Get The Most Out of Your Mint from Backyard Eats
When It’s Ready
- Pick individual leaves when the plant reaches at least 4″ height
- Pick handfuls of mint leaves regularly to continuously stimulate growth of the plant
- If harvesting a large amount, cut at the the plant at the base of the stem before it begins to flower
- Use a sharp knife or shears to clip stems and/or leaves away from the bush
Mint is a herb that is widely used in cooking for its fresh and aromatic flavor. It can be used in both sweet and savory dishes. In sweet dishes, mint can be used to add a refreshing flavor to fruit salads, smoothies, and cocktails. In savory dishes, mint can be used in marinades for meat, as a garnish for soups and stews, and as a key ingredient in dishes such as tabbouleh and mint sauce.
Note: we recommend growing mint in containers due to its tendency to quickly take over raised bed gardens.
Fresh Storage: Keep in a dark, cool, and dry place for continual use after harvesting.
Long-Term Storage: “Woody” perennial herbs like mint can be dried at home to enjoy all year long! First, trim stems from the main plant. Tie 3-5 stems together into a bundle, then hang them to dry in a cool, dark, and well-ventilated place for 2-3 weeks.
Once the herbs are dry and brittle, you can store and enjoy them long-term.
Cooking With Mint
- Mint Tea: Steep fresh mint leaves in hot water for a soothing and refreshing herbal tea. Add a touch of honey or lemon for extra flavor if desired.
- Mint Mojito: Muddle fresh mint leaves with lime wedges and sugar in a glass. Add rum, ice, and soda water for a classic and refreshing cocktail. Garnish with mint sprigs for an extra touch.
- Mint Yogurt Sauce: Blend fresh mint leaves with plain yogurt, garlic, lemon juice, salt, and pepper. This tangy and herbaceous sauce pairs well with grilled meats, roasted vegetables, or as a dip for pita bread.
- Mint Pesto: Blend fresh mint leaves, pine nuts, Parmesan cheese, garlic, olive oil, and a squeeze of lemon juice to create a unique and vibrant mint pesto. Use it as a sauce for pasta, spread it on sandwiches, or as a flavorful marinade for grilled meats.
- Mint Salad Dressing: Blend fresh mint leaves with olive oil, vinegar (such as apple cider or white wine vinegar), honey, Dijon mustard, salt, and pepper. Drizzle this refreshing dressing over mixed greens or your favorite salad for a burst of minty flavor.