Essential Oil–Flavored Sugar

Have you ever used flavored sugar to sweeten your tea, sprinkle on toast, or use in your baking? Vanilla-flavored sugar is common and quite popular in European desserts, but you can easily make different flavors when you use essential oils. Try making some and using it to flavor toast, pancakes, french toast, crème brûlée, cereal, fruits, or milk and other beverages.
Gift idea: add your flavored sugar to 4 oz. glass salve jars, attach a little plastic spoon and a gift tag, and give it away as a unique neighbor gift.

Essential Oil–Flavored Sugar

  • Servings: Yield=2 cups (400 g)
  • Difficulty: Easy
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Ingredients & Supplies:

Instructions:

  1. Place the sugar in a glass bowl. Stir in essential oil for a couple minutes.
  2. Fill jar(s) with your flavored sugar, or use right away.

Extra Idea:

  • Scrape out the seeds of a vanilla bean and add them to your sugar along with an essential oil. You can even throw in the vanilla pod for extra flavor.
    (Remove the pod after 2–3 weeks.)

Use your flavored sugar in one of these recipes:

Alcohol-Free Glycerin Extracts

Making homemade extracts is pretty easy to do, but we’ve figured out a shortcut—essential oils—to make some extracts even easier. Normally, extracts are achieved by steeping vanilla beans, citrus peels, fresh herbs (such as peppermint leaves), dried herbs/spices (including cinnamon sticks), or coconut meat in alcohol for several months. As it steeps, the alcohol takes on the flavor of the added substance and an extract is produced. The longer you let it sit, the stronger the flavor tends to be.

We used the alcohol extract method to create this Homemade Vanilla Extract. Since then, we’ve learned that there are alternate solvents, such as vegetable glycerin, that can be used instead of alcohol. By using vegetable glycerin, we can create an extract that is alcohol-free and has a more pleasant taste. However, it is important to keep in mind that these extracts may only last about 14–24 months (whereas alcohol extracts can last 4–6 years).

Vegetable glycerin extracts usually use a glycerin/water combination and need to have at least 70% glycerin with 30% (or less) distilled water (if you are making extracts from fresh herbs, you’ll need to account for the water in the plant). The common ratio for herb to glycerin/water is 1:8.

To make most extracts, it is important to let the substance steep in the glycerin for a minimum of 4–6 weeks (preferably 10–12 weeks or more for a stronger flavor). However, we’ve found that if you use essential oils for some extracts, you can use the extract within days of steeping.

Essential Oil Glycerin Extracts

  • Servings: Yield=2 oz.
  • Difficulty: Easy
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Ingredients & Supplies:

  • 3 Tbsp. (45 ml) organic liquid vegetable glycerin
  • 10–15 drops essential oil (such as lemon, orange, peppermint, cassia or cinnamon)
  • 1 Tbsp. (15 ml) distilled water
  • 2 oz. Glass Bottle with Black Lid

Instructions:

  1. Add glycerin and essential oils to the bottle. Screw the lid on, and shake to combine. Remove the lid, and add the distilled water. Replace the lid, and shake once more.
  2. Let steep for at least 24 hours before using.

Extra Idea:

  • If you would rather use alcohol for the longer shelf life, just add the essential oils to the bottle and fill it up with vodka (80-proof).


You can also use glycerin to make other extracts such as vanilla, almond, and coconut extracts.

Glycerin Extracts

  • Servings: Yield=4 oz.
  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Print

Ingredients & Supplies:

  • 2 vanilla beans (sliced open lengthwise and cut in half or chopped into smaller pieces),
    1/4 cup (21 g) coconut meat (freshly grated),
    OR 10 sweet almonds (skins removed and cut in half or chopped)
  • 6 Tbsp. (90 ml) organic liquid vegetable glycerin
  • 2 Tbsp. (30 ml) distilled water
  • 4 oz. Glass Bottle with Black Lid

Instructions:

  1. Place vanilla beans, coconut meat, or sweet almonds in the bottle. Add glycerin and water to the bottle. Screw the lid on, and shake to combine.
  2. Let steep for at least 4–12 weeks before using. Shake as often as possible. The more you shake, the sooner it will be ready. (Your extract can be ready as soon as 2 weeks if you shake it at least once every day.)
  3. After 12 weeks, strain out the vanilla beans, coconut meat, or sweet almonds, and pour the liquid back into the bottle.

