Dandelion Salve Recipe

Dandelion Salve Recipe Made with Dandelions from your yard

Dandelions are one of my favorite plants! They’re the epitome of cheerful resilience and have so many uses and health benefits!

I always find it strange (and sad) when I drive down the road and see people diligently spraying herbicides (some of which are linked to cancer) on their dandelions (being studied to fight cancer.) Just who decided dandelions were ugly weeds in the first place? And, why did anyone listen to them??

Anyway, rhetorical ponderings aside… today, I’m going to talk about how to use those dandelions growing in your backyard to make a salve that’s useful for:

  • sore muscles
  • achy & arthritic joints
  • rough, chapped skin

Dandelion salve is especially ideal for those who work outdoors and with their hands a lot!

 

drying dandelions

To make our salve, we first need to create an infused oil. The problem with using freshly picked dandelions for this is that they have such a high water content, that your oil will get a little sludgy and yucky sometimes, with a higher likelihood of spoilage.

To solve that problem, I spread my dandelions out in a single layer on a plain paper towel and let them wilt for a day or two.

The next day, I add them to a jar and pour olive or some other light oil, such as sunflower or sweet almond oil, over them – all the way almost to the top of the jar.

The size of the jar will depend on how many dandelions you have. For a small amount of dandelions, use a small jar; if your supply is large, use a bigger jar. Don’t get hung up on precise numbers and amounts. You’re basically filling some type of container about 1/2 to 3/4 full with wilted dandelion flowers then covering them with oil.

Set the jar gently into a pan of warm water and heat slowly over medium lowish heat. Let the oil stay in the heated water for several hours then remove.

dandelions infusing in oil

At this point, you can go ahead and strain the oil and use in your salve or you can let it infuse several days longer in a dark cabinet. Another option is to strain the oil then do the whole process again with freshly wilted flowers and the first batch of dandelion oil. This is a double infusion.

This also makes a wonderful massage oil. It’s especially nice if you add in a few drops of soothing lavender essential oil.

Once our oil is finished infusing, we’re ready to make some salve!

 

Dandelion Salve

  • 3.5 ounces (100 grams) of dandelion infused oil
  • .5 ounces (15 grams) of beeswax pastilles (buy HERE or HERE)

I like to put a little tamanu oil in most things I make because it is simply the best all around skin healing agent I’ve experienced (to date), so I use about 3 ounces of dandelion oil and .5 ounces of tamanu when I do that. You can buy tamanu oil from Mountain Rose Herbs or HERE on Amazon.com. If you don’t have any on hand though, no worries. Just use all dandelion infused oil!

Add the oil and beeswax pastilles into a heat proof container. Set it gently into a pan containing several inches of water (just like we used when we infused our dandelion oil.) Gently bring the temperature up to medium-lowish heat and let the container stay in the makeshift double boiler until the wax is melted.

Remove from heat and carefully pour into tins or jars then let sit until firm. This sized batch makes about four ounces of salve. One batch filled two of the 2 ounce glass jars shown with a tiny bit leftover. I buy my tins and small jars from Specialty Bottle or Mountain Rose Herbs, but you could even recycle an old jelly jar for this.

You can use my tutorial on How to Create Your Own Round Labels if you wish to pretty up your salve.

Dandelion Salve

 

For more dandelion ideas, check out my FREE eBook: Things to do With Dandelions! You can find me on Pinterest and Instagram or sign up for my monthly newsletter so we can keep in touch!

Things to do with dandelions free ebook

Important Note: This is simply a retelling of a natural home remedy that works for my family and is not to be construed as medical advice or treatment. Some links in this post are affiliate links. That means if you click on one and make a purchase, I earn a small commission. This cost nothing extra for you, but does help support my blog Рthank you! :)

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178 Responses to Dandelion Salve Recipe

  1. Mammy Oaklee says:

    This is wonderful! Thank you. :)

  2. Valarie Jennings says:

    Really enjoyed reading your instructions and the pictures are wonderful.

    • Jan says:

      Thank you! I also appreciate the dandelions you sent with the violets the other day. They made their way into a batch of dandelion soap (which I’ll post about soon.) :)

  3. Sarah says:

    How pretty! Would this be similar to a calendula salve? I have a lot of dried calendula looking for a use.

    • Jan says:

      Hi Sara! Yes, you can use calendula in this recipe instead of dandelions. The calendula will have slightly different properties – dandelion has a mild analgesic effect which helps with the achy joints & soreness part, but calendula excels at healing the skin. Calendula salve is lovely and I think you’ll like it as well! :)

  4. Patti Barber says:

    Thank you for sharing your natural remedies. How many dandelions do you start with?

    • Jan says:

      Hi Patti! It depends on how many I have available. When they are blooming like crazy, like they are now – I will fill the jar at least half full (but not more than 3/4, to allow expansion room.) When they are scarce, I collect a few each day and keep in the fridge with a damp paper towel over them (or you can freeze in a baggie) and then pull them out and let dry all at once. Then I might only fill the jar up to a quarter full. If I use less, I let it infuse a little longer to hopefully compensate a bit for the lack.

  5. Rhonda says:

    I found this post particularly interesting. I’m always looking for unique ways of using thing. I’ll have to try this out. Dandelions are underrated for sure. My family has been enjoying dandelion jelly for the last few years. http://wine-y-wife.com/how-can-i-eat-that/

    • Jan says:

      Yum! I’ve not made dandelion jelly myself, but my brother does and it is soo delicious! I hadn’t seen a version with vanilla in it – that sounds extra tasty! :)

  6. Rachelle says:

    Wow, I knew somewhere dandelions was good for something healthy. I was wondering if you use the flower only and separate from the bottom. Thank you, here in Quebec the dandelion will start really soon, so glad I got your recipe.

