How To Make Your Own Homemade Herbal Tea Blends
Want to learn how to create your own herbal tea blends at home? Formulating your own herbal tea blends at home is easier than you think and will open you up to the wide world of herbs that can help support your holistic well-being. This article will walk you through everything you need to get started blending your own herbal teas at home as well as a bonus recipe for one of my favorite seasonal stress-reducing tea blends.
Disclaimer: This article was sponsored by Arbor Teas. A social impact focused tea company dedicated to providing the highest quality fair trade, and organic teas, while making a positive impact on people and planet. As always all opinions are my own, and I thank you for supporting the companies that make the educational work we do here possible.
As an herbalist and holistic dietitian, one of my favorite ways to connect with nature and the healing powers she possesses is through herbal medicine — and my favorite type of herbal medicine will always be tea.
Tea has been used for medicine for centuries and is one of the oldest forms of herbalism that we have recorded and in my opinion is one of the most therapeutic ways that we can utilize healing herbs in our daily lives. It also just feels natural. Even as children, we are drawn to tea as our mom’s reach for it to sooth an upset stomach or calm anxious emotions.
Then as adults, it is something that many of us will naturally reach for when we need a little “me time”. The art of boiling water, steeping tea, and then sitting down to enjoy a cozy cup is something that nourishes our soul and calms our stress hormones, even before the actual healing herbs ever begin to do their work.
For these reasons, I think it is important that more people learn how to use the native herbs and flowers that we have available to us to support our holistic well-being. Which is why learning how to create your own tea blends is such a wonderful place to begin, and can have an endless amount of possibilities for supporting your personal wellness and reconnecting you with nature and the natural medicines we once used to understand so well, and can again.
What Is An herbal Tea Blend?
An herbal tea blend or an herbal “tisane” is a combination of a variety of plant herbs, spices, berries, barks, roots, and flowers that are steeped in boiling water in the same way one would tea leaves, and consumed to support a wide variety of symptoms and improve overall wellness.
What makes herbal tea blends different from traditional black, green, oolong, or rooibos teas is that often no tea leaves are used in the making of herbal tea blends.
However, when purchasing tea in stores you will often find teas being mixed with a variety of different herbs to combine the caffeine or health benefits of tea with the healing properties of complimentary herbs.
What Herbs Can You Use In Homemade Herbal Tea Blends?
There are an endless variety of herbs, flowers, roots, barks, teas, and spices that you can utilize and incorporate in your homemade herbal tea blend formulations, but the following are a few of my favorites to help get you started.
If I had to pick only one herb to keep in my home herbal apothecary then holy basil (or tulsi) may very well be it. What I love about holy basil is that it is a powerful adaptogenic herb that is incredible for mitigating stress in the body and also has the most delicious flavor and scent that immediately activates a sense of calm and balance.
I love growing holy basil in my garden and find that the dried Holy Basil from Arbor Teas is just as powerful!
Chamomile is another herb/flower that I love to grow in the garden because it's delicate daisy like flower and scent immediately brings me back to the tea with honey my mom would make when I wasn't feeling well or needed a little comfort growing up.
Chamomile is also excellent for supporting digestive health, promoting a good nights sleep, and reducing feelings of anxiety, which makes it a great herb to have on hand for many different herbal tea blends.
After all my travels in Southeast Asia I couldn't not fall deeply in love with this incredible herb. Again this is another herb that I love to grow in my garden, but I find that the dried Lemon Grass from Arbor Teas is of equally high quality. Lemongrass is excellent for it's calming scent and is often used in aromatherapy. It is also an excellent herb for supporting digestive health.
Just looking at hibiscus makes me happy and this is one of my favorite antioxidant rich herbs to include in many of my cold-tea infusions. I love adding just a little hibiscus to many of my herbal tea blends as a delicious and antioxidant rich accent.
Personally I find that it pairs especially well with holy basil, mint, and lemongrass.