Extra Ideas:

  • You can make this recipe in bulk using mason jars and then place the final liquid extract in smaller bottles (such as the 2 oz. Glass Bottle with Black Lid) for gifting.
  • Check out these cute vinyl labels for vanilla extract.
  • If you would rather use alcohol for the longer shelf life, just replace the glycerin and water in this recipe with vodka (80-proof).

Don’t forget about gift giving during this holiday season! These little bottles of extract make a perfect neighbor gift!

Mini Pumpkin & Apple Candles

These mini pumpkin and apple candles make cute autumn decorations that double as essential oil diffusers. You’ll also love the sound of a real fire crackling and snapping as the wooden wicks burn!

Pumpkin & Apple Candles

  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Print

Ingredients & Supplies:

  • Mini pumpkins, gourds, squash, or apples
  • Wooden candle wicks (these can be found on amazon.com)
  • Beeswax Pellets
  • Essential oils (see blend suggestions below)
  • Small autumn-shaped cookie cutters (optional)
  • Sharp paring knife and/or pumpkin-carving tools

Instructions:

  1. Melt 1/3 cup (25 g) of beeswax pellets in a microwave, or use a double boiler. A DIY double boiler can be made by placing a heat-proof glass measuring cup in a pan of water. Place the beeswax pellets in the measuring cup, and heat over medium heat.
  2. While the beeswax is melting, cut out a hole in the pumpkin, gourd, squash, or apple. We used small autumn-shaped cookie cutters to start the cutting process and give the holes some character. We found pumpkin-carving tools helpful for carving holes in the mini pumpkins.
  3. Once you have the holes cut out, set up the wood wicks inside, and cut to about 1/2″ (1 cm) above the pumpkin or apple. You’ll want to double up the wood wicks (2 per candle) for the best continuous flame.
  4. Once your wicks are cut, soak them in the melted beeswax for 5–10 minutes as you keep the beeswax hot.
  5. Pull out the candle wicks, and place them on a paper plate. Match up the pairs (according to size) and place them in the candle wick holders that came with the wicks. Then place them in the pumpkins/apples, and pack beeswax pellets around them to hold them in place and fill the holes.
  6. Add 15 drops of essential oil to each candle (see blend suggestions below). Then pour the melted beeswax into each candle until all have been filled.
  7. Allow candles to cool before using.

Essential Oil Blend Suggestions:

Pumpkin Spice:
6 drops cinnamon*
4 drops ginger
4 drops clove
2 drop cardamom
Autumn Zest:
6 drops orange
4 drops lemon
3 drops cinnamon*
3 drops clove
Spiced Cider:
6 drops orange
5 drops cinnamon*
3 drops ginger
Spicy Citrus:
4 drops orange
4 drops cinnamon*
3 drops lemon
2 drops bergamot
2 drops clove
Stress Less:
4 drops lemon
4 drops orange
4 drops clove
4 drops cedarwood
Holiday Glow:
3 drops cinnamon*
7 drops fir
5 drops orange

*Cassia can be used instead of cinnamon.
You can also use the essential oil autumn blends we used in our room sprays. Just double the recipes for use in the candles.

Safety Note: Make sure to keep an eye on these candles while they are burning or place them in a heat-proof (or candle-approved) glass container while burning.


EO-Flavored Water: Rosemary Lemon

Though not a common water flavoring, this rosemary lemon combination is delightful! The subtlest rosemary flavor will be achieved by adding a sprig of fresh rosemary with a drop of lemon essential oil. However, you can achieve a stronger rosemary flavor by dipping a toothpick in rosemary essential oil and placing the toothpick in your water bottle along with a drop of lemon essential oil or lemon slices. Shake well, or stir the toothpick in before drinking.

Safety Note: Rosemary essential oil should be avoided during pregnancy. It is not for use by people with epilepsy and should be avoided if dealing with high blood pressure.

Guidelines for Adding Essential Oils to Your Water:

  • Make sure to use an essential oil–safe water bottle! Glass or metal cups, bottles, and straws work great. Plastic should be avoided, especially with cinnamon or citrus essential oils.
  • This Natural Essential Oil Emulsifier really helps disperse the oils throughout your water. Just add 1 drop of emulsifier for every drop of essential oil. If you don’t want to use the emulsifier, then remember to shake the bottle to mix in the oils before drinking. When taken internally, essential oils can irritate the mucous membranes—especially when concentrated on the surface of the water—so make sure to add an emulsifier or shake the bottle really well before drinking.
  • Remember, a little goes a long way! If you don’t know whether you’ll like the taste, start out small—dip a toothpick in the oil and swish it in your water (the more you dip, the more oil you’ll get). A good rule of thumb is 1 drop oil to 1–4 cups of water.
  • Safety Note: Essential oils are very concentrated, and it is easy to overload the body if adding oils to your water every day. Occasionally is fine, but make sure to give your body a break in between uses.

