10+ Things to Make With Violets

Here are a dozen pretty and practical ways to use violet flowers and leaves.

two hands holding fresh violet flowers in the shape of a heart

Violets (Viola odorata, V. sororia) are not only lovely to look at, but are cooling and healing.

The leaves and flowers are edible food herbs and are traditionally used in fighting eczema, chronic diseases, and oral or breast cancer.

A few studies of interest (there are more to explore in Pubmed!):

Here are a few helpful links on identifying and foraging for violets. Picking only when the plant is in flower will help pinpoint the correct plant. (African violet houseplants are not related or edible/medicinal and should not be used in any of these recipes.)

If violets don’t grow where you live, you can source both seeds and plants from Strictly Medicinal Seeds.

While violets are generally mild and safe for most people, if you have medical concerns about using them, check with your health care provider for advice. Violets have a mild laxative effect, so consume in moderation.

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Infusing Violet Leaves in Oil

1. Violet Leaf Infused Oil

This violet leaf infused oil can be massaged directly onto dry, irritated skin or used as an ingredient in recipes for salves, lotions, creams, lip balms, soaps, and lotion bars.

Shelf life of strained infused oil is around 1 year.

If you don’t have violet leaves where you live, you can purchase dried from Mountain Rose Herbs.

To make it, fill a canning jar about half-way with dried violet leaves. Cover with about twice as much as your favorite carrier oil, or to the top of the jar. (Suggested oils include sunflower, olive, sweet almond, apricot kernel, avocado, hemp, and so forth.)

For a quick infusion: Set the uncovered jar down into a small saucepan filled with a few inches of water. Heat over a low burner for a few hours, keeping a close eye that the water doesn’t evaporate out. Remove from heat and strain. The quick infusion is the best way to infuse coconut oil.

For a slower, more traditional infusion: Cap the jar of dried violet leaves and oil and tuck away in a cabinet for around 4 to 6 weeks, shaking occasionally as you remember to. When the infusing time has passed, strain.

For an alternative option: You could also set the jar of violet leaves and oil in a sunny windowsill for several days to a week to jump start the infusion. (Don’t store for long periods in sunlight though, as it tends to fade flowers and herbs over time.)

How to Make Violet Leaf Balm

2. Violet Leaf Balm/Salve

Violet leaf infused oil makes this balm extra soothing, moisturizing, and toning.

It’s helpful for eczema, minor scrapes, rashes, and as a general skin-smoother.

Violet leaf balm (or salve) may also be helpful for treating fibrocystic breasts.

Find the full recipe and more details in my article: Violet Leaf Balm.

light green pottery bowl of purple violets nestled in a bed of wild violets and strawberry plants

3. Violet Leaf Lip Balm

This extra soothing lip balm is perfect for those with chapped or dry lips.

You an also use it as an every day lip balm, to keep lips soft and protected.

To make, you’ll need:

  • 3 1/2 tablespoons violet leaf (or leaf and flower) infused oil
  • 1/2 tablespoon castor oil
  • 1 tablespoon shea or mango butter
  • 1 tablespoon beeswax pastilles
  • 5 to 10 drops peppermint essential oil, optional

Combine the infused oil, castor oil, shea butter, and beeswax in a heatproof container or jar. (Use a clean empty tin can for easiest cleanup.)

Place the jar or container down into a small saucepan containing a few inches of water.

Heat the pan over a medium to medium-low burner until the wax is completely melted.

Pour into tins.

This lip balm is designed to be applied with your finger. If pouring into tubes, try decreasing the amount of oil by 1/2 to 1 tablespoon for a firmer texture.

Violet Infused Aloe

4. Violet Infused Aloe

This soothing gel can be rubbed over mild irritations such as sunburn, bug bites, rashes, dry skin, razor burn and minor scrapes.

You can also incorporate it into lotion and cream recipes.

It’s super easy to make too!

You can find the full recipe and how to make it over at Learning and Yearning.

Violet Flower Jelly Recipe

5. Violet Jelly

For this easy to make yummy jelly recipe, you’ll need:

  • 2 to 3 cups fresh violet flowers
  • 2 1/2 cups boiling water
  • the juice of one large fresh lemon
  • 3 1/2 cups sugar
  • 1 package Sure-Jell pectin.

The finished product is delicious with a taste similar to grape jelly.

You can find the recipe and directions to make violet flower jelly HERE.

jar of purple colored vinegar in a bed of fresh violet flowers

6. Violet Vinegar

Violet vinegar is not only beautiful to look at, it’s really useful too!

Here are 5 ways to use it:

  • Vinegar baths
  • Wasp stings
  • Sunburn
  • Hair rinse
  • Violet vinaigrette

Find out how to make it HERE.

homemade deodorant in a green tube on a wooden background with fresh violets and dandelion flowers

7. Herbal Deodorant for Women’s Health

This homemade deodorant was designed especially for women.

It contains herbs, such as violets, that are used to promote lymph flow and prevent or treat issues with inflamed or cystic breast tissue.

