Start by rinsing your fresh herbs thoroughly. Once cut, I dry my oregano on a very low setting in my dehydrator. Herbs commonly dried in the microwave are parsley, celery leaves, chives, thyme and sage. Oven drying is one way to speed the drying process, but drying at too high a temperature can sacrifice plant quality, and it can be difficult to maintain the best temperature for drying herbs … Leaves with higher moisture such as lemon balm, mint, tarragon and basil are better oven dried. While it is usually not necessary to rehydrate dried herbs prior to using them in a dish, you may sometimes find yourself needing to do so. Preheat the oven to 180˚F. Air-drying is the easiest and most economical way to preserve fresh herbs for use all year. Air Drying: Sturdier herbs are the easiest to dry and can be tied in small bundles and air dried indoors for best color and flavor. Another general rule: 1 teaspoon dried leaf herb = 1/2 teaspoon ground dried herb Why These Ratios? To air dry, divide your herbs in small batches (about 3-6 branches) and bind them together at the sturdiest bottom stems and the main stem. Just hang small bunches in a well-ventilated room, away from light. A tablespoon of fresh leaves is roughly equal to a teaspoon of dried leaves. Lay them out on a paper towel and pat them dry. If you bought a bag of fresh herbs and only used a leaf or two in a recipe, or if you’ve got a large end-of-season herb harvest, here’s what you need to know to air-dry and preserve your herbs for lasting use. Using A Dehydrator A high quality food dehydrator with a fan and adjustable temperature is the most efficient way to dry herbs quickly and preserve the most beneficial parts of the herb or spice. An efficient way to quickly dry and preserve the goodness of fresh herbs is to dry herbs in a dehydrator. Drying Herbs - Traditional Method. How To Dry Fresh Herbs. It can take upwards to an hour to effectively dry herbs … Some herbs dry pretty quickly (like oregano and thyme) so those probably wouldn’t be as much of a problem with high humidity. Dried herbs will do best when stored in an airtight jar or container in a cool, dry area away from direct sunlight. This will delay flowering and you can harvest more leaves throughout the season for using fresh or dried. Separate the herb leaves from the stems and discard the stems. Air drying herbs is not only the easiest and least expensive way to dry fresh herbs, but this slow drying process also doesn’t deplete the herbs of their oils. Here's how to do it, complete instructions in easy steps and completely illustrated. Dry them: Herbs that have a lower moisture content such as thyme, rosemary, oregano, and sage can be air-dried. The easiest method for drying herbs is to hang dry them. Fresh vs Dried Herbs Garden fresh culinary herbs grow best during the hotter days in the year. While you can dry any type of fresh herbs in a very low oven, some people prefer using the oven for woody (thyme, rosemary) herbs, rather than tender (basil, parsley) ones, which are more delicate. Drying Herbs in the Oven. Cover the herbs with a second paper towel or clean dish towel, then microwave them on high power. So, keep pinching the tops off your herbs. Cooks can also opt to swap in dried herbs like basil or oregano, which will add the desired herbal flavor. To see if the herbs are dry, check if leaves crumble easily. Twine, twist … Rachel M. Other herbs like basil have a higher moisture content and they take much longer to dry, so the humidity would affect them more. So if you’re lucky to have a herb garden, it would be best to learn how to dry herbs for your own use, or even for sharing. It works best with herbs like bay leaves, oregano, rosemary, sage, and thyme, and there are a couple methods you can use. The cheapest and easiest method for drying is using the air to dry your herbs. Drying herbs in the oven is much faster than air drying. All herbs can be dried successfully with the proper technique, but the easiest herbs to dry are those with lower water-content: sage, dill, savory, oregano and thyme. Hang-Dry Indoors. Most hearty herbs will take around 1 minute initially, followed by a few 20 second bursts until completely dry. While larger leaves, like basil and parsley, can take up to 2 weeks. Store dried herbs in glass jars, ideally dark ones, clearly dated and labelled in a cool, dark, dry cupboard or similar. Hope you enjoyed this post! If stored properly your dried oregano will last 2-3 years. For some climates, ovens and dehydrators may be the only way to dry freshly harvested herbs. Leave the stems intact, when storing, and run your fingers down the stem to crumble the leaves, when you are ready to add it to your cooking. Put herbs in an open oven on low heat – less than 180 degrees F – for 2-4 hours. Delicate herbs will take 40 seconds followed by a few 20 second bursts until completely dry. Notes