    • Jan says:

      Hi Rachelle! I use the flowers but let a few stems get in there and occasionally a leaf or two. Some people use the sap from the stems on acne or warts, so I like a little of that benefit to be in the salve too! :)

      • Anonymous says:

        Thank you very much, Will try next year, this year just added the top flowers and its amazing. I use the oil for aches in my leg from a previous broken femur. I now sleep pain-free like a baby. I also use on my face morning and night and find that my dilated pores are shrinking like magic. Again thank you.

  7. Ann says:

    Hi there, does this make a soft salve, or a hard balm? I’ve made some calendula balms in the past, but always struggle to get them the right consistency!

    • Jan says:

      This is a pretty soft salve. I like to make all of mine on the soft side because it’s gentler on tender skin. Plus, trying to scrape a hard balm out of a jar is not fun! :)

  8. laura says:

    Hello I was wondering could you use coconut oil instead of the beeswax? Thanks :-)

    • Jan says:

      You could melt the coconut oil and infuse it with the dandelions and make a dandelion coconut oil to use on your body – only it won’t be salve-like such as this texture. But, it will still give benefits! :)

      • Meg @ The Coop says:

        I like the coconut oil idea. I bought some coconut oil recently and though I know there are many uses for it, I have yet to actually do anything with it.

        If I were to take this route, would I follow the steps for infusing and then just strain out the dandelions, add some lavender and call it good? And although the consistency would be different from the salve, would it provide the same beneifits?

        This is all new to me. I absolutely love your blog. I can’t wait to hear about the dandelion soap!

  9. Holly says:

    The recipe sounds incredible! Thank you. I hope to use it on my scar from Thyroid surgery and on excema and dry skin. What type of Tamanu Oil do you buy? The organic one? Any tips on getting a good price on it? Thanks. Holly

    • Jan says:

      Hi Holly!

      I get Tamanu Oil from Mountain Rose Herbs (there’s a link to it up in the post above.) It’s organic plus when I shopped around at the time, it was a good price. (That was a few years ago.)

      They were out of stock for a while once so I ordered a small bottle from a vitamin supplier. It wasn’t as fresh plus it cost twice as much. I’m super happy with Mountain Rose Herbs (just be aware they are s-l-o-w shippers.) But, they have outstanding fresh, high quality products that I highly recommend!

  10. Lisa says:

    I think this is a great idea! I have some lavender buds and may put it in with the Dandelions. Hubby and I work out and could always use something for sore muscles. We are both recovering from knee and back surgeries. Thank you so much! This is fantastic!

  11. Ashley says:

    Thank you for this recipe. Our yard is full of dandelions right now! My daughter loves picking them, now instead of them just dying we will have a good use for them :)

  12. Debra says:

    You use beeswax, but I don’t have any. Could this be done with soy wax instead?

    • Jan says:

      Hi Debra, I don’t really have experience with using soy wax to be sure. I’ve seen a few mentions of people using it for salve – you’d just have to check the label and see if it says anything about not being skin safe. If you’re looking for a vegan option – you could use candelilla wax and just use half as much.

      You could also try adding shea, cocoa or mango butter to the oil and melt them together and it would thicken it as well. You’d have to experiment with amounts, but maybe start with half and half and adjust from there!

  13. Penny says:

    Just discovered the potential with these amazing little flowers, thank you for sharing.

  14. janel says:

    Great recipe. Thanks!!
    Seems like the oil could just be used for salads and cooking as well?

    What is the advantage of using the beeswax and making salve?

    • Jan says:

      You probably could use the oil in a salad, freshly made, but the problem with storing infused oils is that they can grow bacteria that’s harmful to ingest. If you wanted to take dandelions internally, you could make a tea or a tincture. You could even make a dandelion vinegar. (If you have active gallstones or are on a diuretic, you should check with your doctor before trying dandelion in therapeutic doses.)

      As far as using the oil externally, the main advantage to adding the beeswax and making salve is that it’s easier to apply. But, you can certainly just use the oil all by itself! :)

  15. Wendy says:

    You said you save them in the frig or freezer until you have enough for a new batch. Could I dry the dandelions and use them later? That way I could dry a lot now while they are in abundance and make the salve as I wanted. Or would they lose some of their potency if there were dried? How long would the infused oil keep?

    • Jan says:

      They do lose some of the potency when they’re dried, so that’s why I like freezing them. Infused oils usually keep about a year, but when you make some with fresh plant matter, they sometimes spoil quicker. You can add a few drops of rosemary antioxidants or a vitamin E capsule to help preserve it a little longer. I would say 6 or 9 months shelf life and quite possibly longer (but maybe shorter) – you just have to check it for spoilage (like a rancid smell.)

  16. Sandra says:

    I have been seeing all kind of post about dandelions these days. Thanks for sharing. This is one I may just try!

  17. Marilyn Hoffman says:

    In Florida aloe is abundant, do you have a recipe for aloe lotion or moisturizer?
    Many thanks

    • Jan says:

      Hi Marilyn! I don’t currently have an aloe moisturizer recipe, but I do have some aloe on the way. If I come up with a good recipe, I’ll be sure to let you know!

  18. Steff says:

    Once again, the timing of your post is perfect! I have a great little patch of dandelions that just sprung up and I wanted to do something with them before the gardeners come and get rid of them! (My landlord is a landscaper and has his guys mow the lawn, weed, etc once a week, though luckily with no pesticides or anything!)

    What I think is silly is that my local healthfood store sells dried dandelions for SO much money! Hello people, you can pick them anywhere!

    • Jan says:

      That’s awesome timing! :) I was ordering herbs online today and saw that dandelion leaves were over a dollar per ounce. I could make a fortune from my yard lol.

