How to dry basil to preserve it and use it year-round. Perfect for use in recipes like pasta sauces calling for dried basil.
Stems of basil (that’s all!)
Glass jars for storage (spice jars or small mason/canning jars).
Turn your oven to it’s lowest setting. Something like 150 – 200 Fahrenheit
Place washed and dried individual leaves in a single layer on your baking sheet. I normally wash the whole stems, let them dry for a few hours, then take the leaves off the stems. Do not try to dry wet leaves. You will steam them not dry them.
When the leaves start getting crunchy, about 1 1/2 to 2 hours, turn the oven off but keep the basil leaves in the oven. Once the leaves are really crunchy and cool, place in a plastic bag and remove air from bag before closing. Either use your fingers to crumble the dried basil leaves or use a rolling pin (or a water glass). Once the dried basil is crumbled, place in a glass jar.
Store in a cool and dry place.