Tangerine Lemon Cheesecake

Do you have a pressure cooker? We love the way pressure cookers cook dishes faster and more “hands off.” Although cheesecake is often viewed as time consuming and a little tricky, cooking a cheesecake in the pressure cooker makes it fairly easy to get just right every time. The nice thing about using a pressure cooker is that it creates a built-in water bath that prevents cracking and gives the cheesecake a creamier texture.

We used an electric pressure cooker (Instant Pot®) and a 6″ × 3″ push pan. You can use a springform pan or even small (4–8 oz.) widemouthed mason jars for individual servings. If you have a stovetop pressure cooker, then heat it until you have low pressure and cook for 35 minutes; then remove from heat and allow the pressure to release naturally.

We know that not everyone has a pressure cooker, but they are a growing trend for a reason! If you don’t have a pressure cooker, just add 2 drops of citrus essential oil to your favorite cheesecake recipe, and bake it as normal. You’ll love the hint of citrus the oils add to the dish!

Tangerine Lemon Cheesecake

  • Servings: 6–8
  • Difficulty: Moderate–Difficult
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Crust Ingredients:

  • 1 pack (136 g) graham crackers or digestive biscuits
  • 2 tsp. (8 g) sugar
  • 2 Tbsp. (28 g) butter, melted

Filling Ingredients:

  • 16 oz. (454 g) cream cheese, room temperature
  • 1/4 cup (60 ml) heavy whipping cream
  • 1/2 cup (100 g) sugar
  • 2 tsp. (5 g) all-purpose flour or 1 Tbsp. (10 g) potato starch (optional, but makes a denser texture)
  • 1 pinch sea salt
  • 1 tsp. (5 ml) vanilla extract
  • 1 drop tangerine or orange essential oil
  • 1 drop lemon essential oil
  • 2 eggs, room temperature
  • 1 egg yolk, room temperature

Sweet Cream Topping

  • 1/2 cup (120 ml) sour cream or greek yogurt
  • 2 tsp. (8 g) sugar (more if using greek yogurt)
  • 1 toothpick tangerine essential oil (optional)

Instructions:

  1. Prepare a 6″ (15 cm) cheesecake pan by greasing it and lining the bottom with parchment paper.
  2. Crust: To make the crust, place crackers and sugar in a blender, and pulse until small crumbs form.
    Add the melted butter, and pulse until combined.
  3. Firmly press the mixture in the bottom of the pan and up 1″ (2.5 cm) of the side of the pan. Place the pan in the freezer while you work on the filling.
  4. Filling: For the filling, blend together the cream cheese, sugar, flour, vanilla extract, and essential oils in an electric stand mixer or with a sturdy hand mixer. Blend until the mixture is smooth.
  5. Add the eggs and egg yolk one at a time, lightly mixing until just combined with each egg. Be careful not to overmix the eggs.
  6. Pour the filling on top of the crust (make sure to cover the crust completely).
  7. Pat the sides to get out as many air bubbles as possible. This can take a few minutes. You can also pop the air bubbles that come to the surface with a pointy knife or fork.
  8. Cover the cheesecake with a paper towel, and then secure the paper towel with aluminum foil. Make sure none of the paper towel is visible (it can act as a wick and bring moisture to the surface of the cheesecake). Place the cheesecake in the middle of an aluminum sling (a long section of aluminum foil folded in thirds lengthwise).
  9. Pour 1 1/2 cups (360 ml) of water into the pressure cooker, and place the trivet in the pot. Lift the cheesecake using the aluminum sling, and gently place it in the pressure cooker. Fold the sling over the cheesecake and secure the lid in place. Make sure the pressure valve is sealed.
  10. Cook on high pressure for 35 minutes, and allow the pressure to release naturally for 18 minutes before releasing the remaining pressure.
  11. After all the pressure has been released, gently lift the cheesecake out using the aluminum sling. Remove the foil and paper towel. Tilt the cheesecake pan, and dab off any liquid from the side of the pan. The center of the cheesecake should be a little jiggly, but not wet. Note: If it doesn’t look cooked enough (i.e., it looks too wet), return cheesecake to pressure cooker, and cook for 5 minutes with an 18-minute natural pressure release.
  12. Sweet Cream Topping: Mix up the sweet cream topping by whisking the sour cream and sugar together until combined. Stir in a toothpick of tangerine essential oil if you want a little extra citrusy flavor. Spread the mixture on top of the cheesecake. Let cool on a wire rack for at least 1 hour.
  13. Lightly cover, and chill in the refrigerator. The pan can be removed easily after an hour in the refrigerator. If you want to eat it by that point, no one will blame you! However, the texture will improve significantly if it can chill in the fridge for at least 4 hours. Enjoy!

