Five Uses for Violet Vinegar

Learn how to make this pretty violet flower infused vinegar, along with 5 creative ways to use it!

jar of purple colored vinegar in a bed of fresh violet flowers
Make this wild violet vinegar when the flowers are blooming in early spring!

Violet Vinegar Recipe & How to Use It

To make Violet Infused Vinegar, you just need some fresh violet flowers and vinegar.

I like the pretty color to show through, plus I like using vinegar for culinary uses, so I use white wine vinegar. Apple cider vinegar is another excellent choice.

To make the infused vinegar:

  • Go out and pick some fresh violets from unsprayed areas. Don’t pick to the point where no flowers are left, always leave some behind! You can rinse the flowers if you wish. (I don’t because I inspect as I pick.)
  • Fill your jar about half full of violet flowers. Pour vinegar over them and cap with a non-metallic lid. Vinegar will corrode metal, so if that’s the only type of cap you have, use a layer of plastic wrap between it and the vinegar.
  • Let this sit for a few days in a cool, dark place. The vinegar will take on a gorgeous deep magenta hue. Sunlight will fade the colors faster than time alone.
  • Strain the vinegar and store for a year, possibly longer, in a glass container.
  • Be sure to store in a dark area to preserve the color as long as possible. You may also wish to store in your refrigerator. It’s normal for the color to fade before 1 year.

That’s it! Easy, peasy. Now, for some ideas of ways you can use this.

green saucer with fresh purple violet flowers and heart shaped green violet leaves held over a bed of fresh spring violet flowers
Wild violets are a beautiful sight in springtime!

Ways to use the infused vinegar:

1.) Vinegar Baths

Vinegar baths are great at easing aches and pains. Violets add an extra layer of skin soothing and anti-inflammatory properties.

If you add some Epsom salts to the mix, the synergy becomes even more powerful. Add about 1/2 to 1 cup of vinegar (and equal amounts of Epsom salts, if desired) to your water as it’s running.

If you have tired, achy feet, try a vinegar foot bath, as described above. Just reduce the amounts in proportion to the smaller amount of water in a foot tub.

2.) Wasp Stings & Chiggers

Wasp stings are alkaline in nature, so vinegar is the perfect antidote for neutralizing the venom and erasing the pain. Simply soak a cotton ball or small piece of cloth in violet vinegar and hold on the sting until the pain subsides. This usually happens within minutes. Remember, bee stings can be serious, so if you have a life threatening allergy to them, be sure to use appropriate medical treatments as well.

I also love using infused vinegar for pesky chigger bites. It really helps soothe the itching! (My Rose, Plantain & Yarrow Itch Remedy, which is based on vinegar and witch hazel, is another effective option for chigger bites.)

3.) Sunburn

A classic remedy for sunburn is vinegar, diluted with at least an equal part of water. I’ve also mentioned this in my article on Rose Petal Vinegar.

Violets have an affinity for healing and soothing the skin and helping combat inflammation so are a great substitution for rose petals in the treatment of sunburn.

If you keep a small spray bottle of your vinegar/water solution in the fridge, it will cool the skin even more.

4.) Hair Rinse

Vinegar makes a terrific hair rinse! Violet Vinegar can ease itchy scalp & fungal infections, assist in removing soap residue, and can help control dandruff.

Dilute with equal parts of water and pour over hair after shampooing. Or you could add the diluted vinegar to a spray bottle and spritz all over your scalp and hair.

You may wish to rinse it out of your hair, or leave it on for more effect.

5.) Violet Vinaigrette

I thought I’d also throw one edible violet vinegar recipe in here!

Violet flowers are high in vitamin C and A, not to mention are known for helping fight oral cancer, fibrocystic breast disease, respiratory issues and sore throats. Adding violets to your salad dressing (and salads) is quite a palatable way to enjoy their benefits!

To make the vinaigrette: Combine 3 tablespoons oil, 2 tablespoons violet vinegar, 1 tablespoon crumbled bacon, 1/2 tablespoon chopped onion, 1 teaspoon maple syrup and salt and pepper to taste. Shake together in a jar and let stand for twenty or thirty minutes so the flavors meld together. Shake again and pour over your salad. Yum!

There you go! Five easy ways to use up that gorgeous vinegar and get added healing and nutrition in the process!

Don’t forget the leaves!

Violet leaves are used herbally for dry skin, eczema, and more – like in this Violet Leaf Balm Recipe.

