Ways to Use Fresh Mint

As summer comes to a close — bummer, I know! — I bet you’re finding yourself overstocked on a few seasonal items in your kitchen, and fresh mint leaves are likely to be among those items. Don’t let them go to waste! Fresh mint has tons of unexpected uses. We’ve been sharing mint recipes all week long, but just in case you need you need further convincing that mint leaves are versatile, here are 10 more ways to use fresh mint leaves!

10 Ways to Put Fresh Mint Leaves to Use

We’re wrapping up mint week with a bang! After sharing with your 4 brand new ways to use fresh mint, we’ve got 10 more uses for mint leaves that will be a sure fire way to use up any of your leftover mint leaves.

This week we shared:

Health Benefits of Mint Leaves

You should know that fresh mint leaves also have a ton of (possibly) unexpected health benefits. Fresh mint is rich in nutrients, can aid stomach pain and digestive issues, can improve brain function, and helps relieve cold symptoms. Since it’s relatively easy to add to your diet, there’s really no excuse not to reap those benefits.

Mint

And there’s definitely no excuse to toss the fresh mint you have in your kitchen. Here are ten easy ways to use it. 

1. Garnish your favorite juices. One of the best things about making your own juices at home is that you can add a whole bunch of delicious flavors that you probably wouldn’t find in a store-bought equivalent. Mint is one of those delicious flavors, and I like to add it to many of my own juice recipes, including my Strawberry Lemonade with Mint and my 2-Minute Watermelon Juice. The mint adds a subtle and fun depth of flavor — plus, it makes for a really pretty garnish. (Extra food Instagram points for pretty garnish!)

2. Make a salad dressing! It’s easy to get stuck in a rut with salad dressings. You throw together a little vinegar, a little oil, a little seasoning, and call it a day — right? Wrong! Salad dressings don’t have to be boring, and mint is a great way to spice up your greens. I love the Mint Chia Dressing I use on arugula salads. Make it one time and you’ll wonder why you weren’t making your salad dressings minty before! 

Arugula Salad with Mint Chia Dressing

3. Put it in frozen smoothie packs. You know how much I love to prep my healthy smoothies ahead of time by assembling frozen smoothie packs in large batches. When I’m ready for one, all I have to do is toss the contents of one of the packs in a blender and enjoy! I include fresh mint in several of my go-to frozen smoothie pack recipes. My Chocolate Mint Smoothie is extra delicious! 

4. Cocktails, anyone? We’ve already talked about how great fresh mint is as an addition to homemade juices, but it can be just as wonderful in beverages that are a little more… adult. I add it to many of my favorite boozy bevys, and if you find yourself with a lot of fresh mint lying around the kitchen, I encourage you to do the same! Try a Cantaloupe Ginger Cocktail, a French Kiss Cocktail, or a batch of Rose Sangria. Cheers to you!

5. Top off your parfaits. Parfaits look pretty to begin with, but adding a little fresh mint as garnish just takes it to a new level. Check out the way I garnish my Berry and Cream Parfait or Mocha Fudge Fruit Parfaits! Using fresh mint in any parfait that features chocolate has the added benefit of making you feel a little like you’re eating mint chocolate chip ice cream.

6. Make mint ice cubes. Drop leaves of fresh mint into each slot of your frozen ice cube molds to add a minty twist to any of your favorite juices or cocktails. This is a fun touch for any party or gathering, since it looks a little on the fancy side, but is actually really easy to pull off. 

7. Do a DIY face mask. Mint is a refreshing, rejuvenating herb, which means that it has tons of benefits for your skin care. It’s anti-bacterial, chock full of Vitamin A, anti-oxidant, and soothing, and it comes especially highly recommended for skin ailments like acne. With everything that fresh mint has going for it, it would be a waste not to use it to make DIY face masks. It can be mixed with other natural ingredients — like cucumber, honey, oats, and milk — to give your skin the glow you’ve been looking for. Check out eight awesome recipes here! 

8. Spice up a salad. Bored of your usual salad mixes? No problem. Throw in some fresh mint! The herb might just become a standard addition to all of your salad. My favorite minty salads are my Melon Salad with Prosciutto, my Mediterranean Quinoa Salad, and my Easy Cucumber Salad, but I challenge you to use mint in all of your best-loved salad recipes. 

9. Mix it in a spring roll. Spring rolls are totally underestimated as a healthy snack, nutritious lunch, or party appetizer, and they’re also a great place to use any fresh mint you have around the house. My Spring Rolls with Mango Ginger Sauce recipe calls for a bunch of mint leaves. You’re gonna love it! 

