Does anyone have any ideas on what to make with an over abundance of Lemon Balm and Oregano.


I use them in cooking and salads etc but I need something that uses uses up a lot, seems a waste to cut in back and just put it in the compost.

What are your brillant ideas?

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Lemon Balm can be used in so many ways. It's delicious.

As a tea - simply put a sprig (or 3) in a cup and pour boiling water over and let stand for a few minutes. Sweeten with honey if you wish. And of course, you can DRY the leaves and keep for tea over the off season...delicious.

As a syrup - make a standard infusion (as you would for tea) and then strain. Put liquid (about 5 cups) into a pot and simmer, steaming, until reduced by about half. Add about 1 cup of honey, stir well and pour into a glass jar. Keep  in the fridge (for up to 3 months). Take one teaspoonful, as is, in times of stress - it's a great nervine.

As a liqueur - pack a 1 litre jar 3/4 full of clean and crushed lemon balm leaves,  put in the grated peel from a couple of lemons, 250g of honey and cover with vodka. Let stand for a couple of days, then give a good shake and leave for another week. Strain well. Serve by putting an amount (to taste) in a glass and topping with mineral water.

As a vinegar - pack a jar (any size) 3/4 full of clean and crushed lemon balm leaves. Top jar up with white or apple cider vinegar (I prefer white) and let stand for at least a week. Strain. Beautiful added to a little oil to make a vinegarette for a dressing.


I've used my lemon balm to make pesto. I added a little basil as well, but you can use up quite a bit of lemon balm this  way.

reallly what a good idea - thank you i am going to try it this summer 

What about making a herb seasoning with them. The latest NZ gardener has some recipes .

Oregano, dry it for use during the winter.

Lemon balm chuck it in fresh into boiling water for tea.

I dried mine in the oven overnight on low, and packed up in little plastic bags as little Christmas gifts for family and friends who appreciate herbs and herbal teas. They went down wonderfully well last year. I may even do it again this year.

my thai friends use lemon balm as a substute to lemon grass, very similar flavour which is much easier to grow in temperate climates than the tropical lemon grass! i have found adding it near the end of cooking works better as it can turn a little bitter if over stewed!

it is also lovely chopped finely in a fruit salad.


oregano is beautiful with tomatoes, olives and feta cheese either togeather or individually.

and in herb scones or  herb bread :)

Hi, you can use lemon balm to  make lemon balm pesto, which goes well with chicken or fish or seafood, I could go and look for the recipe but I can't move because there's a fat heavy cat on my legs.  Anyway, lemon balm pesto recipe is basically the same as basil pesto, but you use lemon balm instead of basil, there are ercipes on the net also.

hi, yes i agree, what a waste - the only thing i can think of is to cut and dry the lemon balm for herb teas through out the year and the same for the oregano re cooking ...that way you won't have to buy either and if you think you have more than you need give them away ...herbal teas are a great intro into the natural medicinal world 

Thanks everyone, I've now dried some to use through winter, I've made parsley and lemon balm pesto and lemon balm syrup. as well as using lots for tea's etc. also used some in salads etc.

Wonderful sugestions, I feel like I'm finally making proper use of this lovely herb.

I'd be careful putting either in the compost, you may find you have an ever bigger overabundance. I use both to stabilise clay banks and suppress weeds then make tea with the balm and hedge cut it when it threatens to take over the world.



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