For even more violet ideas, here are 10+ Things to Make with Violets.

pin for violet vinegar




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  1. Pingback: Five Uses for Lavender Vinegar The Nerdy Farm Wife
  2. Another use for vinegar is for the terrible itching of tick bites. It works better and lasts longer than any thing else I have tried. I get ticks at least once a week and usually use apple cider vinegar but will make some violet vinegar and try it. Beautiful pictures and great information.

    1. That’s a great idea Valarie! We are already having a time with ticks this year, so that’s a handy trick to know!

  3. This is absolutely perfect for my lavender vinegar cleaner that I use. I use white vinegar with lavender oil (antibacterial) and it bugs me that it’s clear so I drop a drop of purple food coloring in it. I like still having a purple tint and eliminating the drop of lousy coloring! Thanks for sharing…your pictures are beautiful!

  4. Hi Jan. And here I thought white vinegar was only good for killing moss between patio stones or (mixed with baking soda) to clear a clogged bathroom drain! Thanks so much for this in-depth information.

    1. Hi Carol – I’m glad you found some ideas for your violets! I always feel like I never have enough! I’ve been trying to spread them to other areas around my house the past few years. They have so many great uses; plus they are pretty to look at! :)

  5. Thanks for the great recipe. I am a little unsure of the storing for 1 yr. Is that the shelf life or how long it needs to sit before using? Can’t wait for springtime!

    1. Hi Michelle, I can’t wait for spring either!! :) You can use it a week or two after making. The one year is just the suggested shelf life of how long it should stay fresh. It could actually last much longer than that, but the color tends to fade over time.

  6. I would like to make violet vinegar and want to ask you about my white wine vinegar. It’s from a winery and is strong-70- grain. I made a test batch and thought the vinegar as is was a little too strong, that it masked the violet flavors. Should I dilute it? and by how much?

    Thanks so much. Want to know quickly because my flowers are in bloom. Thanks so much.

    1. Hi Catherine!

      I did a bit of looking around Google and found a few formulas that might help you figure out dilution.

      Using the formula from this site:

      Take the beginning amount of vinegar (in any unit) x vinegar grain strength / desired strength (5% would be a good targete) – beginning amount of vinegar = total amount of water to be added

      So, if you start with 2 ounces of vinegar you would have: 2 oz x 70 grain / 5 – 2 oz = 26 ounces of water you can add to dilute 2 ounces of your 70 grain vinegar.

      That seemed like a lot of dilution! So, I looked at another formula here:
      “If you want 5% vinegar, measure the strength of what you have made, subtract five, divide the result by five, then add that fraction of a gallon of water to each gallon of the homemade vinegar.”

      (Scaled down to ounce instead of gallon) you would take 70 grain – 5 = 65 / 5 = 13 then add that fraction to each ounce. So for every ounce you would add 13 ounces of water. Which brings us to 26 ounces of water for 2 ounces which is exactly the amount I got with the other formula.

      All that slightly mind numbing math to say that you can dilute it with quite a bit of water and still be fine. I would refrigerate what you make though and keep an eye on possible shortened shelf life, to be safe. Also, math is not my strongest subject, so find someone smart to double check my figures and don’t take them as set in stone since I’m not a vinegar expert by any means!

      Since their season is so fleeting, you can freeze your violet flowers in a single layer in freezer bags so you can continue to experiment after they’re out of season. They’ll stay that gorgeous color for months. I just pulled some out last month that had been frozen since last April and they worked just as well as fresh. (Here’s a photo that shows how well they preserve: ) Use them straight from the freezer without thawing first.

    1. Hi Jay, It does still have a vinegar scent. If you use a strongly scented flower – like roses or lavender – it will take on the flower’s scent with just a hint of vinegar detected, but my violets have too faint of a smell for that.

  7. Can I use the leave and the flowers? Your pictures suggests just using the flowers but I’d like to find a use for the leaves too (other than drying them and using in teas/infusions). Thank you.

    1. Hi Jennifer! You can use the leaves in vinegar, but it may muddy up the pretty purple color. I like to use the dried leaves in oils for salves, balms & soaps. It’s wonderful for dry, sensitive or irritated skin. Here are a few recipes I use violet leaf oil in, to give you an idea of its usefulness:

  8. hi! i was wondering, do you think the vinegratte could be frozen for later use?… we love it but sometimes i don’t think about till it’s too late and i’d love to have it sort of on hand :)

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