      • Kim says:

        I’ve had that same thought before! Lol. Have you seen that there are people who package and sell dandelion seeds? Double earnings potential…

  19. Carrie says:

    When making the infused oil can I just put the jar of oil and dandelions, in the crock pot with water maybe half way up the jar, on low, while I am at work? Or how long is best to heat it?

    • Jan says:

      Hi Carrie!

      I’ve not used a crock pot to heat oils, but I’ve heard of plenty of people who do. The main thing is to keep it uncovered so that condensation droplets won’t fall in. As long as the heat is really low, it should be fine for that length of time.

      You might want to consider doing the heating overnight instead of while you’re at work though, since oil can be flammable. Being on low shouldn’t be a problem, but just in case something comes up, you would be home to deal with it quicker.

      Again, I don’t have experience with heating this way, so these ideas are based off of what I’ve heard others do. :)

  20. Sharon says:

    Great looking recipe and I’d like to try it. I am a little confused about the jars of oil in the heated water. Do you continue to heat the oil for a couple of hours or do you bring the water up to a temp then let it cool for a couple of hours. Would leaving the jars in the sun accomplish the same effect as the heated water? Thank you!

    • Jan says:

      Hi Sharon, Sorry I wasn’t very clear! :) You heat the oil for a couple of hours while it’s in the water and then turn it off. I know many people like to use the sunshine method as well, so you can certainly try that. The main reason for the added heat is because the dandelions aren’t completely dry so they need a little bit of a boost to get going. This way, they can infuse for a shorter amount of time, decreasing any chance of spoilage.

  21. Tanya says:

    This sounds divine! I might have to try my hand at it.
    I noticed you said to fill a jar no more than 3/4 full to allow for expansion. How big is the jar that you are using to begin with? And, what do you do with the infused oil if you have extra after making the salve? Thanks!

    • Jan says:

      Hi Tanya! I size the jar depending on how many flowers I gathered. A small handful gets a jelly jar, a big collection gets a quart jar. So throw in your wilted/almost dry flowers – anywhere from 1/4 of the jar full to 3/4 of the jar full, pour oil over them, (just leave a little room at the top) and infuse away. None of it has to be precise, so if you have a few less flowers or a few extra – it’s all good. :) You can infuse batches with less flowers a little longer to help compensate.

      Any extra oil is strained well and stored with my other oils & tinctures & such in my storeroom/pantry. When I make a cream or salve, I’ll look at what I have and what I want the salve to do and then mix it in there. For example, I think dandelion salve would make a great addition to a pain reliving balm like my Aches & Pains Balm recipe so will probably add that in the next batch I make my dad! You can also use it as a massage oil for achy muscles or sore back.

      (I edited this a bit since I didn’t realize all of your question at first! Let me know if I missed anything!) :)

  22. Kim says:

    This sounds wonderful! I’m starting some today. My husband and I harvested 3 quarts of blossoms a week ago to make mead — and you cannot tell there’s even one blossom missing! I was looking for something else to try and this salve sounds perfect. Thank you for the idea and the clear instructions!

    • Jan says:

      Hi Kim! Sounds like you have a lot of dandelions! :) Our biggest flush has faded out, but I have the kids out scouring the fields for them daily!

  23. Beckie says:

    Thankyou so much I suffer from lots of aches and arthritus, and my garden is full of beautiful dandilions, I cant get rid because I love them but when I have to mow the grass I can save a load and make this up. thankyou,xx

  24. Would love to have you share this on Wed at Wildcrafting Wednesday.
    http://www.visionherbs.tumblr.com

  25. Meg @ The Coop says:

    I ran to my local health food store today and bought beeswax and containers so I could make this. I’m so excited!

    Quick question….(hoping you see this soon, if not no worries) – I just heated my oil on low/med heat for about 3 hours. Should I let it sit over night? Will it make a difference if I do or could I continue on.

    I don’t want to rush the process….I get a little antsy to finish new things :-p but I want it to be good and turn out well.

    • Jan says:

      Hi Meg! I love hearing your excitement!

      Three hours is plenty enough time for the heat.

      You could probably go ahead and make your salve if you’re super wanting to try it! :)

      Or, you can cover the infused oil with a bit of cheesecloth or paper towel or something breathable and let it sit out all night (not in the heat.) I just like to not quite cap it or use it right away in case more water needs to evaporate from the dandelions, plus I like to give it a little extra infusing time. But, I’m usually on the extra cautious side of things!

      So, that’s completely up to you, how you make it!

      Have fun making your salve!! :)

      • Meg @ The Coop says:

        Thank you so much for such a quick response.

        I’m glad you told me to let it breath because I put a cap on it.

        I may make the salve yet tonight, depending on my ambition level. The littles are asleep and hubs is out of town so I am enjoying mommy time and catching up around the house.

        Anyway, I’ll let you know how it turns out!

  26. Eliina says:

    Thanks for this! Can’t wait to try it! Just wondering if there is a shelf life to the salve? Thanks so much!

    • Jan says:

      Hi Eliina! I usually say about 6 to 9 months, especially when dealing with fresh plant matter – but most salves have a shelf life of at least a year, and many with essential oils, vitamin E or rosemary antioxidants last longer. I usually smell the salve to see if it’s gone off or not. It will start getting a hint of old, rancid oil smell and at that time, it’s good to make up a fresh batch to replace it with.

  27. Jocelan says:

    Hi,Just found your blog,love it.For the dandalion sauve,Can I use dried dandalion if so what would be the portions.
    Thanks for your help.
    Blessing’s Jocelan

    • Jan says:

      Hi Jocelan! You can use dried dandelions, but freshly wilted ones are more potent, so the salve would probably be milder acting. You would just use similar ratios as given above, maybe don’t fill the jar as full since dried herbs expand more. You don’t have to be precise – adjust the size of the jar to the amount of dandelions you have and fill it anywhere from 1/4 to 1/2 full of dandelions then top with oil. This should still make a fine salve for you! :)

  28. nicki says:

    Ok looking back at recipe I am thinking it was wrong to use whole flower instead of just the blossomis this ok or shld I start all over?

