Soothing and comforting herbal thyme tea provides relief and aid for sore throat.
Learn how to make thyme tea using fresh or dried thyme that you foraged, homegrown, or bought.
What is thyme tea?
Need more time to make thyme tea? Well, a hot cup of thyme infusion is packed with flavors and contains thymol, which has potent antimicrobial properties and helps to alleviate coughs or sore throat.
You can make an easy thyme tea by steeping fresh or dry leaves or the whole spring in boiling water.
To harvest wild thyme (Thymus serpyllum), you should look for dense clusters of purple-pink flowers that grow in summer. They delight your senses with intense fragrance.
Their egg-shaped leaves grow opposite in pairs, instead of growing tall and vertically, Wild thyme creeps along as ground, forming a sort of purple mat that is hard to overlook.
I always find wild thyme when walking in higher altitude locations, mountains, cliffs, or pastures. Thyme is a perennial plant that flowers from June to September. Pople often confuse thyme with oregano or sage.
Which thyme is best for tea?
Wild thyme has the same properties as Common Thyme or Lemon Thyme (Thymus citriodorus). They are all aromatic and a good remedy for coughs or sore throat. It tastes different; I like lemon thyme, The lemon flavor is very subtle, so I usually sweeten it with sugar or honey to make a really soothing cup of thyme infusion.
Are you using fresh or dried thyme for tea?
You can use both. Thyme infusion made of fresh herbs is milder than dried herbs. It is crucial that you like the fragrance of herbs, as it will affect the taste of your tea. The tea will not have an aroma and taste if it has no scent. You can store fresh thyme wrapped in a damp towel in the fridge and leftover use in this wild rice soup.
How to dry fresh thyme?
There are several ways you can dry thymes. You may want to dry the whole spring of thyme. You are tying them in bundles and hanging them upside down in a place with fresh air for a few days. Alternatively, use or use a herb drying rack.
Another easy way is to spread them on a drying rag or parchment paper in a ventilated area and let them air dry for several days.
To speed up the process, you can use a dehydrator where you lay the thyme in a single layer for the air to circulate. Use a low temperature of 40 C (105 F) for 3-4 hours until dry completely.
Alternatively, you can use an oven, the lowest temperature, and a baking tray.
Tea bags may be an option, but I always ensure I have some dried thyme on hand in my pantry during the winter months. Drinking thyme infusion is a great way to relieve cold and flu symptoms, especially when coughing.
What are thyme tea benefits?
Besides its aromatic scent, thyme possesses many medicinal health benefits.
It may have antibacterial, antifungal, and antimicrobial properties.
Studies confirm antimicrobial activity against bacteria such as E. coli, salmonella, staphylococcus aureus, and candida Albicans yeast of thyme essential oil. However, whether that activity would be as intense when consuming thyme infusion has yet to be confirmed.
It’s packed with antioxidants.
Thyme contains antioxidants and polyphenols known as bioflavonoids that help defend against free radicals.
Thyme contains vitamins and minerals.
Besides antioxidants, thyme also contains vitamins A and C, copper, fiber, iron, and manganese—all of which are present, to some degree, in its tea form as well. Vitamins A and C can help fight infection and supports the immune system.
Thyme tea recipe.
This recipe requires two ingredients (thyme and water) and one cup of tea. You can use a mug, tea filter, or infuser; however, you can do it without it.
I use this ceramic tea infuser cup with a cover so the tea doesn’t get cold while steeping.
If you want to make a bigger batch, use a teapot or french press instead.
First step – Gather thyme.
Place one teaspoon of dried thyme or two teaspoons of fresh leaves into a glass jar. Or place the thyme sprigs (two for dried thyme and three for fresh sprigs) in one cup. If you have a tea ball infuser, you can also chop the thyme sprigs before steeping.
Second step – Boil water.
Boil the kettle and pour freshly boiled water into your cup with thyme leaves.
Third step – Steeping the tea.
Cover the mug and let it steep for 10-15 minutes. If you like strong tisane, leave it longer.
Fourth step – Straining.
Strain the herbal material with a tea strainer or just remove the filter
Add honey and lemon juice or other sweeteners
Note: Serve warm or chilled. You can keep the strained tea refrigerated for up to 1 day.
Can I drink this herbal tea with thyme at night?
Thyme contains a compound that calms the nervous system. A cup of thyme tea may help you relax if you feel anxious. Thus drink thyme tea during your pre-bed routine or enjoy a cozy cup at the office in high-stress moments.
What are the side effects of drinking herbal thyme tea?
People with an allergy to thyme or other similar plants like basil, oregano, sage, or lavender may experience skin sensitivity, nausea, diarrhea, or vomiting.
How to make tea taste better?
Thyme tea tastes delicious and makes a flavorful soothing tea, mainly made from lemon thyme. However, you can add a bit of honey or another sweetener like maple syrup, ginger, or lemon juice.
Some people like to add a slice of ginger or lemon. Can you make thyme iced tea?
Cold thyme tea makes a refreshing lemonade, especially during the summer. However, make a larger batch and keep it in the fridge.
To make 32 ounces (1 litter) of cold brew thyme infusion:
- Place thyme (two tablespoons of dried) into a tea infuser or a cold brew pitcher.
- Pour in chilled water. If desired, add berries, cucumber slices, or mint.
- Allow it to steep on the counter overnight.
- Take out the thyme the next day and store it in the fridge for two to three days.
Add fresh lemon juice or honey when serving.
Can you boil thyme for tea?
If you are using just leaves or sprigs of thyme, I will not boil it as you will lose the vitamins and other nutrients with the boiling. However, using other seeds, such as cardamon or cinnamon bark, you can boil it to get the right taste and other benefits.