Purple Sweet Basil Flowers and Orange Zest Tea

by Michelle on May 3, 2010 · 16 comments

in Hot Drinks

I wanted to share with you, dear readers, these pictures of the beautiful sweet purple basil flowers from our garden and a refreshing tea recipe.

These beautiful purple flowering tops were growing out of the sweet basil in the garden so I just had to do something with them!

The due to the sweet basil’s sweetness, the flowers make quite a nice naturally sweetened tea.

And the orange zest gives it quite a fresh flavour.The basil flower’s colours ranged from a light violet to dark purple.

I hope you enjoy this recipe.

Recipe: Purple Basil Flowers and Orange Zest Tea


  • 1 Tsp. per person Purple Sweet Basil Flowers
  • 1 Tsp. per person Orange Zest
  • Hot Water


  • A Teapot
  • A kettle filled with water
  • A zester or a fine grater

How to:

  1. Grate the orange zest. Place the zest and basil flowers into the tea pot along with the just boiled water and leave to infuse.
  2. Strain and enjoy!

Information about Basil:

I believe the plant I used was Ocimum basilicum (Purple Basil a.k.a Purpurascens).  For information about other common types of basil click here: Click me. (Iowa State University, 1997).

Where to buy Basil? Mountain Rose Herbs (my US equivalent of the Aussie Southern Light Herbs) sell quite a few types of basil if you’re wondering where you can get it!

Mountain Rose Herbs. A herbs, health and harmony c

This was linked to Slightly Indulgent Tuesday 4th of May, Real Food Wednesday May 5th, Pennywise Platter May 13th.


Health Food Lover is Michelle Robson-Garth. Michelle is a degree-qualified Naturopath (BHSc) and Massage Therapist. She is also a passionate writer, recipe-creator and all-round foodie from Melbourne, Australia. © Copyright: 2009-2012 Michelle Robson-Garth. Please ask permission first when using any text or images on healthfoodlover.com. Read the disclaimer here. Have a look at the recipe index for more health food lovin’ recipes. Join the Facebook page & follow Health Food Lover on twitter.

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{ 12 comments… read them below or add one }

Heather May 4, 2010 at 12:52 pm

Mmmm this looks delish! And so pretty! I have never heard of using basil flowers before…I must find out where I can track some done!


Aubree Cherie May 4, 2010 at 1:38 pm

This is fantastic! I love that you’re using the basil flowers in your tea! I need to grow basil in my garden too I guess, this sounds heavenly :)

~Aubree Cherie


gfe--gluten free easily May 4, 2010 at 2:06 pm

How amazing and lovely! I’m totally unfamiliar with basil flowers. They are beautiful, and the fact you can use them in tea … too cool. Now I want some basil plants.



Lindsay at Kitchen Operas May 4, 2010 at 8:46 pm

So beautiful! What a great idea to use the flowers, thanks!


Michelle May 5, 2010 at 9:35 am

Hi Everyone :)

Heather- perhaps ask at a farmers market who grows basil and see if they can bring the flowering tops? Or grow some :)

Aubree Cherie, Shirley, Lindsay- Thanks for stopping by! I’m glad you all liked the post! The flowers are really quite tasty too!


Maggie May 5, 2010 at 1:18 pm

So, when you say 1 tsp basil flowers, are you talking about petals only? Petals and a little green? The whole flowering stem? I’ve never tried this, but would like to! They really are beautiful plants!


Michelle May 5, 2010 at 9:49 pm

Hi Maggie.

Well what I used mostly was the purple petals, however there were quite a few of the basil leaves in as well. Considering you can eat the leaves I see no harm in using the leaves so I think that could be okay if you wanted to do that. I didn’t use the actual stem, but I used all the flowers of the stem (kept the rest to dry). But do try it! Thanks for the compliment!


Amy @ Simply Sugar & Gluten Free May 11, 2010 at 4:06 am

Your purple basil is beautiful. I’d love to have one of those in my herb garden.

And, a cup of that tea sounds completely relaxing right now!!


Michelle May 11, 2010 at 7:42 pm

Hi Amy.
Thanks for your comment! It is quite a relaxing tea! If I could send dried herbs to the US I would send you some! :)


Chris May 17, 2010 at 3:51 am

Great and simple! Thanks!!


Michelle May 17, 2010 at 4:35 am

Thanks Chris!


Curtis Robinson October 15, 2011 at 5:49 am

I am a recent graduate from a Culinary Training Facility, ( Aug, 2011) we have a veggie garden with several types of basil plants. Now that winter is upon us I was told that I can get plenty of the purple flower basil which has grown in abundance and no one is using it. Thanks for all of the info.


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