    • Jan says:

      Your salve should be perfectly fine. All parts of the dandelion are beneficial – I like to use the blossom ends since they color the oil a pretty yellow tint, but you can use stems and even a few leaves in there. You don’t have to be precise with this at all. Just make it with what you have on hand! :)

  29. Kris says:

    Dandelions are on the stove top as I type. My husband uses store bought balms with menthol in them for his sore muscles. I cannot stand the smell, so I’m making a batch of your dandelion salve with some lavender essential oil added in for him. Hoping he likes this more, I know our noses will be happier :)

  30. Heidi Lisa says:

    Great tutorial! I vaguely my oma making something like this. When is the best time to harvest the flowers? Can they already be a couple of days old?

  31. Amber Morgan says:

    Would this be beneficial as a chap stick or lip balm?

    • Jan says:

      Hi Amber! You could most certainly use this as a lip balm – just adjust the beeswax to make it the firmness/softness that you like.

  32. Stephanie says:

    Do I wash the blossoms before I lay them out over night? Very excited to try this!

    • Jan says:

      Hi Stephanie! I usually don’t because they tend to get all soggy and clump together if you do. Sometimes, I’ll pick some that will have ants on them, so I let them sit out on my back porch for a bit to let any little critters scamper away. If you see visible dirt or sand on them though, then you’ll want to rinse that off and gently blot dry. Have fun making your salve!! :)

  33. Michele says:

    I have a question… do you measure the oil by volume and the wax by weight? I am shredding a large block of beeswax to use and i am unsure hoe to measure it. Thanks for the recipe, my oil is infusing as I type!

  34. Anit says:

    I agree. Dandelions in the yard don’t bother me at all! And yes, they are resilient!

  35. Laura says:

    Hi, Thank so much for this recipe! I have a couple of questions, I don’t think they’ve been answered yet from what I’ve read.

    1) If I read correctly, we’re discarding the flowers and using the oil, right? Is there any other use for the used flowers at this point? Could we add more oil and store it as a weaker batch of oil for future use? Or is there another use for the flowers once we strain out the oil? Freeze them in bags and use them as a poultice perhaps??

    Which leads to my next question;
    2) Can I just store this oil and not make a salve right now? Maybe a salve later, maybe just use the oil later, etc? And if I don’t make a salve now, do I need to strain out the flowers and store the oil only in the jar, or can I leave the flowers in the oil to make it even stronger over time? Or will that just go bad quicker?

    I don’t have beeswax at this time, but I’d really like to at least make the oil while the dandelions are in bloom, so I really would like to know how to store it, with or without straining it, until I know how I want to use it later. Thank you so much, I appreciate your help!

    • Jan says:

      Hi Laura!

      1.) Yes, discard the flowers. They are considered “spent” though I suppose you could add them to fresh oil and get traces of benefits if you use it in a formula that normally calls for plain oil (like lip balm or cream or soap), just don’t rely on it for a main active ingredient. That’s an interesting idea as far as freezing them and using as a poultice later. You could try it and see how it works!

      2.) Yes, absolutely you can store the oil to make your salve later. You can leave the flowers in for a few weeks before straining. It’s a good idea to take most herbs out after 4 or 6 weeks, though sooner if you’re using fresh materials – so about 2, maybe 3, weeks is all I’d do for dandelions (they have high water content & will tend to spoil easier than some oils) The infused oil should be good for about 9 months to a year. You can add a capsule of vitamin E oil to it to act as a preservative or rosemary antioxidants will help as well. (You can buy rosemary antioxidants at Mountain Rose Herbs. A little bit goes a long way, so while it seems expensive, I can use a bottle in countless creations and still have a bunch left.) Having said that, I don’t add anything to my oils, I just keep them downstairs in my storeroom which stays cool, mostly dark, and dry year ’round. I’ve also completely forgotten about an infusing oil and left the herbs in for several months with no ill effect. You can see and smell if an oil is off, just do a sniff test before using each time!

      • Laura says:

        Thank you so much for your fast and thorough reply, I appreciate it! I’m really looking forward to trying this, along with other herbal concoctions, so I’m thrilled to see you’re on Facebook too! :-)

        PS: As far as trying to re-use the spent flowers, I admit I’m guilty of trying to re-use everything as much as possible, LOL. The poultice thing might work, I’ll let you know!

  36. Linda says:

    Sounds like a great idea! I already have my dandelions ready and plan on adding the oil and simmering tomorrow. A couple of questions: Do I leave the jar uncovered while simmering in water? How high should the water level be on the jar? What is the best way to strain the oil out from the dandelions? This is going to be great. I cannot wait to get started! Thanks!

    • Jan says:

      Hi Linda, Yes, I leave the jar uncovered while simmering. The water can be anywhere from a few inches to half way up the jar – just depends on pan size/jar size. I use a fine mesh strainer to strain the oil out from the dandelions. You could also use a coffee filter or a few layers of cheesecloth.
      Have fun and let me know if you have any more questions! :)

  37. I LOVE making salves and will add this one to my collection. Did not know that dandelions had an effect on sore muscles only the liver/kidney cleanse, clearing skin and of course the edible part! Thanks!!!

    • Jan says:

      Hi Anne-Marie! I didn’t realize that either until I began researching them more thoroughly after reading so many studies on their potential cancer fighting abilities. They are some amazing little plants!!

  38. Halley says:

    What is the shelf life on just the oil infusion?

