How to Make Basil Tea with Fresh Leaves

Fresh herbs are great in salads, sides and pasta but you can also make tea with them. This sweet basil tea is wonderfully mild, herbaceous and soothing.

To make sweet basil tea with fresh leaves, simply steep them in boiling water for 30 minutes before straining, sweetening and serving either warm or cold.

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Ingredients for basil tea

For this simple tea, I used:

  • sweet basil: there are so many types of basil that you can use to make tea like Thai basil and holy basil (also called tulsi). While these are great, you can use sweet basil as well. Be sure to use fresh, organic leaves where you can. Dried basil will also work for this recipe but you’ll need 1 to 2 teaspoons instead.
  • water
  • sweetener: if you like sweetened tea, then be sure to use a little honey or any of your favorite sweeteners here.

Equipment for this recipe

While no equipment is needed, I enjoy using my teapot with tea infuser. It’s great for steeping fresh herbs and clean up is so easy. Of course, you can use a regular teapot and strainer or anything you have available for making brews.

How to make basil tea from fresh leaves

Step 1: Wash the basil leaves. Tear them into large pieces and add them to the tea infuser, teapot or teacup.

add basil leaves to infuser

Step 2: Bring water to a boil using a kettle, saucepan or even the microwave. Pour boiling water over the torn basil leaves.

add boiling water to basil

Step 3: Leave to steep for 30 minutes.

Step 4: Strain the tea. You can sweeten at this point with your desired sweetener like honey. Serve warm or allow it to cool, add ice and serve it as a refreshing, mild, herb tea.

basil tea in teacups with saucers

Basil tea recipe

basil tea in a white teacup with saucer, fresh basil leaves on the left and a silver spoon on the right
Print Recipe
5 from 1 vote

Basil Tea with Fresh Leaves

Basil tea made with fresh sweet basil leaves has a mild, herbaceous taste that is pleasant and soothing. Steep this tea and serve it warm or cold as a refreshing, afternoon drink.
Prep Time2 minutes
Cook Time5 minutes
Steep Time30 minutes
Total Time37 minutes
Course: Drinks
Cuisine: American
Keyword: basil tea, sweet basil tea
Servings: 2
Author: Ros Singh


  • 6 g sweet basil leaves (2 tbsp or 8 large leaves)
  • cups water


  • Bring water to a boil (using a kettle, saucepan, etc; approx. 5 minutes).
  • Wash the basil leaves.
  • Tear them into pieces.
  • Add to tea infuser (or teacup).
  • Pour boiling water over the leaves.
  • Allow to steep for 30 minutes.
  • Strain and sweeten if desired.
  • Serve warm or cold.

One Comment

  1. 5 stars
    I had a few extra basil leaves after making pasta and I tried your recipe! Was pretty good and I got to be zero waste. Yay!

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