Monday, October 9, 2017

Replacing Spices With Essential Oils

Replacing Spices

Because essential oils are so highly concentrated, they are 50 to 70 times more therapeutically potent than the herbs or plants they are derived from! Dried herbs lose up to 90% of their healing nutrients and oxygen molecules, whereas essential oils do not. 

Essential oils are “volatile”oils, meaning all of the therapeutic properties are in the essential oil of the plant and it dissipates quickly and easily. Once a fresh plant is dried, very little of the essential oil is still left. It's the same with herbs. Once an herb is dried, it only contains 3 – 5% of its essential oil, and it's the oil that contains the most benefit for our bodies.

You can use both dried herbs and spices and essential oils in cooking and medicinally, but there is greater health benefit in the essential oil. When cooking with essential oils, you receive all the great taste of traditional herbs and spices, but without any unnecessary preservatives. Plus, essential oils have a chemical structure that is similar to human cells and tissues. This makes essential oils compatible with human protein and enables them to be readily identified and accepted by the body. So let's start using essential oils in our cooking for flavor and benefit!

How much oil to substitute for an herb varies quite a bit depending on the essential oil. Essential oils are very concentrated, so you only need a little bit––typically a drop or two. Some oils are really strong, and you may only need to dip a toothpick in the oil and then stir the toothpick into your mixture.

The number of drops needed in a recipe can also differ based on a number of factors such as when the oils are added, the kind of food or beverage you are preparing, the strength of the oil, and your taste preferences.

If you are adding the oils at the end of cooking, smaller amounts are needed than if adding before baking, simmering, or steaming because oils tend to start to evaporate under heat. It is generally better to stir the essential oil in at the end of cooking or when the food has cooled; but some oils such as basil, marjoram, oregano, rosemary, and thyme are quite strong and may actually benefit from cooking a little to get a milder flavor.

One thing to keep in mind is that oil flavors tend to get stronger the longer the food or beverage has to “steep.” If you are preparing something that will sit in the fridge for a day or two before you eat or drink it, you may want to add your oils an hour or two before serving instead of when you prepare the food or beverage.

With that said, let’s talk about some specific amounts or at least the base line amounts for you to add to according to your taste preferences.

- Typically, 1 drop of a citrus oil can substitute for 1 tsp. of citrus zest. If the recipe calls for the zest from 1 citrus fruit, you can use 8–14 drops of the citrus essential oil instead.

- For minty oils such as peppermint and spearmint, try substituting 1 drop for 1 tsp. dried mint leaves or 1 Tbsp. fresh mint leaves.

- Cinnamon and cassia are pretty similar, and typically what we know as ground cinnamon is really ground cassia; however, the strength of their flavor is quite a bit different. You will want to start by substituting 1 drop of cinnamon for 1–2 Tbsp. ground cinnamon and 1 drop of cassia for 1 tsp. ground cinnamon or cassia.

- For herbaceous oils like basil, marjoram, oregano, rosemary, cilantro, dill, etc., start with a toothpick dipped in the oil and stirred into the mixture, and then add more to taste as needed.

- Floral herbs like lavender can be used in cooking; but because floral flavors are uncommon, you want just a hint of this flavor. Start with a toothpick, and add more if needed.

- For other flavors, a good rule of thumb is to substitute 1 drop of oil for 1–2 Tbsp. of dried spice or herb and 1 drop of oil for 1–2 tsp. of fresh spice. If you think the oil is strong or the recipe calls for less than the above quantities, start with a toothpick dip instead. Taste, and add more if needed.

Order your essential oils as a 'Wholesale Member' HERE.


I am an independent distributor of Young Living.  Patti Friday Kennedy #12680967
***  Any suggestions made on this blog are very specific to Young Living essential oils and should not be used with oils from another source. Statements made on this website about Young Living Essential Oils have not been evaluated by the FDA. These products and information are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease. Anyone suffering from disease or injury should consult with a physician. If you are currently on medication, please DO NOT STOP.

We are NOT Doctors, we are looking to support ourselves and families with essential oils. Anything shared here is not intended to treat, diagnose, or prescribe any medical advice. All oils we are talking about today/tonight are Young Living Essential Oils only.

Patti Friday: Artist | Illustrator | Author | Wellness Community Member | Reporting from inside 'The Art Dept.' at the international 'Embassy of Ideas'

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