    • Jan says:

      Hi Halley, The infused oil should be good for 9 months to a year. You can add the contents a vitamin E capsule or a few drops of rosemary antioxidants to the oil to prolong the shelf life, but I just keep it stored in a cool, dark pantry & it does fine.

  39. Maria says:

    Thank you for this recipe. My garden has been over taken by Dandelions, so to find this was perfect.. ive always wanted to try making my own herbal remedies and have now made my first ever batch! Hope it works! How do you know if youve got it right/wrong?

    • Jan says:

      Hi Maria! There’s not really any wrong way to make it – the salve might turn out softer or harder than you like, but you can just remelt it and add more oil or more beeswax to adjust. If you do run into any questions though, be sure to ask! :)

  40. Carol Samsel says:

    So wish I had seen this two weeks ago when my yard was full of blooms !!!! Will be saving and using this recipe!!!!

    • Jan says:

      Our dandelions are fading away as well. You can still gather the random few that pop up after the main flush of blooms has passed, and store them in the freezer. You might be able to collect enough to make a small batch of oil!

  41. Jenny says:

    Thanks for the info! seems funny how people want to kill alla the dandys in their yard, and use toxins to do it. So many uses for them to make our lives better.

  42. Kim T says:

    Can you use this infused oil to make soap and what benefits would it have?
    You gave me such a great idea if it would work.
    Thanks

    • Jan says:

      Yes! I love to use infused oils in my soaps. It should carry some of the same properties over as far as for the skin. I make a dandelion soap recipe that’s in the free eBook I have in another post:
      http://thenerdyfarmwife.com/things-to-do-with-dandelions
      For that, I use a dandelion water infusion, but if I have the infused oil on hand, substitute that for some of the olive oil as well. It’s been exceptional for the people I know with chronic skin problems. One friend is able to come off of a med for itching while she uses it, so orders a year’s worth at a time. So yes, dandelions are great in soap! :)

      Another one that makes a lovely soap, so nice and soothing is violet leaf infused oil. I love to put that in recipes whenever I can!

      • Kim T. says:

        Thank you for your fast response. Now I just have to wait for mine to grow back in my yard.
        Can I just use the leaves also? I do Civil War Re enactments and I am learning to make lye from ashes. I have to get some chicken feathers to test the lye to make sure it is strong enough.
        This is great because I can have children help me look for the flowers, have some ready, and make the soap in front of them. More education for our youth of today.

        • Jan says:

          Wow, making soap from ashes sounds awesome! We heat our house with just a wood stove so have plenty plus chicken feathers. I will have to read up more on that!

          I throw a few dandelion stems in, since they are purportedly good for acne or warts, but I’m thinking most of the analgesic properties are in the flowers. I may be wrong though; that will require some further research. I don’t see where throwing a few leaves in would hurt though, especially if kids are gathering, then they can participate without worrying about *just* getting flowers.

          What fun projects you have going on! :)

  43. Rachelle says:

    My God its a miracle salve, I am telling you, I have osteoporosis and add broken my pelvic 8 years ago and the pain is always there, day in day out, in my lower back, well today did the salve and tonight decided to try it after my shower. Well, well, well, the pain is gone, am I going to sleep good tonight. I know it is not a cure but what a good relief. Anyway guess what I will be picking tommorow morning, yes you got it, dandelion, I want to have it till next year. Please try it it works. Unbeleivable. Thank you so very much for the recipe.
    xxxxxoooooo

    • Jan says:

      Rachelle, I’m so sorry you have to live in constant pain, but it’s wonderful to hear how much the salve helped you. Do you mind if I quote you on Facebook – I’d like to mention the recipe again so people can get out and pick their dandelions while there are plenty of them!

  44. Rachelle says:

    Hello Jan,

    Me again, lollll I was wondering, if I pick alot of dandelion and make infused oil, can I keep it in a big plastic container that we get for example when we buy coconut oil, you know those white pale. I was thinking of making oils, adding them to the white container and refrigerate. Would that keep longer than in mason jars.

    Thank you
    Rachelle

    • Jan says:

      I think that would work well Rachelle, I store the coconut and palm oil that I get from Mountain Rose Herbs in the white plastic buckets they came in, so it seems like it’d be a good choice for storage. As far as refrigeration, in theory it sounds good – I keep my rosehip seed oil refrigerated at all times to prolong its shelf life. There may be some reasons not to that someone will come along and tell us about, but I can’t think of any right now! So, sounds like a good plan to me! :)

  45. Megan says:

    I don’t have a way to measure in grams…..about how many Tablespoons or such of oil to beeswax would you use?? I’d like to make 6 2oz containers. Thanks :)

    • Jan says:

      Do you have a liquid measuring cup? You could measure that way and get similar results. Just pour the oil in until it reaches 3 1/2 ounces and add enough beeswax until the oil pushes high enough to measure at the 4 ounce mark. That would give you enough for about two 2 ounce containers – so triple that! :)

  46. Betina Reinhardt says:

    Ok so I have a question! You said to let the oil sit in the warm water for a few hours! Now my question is this, you do or do not cook it for this time? Or just put it in warm water and let cool on its own? Thanks? Hope that made sense!

    • Jan says:

      Hi Betina! You would let the oil sit in the warm water while the burner is turned on low the whole couple of hours, to ensure the water stays warm the entire time, then turn off the burner & let it cool down. :)

  47. shanna sims says:

    Do you have anything recipe nor treatment u can share on how to treat molluscum contagiousum ( so)
    Thank you

    • shanna sims says:

      Spelling sorry its for my 5 year old

    • Jan says:

      Hi Shanna! Being that it’s a viral condition, you could look into taking things that fight viruses from within. I can’t legally give medical advice, but I can tell you that if it were my child – I’d research taking olive leaf, elderberry, lemon balm, echinacea & probiotics. Something like Sambucol (Elderberry extract you can get from places like CVS & Target) is pretty easy to get in a kid and it boosts your immune system very nicely.

