How to Store Mint Leaves: Storing, Drying, and Freezing will help preserve your summer’s bounty. The refreshing flavor of mint leaves makes them a valuable ingredient in various culinary delights and beverages.
Preserving mint leaves allows you to enjoy their flavor long after the harvest season has ended. By storing mint properly for future use, you can maintain its freshness and flavor, ensuring a ready supply for your culinary needs.
Did you know there are over 600 varieties of mint to try? Varieties like apple mint, orange mint, pineapple mint, spearmint, and chocolate mint are some options available.
Mint is a perennial herb that will reward you with a large harvest year after year. For a list of mint varieties to grow, you can check out this list I made of my favorite types.
Whether you use fresh, frozen, or dried, preserved mint, it can easily be incorporated into various dishes, such as soups, salads, sauces, and beverages. Try all the different methods of preserving mint to find out what idea works best for your family.
Health Benefits of Mint
Mint offers a wealth of health benefits. It aids in producing digestive enzymes, eases bloating, and helps relieve stomach discomfort.
This potent herb also contains antioxidants that help strengthen the immune system and protect the body against free radicals. It also can help with congestion and sore throats.
Mint’s calming properties can help reduce stress, anxiety, and improve sleep quality. Whether consumed in tea, added to meals, or used in essential oils, mint is a versatile herb that contributes to overall well-being.
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How to Store Mint Leaves: Storing, Drying, and Freezing
Harvesting Mint Leaves
You’ll want to pick a clear day with little to no moisture to harvest your mint plants. The optimal time for picking fresh herbs is in the morning when their essential oils are most concentrated.
Use sharp scissors or pruning shears to cut mint stems just above a set of healthy leaves. Avoid stripping the mint plant of all its leaves, as this can hinder regrowth. Bring a basket or bowl to hold the delicate herb.
Washing and Drying Mint Leaves
The best method to clean the herb is to gently rinse the harvested mint leaves under cold water to remove dirt. Be careful not to bruise or damage the leaves during the washing process.
Use a paper towel or kitchen towel to dry the mint leaves and remove excess water. You can also air dry by placing fresh leaves on a screen to allow air flow.
How to Store Fresh Mint in the Refrigerator
Refrigeration of Mint
Bundle the mint stems and place them in a glass or Mason jar with an inch of water. You have enough water to ensure all the stems are getting water, but not too much water to get the leaves wet.
It’s a good idea to cover the leaves with a plastic bag and secure them loosely. This is a great way to keep mint sprigs fresh longer.
Store the small jars in the refrigerator, and change the water every two days. Discard the individual leaves that wither or are brown. Fresh mint is popular in Middle Eastern cuisine.
Refrigerated mint sprigs are wonderful to infuse water, and use in your own mint tea, mint juleps, pasta sauces, mint sauce, mint pesto, and mint spreads. You can use a fresh mint leaf to garnish a dish too.
You can use fresh mint to make Summer Herb Butter. It’s a great gift for friends and family. Making compound butter is a great way for how to store mint.
One of my favorite recipes using fresh mint, is my watermelon salad with feta, black olives, and mint. It is so good and perfect for summer. I also have a chilled watermelon soup recipe that everyone will love!
If you’re looking for more ideas on what to do with mint, I made an entire article dedicated to this topic!
How to Keep Mint Leaves Fresh with Storage Container
Freezing Mint Ideas
Can You Freeze Mint Leaves?
Remove the mint leaves from the stems and spread them in a single layer on a baking sheet. Place the baking sheet in the freezer for about 2 hours or until the leaves are frozen.
Transfer the frozen leaves to freezer-safe airtight containers or resealable freezer bags and store them in the freezer. Mint ice cubes are great to throw into your morning smoothie. It’s one of the best ways for how to store mint.
Mint Leaf Ice Cubes
Fresh mint leaves can also be used to make ice cubes. Just add one or two mint whole leaves for each ice cube, add water, and freeze. You can also use chopped mint in your ice cube tray. Use distilled water if you want clear ice cubes. Mint can also be frozen in olive oil in your ice cube trays.
You can use frozen mint leaves in smoothies, teas, or recipes.
How to Preserve Mint Leaves
Different Ways of Drying Mint
Arrange the mint leaves in a single layer on a food dehydrator tray or baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
Set the dehydrator to around 95 degrees or the oven to the lowest temperature.
Allow the leaves to dehydrate until they become brittle and crumble. It will take 1-2 hours in a dehydrator or a few hours in the oven.
You can also air dry mint by taking a bundle, tying the stems together and hanging it upside down. Using paper bags to cover the mint bundles while they dry is also a great option so the dry leaves fall inside the bag and don’t make a mess.
Store the dried mint leaves in an airtight container in a cool, dark place for long term storage.
Use dried mint leaves in tea or mix in spice blends. You can use dry mint leaves to make this Basic Herb Salt Recipe.
Preserving mint leaves allows you to savor their delightful flavor and aroma all year.
We’ve reached the end of How to Store Mint Leaves: Storing, Drying, and Freezing. I hope you enjoyed it.
Let me know in the comments below what your favorite way is to use mint in your dishes and your favorite how to store mint ideas.
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I created a pin for you below to add to your Pinterest herb board to refer back to this article on the best way to preserve mint.
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