Instead of applying a chemical laden, potentially toxic-to-your-breasts product under your arms each day, try this healthy herbal alternative instead!

Find the full recipe and directions to make over at my article: DIY Herbal Deodorant for Women’s Health.

Violet Flowers in Ice Cubes

8. Violet Ice Cubes (or Salad Toppers)

Dress up your spring lemonades and other beverages with pretty violet flower ice cubes.

To make:

  1. Fill an ice tray about half way with water.
  2. Place a fresh violet flower or two in each section of the tray.
  3. Pop in the freezer and freeze until almost solid, then fill the rest of the tray with more water.
  4. Freeze until completely solid.

You can also sprinkle violet flowers in salads, to add a pretty colorful touch!

Violet Leaf Soap Recipe

9. Violet Soap

This lovely soap is made with violet leaf infused olive oil and colored a pretty natural green with chlorella powder.

Violets are excellent to use in skin products such as soap, especially if you have dry, irritated, or eczema prone skin.

You can find the recipe HERE.

(For more soap inspiration, check out my Simple & Natural Soapmaking print book!)

Spring Tonic Honey

10. Spring Tonic Honey

This spring flower infused honey is a wonderful nutritious treat for you, both inside and out!

You can use it for:

  • Seasonal allergies
  • Detoxing
  • Face wash
  • Minor wounds and burns
  • Sore throat

Find the recipe and more information in my article, Spring Tonic Honey {with dandelions & violets}.

Violet Leaf Honey Cough Syrup Recipe

11. Violet Leaf & Honey Cough Syrup

Violet leaves can be used to make a super gentle cough syrup for mild throat irritations and coughs.

Find out how to make this yummy home remedy HERE.

Violet Flower Soak Recipe

12. Violet Flower Bath Soak

To make this lovely naturally colored bath soak, combine 1/4 cup fresh violet flowers with 1/2 cup sea salt in a mini food processor (like THIS ONE).

Blend well and spread in a thin layer over a sheet of wax paper to air dry overnight.

The next day, crumble the clumps of dried purple salt into a jar and mix with another 2 to 3 tablespoons of extra coarse sea salt or Epsom salts.

If desired, add 4 drops of an essential oil, such as lavender or clary sage for scent. Stir well.

To use, dump the bath soak into a tub as it fills with comfortably warm water. Note that your bath water may turn a pale shade of purple, depending on how many violets you use, but it won’t stain your tub.

If you enjoyed reading about 10 things you can make with violet flowers and violet leaves, let’s keep in touch! Subscribe to my monthly newsletter HERE to receive my latest herbal ideas, DIY body care projects and natural soapmaking recipes once, sometimes twice, per month. (No spam ever, unsubscribe at any time.)

Looking for more creative ways to use flowers and herbs? Check out my Big Book of Homemade Products for Your Skin, Health & Home!

Available from your favorite bookstore or the following book sellers:

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Jan
 

Jan Berry is a writer, herbalist, soapmaker, and bestselling author of The Big Book of Homemade Products, Simple & Natural Soapmaking, and Easy Homemade Melt & Pour Soaps. She lives in the Blue Ridge Mountains with her family and a menagerie of animals, where she enjoys brainstorming creative things to make with the flowers and weeds that grow around her.

  • Basil Becky says:

    I love this information. Mr father would transplant violets and refused to all them. My yard is full of these gems. So now I have some good ways to use them. Thanks

  • Donna Kauffman says:

    We have a lot of what I’ve always assumed is wild violets, many grow under our raspberry patches. Is there anything else that is a look alike plant, that could be dangerous? I would love to utilize these pretty flowers into some of these recipes here. Thank you!

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  • Allayna Decker says:

    I noticed that it’s best not to use African violets. Is it best to use a particular violet for recipes? There are so many different types that even pansies and Johnny-jumps are considered in the viola family. Do you know the difference in preference, or is there only one type that you use?

    • Hi Allayna! Anything in the viola family is safe to use, though Viola odorata are usually favored for their medicinal properties. (You’re exactly right that African violets aren’t true violets and aren’t in the viola family.) For body care projects though, pansies and Johnny-jump-ups will both work great too! :)

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  • Margaret says:

    Jan, I have so many violet plants. Can I use fresh violet leaves to infuse the oil or is there an easy way to dry them. I want to make the soap now.

    • Jan says:

      Hi Margaret! I’ve infused oil with wilted plants (dried just overnight or for an afternoon) before for just for soapmaking. That tiny bit of extra moisture in the oil shouldn’t impact the soapmaking process. Then you could use dried violet leaves to make infused oils for longer storage. :)

  • Iris says:

    Could I infuse some violet flowers with the leaves?

  • Rebecca says:

    Violets are in bloom now, but I can’t make jelly at the moment. Can I dry flowers in the dehydrator and use for jelly later?

    • Jan says:

      Hi Rebecca! When I can’t make violet jelly right away, I either freeze the flowers to use later, or I make the violet flower infusion for the jelly recipe and then freeze that to make the jelly later in the year. Both ways work! :) I haven’t tried making jelly from dried violets though, so not 100% sure how that would go.

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