      If you want a ready-made salve, you might want to try out the Powerful Skin Compound from Mountain Rose Herbs:
      http://www.mountainroseherbs.com/salves/salves.html
      If you want to make one, you can use something like the Healing Salve recipe:
      http://thenerdyfarmwife.com/herbal-healing-salve-recipe/

  48. LeAnn says:

    Just recently found your site and I am really enjoying it with all the good information and recipes!! I went out and picked a batch of dandelions today and they are presently wilting on paper towels and plan to make the salve tomorrow!! Have never tried anything with dandelions so this should be fun!! Thanks – will be looking forward to more posts!! :)

  49. troutwife says:

    Thank you for this great recipe/directions!! :) I have always bought/bartered for salves like this–I didn’t know how easy to make this is! I just made some this afternoon and it is wonderful!! It smells SO good, like honey. I’ve made dandelion jelly before and it tastes like honey — I was surprised, though, that this smells so honey-like too! Thanks for the recipe! Hope it’s okay that I put a link to your recipe on my blog. Thank you!!

    • Jan says:

      That’s wonderful; I’m so glad you liked it! :) It’s absolutely fine to link to this recipe – I appreciate you doing so. :)

  50. Carol Cook says:

    Until recently I would have seen your recipe and said, “yeah, right! Like I have the time.” But, in less than 2 weeks I am retiring and it will be fun to try it out.

    I was watering my garden and marveling at whatever it is growing between the cobblestones of my patio. I thought about tearing it out since we are having a retirement party in 2 weeks – I can’t have weeds growing there. And then I told myself that I can have anything growing there that I like and I like what I see.

    And, today when I am working in the garden, I will have a different opinion of my dandelions.

    Thank You.

  51. SuziQ says:

    So, call me a skeptic. My daughter had started working on this without my knowledge and after a couple days of hard physical labor and so sore I could not stand it she handed me a jar. Worked wonderfully. Guess I will be picking all those dandelions before mowing from now on!

    • Jan says:

      I’m so glad it worked well for you! I’ll admit I was skeptical at first too; I thought there was no way it could be strong enough. Then, one night, I slept so soundly that I woke up the next morning with a crinked up neck. I tried some dandelion salve on it and just one application worked beautifully. It’s amazing the uses that these little flowers have!

  52. Jodi says:

    Hi Jan,

    I’m making the oil and find I’m making quite a mess trying to strain it. What is your secret straining item? Thanks!

    • Jan says:

      Hi Jodi! I have a little fine wire mesh strainer that was my mom’s that she gave me when I got married 15 years ago. It’s been so handy; I use it constantly!

      I set a funnel (like is used for canning) on top of a clean jar then set the mesh strainer on top of that, then pour the oil with one hand while holding the strainer/funnel steady with the other. I keep a saucer handy to set the strainer on when I’m done so oil won’t get all over my counter.

      I’ve also used cheesecloth, but I find it pretty messy.

      I hope that helps! :)

  53. Sabrina Weaver says:

    I don’t have glass or tin containers but I have some little plastic containers would they work. I know this is a stupid question but I know sometime plastic can cause problems when making things..

    • Jan says:

      Hi Sabrina, That’s not a stupid question at all! :) There are concerns about what can leech out of some types, but a lot of creams and such come in plastic. If that’s all you have on hand and it’s not super thin and likely to melt easily from the hot oil then I think it’s better to use that than to give up on the project completely. :) One thing you can do is to save & rinse glass jelly, mayonnaise, pickle jars etc and re-use them to store your creations in.

  54. Brenda says:

    I made my dandelion salve, it turned out beautifully! Thanks for sharing this recipe. I look forward to using it. btw, I put a little coconut oil in place if the tamanu oil. Not bad for flying by the seat of my pants!

  55. Tammy says:

    I just found this and came to see if it was similar to my own recipe and ideals. I so appreciate finding others who believe in holistic methods, so thank you for sharing!

    I would hesitate to stop and gather dandelions (or other herbs) in a good many locations since you don’t know what has been sprayed on them. I live in a rural area so I have many places that I know are chemical free, however, I also know many of the local fields are sprayed, so I don’t go near the farms. Additionally, our county sprays roadsides, so I never gather on the sides of roads either. Just be careful, you don’t want to cook any chemicals in your herbal infusions!

    Just to clarify a few points from above; if you are infusing an oil, you leave the lid off so that the water condensation does not mix into the oil and contaminate it, thus making your shelf life shorter (water introduces bacteria that will ultimately grow nasty things without a preservative being added). However, when you are making a tea or tincture, you leave the lid on to keep the condensation droplets inside your mixture so that you don’t loose any of the goodness, those volatile oils that come from the plant material and mix into the water. So how you are infusing your herb, and what you are infusing it into is what determines whether the lid should be on or off.

    Also, using the crock pot is wonderful for a heated infusion, you just need to be careful of the heat setting. On many pots, low or warm if it has it, will work just fine. However, on some models, especially older ones, the warm can get too hot and your herb(s)/oil(s) can burn, so exercise caution, especially on that first batch. I have a new pot that has warm and I leave it on for 24 hours or more without any issues. But I also have an older model that I cannot leave on low for more than 2 hours before I have to shut it off for a while.

    I like to infuse my herbs longer than a quick few hours, but I also like to make sure I have infusions on hand at all times, so I generally do a hot infusion and then will allow it to sit for another day or two as well. This way I get the best of both worlds. Just make sure that your plant material(s) are thoroughly dried, or else you may just end up infusing mold. Don’t ask me how I know that, but let’s just say that I will never forget my first attempt at making an infusion. To this day I still think I should have packaged it as all-natural penicillin, who knows, maybe I could have made some money! Lol

    • Jan says:

      Hi Tammy!

