blood sugar levels or cause problems with yeast.

Ingredients & Supplies

- Appropriate fresh or dried plant material

- Vegetable glycerin

- Distilled water

- A clean canning jar with a tight-fitting lid

- A large pot for water bath

- A fine-mesh strainer or cheesecloth

- A dark glass bottle for storage

Three Options For Making Glycerites

Glycerine as a Preservative

  1. Make a strong tea or decoction

  2. Combine with glycerine at at least 60% to avoid mold (ie: 2 parts glycerine to 1 part tea/decoction)

Fresh Plant Glycerites

Choose this method when you want to preserve the essential oils in fresh plant material.

  1. Fill a Mason jar full of fresh herb, leaving 1” head space.

  2. Fill jar with a mix of 70% glycerine and 30% water.

  3. Place the canning lid on the jar and tighten.

  4. Place jar in boiling water bath and process in boiling water for 15 minutes.

  5. Remove from water bath, allow to cool, then strain out the herbs.

Sealed Simmer

You may use the same method for fresh plants on dried plants, with a few changes.

Follow instructions above, except use 60% glycerine and 40% water to account for the lack of water in dried herbs.

Use a 1:5 ratio of plant material to your glycerine and water mixture. This will be roughly 3.33oz herbs for pint jars and double that for quarts. You may need to adjust up for more dense herbs or down for light, fluffy herbs.

Simmer 15 minutes for flowers and leaves, but simmer 30 minutes for tougher parts like roots and bark.


Store your glycerite in a cool, dark place. It should last for about a year, but it's always a good idea to check for any changes in smell or appearance before using it.


Known for its calming properties, Catnip can be used to help with anxiety, insomnia, and digestive issues.

Benefits of Catnip Glycerite

- Calming Effects: Catnip is well-known for its mild sedative properties. It can help reduce anxiety and promote relaxation.

- Digestive Aid: Catnip can soothe the digestive tract and help alleviate symptoms such as bloating, gas, and stomach cramps.

- Sleep Aid: Due to its calming effects, catnip can also be used to help with insomnia and promote restful sleep.

Suggested Use

Catnip glycerite can be taken by the dropperful. A typical adult amount is 1-2 droppers full (approximately 30-60 drops), taken up to three times a day. For children, a smaller amount of 5-10 drops can be used.

Making your own herbal glycerite is a rewarding and straightforward process. Not only do you get to enjoy the benefits, but you also have control over the ingredients and the quality of the final product.

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