Using Essential Oils in Cooking

Cooking with essential oils* can be really handy – especially when you discover you don’t have fresh herbs or citrus zest on hand for a recipe!

For instance, I love using citrus oils in recipes. Citrus comes from the rind of the fruit, so it works perfectly in any recipe calling for citrus zest. Lemon essential oil makes the smoothest creamiest lemon curd without having lumpy pieces of zest in it!

It’s also nice to use in salad dressings, homemade mayo, condiments, mixed drinks, simple syrups, frosting, yogurt, homemade ice cream, sauces, lemonade, muffins, soups, sauces, and a million other things!

Remember, essential oils are very concentrated, so do not use too much! For most oils, one drop of essential oil replaces a teaspoon of dried herb or spice. For bolder tasting oils like Oregano, Thyme, Rosemary, Cilantro, or Marjoram, you may want to use the “toothpick method (dip a toothpick into the bottle and stir into your recipe before taste testing).

Stronger flavored oils can be simmered at length in soups and stews to mellow it out.

For milder oils use 1 – 2 drops at the end of cooking, or just before serving, since some of the essential oils are volatile and will be lost in the air while cooking. Also, heat will destroy some of the valuable health constituents.

Note: I have found that Citrus oils (and sometimes cinnamon can be used in even more abundance, depending on the recipe. 



When baking, you can replace extracts with essential oils, but keep in mind essential oils are a LOT stronger than alcohol-based extracts (an extract is a flavor diluted in alcohol or a combination of alcohol and water).

Good baking oils: Peppermint, Lemon, Orange, Lavender, Lime, Cinnamon, Allspice, Clove, Fennel, Rosemary, and Bergamot essential oils.

*Young Living’s Vitality Oils are labeled specifically for cooking, making it easy to choose which essential oils to use in the kitchen!


To get started using therapeutic-grade essential oils with your family, I recommend purchasing Young Living’s amazing Premium Starter Kit & get personalized help from me! Click here to shop!

By the way, I am not a doctor – just a mom who uses essential oils in her own family. Please know that any information provided on The Common Scents Mom is for educational purposes only. It is not intended to prescribe, diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease, nor replace current medical treatment or drugs prescribed by your healthcare professional. The statements made have not been evaluated by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). It is your responsibility to educate yourself and address any health or medical needs you may have with your physician. Please seek professional help when needed.

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