Why I Love This Recipe
A really easy way to keep your basil longer when you just have more than you can use and don't want to make pesto and/or other dishes that uses it up! Here are two ways to dry it (oven and air dry). You can also use a dehydrator or a microwave but we find that the basil looses in taste.
HOW TO USE IN PLACE OF FRESH BASIL: Nothing compares to fresh basil. That said, dried basil is good too. On average, one tablespoon of fresh herbs is one teaspoon of dried herbs. So for instance, if a recipe calls for a cup of fresh basil, use 2 - 3 teaspoons of dried basil at most.
Ingredients You'll Need
1 cup fresh basil leaves
IN THE OVEN: Preheat the oven to the lowest setting possible (in my oven it's 175°F but try to keep it under 180°F) . If the lowest oven setting is higher, leave the oven door slightly open to keep the temperature down.
Spread the basil leaves in a single, even layer on your baking sheet, making sure that they don't overlap. This restricts air flow, so you want to make sure it's all in a single layer.
Let them dry for about an hour, and then start checking 15 minutes thereafter to make sure it doesn't burn. My oven took about 2.5 hours at 175°F for reference.
AIR-DRYING: Air-drying basil is super easy but you need to be patient. It takes about 4 weeks for basil to dry properly and the place needs to be relatively dry so you don't end up getting mold. Hang them from a high ceiling in a cool, dry place in the kitchen and let them dry!
STORAGE: Store them as whole dry basil leaves! When you crush the leaves, they release some of the aromatic oils. So, the closer you can crush the leaves to when you're actually using it, the better. Make sure to store in an airtight container!
Dried basil leaves will last at least a year when stored in an airtight container, in a cool and dark place (like your pantry).