If you have have a lot of fresh Basil Leaves, we will show you How to Dry Basil Leaves. These quick and easy methods will help you preserve it to use on your favorite recipes.

A bowl of dried basil with ½ teaspoon

Why to Dry Basil?

We like to dry out basil because it allows this flavorful herb to last longer. It may be confusing on when to use the dry version or when to use the fresh version. You will find that using the dry version has a more concentrated flavor than the fresh basil.

Some may prefer the fresh flavor but what to preserve it so that it can be used for a longer period. There are three ways to keep that fresh flavor without drying it out and harvesting basil.

  • Freeze Pesto – Make Pesto and freeze. There are many Pesto dishes that would it would be amazing in. Try our Crock Pot Pesto Chicken Pasta Recipe.
  • Freeze Fresh Basil Leaves – To keep basil leaves in its freshest form, freeze them.
  • Make Herb Bombs – This is a simple process of chopping fresh basil in a food processor with oil or water to make a paste. Then freeze in herb bombs in a ice tray for an easy fresh flavor basil to add to many recipes.
Basil plant on a cutting board

What do you need:

  • Fresh Basil
  • Baking Sheet

How to Dry Basil Leaves:

  • Prepare Basil and Oven – Wash and thoroughly dry the fresh basil plant. Preheat the oven to 170 degrees F.
  • Place Basil on Baking Sheet – Then spread out the basil on a baking sheet in a single layer. Make sure that the basil does not touch or over lap.
Basil leaves on a baking sheet
  • Bake Basil in Oven – Then place the baking sheet in the oven and bake for 25-30 minutes until the basil leaves are dry and crumble easily.
  • Bake until Basil is Dry – Make sure to check the basil regularly while it’s cooking as you want the basil dry but not browned from baking.
  • Continue Baking it not Dry – If the basil is not dry after 30 minutes, continue to bake it in 5 minute intervals until the basil is dry.
Dried Basil Leaves
  • Break into smaller pieces – Crumb the leaves with your fingers so that the basil is in smaller pieces
  • Continue process – Continue this process until all the basil leaves are crumbled.
Crushed dried basil
  • Store in Air tight Container – Then transfer the dried basil to an airtight container and store in a cool, dry place.
A bowl of dried basil with ½ teaspoon

How to Dry Fresh Basil:

Fresh Basil can also be dried in the Microwave. This is an easy process and an option if you don’t want to heat in the oven.

  • Get a Microwave Safe Plate – Place basil between two paper towels on the plate.
  • Heat Basil in Spurts – You heat microwave to 45 seconds, then 30 seconds, then another 30 seconds.
  • Dry Basil – Your basil should look dry and shriveled.
  • Heating time varies – The heating time will vary. So it might take your microwave 10 mores seconds to get dried herbs.
A bowl of dried basil with ½ teaspoon

How Much Dried Basil to Fresh Basil:

When trying to figure out how much dried basil to add when your recipe calls for fresh basil is simple to figure out. One tablespoon of fresh herbs is one teaspoon of dried basil.

For example, if a recipe calls for a cup of fresh basil, you can substitute with 2 to 3 tablespoons of dried basil.

Can you Dry Basil without a Microwave or a Oven?

Yes, if you prefer to not use a microwave or a oven to dry your basil you can hang dry the basil.

  • Wash and Dry Basil with a towel.
  • Tie a bunch of Basil together with their stems.
  • Then hang them in a dry, cool place high in your kitchen.
  • This process takes about 4 – 5 weeks to fully dry out basil.
A bowl of dried basil with ½ teaspoon

The Best Way to Maximize the Flavor:

To maximize the flavor of basil, store as whole basil. When the basil is crushed it releases the flavor and oils. We recommend crushing the basil close to the time you are using it in your dish.

Make sure to store your basil in an air tight container.

A bowl of dried basil with ½ teaspoon

How long does Dried Basil Last?

If stored in the pantry, your dried basil will last about a year. Make sure store dried basil in an air tight container to preserve your basil.

You can have two different containers, one for dried basil leaves and one for crushed basil. Then refill the crushed basil when you need. This keeps the basil fresh.

Different Methods to Drying Basil:

Here is a quick guide in drying Basil. This guide shows you the quickest way to the best way in drying basil.

  • Microwave – Microwaving Basil is the fastest way to dry basil. Dries in about 90 seconds. It has the least flavor retention but is the most convenient.
  • Food Dehydrated – Using dehydrated is a great way to dry basil on dehydrated trays at the lowest setting. It is also the best and retaining the flavor. But it does take awhile to dry them when using the herb setting. It could take a couple of hours or up to 24 hours to get dried basil.
  • Air Dry Basil – Air drying is also a great way to retain the flavor of dried basil. But it takes about 4 to 5 weeks for the basil to dry.
  • Oven – Drying basil in the oven is our best recommendation. It gives it the best flavor and it is the most convenient. You want to bake until dry and be careful not to burn it.

Print Instruction here for How to Dry Basil Leaves:

How to Dry Basil Leaves

5 from 3 votes
If you have fresh Basil Leaves, we will show you How to Dry Basil Leaves. These easy methods will help you preserve it to use in your recipes.
Prep Time 5 mins
Cook Time 30 mins
Total Time 35 mins
Servings 1
Cuisine American
Course Mixes and Seasonings
Author Eating on a Dime

Ingredients

  • Fresh Basil

Instructions

  • Wash and thoroughly dry the fresh basil. Preheat the oven to 170 degrees F.
  • Then spread out the basil on a baking sheet. Make sure that the basil does not touch or over lap.
  • Then place the baking sheet in the oven and bake for 25-30 minutes until the basil leaves are dry and crumble easily. Make sure to check the basil regularly while it’s cooking as you want the basil dry but not browned from baking. If the basil is not dry after 30 minutes, continue to bake it in 5 minute intervals until the basil is dry.
  • Crumb the leaves with your fingers so that the basil is in smaller pieces Continue this process until all the basil leaves are crumbled.
  • Then transfer the dried basil to an airtight container and store in a cool, dry place.

Pin This Now to Remember It Later

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Homemade marinara sauce
Homemade marinara sauce recipe is so flavorful and very simple to make. Enjoy with any pasta dish or for dipping your favorite breadsticks.
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More Kitchen Hacks:

If you have fresh Basil Leaves, we will show you How to Dry Basil Leaves in the oven. These easy methods will help you preserve it to use in your recipes. Save your fresh herbs by drying them out to use in your favorite recipes. #eatingonadime #basil #howto #freshherbs
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About the Author

Hi, I’m Carrie. Welcome to Eating on a Dime!

I’m on a mission to help you cook delicious meals without busting your budget. Together we are going to cook real food… for real families.

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  1. 5 stars
    I use Cilantro so often and was wondering if I could dry it in the same way?
    Thank you for all your wonderful and tasty recipes! ?

  2. Yes you can. I find it often looses some of the flavor when dried like most seasonings, so you will just need to use more.