Extra Ideas:

  • If you don’t have a cheesecake pan, you can use small mason jars for single servings—just divide the ingredients among each of the jars. For 4 oz. widemouthed jars, cook for 4 minutes with a 15-minute natural pressure release. For 8 oz. widemouthed jars, cook for 7 minutes with a 15-minute natural pressure release.
  • If you have a stovetop pressure cooker, heat it until you have low pressure, and cook for 35 minutes; then remove from heat, and allow the pressure to release naturally.
  • Try experimenting with different cookies for the crust. Chocolate sandwich cookies, Biscoff®, vanilla wafers, ginger snaps, or other crispy cookies can be used.
  • This cheesecake tastes especially yummy when topped with this Lemon Curd or our Lemon-Berry Sauce (recipe below).


Lemon-Berry Sauce

  • Servings: 8–10
  • Difficulty: Easy
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Ingredients & Supplies:

  • 3/4 cup (~110–15 g) frozen or fresh berries
  • 2 Tbsp. (30 ml) maple syrup, agave nectar, or honey
  • 1/4 cup (60 ml) water
  • 1 drop lemon essential oil

Instructions:

  1. If using frozen berries, place all berry topping ingredients in a pan on the stovetop, and heat just until the berries have thawed.
  2. Place berry topping ingredients in the food processor, and pulse until mixed.
  3. Use hot or cold to top cheesecake—either way it is delicious!

Note: Leftover berry sauce can be used to flavor plain yogurt or kefir, or it can be used on pancakes, waffles, or crepes.

Spinach Dip with Essential Oils

This savory dip is great to use as a refreshment at an essential oil class, a side at a potluck dinner, or even a unique camping appetizer!

Spinach Dip

  • Servings: 10–12
  • Difficulty: Easy
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Ingredients & Supplies:

  • 1 cup (227 g) sour cream
  • 8 oz. (227 g) cream cheese, room temperature
  • 3/4 cup (60 g) shredded parmesan cheese
  • 3/4 cup (115 g) chopped frozen spinach, thawed and drained of excess liquid
  • 1/4 cup (30 g) bacon bits (optional)
  • 1 cup (150 g) frozen or canned artichoke hearts, chopped (optional)
  • 4–5 cloves garlic, minced
  • Salt to taste
  • 2 drops rosemary essential oil
  • 1–2 drops lemon essential oil
  • 1 drop black pepper essential oil

Instructions:

  1. Mix ingredients, except essential oils, together in a medium bowl.
  2. Cook mixture over medium heat for 20 minutes or so until hot and bubbly. This can be done on the stovetop, in the oven, in a slow cooker, or wrapped in aluminum foil and grilled or roasted over an open fire.
  3. Once warm, stir in the essential oils.
  4. Serve with baguette slices, crackers, or veggie slices (carrot sticks, cucumbers, broccoli, etc).

Coconut Oil Tablets for Mouthwash or Oil Pulling

These coconut oil tablets are simple to put together and make oil pulling easy—just pop one in your mouth, and swish around for 5–20+ minutes. When finished, spit out in the trash (not in a sink, as coconut oil can clog pipes).

Oil pulling is said to reduce plaque and may prevent cavities. Coconut oil is naturally antibacterial and can help freshen your breath by killing the bacteria that causes halitosis (and cavities). Oil pulling gets its name because as you swish, you are pulling the oil through your teeth so it can reach even the hard-to-get spots that often develop cavities. Oil pulling expert Bruce Fife says that to maximize the benefits of oil pulling, it’s best to swish the coconut oil for 20 minutes. Even if you only use these as a mouthwash (and swish for only 5 minutes), you’ll still get a lot of benefits to your oral health from these little tablets.