      Thanks for all of the great tips! I can see that I wasn’t very clear in the instructions above about covering/not covering. When I have longer tomorrow, I will sit down and edit that to clarify. I like to cover my infusing oils with a bit of cheesecloth – for a breathable layer of protection. I’ve not made penicillin ;) but I did accidentally deep fry an infusion once! :D

      Wonderful to know about the crock pot as I have never used one to infuse oils before!

      I appreciate you sharing your wisdom with us and so many helpful ideas! :)

  56. Zoe says:

    Thanks for all the good info and tips. I, unfortunately, didn’t dry my blossoms first and ended up with mold on top. Just took the mold off, it smells and looks good. My question: I don’t have Vit E caps or rosemary antioxidants here but would like to add something to preserve my lovely oil. I do have phamaceutical grade ascorbic acid in powder form here–what do you think of using that? I was going to add a little to my oil. I do also have some liquid vitamin c that’s made from calcium ascorbate. Ooops, just see now that it has a bit of fructose in it and potassium sorbates and benzoates in it so don’t want to use that. So, have you ever use the ascorbic acid powder to preserve an oil? If not, what do you think? I’m thinking of trying it and would love some feedback.

    • Jan says:

      Hi Zoe! I’ve not tried preserving oil with ascorbic acid before, so I’m afraid I don’t have any helpful feedback. It’s worth a shot testing it out with a small portion of your oil though! Because of the moisture, your oil will likely have a shorter shelf life, so it’s a good idea to refrigerate it and then try to use it up within a month or two. If you’ve noticed any visible separation of oil and water in the jar, you can carefully pour the infused oil into a new jar, leaving as much of the water on the bottom behind as possible. You might lose a bit of the oil that way, but it will really help it last longer. :)

  57. Beth Matthews says:

    Greetings! I’m interested in using your dandelion salve recipe but am having trouble finding dried dandelions from which to make the oil infusion (ordered some tamulu oil and then found it in the whole foods store here and I already had some beeswax). Can you suggest a site? Or do you sell them yourself?
    Thank you!

    • Jan says:

      Hi Beth! I’ve had several people ask that, but unfortunately I have yet to find a source for the dried flowers. If I do find one, I’ll be sure to let everyone know!

  58. Rebecca says:

    I was wondering you talked about heating the oils to infuse it , I was wondering if i could put it in a crockpot with water my stove is old and unreliable.

  59. Karla says:

    Hi Jan! This is my first time making my own beauty product and I was unsure about whether or not I should open up the dandelions to wilt over night. Im excited to make this and I want to make sure I have everything right. Ive already orders all my products through your link for Mountain Rose seed ( I believe that’s the name) so im almost ready to begin.please advise. Thanks for your time and thanks bunches for the recipe

    • Jan says:

      Hi Karla, Thanks for using my link! You don’t have to open them up to wilt. Just spread them out so they aren’t stacked and you’re good to go! Have fun making your own products! :)

  60. Carla says:

    So I made my infused oil…however it is cloudy. ..is it supposed to look like that or is that an indication that the flowers weren’t dry all the way…this is my results AFTER straining it….PLEASSSSSE HELP….:-/

    • Jan says:

      Hi Carla, Sometimes the oil gets cloudy if you you squeeze the flowers a lot when straining. You could let the strained oil sit undisturbed for a day or two to see if it settles out, but as long as it smells fine, I think you’re good to go!

      • Carla says:

        Thanks Jan..u are VERY helpful. .I used sweet almond oil so it kinda smells like roasted peanuts. ..lol…im not sure if it supposed to smell like

        • Jan says:

          hmm maybe it’s the brand of oil? You might want to keep the temp a bit lower next time too. You could remelt it and add some essential oils if you like, but if it’s effective for you and you’re fine with the scent then it sounds like you’re good to go! :)

  61. Donna says:

    This may have been answered, but…… how long does salve last once made & how long could yoy store blooms in freezer? Thanks to sports, dance, & general labor we get lots of sore muscles! Want to have enough on hand till next dandelion season!! :)

    • Jan says:

      Hi Donna! Salves are usually good about a year (or longer.) It won’t go moldy or anything, just the oil will become aged & start to smell a little off or rancid. When that happens, it’s time to toss it. I like to dry my dandelions for a week or two (or I have up to probably a month before) and then infuse them in the oil. Freezing them works better for soaps & jelly and other liquid infusions where you can use them straight from the freezer, but the flowers get a little mushy once they thaw and don’t dry out as well after that. You could dry the dandelions for a few weeks, then infuse the oil – which will keep for at least a year or so – and make it into a salve as you get the chance to. That should keep you supplied until next year! :)

  62. Elise says:

    Hi Jan,
    I’ve come to your page via a link on Pinterest and I’m interested in making this salve. My 4yo and I went out and gathered a bunch of dandelion heads yesterday afternoon and I laid them out on paper towel to wilt. However, today they are all closed up and hence look more green than yellow. Should I have stripped off the outer green layer? Should have broken the head in half? I know you say in a reply to one of the other queries that it’s not an exact science, but I’a appreciate a bit more direction. Thanks!

    • Jan says:

      Hi Elise, If you give the dandelions another day or two, they should be dry enough to show more yellow. Sometimes, a few even turn into seed heads. It’s all good. You don’t have to strip off any green either, and even a few stems in there is just fine. It’s a super flexible recipe, you really can’t mess it up! :)

  63. Wonderful recipe. I love dandelion, I have it from my grandfather. He always said in the spring, “aahh there are a thousand suns shining in my lawn”.

    How long will the salve last? I belive it gets old at some point?

