Herb of the Month: Lavender

Nicknamed the "herb of love," lavender is in season now. For those new to the idea of cooking with lavender, we’ve got simple recipes to get you started.

Nicknamed the "herb of love," lavender is in season now. For those new to the idea of cooking with lavender, we’ve got simple recipes to get you started.

Lavender basics

The name lavender comes from the Latin verb "to wash."  Throughout history, it was commonly used in baths to help purify the body and spirit. Today, it is added to many hand soaps and body washes due to its aromatic fragrance.

A relative of mint, the lavender plant is adorned with violet flowers and green or pale grey leaves. Both the flowers and leaves can be eaten and have a pleasant yet slightly bitter flavor. Lavender grows throughout southern Europe, Australia and the United States.

Nutrition Info

Dried lavender has only a few calories per tablespoon and is free of fat and cholesterol. Throughout history it has been used to remedy various ailments including insomnia, anxiety, depression, and fatigue. Research has shown that lavender oil may help alleviate insomnia, anxiety, and stress.

What To Do With Lavender

Fresh lavender can be found at the farmers’ market or you can easily grow your own. Dried lavender can be found in specialty stores and health food stores.  Both fresh and dried lavender can be added to both sweet and savory dishes for both flavor and its gorgeous color. Add the fresh herb to salads, lamb, teas and cocktails. It also works very well with citrus, fruits, and desserts like crème brulee.

Dried lavender can be used in rubs, marinades, sauces, cookies and sorbet. It can also be added to a simple syrup mixture and used to flavor summer drinks like cocktails, lemonade or iced tea.

Shopping Tip: Be sure to purchase lavender for cooking as opposed to lavender sold at craft shops. Store dried lavender in an airtight container in a cool, dry place. Fresh lavender can be wrapped in a moist paper towel and placed in the fridge for several days.

Recipes to Try:
Keep Reading

Next Up

Herb of The Month: Marjoram

This lesser-known herb is a must-have in my garden. Learn more about the flavor of marjoram, plus find out why the ancient Greeks would stock up on it for funerals.

Herb of the Month: Mint

In this new series, we’re exploring new ideas using our favorite herbs. Many folks buy or grow fresh herbs but aren’t sure what to do with them. Check these fresh ideas on our first herb, mint.

Herb of the Month: Cilantro

Most folks just love it or hate it – cilantro is fresh, flavorful and super easy to grow. Find out what’s to love about this polarizing herb.

Herb of the Month: Oregano

Sweet and spicy fresh oregano is totally different than the dried version in your spice rack. Fall is the perfect time to enjoy this hearty green herb.

Herb of the Month: Rosemary

Fresh herbs are becoming tougher to find as the weather becomes colder. Luckily, rosemary is still available- so grab a bunch while you still can!

Herb of the Month: Basil

Basil is high in vitamins A, K and C and adds a lot of fresh flavor to food without the calories.

Herb of the Month: Lovage

Have you even heard of this fresh herb? Here's why lovage deserves some love.

Herb of the Month: Thyme

It’s the season to pick up fresh thyme. Packed with flavor and nutritious goodness, make this delicious herb part of your next meal.

Herb of the Month: Chives

Learn why chives are so good for you, then try our mouthwatering chive recipes.

Food Network Apps

In the Kitchen

Get over 70,000 FN recipes on all your mobile devices.

Facebook Messenger

Ask our bot for recipes, meal ideas and daily food trivia.

Amazon Echo

Just say "Alexa, enable Food Network skill" to get started.