Creative Ways to Use Old Herbs and Spices 🌿

A New Life for Old Herbs :herb:

While digging through your kitchen cabinets or re-organizing your spell supplies, you may come across herbs and spices that have been forgotten. Anything that hasn’t passed its “best before” date is probably still okay to use in cooking (assuming it was properly dried and stored). But what about the things that have surpassed their “best before” dates?

Can I still eat them? :plate_with_cutlery:

The truth is, your herbs that were properly dried and stored are probably still edible for a period of time after their “best before” date- as the food label “best before” implies an ingredient is at peak quality before this date. After that, rather than go bad like perishable food, dried herbs tend to just lose their flavor over time.

These older herbs and spices won’t bring much flavor to your cooking, but it’s still a shame to throw them out- why not find another use for them? :recycle: :grinning:

Here are some creative crafting ideas to put those old herbs and spices to use in your practice!

Magickal Oils :diya_lamp:

Spell oils are a magickal item crafted from a mixture of ingredients in an oil base. Herbs and spices are often included in recipes and it is best to use dried materials to create a long-lasting oil that isn’t prone to spoiling.

Magickal oils can be used as part of a consecration ritual, to anoint magickal tools, dress candles, included in spellwork, dressing candles, or even given as an offering to deities.

How to Make Your Own Magickal Spell Oil

“Confusion Oil” Hexbreaker Oil Recipe

Dressing & Anointing Candles :dressed_candle:

Some candle magick spells call for the candle to be “dressed” (also called “anointed”)- this process requires rubbing herbs, spices, and oils on your candle prior to use in spellwork.

Older herbs and spices are perfect for dressing your candle with- they do not need to be fragrant to imbue your candle with the magickal properties of the plant!

How to Dress a Candle for Spellwork

Anointing and Dressing Candles - Previous Challenge
Anointing Dressing Candles Spellwork Witch Challenge

Spell Pouches :purse:

Also called “Spell Bags”, these travel-friendly pouches are filled with herbs, crystals, runic symbols and more- any non-perishable things that correspond with your intention will serve you well in a Spell Pouch!

“Pocketful of Wealth”: An Abundance Spell Pouch

Spell Bag to Ward Off Nightmares

Spell Jars :jar:

Spell Jars (also called Witch Bottles) involve taking ingredients that correspond with your intention and placing them in a sealable vessel such as a jar or bottle. Anything non-perishable can be put into your jar, so dried herbs and spices are a great choice!

Because they are sealed inside, it does not matter if the herbs or spices are less fragrant than they originally were- the magickal properties of the plant will still work for you!

How to Make Your Own Spell Jar

Self-Love Spell Jar

Handmade Soap :soap:

Making your own soap is a fun activity that gives you control over your cleansing products. Melt & Pour Soapmaking is as easy as melting a pre-made soap base and adding herbs, colorants, and scents to design your own soap. Hot-Press and Cold-Press Soapmaking are a bit more advanced and require some mindfulness about safety (when working with lye- a necessary ingredient in authentic soap), but allow more control over what goes into your bath and beauty products.

Whether you include herbs within your soap blend or sprinkle them on as a tasteful decoration at the end, homemade soap is another fun way to put your old herbs to good use!

Herbal Soap Bry
Homemade Herbal Soap by Bry Wisteria

Decorations :bouquet:

Dried flowers, herbs, and spices maintain their colors long after they are harvested. With a bit of a creative eye, they can become beautiful decorations- from dried flower bookmarks to spice colorants and natural dyes and more.

Witch Crafts with Dried Lavender

A note about old herbs as deity offerings:

While offering old herbs to some deities (especially those associated with nature and renewal) may be seen as a kind gesture, it may not be deemed acceptable by every deity. Diety Offerings are a display of respect and reverence to a higher power- giving old, stale things that you want to get rid of may come across poorly to certain deities.

That being said, you know your deities and your intentions best- do what works well for you and your deities! :green_heart:

Ready for more Herbal Magick? :herb:

Enchanted by herbs and plants? You may be a Green Witch! Here are some additional resources and materials for those studying Green and Herbal Magick *Please make sure you are logged in to your Spells8 Account so you can view all of these materials.

The Green Witch: Complete Herbal Magick Course

Plant Magick & Spells: A Simple Guide for Green Witches

Herbal Magick Printable Pages for Your BoS

How do you like to reuse your old herbs and spices? :herb:

Have you tried any of the magickal methods above? :sparkles:

Feel free to share your ideas, recipes, experiences and more with your Coven members in the comments below!

Blessed Be & Happy Crafting! :green_heart:


Oils are one of my favorite ways to use dried herbs :clap: and I’ve never tried making soap before…maybe I’ll have to give that a go! Do you find it fairly easy? Or does it require special tools and materials?


