Decoctions: Herbal Remedies, Recipes, How To Make

* Ashwagandha * Angelica * Astragalus * Carob * Chaga * Dandelion * Eleuthero * Ginseng, Panax * Ginseng, American * Hawthorn * Reishi * Sarsaparilla * Sassafras * Uva Ursi * White Willow * Wild Ginger * Yucca

Unlike infusions, decoctions are boiled. Woody roots, non-aromatic seeds and barks are suited to this method. If you simply infuse roots and barks in hot water, as you do leaves and flowers, you will not extract the full medicinal properties of the herb.

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Herbal Decoctions Remedies

Tools: You will need a non-reactive, heavy saucepan. I use a Corningware 1 quart pan with a see through glass lid. It is the perfect size for me, as I normally make decoctions 3 cups/750 ml at a time.

Ratio: Amounts can vary, depending upon your taste and the potency of the herbs, however 1 to 2 teaspoons of herb mixture to each cup of water is a good starting point. Roots and barks are more concentrated than the lighter leaves and flowers used in infusions, so less is needed.

  1. Heating: Start with cold water over a low heat and slowly bring herb mixture to a simmering boil. Keep the pot covered and simmer for ten to 20 minutes. Take off heat and leave covered while you brew cools to drinking temperature.
  2. Straining: I often let the mixture set all day or overnight without straining, the heavy roots and barks settle to the bottom, and you can pour off the top.
  3. Overnight Method: Use this method when the material you want to extract is a bitter, or mineral salt. The whole herb, roots or seeds, or the bark of a woody plant are soaked in cold water for several hours, then brought to a boil and simmered for 30 minutes.


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