How to Make Basil-Infused Oil

How to Make Basil-Infused Oil: A Flavorful Addition to Your Kitchen


Basil-infused oil is a delightful and versatile ingredient that can elevate the flavor of many dishes. This aromatic oil is perfect for drizzling over salads, pasta, grilled vegetables, and more. Making your own basil-infused oil at home is simple and allows you to enjoy the fresh, vibrant taste of basil year-round. In this guide, we’ll walk you through the steps to create your own basil-infused oil.

Ingredients and Equipment


  • 2 cups fresh basil leaves
  • 1 cup extra virgin olive oil (or your preferred oil)


  • Blender or food processor
  • Fine mesh strainer or cheesecloth
  • Clean, dry glass bottle or jar
  • Funnel (optional)

Step-by-Step Guide

1. Prepare the Basil

  • Harvest Fresh Basil: Pick fresh basil leaves from your garden or purchase them from a store. Make sure the leaves are free from any spots or blemishes.
  • Wash and Dry: Rinse the basil leaves thoroughly under cold water to remove any dirt or pesticides. Pat them dry with a clean kitchen towel or paper towels. It’s important that the basil leaves are completely dry to prevent water from mixing with the oil, which can cause spoilage.

2. Blanch the Basil (Optional)

Blanching basil can help preserve its bright green color in the oil, but this step is optional.

  • Boil Water: Bring a pot of water to a boil.
  • Prepare Ice Bath: Fill a bowl with ice water.
  • Blanch and Shock: Submerge the basil leaves in the boiling water for 10-15 seconds, then immediately transfer them to the ice water to stop the cooking process. Pat the leaves dry.

3. Blend the Basil and Oil

  • Combine Ingredients: Place the basil leaves in a blender or food processor. Add the olive oil.
  • Blend: Blend the basil and oil until the mixture is smooth and the basil is finely chopped.

4. Strain the Oil

  • Strain the Mixture: Pour the blended mixture through a fine mesh strainer or cheesecloth into a clean bowl. This will remove the basil solids, leaving you with a clear, green-infused oil.
  • Press to Extract Oil: Use the back of a spoon to press the basil solids and extract as much oil as possible.

5. Bottle the Basil-Infused Oil

  • Transfer to Bottle: Using a funnel if needed, pour the strained oil into a clean, dry glass bottle or jar.
  • Seal and Store: Seal the bottle tightly and store the basil-infused oil in a cool, dark place. For best flavor, use the oil within 1-2 weeks. You can also refrigerate the oil to extend its shelf life, but it may become cloudy (this will clear up at room temperature).

Tips and Usage

  • Use High-Quality Oil: The flavor of your infused oil will depend on the quality of the oil you use. Extra virgin olive oil is a popular choice for its rich flavor, but you can use any light-tasting oil you prefer.
  • Flavor Variations: Experiment with other herbs and spices to create unique infused oils. Garlic, rosemary, thyme, and chili peppers are great additions.
  • Safety Tip: Always ensure your herbs are completely dry before infusing to prevent the growth of bacteria.

Usage Ideas

  • Salads: Drizzle basil-infused oil over fresh salads for a burst of flavor.
  • Pasta: Use it as a finishing touch on pasta dishes.
  • Grilled Vegetables: Brush it over grilled vegetables for added aroma and taste.
  • Bread Dip: Serve it as a dip with crusty bread.
  • Marinades: Incorporate it into marinades for meat or seafood.


Making your own basil-infused oil is a simple and rewarding process that brings the fresh taste of basil into your kitchen. With just a few ingredients and steps, you can create a versatile ingredient that enhances the flavor of many dishes. Enjoy the vibrant, aromatic essence of basil-infused oil in your culinary creations!