    • Jan says:

      Oh, I love that saying your grandfather had – what a great memory to treasure! Homemade salves are usually good for about nine months to a year. You can tell it’s past its prime when it starts to smell like old, slightly rancid oil. Adding liquid vitamin E or rosemary antioxidants could help extend the shelf life a bit longer.

  64. Lynn Rainville says:

    Hi Jan! I was so thrilled to come across your directions for your dandelion salve. I love dandelions and practically enjoy all of the wildflowers in my yard. On Saturday I picked a bunch of flowers from my Mother in Laws yard. She despises them and having terrible arthritis I just want to show her how beneficial all of these so called “weeds” are. (Besides using it in our home) I just went upstairs to put my dried flowers in a jar to start the next step and sad to find that they had all turned to fluff. Perhaps I let them dry too long? I am going to go harvest more now and thinking I should only let them go a day before putting them in the oil? I have read thru all the posts and didn’t see that anyone else had fluff. Curious…thanks!!

    • Jan says:

      Hi Lynn, That’s a great way to win over your mother-in-law! I did the same with my parents & before you know it had them outside pointing out dandelions to me in their yard so I could make them more. :) As far as your question, some years, I find a portion of my dried dandelion flowers turn to fluff. I think it must be something to do with the stage they’re picked and perhaps the weather. It seems to happen less when we have a rainy spring. I’ve never had all of them turn at once though. When fluff happens, I stick it in the jar with the rest of the dried flowers and keep going! I would just harvest some more dandelions and check on them a few times per day to keep tabs on what’s happening to them and when. You should be able to hit a sweet spot of dry, but not too dry. I hope your mom-in-law enjoys her salve!

  65. Thank you so much for this!
    I truely appreciate it and am glad seeing someone actually praising and using this “weed”.

  66. golnesa says:

    Hi Jan! I had a customer come into the natural food store where I work- she was buying ingredients for this salve and was raving about the benefits that she has seen for her grandson’s acneic skin. She adds Tamanu oil as you suggested at the end with the beeswax. Is it possible to infuse the dandelion in Tamanu oil to begin with? Also, what do you think of combining the benefits of the dandelion with emu oil for joint pain? Can one make the infusion with emu oil? And how much does the heat process affect the nutrients or properties in said oils? Any guidance on tweaking the recipe for acne would be greatly appreciated. Our customer could not stop raving about this recipe! Many thanks in advance for you guidance!

    • Jan says:

      Wow, that’s great to hear! You could certainly infuse the tamanu oil with dandelion as well. My daughter has had great luck with straight tamanu oil mixed with clay for spot treating acne. (Make a paste, dab on at night, wash off in morning.) So, you could possibly try stirring some type of cosmetic clay into the salve to get a similar benefit. I don’t work with emu oil, so I’m afraid I can’t be much help on that end. You would just need to find out a few things about it though – such as, is it sensitive to heat? and how long is its usual shelf life? Then figure out the best way to infuse it from there.

  67. Lisa Severance says:

    My co-workers are laughing at me but I am on a big dandelion kick recently. i just strained my first batch of dandelion oil for making the salve, which I will tackle tomorrow. My husband is all for it as he recalls a teacher in school telling them all about the health benefits of dandelions. He has been helping me collect tins for the salve and is more than willing to give it a try. I have a question about the lotion bars but will post that there. Thanks for the recipe…it has been leading me down some very interesting paths concerning wild edibles and uses for “weeds” around here. I should have known that a flower so bright and sunny that every child loves to collect for their mother cannot be as bad as people think!

    • Jan says:

      Your co-workers don’t know what they’re missing! :) That’s wonderful that your husband is interested in dandelions too. It’s always great to have supportive family!

  68. karen says:

    i was wondering if it was safe to pot the dandelion salve on my english bulldogs nose and the pads on her feet they sometimes get dry but she will probly lick it so was wondering if it was pet safe

    • Jan says:

      Hi Karen, You sure can – I’ve used it on my oldest dog’s nose before with no problems. Dandelions aren’t toxic to dogs (and in fact, are beneficial.)

  69. karen says:

    hi jan i was also wondering if you can do the same with daisys and if that salve would be harmful to pets? there are lots of typs of daisys to i noticed the ones that grow along the highways in oregon grow much taller then the one you see in your yard dose it matter which daisy i use

  70. {Leslie} says:

    I am confused about the dandelions. I have been picking them, but there seems to be two different kinds! Does it matter which one? Is one better than the other? There are the darker yellow ones that seem to grown in the grass and then the larger, light yellow ones that grow as a tall “weed” ~ anyone have any answers?

  71. Charissa says:

    I just found your blog today, and I already want to make soap :) I was wondering, when you said the infused oil would be good for massage oil, but to possibly add some lavender essential oil… would you be able to add a few lavender flowers with the dandelions instead?

    Thank you for being so nice and informative!

  72. CJ says:

    Made some recently and there is a tiny bit of mold on the top of my oil. Us it still usable or do I need to dump it?

    • Jan says:

      Hi CJ, I’ve read a few herbalists who suggest scraping the top off and if it smells fine then it’s okay to use. Personally though, I would toss it. I had that happen once, when my dandelions weren’t dry enough when I made the oil and it didn’t smell great at all. I emptied the whole jar and started again. I’ve never had another oil do that, other than dandelions – they can be tricky like that!

  73. Clarissa says:

    Hi

    I would like to use the picture of you dandelion salve in a presentation I am doing. I see your website is copyright so I wanted to check if that is ok. I will leave your website url on the picture.

    • Jan says:

      Hi Clarissa, Thanks for checking! It should be fine to do, especially if it’s for your school or community – what type of presentation are you doing?

  74. Jennifer says:

    I love this one! This must be my favourite, and my skin loves it. I had some dandelion-oil left afterwards that I use directly on my eczema whenever it comes back. It’s awesome! Thank you for sharing :D

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