8 Herbs to Grow in Your Kitchen
Is there anything better in the kitchen than a fresh supply of herbs? Snipping a sprig to add to a bubbling sauce or to drop into a cup of hot water for tea makes me feel more accomplished somehow. It’s wonderful to cultivate an herb garden outside, near the kitchen door. However, it is easy to create an indoor garden that produces an ongoing supply of fresh herbs.
Try out these eight herbs to grow in your kitchen. If you have a sunny windowsill or a grow light you can enjoy fresh herbs year-round.
Please visit 13 Extraordinary Uses for Herbs for some more tips from Cindy, how to use these 8 Herbs you are so proud of which you now have in Your Kitchen.
Select the Perfect Spot
For the best results, herbs need at least six hours of sunlight. Some require strong light so a south-facing window that lets in plenty of sunshine is ideal. Others thrive on moderate light. The East or west-facing window is perfect.
Use an individual pot for each herb, as they may have different watering requirements. Also, the plants have more room to spread out their roots.
Generally, use a loosely packed, well-draining potting soil. And unless otherwise suggested, let the soil dry out slightly between waterings.
8 Herbs to Grow in Your Kitchen
Choose from among the following easy to grow herbs, to start a kitchen garden.
Chives are related to onions. These fragrant plants with grass-like spiky leaves prefer strong light and soil kept moist. They produce cheerful pink flowers during the summer.
Trim one-third of the plant at a time, for use. Add chopped chives to soups, sauces, and stir-fries or add as a garnish to a plated meal.
This hardy plant comes in a variety of flavors, from peppermint to spearmint to more exotic choices such as chocolate. Mint does very well in a container and in fact, some would argue it’s the best way to grow this plant. It quickly runs wild outdoors.
Snip leaves for salads chilled flavored waters and freshly brewed teas. I love combining mint with other herbs to make my own tea blends.
Mint tolerates moderate to strong light and likes moist soil.
So much more than a garnish, parsley comes in flat-leaf or curly-leaf varieties. Although parsley can be started from seeds, it’s easier to pick up a plant at a garden center. If sowing seeds, soak them overnight in water, to soften the seed coats.
Add parsley to salads, soups, and sauces. Make a parsley pesto or combine with tomatoes, mint, onion, and olive oil for a wonderful tabbouleh.
Pinch off stems of parsley near the base of the plant. The herb prefers strong sunlight.
One of my favorite herbs to grow, this aromatic plant is available in a smaller compact size, called global basil, that makes it ideal for a container. You can also find purple basil and pineapple basil.
Basil is a wonderful addition to sandwiches, salads, sauces, and Italian dishes. Make your own fresh pesto for pasta or zucchini noodles. Or, as with any of these herbs, it makes a flavorful hot tea.
Snip off leaves for use. And if your kitchen basil gets leggy, simply pinch back the plant so it will fill in more. Basil favors strong sunlight and heat. Let the soil dry out before watering.
This plant is short-lived. If you enjoy cilantro keep seedlings going in two to three-week intervals for a steady supply.
Add cilantro to salsas, rice dishes, Mexican cuisine, smoothies, and juices. Or combine with other herbs for a cup of hot tea. Cilantro has many health benefits as well.
Pinch off leaves for use. Water regularly.
This fragrant herb adapts very well to containers. It is also easy to root in water, so you can start more plants from an existing one.
Snip off leaves for use in soups, sauces, rice dishes, and lentils. Or brew a health-boosting hot tea from thyme. Dry leaves to flavor roasted potatoes and other veggies.
Plant this herb in fast-draining soil. It doesn’t like to sit in a soggy pot. Place in strong sunlight and only water when the soil dries out.
This is another easy herb to propagate from cuttings. Root a start in water and then transfer to a pot.
Fresh oregano is more mild than dried. Pinch off leaves to use in sauces, soups, stews, tomato dishes, and casseroles. Add fresh leaves toward the end of the cooking process for the best results.
Oregano likes moderate to strong light. Water when the soil dries out.
This classic savory herb is best to purchase as a starter plant. Plop it into a pot of fast-draining soil.
Harvest the leaves regularly and use in soups, rice dishes, stuffing, and casseroles. Dried sage is a perfect addition to homemade potpourri. And it too has amazing health benefits. Brew it in a cup of hot water for a flavorful, healing tea.
Sage prefers strong sunlight. Water when the soil becomes dry.
Cultivate Your Favorite Herbs and this will be 8 Herbs to Grow in Your Kitchen
There are so many herbs to choose from when creating a kitchen garden. I hope these suggestions help you start your own culinary herb garden. Not only are herbs useful for cooking, teas, and making potpourri, they cheer up a room. And for me, nothing smells as wonderful as herbs. I love brushing the leaves of the plants as I water them, just to catch a whiff of their tantalizing scents.
Which herbs are your favorites? Do you use fresh herbs for tea or when you cook?