Coconut Oil Tablets

  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Print

Ingredients & Supplies:

  • Coconut Oil
  • Essential Oil(s) of choice (see recommendations below)
  • Candy mold or small ice cube tray

Instructions:

  1. Place 1–3 tsp. (4–12 g) of coconut oil in each section of your mold or ice cube tray.
  2. Add 1–2 drops of essential oil per 1 tsp. (4 g) of coconut oil to each section. Use a toothpick or spoon to stir the oils together. Note: If you have a favorite oil or oil combination, you can simplify the process by melting down 1/2 cup (96 g) coconut oil and adding 20–40 drops of essential oil. Then pour or scoop the oil into the molds.
  3. Place the coconut oil tablets in the refrigerator to solidify.
  4. To use, pull out a coconut oil tablet from the refrigerator, place in mouth, and swish around for 5–20+ minutes. When done, spit the oil into the trash. Note: If you don’t like the feeling of oil on your teeth when you are done, try rinsing your mouth with a little salt water.

Essential Oil Suggestions:

Any of the following oils (or a combination) can be used for everyday oil pulling: lemon, orange, grapefruit, peppermint, or spearmint.
Any of the following oils (or a combination) can be used for oil pulling when battling a sickness or infection: clove, cinnamon, tea tree, or Protective Blend.

BlenderBottle® Homemade Raspberry Ice Cream

Don’t have an ice cream maker? Try making ice cream in a BlenderBottle®! It’s a fun activity for a family or small group. Just throw the ingredients in, take turns shaking it up until it gets thick, then freeze until solid and ready to eat. The ball whisk gives it a great texture and makes the mixing part easier. If you have a larger group, you can put your mixture in a few different pint- or quart-sized mason jars and move the ball whisk from one jar to the next until all jars have been shaken and frozen.

BlenderBottle® Homemade Raspberry Ice Cream

  • Servings: 2–3
  • Difficulty: Easy
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Ingredients & Supplies:

  • 1 cup (240 ml) heavy whipping cream
  • 1–2 Tbsp. (15–30 ml) sugar or maple syrup
  • 1 tsp. (5 ml) vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup (60 g) raspberries
  • 1 drop lime essential oil (Lemon or peppermint essential oil would also taste great!)
  • BlenderBottle® with Ball Whisk

Instructions:

  1. Place cream, sugar/maple syrup, and vanilla in a BlenderBottle®. Shake until the mixture thickens and doubles in size.
  2. Place raspberries and lime essential oil in a glass bowl. Smash and mix them with a fork. Add the raspberry-lime mixture to the BlenderBottle®, and continue shaking until well combined.
  3. Remove the ball whisk, and freeze for at least 3 hours or until solid.
  4. Warm a spoon under hot water, scoop out your ice cream, and enjoy!

Raspberry Lemon Popsicles

Cool off this summer with these delicious and refreshing popsicles! These treats are vegan and loaded with good fruit, healthy fats, and non-dairy milk, with the added benefit of lemon essential oil.

Raspberry Lemon Popsicles

  • Servings: 4–6
  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Print

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup (130 g) raspberries
  • 1 banana
  • 2 Tbsp. (24 g) coconut oil (optional)
  • 2/3 cup (160 ml) coconut milk or almond milk
  • 1 drop lemon essential oil

Instructions:

  1. Add all ingredients to a blender, and blend like you would a smoothie.
  2. Pour into popsicle molds, and freeze for at least 3 hours or until solid.

EO-Flavored Water: Strawberry Lemon

Mix up this refreshing drink and take it along with you to the park with your kids! It is easy to get dehydrated with the heat of summer, so change up the flavor of your water every now and then to remind yourself to stay hydrated. This strawberry lemon combination is perfect for spring or summer!

Guidelines for Adding Essential Oils to Your Water:

  • Make sure to use an essential oil–safe water bottle! Glass or metal cups, bottles, and straws work great. Plastic should be avoided, especially with cinnamon or citrus essential oils.
  • This Natural Essential Oil Emulsifier really helps disperse the oils throughout your water. Just add 1 drop of emulsifier for every drop of essential oil. If you don’t want to use the emulsifier, then remember to shake the bottle to mix in the oils before drinking. When taken internally, essential oils can irritate the mucous membranes—especially when concentrated on the surface of the water—so make sure to add an emulsifier or shake the bottle really well before drinking.
  • Remember, a little goes a long way! If you don’t know whether you’ll like the taste, start out small—dip a toothpick in the oil and swish it in your water (the more you dip, the more oil you’ll get). A good rule of thumb is 1 drop oil to 1–4 cups of water.
  • Safety Note: Essential oils are very concentrated, and it is easy to overload the body if adding oils to your water every day. Occasionally is fine, but make sure to give your body a break in between uses.