10. Toss it in a slaw. Sick of the same old slaw? Fresh mint might be just what you need to mix it up. You’ll find it in my Beet Slaw, for one!

Bonus: Check out this post and this post for other ways to preserve fresh herbs!

What are your favorite ways to use up fresh mint leaves?

Mint Simple Syrup

This mint simple syrup is made with honey and is perfect for cocktails, mocktails, in tea, coffee or for baking projects! It’s simple to make it will last for a week or two in the refrigerator.

Fresh mint simple syrup in a jarPaleo Mint Simple Syrup Recipe

This 3-ingredient flavored simple syrup uses no refined sugars or artificial ingredients. It has an amazing and earthy mint flavor. Simple syrup is basically just water and sugar cooked together to create a liquid sweetener that easily dissolves in other liquid. It’s perfect for making drinks and for baking projects and is so easy to make. We’re skipping out on the white sugar and instead using honey to sweeten this Mint Simple Syrup.

Mint Simple Syrup Ingredients:

  • Fresh Mint
  • Water
  • Honey

Types of Mint

There are so many different types of mint out there! They all have their own taste and aroma. More than likely if you’ve just got your standard run-of-the-mill mint either growing in your backyard or from the grocery store, it is probably peppermint or spearmint. Both of those will work well for this recipe and give it a typical mint taste. Another varietal that will work well for this simple syrup is Chocolate Mint. This isn’t easy to find in stores, but if you are lucky enough to be growing it in your garden definitely use it here!

Mint simple syrup recipe being made

Uses for Fresh Mint Simple Syrup

You’ll get the most use out of a mint simple syrup in beverages! You can use it in cocktails, such as a Mojito, or in mocktail recipes (cocktails without alcohol). It would be great with agua frescas (fruit blended with water) such as watermelon, or used in a lemonade recipe! It would be perfect in any tea, but especially a Fresh Mint tea and it could be a fun addition to coffee! If you are an avid baking you could use simple syrup to infuse flavors in cake layers or to use in a brownie recipe to make it minty!

Why do you ” bruise” the mint?

In this recipe we call for you to rough up the mint, or bruise it. The reason we instruct you to do this is because bruising the mint helps the oils come out of the herb and gives the simple syrup more flavor.

Pouring simple syrup made with honey over fresh mint leaves

How to Make Fresh Mint Simple Syrup

  1. First you make the simple syrup! Again, we’re using honey instead of white sugar to avoid using refined sugar. Simple syrup is 1 part water to 1 part sweetener. 
  2. Clean the mint leaves!
  3. Next you bruise or rough up the mint to help release the oil. Then place the cleaned mint leaves in a heat proof bowl. Carefully pour the simple syrup over the mint. Let it infuse for 10 minutes.
  4. Carefully strain the mint leaves, pressing down gently to get all of the oils out of the leaves.
  5. Place your simple syrup in a heat proof jar with a tight fitting lid and let cool completely. Cover and store in the refrigerator for 1-2 weeks.
  6. Use as desired!

Fresh mint leaves strained to make mint simple syrupWashing Your Mint Leaves

Mint can often be very gritty and dirty. Washing the mint leaves really well is important because if left with grit on them, the mint will turn the simple syrup muddy. To properly wash mint you should:

  1. Pick all the mint leaves off the stem
  2. Fill a big bowl with cool water
  3. Submerge the mint leaves and swoosh them around.
  4. Let them sit for a minute so that the dirt drops to the bottom.
  5. Pick up the mint leaves as gently as possible, so as to not disturb the dirt, and place in a colander.
  6. Empty out the water, rinse the bowl and repeat the process until no dirt is left behind in the bowl.
  7. If desired you can run the mint leaves in a salad spinner to dry them off.

paleo mint simple syrup in a jar with fresh mint leaves surrounding it

If you like this mint recipe, check out these others:

Fresh Mint Simple Syrup

Prep Time 00:05 Cook Time 00:05 Inactive Time 00:10 Total Time 00:20 Yields 1 cup

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 small bunch (about 1 ounce) mint leaves, cleaned well

Directions

  1. Make the simple syrup: To a small pot add honey and water. Turn on the heat to medium and bring the mixture to a boil. Turn off heat.
  2. Place the cleaned mint leaves in a heat proof bowl and tear them into smaller pieces with your hands, bruising them as you go to get the oils out of the leaves. Carefully pour the simple syrup over the mint. Let sit to infuse for 10 minutes.
  3. Carefully strain the mint leaves, pressing down gently to get all of the oils out of the leaves.
  4. Place your simple syrup in a heat proof jar with a tight fitting lid and let cool completely. Cover and store in the refrigerator for 1-2 weeks.
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There may be affiliate links in this post! By clicking on them, or purchasing recommended items I may receive a small compensation, at no cost to you! However, I only recommend products I absolutely love and use in my own home! Thank you for supporting Lexi's Clean Kitchen when you shop! See my privacy policy for more information about this, the information we save, and more!

