If you want to use essential oils in your cooking… you also want to have them handy, right?
However, the kitchen is the worst! place to store your essential oils. The heat will degrade their properties quickly, therefore wasting your investment in these precious oils.
Instead, to preserve and protect the essential oils’ properties, follow these 4 steps to keep them protected and handy for your cooking…
Check out the particulars in today’s #AskWardee in print, podcast, or video below!
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The Question: How To Organize And Store Essential Oils For Cooking?
Amanda W. asked:
I am curious about how and where you store the essential oils that you use for cooking. I haven’t managed to come up with a solution that really suits me yet. Any information would be appreciated.
To protect the essential oils’ properties and keep your oils handy, follow these 4 steps…
4 Steps To Storing Essential Oils To Preserve Their Potency And Make Them Easy To Get And Use!
By the way… cooking with essential oils is controversial and I’m not trying to convince you either way. If you’re ok with it, these storage and organization suggestions will help you. If you don’t prefer to use them in cooking, these tips will still help you organize your essential oils for other purposes… 🙂
#1 — Put Them All Together In A Carry Case Or Box
The essential oils you want to designate for cooking, store together in a carry case such as these 16- or 32-hole wood storage boxes or this 30-hole carry case.
Keeping them together in one box or case prevents them from being loose in a cupboard (making a mess and hard to work with). A case or box also keeps them portable so you can move your collection around the house easily.
I use these 32-hole wooden boxes (they also come in 16-hole size) for my essential oils. I have three of these boxes — one for blends and two for singles, all alphabetized.
You could keep all your essential oils together in one case, both cooking and non-cooking. Or, you could designate one container just for those essential oils you use in cooking.
#2 — Add Labels To The Tops Of Bottles That Aren’t Labeled
Many essential oils don’t have labels on the top (though one of our 2 favorite sources, Rocky Mountain Oils, does). That means you can’t quickly scan the bottles to find your desired oil.
Fix that by adding labels like these to the top of your bottles! Easy-peasy. And such a time saver in the future — no more pulling bottles out to find which one you need!
Or if you make your own blend(s), you can label your custom bottles on the top, too!
#3 — Store In A Cool, Dark Location — NOT The Kitchen!
Do not keep your essential oils in the kitchen! Essential oils should be stored in a dark and cool location, and the kitchen is definitely not that — especially near the oven, stove, dishwasher, sink, refrigerator… or dehydrator… or any other “warm” area of the kitchen.
So, here are your options…
Put your box or carry case in a cupboard or shelf that’s near the kitchen but not as warm as the kitchen. This way, they’re nearby and handy — but not degrading from the heat.
Or… keep the boxes in a closed-off and cool bedroom closet and bring them out when you need them. (That’s what I do.)
I actually think the first suggestion is more handy. Because I store mine in the bedroom, I don’t use them in cooking as often as I would like. Sometimes I just don’t feel like getting them out… 😉
I know that keeping them nearer to the kitchen would make them more handy. In fact, I have a broom closet I’m thinking about re-organizing to make room for them…
Then again, I use them a lot in my bedroom so I like them to be handy there. It’s a catch 22!
#4 — Bonus Tip! Keep An Inventory List Of Your Essential Oils
Wouldn’t it be nice to know anywhere you are — whether in or out of the home — what essential oils you own? My daughter Haniya often texts me and says, “Mom, do we have ____?” and instead of going to the boxes of oils, I just open an app on my phone to check. Or if I’m on the iPad, it’s there. Or if I’m on the computer, it’s there, too!
I can answer her question on the spot. 🙂
The application I use is called Omnioutliner (there are bound to be other list apps!). It syncs outlines/lists between all my devices. One of my lists is essential oils. Within it are 2 sub-lists — singles and blends. I list the oils we have in one column (in alphabetical order) and in another column I put the quantity we own of each. To keep it simple, a 15ml bottle counts as 1; each 5ml bottles counts as .5.
When I run out of an oil, I edit the list.
When I get more of an oil or a new oil, I update the list.
I also do the same thing with our bulk herbs.
This is how I can know in a flash if we have a particular oil or if we need to order it.
- 16- or 32-hole wood storage boxes for essential oils
- 30-hole essential oil carry case
- Circle labels for the top of your bottles
- Omnioutliner app
- FREE Traditional Cooking Video Series
- Rocky Mountain Oils and Aroma Foundry — my preferred essential oil sources
- Using Essential Oils In Cooking
- Top 5 Essential Oils For Cooking
- 27 Recipes With Essential Oils
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How do you store and organize your essential oils? Please share!
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I store only those I use for cooking in my kitchen. However, reading this made me think again. I think I will use sample size bottles in the kitchen. That way convenient but big bottle is in my cooler long term storage area.
I mostly use them in water, or diffuse
We keep all our oils in the bathroom, which is where we use them the most. It is also equal distance from the kitchen and bedrooms, so if we need one we just go get it – provided the bathroom’s not already occupied! 🙂
I keep mine in the frige.
I have a hall closet, on the door of which I have a narrow shelving unit, and have placed all my essential oils on the narrow shelves, next to each other. They stay relatively cool, being closed off from central heating, but the location is quite central for me. I made my own theive’s oil.
Essential oils are mostly prone to oxidation, therefore, make sure to avoid storing it in refrigerator. You can also store oils in aromatherapy box, which will keep the oils safe from extreme temperatures. You can use products such as Cobalt Blue Boston round glass bottle and dark colored glass dropper vials to store oil.