You most likely have heard of echinacea root before due to it's popularity in supporting immune health, especially during cold and flu season. While there are many herbs that can help support immune health, echinacea is one that is great to begin with and well recieved by kids and adults alike.
If you struggle with seasonal allergies and other types of histamine sensitivity then Nettle Leaf is going to become your best herbal ally and a must for your home herbal apothecary.
Peppermint is a classic herb and one that is excellent for supporting digestive health, and a great accent herb to add to many herbal tea blends for a little pop of flavor.
How To Make A Homemade Herbal Tea Blend
While there are many ways to formulate your own tea blends, I personally like to keep my herbal tea blends to no more than three herbs and then potentially compliment with additional seasonal spices for flavor if desired. This is because when you are blending herbs together you want to be intentional about the purpose that each herb will provide and how the varying herbs will benefit one another.
Once you start blending more than three herbs together at a time the concentration of each herbs specific purpose becomes diluted, making it more difficult to achieve the desired benefits you are looking to use the herbs for in the first place.
I’d prefer to blend a wide variety of separate tea blends to utilize for various purposes than try and pack too many herbs together in one blend.
For this reason, I like to follow a three part formula:
Base (the main herb/action)
Compliment (the supporting herb/action)
Accent (the cherry on top)
Your Homemade Herbal Tea Formula
Before you start any herbal tea blend formulation you first need to think about what your primary goal is for the tea blend before you even begin reaching for your different herbs.
For example: If you are looking to reduce stress and anxiety then you may want to consider reaching for adaptogenic herbs like tulsi, or calming herbs like chamomile and lemongrass.
Want more information on creating a home herbal apothecary? Check out this article on “How To Create A Home Herbal Apothecary: Sourcing Bulk Spices & Herbs”
base (3 parts)
Your base herb should be the herb that will be the main focus of your tea. This herb and it’s beneficial properties should be what you are most looking to achieve out of the tea and what you want to highlight the most in your herbal blend. This herb can change from blend to blend, and may sometimes be used as a compliment or accent herb.
This is where studying different herbs and their herbal properties can become very helpful so you know immediately what herbs you want to reach for as your base when supporting immune health, digestion, stress relief, hormonal balance, etc.
compliment (1-2 parts)
The compliment herb is the second strongest herb in your herbal formula and should compliment the base herb. If the base herb doesn’t have a very good taste, this is also a nice way to combine a better tasting complimentary herb into your formula to help improve the palatability of your herbal tea blend.
The compliment herb could also act to address any secondary concern you may have that you are looking to support with your tea. For instance, if your main focus for the tea is to reduce stress, but you also know that digestive issues are a concern, you could choose an adaptogenic herb for your base, and a carminative herb for supporting digestive health as your complimenting herb.
accent (1/2 - 1 part)
Accent herbs are the cherry on top in your herbal tea blend that bring the entire formulation together. These herbs often don’t need to be used in as high quantities and may have a strong flavor where a little goes a long way.
Some examples of good accent herbs would be:
How To Choose The Right Teas For Your Herbal Tea Blends
By becoming more in tune with the many herbs available to you and what their common and overlapping benefits and properties are you will quickly become more in-tune with choosing the right herbs for your specific needs and homemade tea blends.
Since every tea formulation is unique there is no way to create a list of specific base, compliment, and accent herbs, which is why I would highly recommend purchasing one of the following herbal books from your local bookstore that can help you become more familiar with herbs and their specific purposes.
Seasonal Stress Relief Herbal Tea Blend
This stress relief herbal tea blend is perfect for reducing daily stress, calming anxiety, and improving balance in the body. It has a wonderful aroma and can be enjoyed throughout the day to promote relaxation or sipped before bedtime to help encourage a good nights sleep.
Combine all herbs together in a small jar or tea strainer.
Next, bring water to boil and pour boiling over over herbs.
Cover your herbal infusion to trap all the beneficial oils and herbal properties in the water.
Allow to steep for 5-7 minutes before sipping slowly.