How to Make Fresh Mint Tea

Did you know you can make tea out of fresh mint leaves? It’s so simple and can be made to drink hot or cold! Scroll on down because we’re walking you through the steps on How to Make Fresh Mint Tea!

Easy Fresh Mint Tea Recipe

Sipping tea can be so soothing! Mint tea in particular has the ability to immediately calm the mind. Fresh mint tea made with real mint leaves only makes it more amazing! It’s earthy, bright and truly minty. And the best part is making it is SO EASY requiring only two ingredients: mint and water! You can use any type of mint that you’d like, and it tastes even better when you make your own blend! We found it easiest to make the tea inside of a French press, but you can just as easily make it in a bowl and then strain out the tea in a strainer once it’s steeped.

Types of Mint For Fresh Mint Tea

There are so many different types of mint out there! They all have their own taste and aroma. More than likely if you’ve just got your standard run-of-the-mill mint either growing in your backyard or from the grocery store, it is probably peppermint or spearmint. Both of those will work well for this recipe and give it a typical mint taste. If you are lucky enough to have a garden with some of these varietals, definitely use them in this mint tea recipe! Some of our favorites for mint tea is made from these varietals:

  • Chocolate Mint
  • Pineapple Mint
  • Apple Mint (or Whooly Mint)
  • Orange Mint

You can use just one type of mint or mix them up!

Washing Your Mint Leaves

Mint can often be very gritty and dirty. Washing the mint leaves really well is important because if left with grit on them, the mint will turn the tea muddy. To properly wash mint you should:

  1. Pick all the mint leaves off the stem
  2. Fill a big bowl with cool water
  3. Submerge the mint leaves and swoosh them around.
  4. Let them sit for a minute so that the dirt drops to the bottom.
  5. Pick up the mint leaves as gently as possible, so as to not disturb the dirt, and place in a colander.
  6. Empty out the water, rinse the bowl and repeat the process until no dirt is left behind in the bowl.
  7. If desired you can run the mint leaves in a salad spinner to dry them off.

How to Make Fresh Mint Tea

  1. Wash your mint leaves well! Gritty mint leaves will make for muddy tea!
  2. Tear and bruise the mint leaves with your hands. Roughing up the mint leaves will help bring out the oil and make for a stronger mint flavor.
  3. Pour the boiling water over the mint leaves and let infuse for 5-8 minutes. The longer you infuse the stronger the mint essence. However, it reaches a point when the mint tea can start to taste a little grassy, so depending on your varietal of mint start tasting it around 5 minutes.
  4. Strain the tea and pour into tea cups. Add honey, if using.
  5. Serve immediately or cool down and serve cold.

Ways to Enjoy Tea Made with Fresh Mint Leaves

You can spice up your mint tea by adding in some other flavors! You can add in some lemon juice, some honey or maple syrup or even other culinary herbs such as thyme! If you wanted to really amp up the flavor, you could skip the honey and instead make a mint simple syrup to add to the tea to sweeten it (recipe coming in two days!)

If you like this mint recipe, check out these others:

Fresh Mint Tea Recipe

Prep Time 00:10 Total Time 00:10 Serves 2

Ingredients

  • 1 bunch (about 2 ounces) fresh mint leaves, cleaned well
  • 2 cups boiling water
  • 1 tablespoon honey (optional)

Directions

  1. Tear and bruise the mint leaves with your hands and place in either a fresh press or a bowl.
  2. Pour the boiling water over the mint leaves and let infuse for 5-8 minutes.
  3. Strain the tea and pour into tea cups. Add honey, if using.
  4. Serve immediately.

Recipe Notes

  1. You can also serve this cold. While still warm add honey if using, and stir. Store in the refrigerator until cold, at least 6 hours. Will keep up to 2 days.
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There may be affiliate links in this post! By clicking on them, or purchasing recommended items I may receive a small compensation, at no cost to you! However, I only recommend products I absolutely love and use in my own home! Thank you for supporting Lexi's Clean Kitchen when you shop! See my privacy policy for more information about this, the information we save, and more!

P.S. take me back to Morocco for all the mint tea!

Pouring Moroccan Mint Tea at Riad Fes in Fes, Morocco