12 Uses for Fresh Herbs

Herbs contain phytochemicals (plant chemicals) that fight inflammation and reduce damage to your body’s cells. Here are some ideas and ways to include herbs in your diet and even as part of your skincare routine!

  1. Mix handfuls of fresh herbs into cold potato, pasta, or grain-based salads. Try this Cranberry Quinoa Tabbouleh Salad.
  2. Muddle fresh mint or basil leaves in a glass then fill with iced tea or sparkling water and a twist of citrus.
  3. Make a sandwich with herbs rather than lettuce (try a turkey sandwich with basil and roasted red pepper strips).
  4. Use fresh herb sauces in pasta or on top of cooked meats (e.g., pesto in pasta). If you like the spiciness of arugula, give this Pistachio Arugula Pesto a try! Or if you have some extra summer basil in your garden, this Basil, Spinach and Walnut Pesto is a mellow take on a traditional pesto.
  5. Make a body scrub. Plain sugar mixed with coconut oil and fresh herbs can make a soothing (lavender) or energizing (mint) scrub.
  6. Sprinkle lavender, rosemary and mint leaves on cakes, ice cream or fruit salads, like this Minted Fruit Salad.
  7. Substitute some of the greens in lettuce salads with tender herbs such as parsley, dill, and basil.
  8. Top soups with handfuls of fresh herbs.
  9. Make a compound butter. Finely chopped herbs easily mix into room temperature butter.
  10. Mix fresh parsley or dill into boiled or mashed potatoes.
  11. Make an infused olive oil. Place rosemary or tarragon in a jar, cover with olive oil, and let set in a cool, dark place for 1-2 weeks. Drizzle on pasta, bread, soups, eggs, etc.
  12. Freeze extra fresh herbs in oil to have on hand for flavoring stews, soups, and roasts. Tougher herbs such as rosemary, oregano, and thyme hold up well when frozen in oil in an ice cube tray.

Forge is delighted to partner with Laura Rutledge, MA, RDN, CSO, a Registered Dietician Nutritionist who focuses on oncology nutrition for Cooking with Laura focuses on nutrition during and after cancer diagnosis and treatment. For more information and recipes from Laura check out Nourishing Plate

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