How to Dry and Store Fresh Herbs

Fresh herbs from your garden or patio are one of the many joys of summer. While they taste best when enjoyed immediately, drying and saving your herbs is a great way to add flavor to your dishes all year long. Here's the easiest way to preserve the herbs you can't enjoy in one season:

First, the moisture content of herbs varies from low to high. Low moisture content herbs such as oregano, rosemary, thyme, dill and bay are best for drying. The nature of high moisture content herbs requires using a food dehydrator to dry. These herbs include basil, mint, chives, and tarragon. The easiest way to preserve these herbs is to simply freeze them. 

What You'll Need
  • Garden scissors
  • String or rubber bands
  • Paper bags
  • Airtight containers

1. Gather clippings.

Remove healthy branches from your herbs and shake off any dirt or critters. If you wash your herbs, be sure they are completely dry before starting the next steps.

2. Remove any dry or diseased leaves and clear bottom inch of each stem.

3. Bundle 4-6 stems together and tie with string.

4. Punch holes in paper bag.

5. Place bundles in holey paper bag, tie the top of the bag closed, and label the bag.

6. Hang upside down in a warm, airy room for approximately 2 weeks.

7. Once dry, store in an airtight container.


Make sure to label and date your containers. For optimal flavor, store leaves whole and crush when ready to use. Herbs are best used within one year. Enjoy!