A lot of people dread seeing dandelions in the Spring as they see them as weeds. I don’t mind seeing the first dandelions pop up, as that means that Spring is here, the bees have yummy nectar and there are so many things that can be done with dandelions.
Foraging for dandelions isn’t difficult and there are so many wonderful things to do with dandelions, as every part of the herb is both edible and medicinal, even the root. This homemade herbal salve is especially good for sore muscles, joints, and dry skin.
- Pint Jar
- Fine Mesh Sieve or Cheesecloth
- Small Sauce Pan
- Glass Measuring Cup
- Tins or Containers for Salve
- 1 cup Dandelion Flowers (dried out for 24hrs)
- 1.5 cups Carrier Oil (Suggested oils include sunflower, olive, sweet almond, avocado, hemp or grapeseed)
- 1 ounce Beeswax
- 1 ounce Shea Butter
- 20-25 drops Essential Oil(s) of your choice
- Collect your dandelion flowers, it’s best to dry them for a day or two to remove the excess moisture. You can just lay them out on a clean towel.
2. After your dandelions have dried a bit, put them into a jar and cover them with the carrier oil of your choice (I used equal parts olive and melted coconut oil). The size of the jar depends on how much oil you want to make. A pint jar should yield about a cup of oil after straining, which is the amount you will need for this recipe.
3. Let your dandelion oil infuse:
For a quick infusion: Set the uncovered jar down into a small saucepan filled with a few inches of water. Heat over a low burner for a few hours, keeping a close eye that the water doesn’t evaporate out. Remove from heat and strain. The quick infusion is the best way to infuse coconut oil.
For a slower, more traditional infusion: Cap the jar of dried dandelion flowers and oil and tuck away in dark place for around 2 weeks, shaking occasionally as you remember to. When the infusing time has passed, strain. You could also set the jar of dandelion flowers and oil in a sunny windowsill for several days to jump start the infusion. (Don’t store for long periods in sunlight though, as it tends to fade flowers over time.)
4. Once you have strained out the flowers using a sieve or cheesecloth (make sure to really squeeze all of the dandelion goodness out), you will need to warm the oil in a double boiler. You can create a makeshift double boiler by putting a small bowl or a glass Pyrex measuring cup over a pot with about an inch of simmering water.
5. Add the beeswax, then the shea butter into the bowl/glass measuring cup, and heat until they completely dissolve into the oil, stirring occasionally.
6. Let the mixture cool a bit then stir in the optional essential oils. Then carefully pour the mixture into small jars or tins and let sit until the salve sets up completely.
This recipe makes about 12 ounces of salve total, or six 2 ounce tins.
How to Use Dandelion Salve
Dandelion flowers have anti-inflammatory and pain relieving properties, so this salve is good for all kinds of aches and pains. It is particularly good for sore and tired muscles. Dandelion salve is also soothing and moisturizing for dry, itchy, and cracked skin. It would also work well as a lip balm for chapped lips.