How To Make And Use A Simple Licorice Tincture
By Katie Mae Stanley - January 12, 2016
Licorice is a wonderful herb to have on hand, particularly in the winter when colds and coughs seem to be going around. This sweet plant that inspired the famous candy is a go-to herb for coughs and so much more. It is also one of the herbs I use in my healing chai tea.
A Brief Overview of LicoriceLicorice root is commonly made into a tincture to be used for a verity of ailments. Tinctures are a quick and effective way to get licorice root in your system. (If you are pregnant or nursing it is not advised to use this plant.) For an in-depth look at licorice, read our Herbal A to Z post. Here are just a few ways to use this wonderful plant:
- Hormones (The How to Herb Book)
- For the intestinal track (The How to Herb Book)
- Coughs (Nutritional Herbology)
- To stimulate the adrenal glands (The ABC Herbal)
When Making A Tincture There Are Three Different Methods:
- Folk (which is what I have used in this post)
- Dried Licorice Root
- Mason Jar
- Vodka (80-100 proof vodka)
- Cheese Cloth or Flour Sack Towel
- Small Glass Bottles with Droppers
How to Make and Use a Simple Licorice Root Tincture
- Fill a jar 1/2 full with dried licorice root.
- Pour vodka over the licorice up to the neck of the jar, leaving about 1/2 inch of air space. If needed, use a knife or the end of a spoon to remove the air bubbles from the jar. Screw on the lid.
- It is important to store your tincture out of the sunlight so that it does not expose your tincture to the sun, depleting the potency. A cupboard that you open once a day is a good place to store your tincture. This will ensure that you remember to shake the jar at least once a day. (Let me be honest, though, sometimes I forget for longer than that.) Leave for four to six weeks.
- Cheese cloth, a thin, tightly woven towel, or shirt is important when straining a tincture. Place your cloth over a large bowl. Pour a small portion of the tincture through the cloth. Bring the cloth together and squeeze all the liquid out that you can. (Optionally you can use a very fine mesh strainer and press the liquid out or a french press.) Toss the herbs or compost them. Repeat the process until all the tincture has been strained.
- I tend to store most of my tinctures in quart sized mason jars. I use a small funnel to pour into small amber glass bottles for use. I prefer bottles that have droppers for ease of use. You can use bottles with a screw-on lid and pour the tincture onto a spoon.
Ways To Use Licorice Tincture:
- On its own
- Add it a blend of other tinctures
- Add it to a cough syrup or cough drops