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Make Your Own Herbal Tincture

A tincture is a concentrated herbal extract made with alcohol, which can be taken straight or diluted in tea or water. Tinctures are concentrated herbal extracts made by soaking the bark, berries, leaves (dried or fresh), or roots from one or more plants in alcohol or vinegar.

Depending on the condition being treated (or prevented), medicinal herbs can be brewed into teas or simmered into decoctions, mashed into poultices and salves, smoked (so their medicinal constituents enter the body through the lungs), or extracted into tinctures. Tinctures are generally taken internally a few drops at a time, several times a day, often in tea or juice. Some tinctures work well applied directly to wounds or skin infections.

Supplies & Ingredients:

  • A pint-sized glass jar with a lid

  • Vodka, grain alcohol, or rum (at least 80 proof)

  • Herbs of choice

  • Piece of parchment paper or plastic wrap

Step 1:

Finely chop or grind your herbs with a mortar and pestle and place them in the jar.

Step 2:

Once you have filled your jar according to your recipe with the desired ratio of herbs, you’ll want to fill it the rest of the way with alcohol so that it completely covers the plants. You will want to make sure there is a minimum of an inch of space above the herbs to prevent molding.

Step 3:

Screw on the lid.

Step 4:

Shake the jar continuously every other day.

Step 5:

Let the mixture extract for about 8 weeks.

Step 6:

Place a funnel into a dropper bottle with a fine mesh strainer on top. Pour out the tincture into the bottle, to strain out the herbs. To extract more of the tincture, take the remaining herbs out and wrap them in cloth, then squeeze whatever liquid is left in the herbs.

Step 7:

(Optional) Label the bottles with the ingredients you used so you can keep track.

Step 8:

Squeeze a drop into a glass of water or tea up to 3 times a day. The actual amount you’ll want to take depends on the strength of your tincture, the herbs used, and your body chemistry.


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