Your holistic and herbal kitchen

By Sheila McGinnis on 16th May 2019

Using herbs and essential oils in recipes can appear to be a complex process, but as Sheila McGinnis explains, you often already own the equipment you need…

By now, you have been told of what types of herbs, oils, and supplements can help. You have even been given recipes, but have you tried it yet? Are you wanting to try some of these home-made remedies but don’t know where to start? I’m sure it feels a bit daunting, but here are some simple ideas to get you prepared.

Let’s start with some equipment that will make your experience a success, and you probably already have most of these in your kitchen.

  • A notebook to write down what you have tried, recipes that worked, and notes of your experience.
  • Mason jars and lids. To store your dried herbs, teas, poultices, syrups, cordials, and etc.. Get different sizes and always have on hand.
  • Cheesecloth for straining.
  • Mesh strainers of various sizes (you’ll want small ones for your jars, larger ones for your bowls).
  • Glass and stainless steel mixing bowls of different sizes. Any time you are working with waxes you’ll want to keep them specifically for that purpose as they are very hard to get totally clean of wax.
  • Saucepans for steeping and melting wax. Even a double boiler or make one by using a smaller container in the larger one.
  • Scales are important for measuring, but you don’t have to break the bank, just a simple a kitchen scale is fine.
  • Funnels. Trust me on this as I have had to clean up a lot of spills
  • Measuring cups and spoons. Glass and plastic ones will work fine.
  • A mixer and or food processor.
  • Slow cooker for items that need to steep for several hours (or you can just use the sun, it will take a bit longer though)

I’m sure I could keep adding to this list, but this is really all you need to start your journey to creating your own holistic/herbal creations for health.

Now that you know you don’t need expensive equipment to equip your family with natural remedies, let me share a favorite go to that I have used with all three of my children since they were babies (they are all adults now and still want this for colds and earaches).

Garlic and Mullein Ear Oil
*note if you do not have access to Mullein, you can still have an effective oil that will help with coughs and ear pain. Mullein is just an added bonus for coughs.

  • Six cloves of garlic (peeled and smashed or chopped)
  • Half a cup of organic olive oil
  • Three tablespoons of dried Mullein (optional)

Mix all ingredients and simmer on low for about 30 minutes or pour into a mason jar and place in the oven at 250 degrees Fahrenheit for about 45 minutes to an hour. Let sit for a couple of hours or up to a day. Strain and pour into a dropper bottle or back into the jar and use a dropper to place directly into the ear for earaches or excessive wax, and massage very gently. For cough rub on the chest and back ( I also add a drop of oregano essential oil to rub on feet and cover with socks before bed).

I hope you realize you don’t have to have special equipment to try some of the recipes you see in this article. Even herbs that are zoned for this area can be used to make a healthy alternative to over-counter medicines. As always, please check with your medical practitioner before trying alternative/herbal medicines.

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