Oh this is interesting. Thankyou. Bookmarked :green_heart:


Oooh lots of great ideas for things to do with and use herbs for! Thank you!
:herb: :bow_and_arrow: :hekate_wheel: :crescent_moon:


It’s really, really fun- I’ve made three batches of homemade cold-press soap over the past few weeks and I’m a little obsessed! :joy: :soap:

That being said, the version I’m currently doing (cold-press) does require getting some specialty tools/materials and I had to study up on chemistry safety (as lye can be dangerous- even following all the instructions, I melted a plastic spoon accidentally during my last batch :melting_face:) :woman_scientist:

If you’re interested in making your own soap but don’t want to invest too much up front, I’d recommend starting with a melt and pour kit! There’s no active lye involved so it’s easy, safe, and simple- they even have them in kids’ stores! We got and did one at Five Below for $5. It had everything we needed (except for the microwave) and was fun :joy: :+1:

My pleasure, Tracy! :green_heart: :blush:

You’re welcome, Artemisia! :hugs: :herb:


Hello my pretties this this is going to be fun! I was thinking first my deck of “The Herb Crafters Tarot” The author is written by Leticia Guthrie &Joanna Powell
I believe that, even though I don’t have the herbs, the cards still holds in energy,as if it was that botanical

Last night I pulled a card and got the Yarrow

Yarrow can be white or yellow!
I am in survival mode. This is a wild plant. And this is a beautiful botanical to work with because when you mix in the yellow it really has a strong, yellow, vibrant color that can change everything.!
:herb: The Herb of Achilles - How Do You Use Yarrow?
I made a glass of tea as an offering to my beloved Hecate to help me with my goals for this new moon coming! My tea has


Ohh, you’ve sold me! It sounds like something best done in the spring or summer for us, though, so I’m adding this to my list of projects to try with my daughter - thank you! I think I’d even experiment as you did with the herbs and stuff in it. It’s so pretty!


Oh so very beautiful! I haven’t seen these before and might have to look into getting myself a copy! :herb: :hibiscus:

Lovely ritual and offering to Hekate! Thank you for sharing. :hekate_wheel:


If I have any more decks that have to do with herbs I’ll send them your way!
I’m wondering what you have boiling in your cauldron! :witch_cauldron:


These cards are beautiful, Jeannie! :green_heart: And Yarrow sounds like a lovely one to get in a daily draw! A very healing and nurturing plant :herb: :smiling_face_with_three_hearts:

Thank you for sharing the herbal wisdom! :sparkles:

Aww thank you! :heart: And yes- I say go for it! It’s fun to mix things and make design, and then use them as soap! It’s a very handy form of artwork :laughing: :soap:

Here’s my last batch of herbal soap- it has turmeric and hibiscus for color, then cinnamon sticks and star anise as decorations on top:

I also included honey and beeswax (not that those usually go bad, but they are natural additions that can be fun to include!) :honey_pot: :brown_heart:

If anyone gives homemade soapmaking a try, feel free to share your pics/stories- always love to hear about it! :soap: :grinning:


Thank you, I would love that! :green_heart:

:thinking: Currently not too much, I’m in winter seed, berry, and root collection mode but I did need to get going on my herbal preparations course. I’ve got all my supplies, just need the time and motivation!


I think there’s a Facebook group with a funny title that’s something along the lines of “Great, now I want to eat that”! :laughing: The exact title is escaping me at the moment and I can’t find it but I looked at your soap (yes I did type soup first! :laughing:) and it looks so yummy, chocolate and caramel looking! :open_mouth: Amazing!


If I didn’t know that was soap, I’d want to gobble it up because it looks like cake :rofl: :birthday: I bet it smells amazing!

haha we were on the same wavelength! It looks like something you’d want to eat!


I know, right? It kind of looks like a shiny caramel fudge, and I want to eat it. :sob:

@BryWisteria Do you have to take the decorations off before using it? Or how does that work?


It sounds like you had e prepared well! Good Job! Can’t wait to see!


They make good infusion tea baths for spell bags and dips for paper


Ha! Thanks for the smile today- that sounds like a very funny group! :joy: :+1:

I’ll consider that a win if the soap looks delicious! :laughing:

Hahaha unfortunately it doesn’t smell much like anything- I used some vanilla and rose but I clearly didn’t use anywhere near enough. It just smells very lightly of spices and the honey/beeswax. I guess it’s a good one for sensitive noses? Ah well- I learned my lesson! I’ll add more scent next time :nerd_face: :+1:

That is an excellent question that I have not yet worked out the answer too :joy:

I honestly added them just for looks, but then my mother asked the exact same thing- she’s like, “yeah it’s pretty, but what if you poke your eye in the shower with the cinnamon stick?” Honestly did not occur to me while I was designing the soap :sweat_smile:

I don’t know what we’re gonna do with them lol. I guess they could be removed prior to use?

Ohhh these are great ideas for using old herbs too! Thank you, Nixi! :raised_hands: :green_heart:


That made me laugh out loud! :laughing:


:laughing: The image of someone rubbing a bar of soap on their face to end up in this situation alone is hilarious.

I don’t think it would really be a problem for me. I would rub the soap bar onto some other thing, like those rough Japanese wash cloths, to lather it up and scrub myself with that. I’d just have to be careful to not rip my cloth with it. :thinking:

But perhaps removing it would be the most safe. It seems a shame to break off such lovely decorations, though. :sob:


Always happy to share a laugh! :laughing: :+1: :heart:

That would be a clever solution! :grinning: Although you’re right about the cloth potentially ripping, which would be a tragedy…

After a lot of back and forth, I ended up removing the cinnamon and star anise. There are other (less pokey and potentially dangerous) ways to decorate a block of soap- I’ll continue my experimentation with a lesson learned! :laughing: :+1:

On that note, I made another batch of herbal soap using the lemon balm I dried last season. I steeped the water with peppermint leaves too- so it’s a very minty and refreshing soap!

I used some of the dried leaves on top - still a little decorative, but significantly less pokey! :joy: