What are Herbal and Fruit Teas?

Herbal and fruit teas (sometimes also called herb teas or tisanes) are not strictly teas as they are not made from the leaves of the tea bush. They are actually made from an infusion or decoction of herbs, spices, fruits, or other plant material in hot water. They do not usually contain caffeine.

Benefits of Herbal and Fruit Teas

Depending on what you use to make the tea, these can be very beneficial for your health as well as provide you with many essential nutrients. For example tea made from lemon verbena is a good digestive aid, while chamomile tea can help you to sleep better.

Selecting Herbal and Fruit Tea Ingredients

The list of herbal teas and their benefits is fairly extensive and at first glance it would appear that you can make herbal tea from almost any type of plant. I have listed here some of my most favourite ingredients:

  • Mint
  • Ginger
  • Lemon Verbena
  • Hibiscus
  • Chamomile
  • Strawberry
  • Lavender
  • Rosemary
  • Dandelion
  • Lemon
  • Thyme

There are of course many more ingredients that can be used in making herbal teas. It is possible to create a number of delicious combinations by mixing two or three ingredients together, such as for example mint, rosemary and lemon. Or try mixing them with your favourite black, green or white tea for added flavour! The word is EXPERIMENT!

Before you Start

First some basics to remember:

  • Always wash your fresh ingredients before use. Dried ingredients will already have been washed before dehydration
  • Dont allow the infusions to lose any nutrition or flavour during the steeping process – always keep these well covered!
  • Harvest fresh herbs mid morning before the sun gets too hot
  • Certain ingredients can be harmfull especially for pregnant women (such as chamomile, bergamot and borage) and also may react with presctbed medications so please consult a doctor before trying anything new.

Making your Tea

You will need:

  • Filtered water
  • Cup or teapot
  • Sweetener (optional) This can be honey, sugar or any other sweetener of your choice
  • Dried and fresh ingredients (whatever combination you have chosen)
Basic Method
  • Use between 1 to 3 tablespoons of dried ingredients per cup of water.
  • Add these to a teapot, teabag or strainer
  • Boil sufficient filtered water
  • Pour the boiling water over your ingredients and cover to keep the essential oils from escaping
  • Steep for between 15 minutes to 1 hour
  • Reheat if necessary, add sweetener if desired, then sit back, drink and enjoy!

Visit the Recipes section for instructions on making specific tea flavours.


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