Learn how to use herbs from your garden to make tangy flavored vinegars with this quick and easy recipe for Lemon Basil Infused Vinegar.
Homemade Lemon Basil Infused Vinegar Recipe
Enjoy the tangy deliciousness from flavored vinegars that come from your garden with this quick and easy recipe for Lemon Basil Infused Vinegar. It’s perfect for dressing salads, but it can also be used in a variety of ways to flavor meat and vegetables recipes.
If you are a salad enthusiast like me, then you’ll love this quick and easy recipe for Lemon Basil Infused Vinegar.
The inspiration for this recipe actually came from a spa-restaurant that I had traveled to and the salad they made with lemon basil was out of this world.
And, since I had an abundance of basil in my own garden, I decided to make my own infused vinegar when I got home.
You might be wondering if it takes a long time to make flavored or infused vinegar, but in reality it only takes several hours. Keep in mind, however, that the longer you keep herbs steeped in vinegar, the flavor will become more intense.
You can steep it four hours up to 24 hours and after removing the herbs, you can store your vinegar up to 6 months.
As for me, I merely let the basil and lemon steep in the vinegar overnight and used it as I normally would for a French vinaigrette the next day.
It’s fresh, herby and oh so divine with your favorite garden greens.
How to Prepare Herbs for Infusing
If you are using fresh herbs, whether from the garden or from the grocery store, you will want to wash the herbs thoroughly to remove any mold spores or bacteria.
To do this simply:
Step 1: Rinse your herbs under cool water.
Step 2: To a clean dishpan or bowl, add one teaspoon of basic household bleach, along with two quarts of water. Soak your herbs in this solution for a few sections then remove.
Step 3: To rinse, I like to take swish my herbs in a colander under cool water for a minute or so.
Step 4: Allow the herbs to dry while you prepare the vinegar.
Here are some ideas of other herbs you might want to infuse in vinegar:
Pair one (or more) of the herbs above with one of these fruit options for a delicious take on this recipe:
- orange peel
- lemon peel
- lime peel
- rose petals
How to Prepare Vinegar for Infusing (Day of Use)
You have a number of options when it comes to vinegar. Here are just a few:
- distilled white vinegar
- apple cider vinegar
- white wine vinegar
- red wine vinegar
- rice vinegar
- balsamic vinegar
For this recipe, I chose to use white vinegar. Now, since I wasn’t planning on storing my vinegar long-term—just using it in a day or so, I used the vinegar right out of the bottle, without heating.
To avoid spoilage, avoid using metal containers to store flavored or infused vinegars.
How to Prepare Flavored Vinegars for Bottling (Long-Term)
But, if you want to be able to use your flavored or infused vinegars later or give as a gift, you will need to go through a couple of more steps that will ensure longevity of your product.
Here’s how from the Blue Jean Chef:
Cooking Tip: If storing your infused vinegar for long periods of time, be sure to place a label on the bottle or jar and note the date you prepared it. Opened bottles of infused vinegar should be used within three months.
Step by Step Instructions How to Make Infused Vinegar
Begin by cleaning your herbs and any fruit prior to use. (See Instructions above.)
Using a vegetable peeler, remove just the yellow portion of the lemon peel.
Place the clean basil and lemon peel into a glass measuring cup, a clean bottle, or do like I do and add them to a French Coffee Press.
Pour in two cups of vinegar.
Then, used the coffee press to keep the basil and lemon from floating.
Allow the basil and lemon peel to steep in the vinegar four to six hours or up to 24 hours.
Once the vinegar has reached the potency you like, strain and use in your favorite recipes.
Did You Know? The longer you steep your herbs the stronger the infused vinegar will taste. Be sure to strain your used herbs, as they will become wilted and browned over time.
How Long Can You Keep Infused Vinegar
According to the National Center for Home Food Preservation, if you refrigerate your Lemon Basil Vinegar in a tightly sealed jar, it should stay fresh for approximately 6 months or so.
How to Use Lemon Basil Infused Vinegar
This recipe for Lemon Basil Infused Vinegar can be used so many ways. Here’s a short list of my favorite:
- on potato chips
- salad dressings
Vinegar Bottle Ideas
Want to give your flavored or infused vinegars as a gift? You have a number of options when it comes to bottling up your vinegars. Check out these two great ideas:
Glass Bottle Pack to Package Large Quantities of Infused Vinegar
PSST: Don’t forget to include a glass dispenser spout for ease of pouring your flavored or infused vinegar.
So what will you make with your infused vinegar? As you can see, it truly is quick and easy to make. Enjoy!
For more delicious recipes that use herbs and spices, be sure to check out Wisconsin Homemaker’s Recipe Section.
Lemon Basil Infused Vinegar
- 2 cups white vinegar
- 1/2 cup basil leaves basil flowers that have been thoroughly cleaned
- 1 slice of lemon peel
- Pour white vinegar into a glass measuring cup.
- Add basil leaves and flowers, along with the lemon peel.
- Allow this to steep at least 4-6 hours or as long as 24 hours.
- Strain and use immediately or place in a sterilized bottle that is tightly sealed. Keep refrigerated for up to 6 months.
- Use for dressing salads, as a marinade, drizzled over chips or part of a reduction. Enjoy!