Making homemade herbal popsicles is a great way to preserve and enjoy herbs perpetually during the year. They are fun and easy to make and are also a refreshing treat for the kids.
“As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases.” Read full disclosure here.
Popsicles remind me of my childhood and summer. If nothing sweet was available in our house, I always found popsicles in the freezer. My favourite flavor was strawberry and I was surprised to learn that popsicles back then came in seven original flavors such as lemon, cherry, orange, banana, grape, root beer and watermelon, with the most popular being cherry.
Anyway, the other day my 11-year-old son came to me with a specific request. Mom, it has been a long time we had popsicles at home. Can we have some? If you are like me and feel guilty of buying sugar-packed and artificially flavoured popsicles then you create one cool treat at home and choose the ingredients you want.
What are popsicles?
Popsicles or ice pops were originally sold as “a frozen drink on a stick” so basically whatever you can freeze and put on a stick can be turned into popsicles. No need for a particular recipe.
You can use various juices, fruits, teas, soda or milk-based liquids such as yogurt, cream, strawberry or vanilla milk. Adding a few fruits, herbs or pieces of chocolate make the popsicles special treat.
Choose Your Equipment
Making herbal popsicles is fun and they are easy to make. But sometimes you need to use your creativity to get things done. If you have a special popsicle mold, it’s great as your popsicles will look more professional than mine. I didn’t have a proper popsicle mold. But instead of running to the shop or waiting another week for online orders I went to my cellar to search for something I could use instead. I found some old disposable plastic cups we used when we went camping. As for the wooden sticks I simply used Chinese chopsticks. Plastic spoons will also do. It worked and it perfectly served its purpose.
If you are using a homemade mold like me, you will also need aluminium foil to cover the plastic cup with the folium and spear a wooden stick (or chopsticks in my case) through the foil to help the stick stay upright.
Before you start to make the popsicles make sufficient place in your freezer. You will need a couple of hours (at least 2) to freeze them in a standing position.
Ingredients to make Elderflower ice pops
A few elderflowers
handful of mint leaves
handful of verbena leaves
lime or lemon
Instructions to make herbal popsicles with Elderflowers
Gather all ingredients, for the herbs your garden is the best place to start if you grow your own herbs:) If you don’t have access to fresh herbs and flowers, you can purchase high quality, organic dried herbs in Starwest botanicals.
As for the Elderflowers, they have a typical floral scent and creamy colour. If you are still not sure this guide should help you to identify them.
Elderflowers are not only pretty carriers of unique taste they also possess many medicinal benefits. They are considered one of the top antiviral herbs on the planet that boost the immune system and provide cold and flu relief.
Make thin slices of lime or lemon and place 1-2 pieces into each section of the popsicle mold.
Add mint, verbena and elderflowers into each section as well. Note that you can replace each and every herb with other options that you have at hand.
Mix water with elderflower cordial as per your taste and pour it into the forms
If you are using plastic or paper cups use aluminium foil to cover each cup
Poke the stick through the folium
Freeze it for a minimum of 2 hours
When the popsicles are ready to eat it might take some time to pull them from the cup. I used my hands to warm them a bit and they fell out of the mold. Others suggest a quick dip in hot water to faster remove them from the mold.
I have to admit that these Elderflower popsicles became such a hit that my son invited his friends over for a special treat.
Sugar-free herbal Popsicles
If you still want to use herbs when making popsicles, one good way is to use herbal tea instead of cordial. This will give you a choice of using some sweeteners or not. Make a herbal tea, chill it completely preferably in the refrigerator, pour it over the herbs and freeze it.
Herbal popsicles alterations
- Make Elderflower tea to enjoy their antiviral and immunity-boosting benefits.
- Chamomile tea to calm you down goes well with lemon, lemongrass, lemon myrtle, or lemon balm.
- Peppermint tea supports your digestive system and pairs well with Mint Chocolate, vanilla or cinnamon. You can also make mojitos like popsicles with lime and rum but be careful as alcohol doesn’t freeze well so don’t put too much
- Hibiscus tea is good to lower your stress level and can add some nice pink-red colour to your popsicles. You can add some additional flavours by adding mint, ginger or cinnamon.
- The immune-boosting herb Echinacea makes for a delicious tea that can make a great liquid base for your popsicles
- If you wish to improve the level of antioxidants in your body and relieve anxiety, use lemon balm tea.