More importantly, before storing your herbs, be sure that they are completely dry. The flavor of thyme becomes much more delicate when dried and it’s the rare herb you will use in larger quantities dried, than fresh. Reply. Sage, thyme, summer savory, dill, bay leaves, oregano, rosemary and marjoram are less tender, low-moisture that are easy to dry or freeze some for a year-round supply of good quality herbs! Step 1 – Prep. Drying herbs is a great way to extend the flavor of a bountiful crop. You can also strip off some of the lower leaves and tie the stems together and hang the oregano somewhere out of direct sunlight to dry, but this time of year in the northwest we’re still getting wet days quite often and herbs just don’t dry very well in our damp air. Air Drying Herbs: A Low-Cost Method. {mine are usually dried out and ready after a total of 2 minutes and 15 seconds} If you have a larger bundle of thyme sprigs you are microwaving, you may need to add a little extra time. Herbs tend to dry quickly with this method, so check the herbs often and remove when leaves start to crumble and no longer bend without breaking. Storing Dry Herbs. (It took a full day and night on the number 2 setting.) Take the herbs and rinse them cool water. The drying process results in oxidation, which can have negative effects on flavor and texture. Can I dry different herbs together? When leaves are dry, remove them from their stems and store in an airtight jar. Air-drying herbs is ideal for herbs with larger leaves, like mint, basil, oregano, and marjoram. Small leafed herbs like thyme, oregano, and rosemary will take about 4-7 days to dry out completely. When substituting for dried thyme, the best option is Italian seasoning, which contains thyme and other subtle herbs that will replicate the flavor of dried thyme. That saves money if you're buying them. However, like oregano, it is extremely easy to dry on the stem. The fastest way just happens to involve your microwave. If you are working with dried ground herbs like ground ginger which is going to be even more potent than the dried flaky herbs, the general ratio is 4 to 1 or four parts fresh to one part dried. Gather the herbs into a bundle with the cut stems facing the same way and use twist ties, wire, string, or rubber bands to tie the stems together. Some herbs, such as oregano, sage and thyme, can be air-dried. 1 tablespoon fresh herbs = 1 teaspoon dried herbs. How To Dry Herbs: Tips and Tricks on Preserving Herbs Fresh, potted, or dried herbs from the supermarket can be costly. Herbs are dried to make them last longer, but dried herbs are rarely superior to the fresh version. How to store dried herbs. I dried some oregano, thyme, parsley and basil. Microwave 1 minute and 30 seconds, then in 15 second increments until dry. This process works best with herbs that don’t have a high moisture content such as Dill, Marjoram, Oregano, Rosemary, Summer Savory and Thyme. Because their flavors become more concentrated during the drying process, you can use smaller amounts of them. Dried herbs like sage, rosemary, oregano, marjoram, bay leaves and thyme are better for cooking. If you’re drying less hardy herbs, like cilantro or parsley, separate the leaves from the … I cover 3 drying options, various culinary herb types, share some ideas to use them, and explain how to store your homemade dried herbs the right way. Any kind of herb can be dried as follows – it is easy and fast to get them hung up and drying! The leaves of herbs like sage, mint, rosemary, thyme and parsley, stripped from their stalks, are ideal for oven drying. How to Dry Herbs. For drying herbs with seed heads (like fennel or dill), I like to put a paper or plastic bag over the heads and tie this around the stalks so any seeds that fall will be caught in the bag. You want the herbs to be as dry as possible when they go into the oven. Many herbs come in a “whole” form and are later ground for culinary practices. Yes, you can definitely dry some herbs together. Generally speaking heavier, woodier, thicker stems will air dry well eg sage, rosemary, bay and dill. Oven-drying herbs is a much quicker method than air-drying, though you’ll have to be careful not to burn the herbs, and you may have to experiment with your oven to find the ideal technique. You can also dry your herbs outside if you live in a dry climate, but keep in mind that the direct sunlight can fade the colors and extreme warmth can damage some of the vibrancy. The best time to harvest any type of herb is before it starts to flower. Oven-dried herbs will cook a little, removing some of the potency and flavor, so you may need to use a little more of them in cooking. Have fun drying your oregano! Here are a few methods that I learned from fellow homesteading friends that you can use to dry your own herbs. Store your dried oregano in a glass herb jar, in a dark cabinet.