Lemon Basil Uses & History

In this article, I will introduce to you lemon basil uses and its history.

Lemon basil is a slept-on herb. It is not very common in the USA and many other counties, yet, it really should be. It has so many benefits with highly rich properties. Additionally, it has a unique citric beautiful fragrance. However, the smell of lemon basil is light, and not too heavy.

Lemon Basil History

Even though some experts believe that lemon basil is a hybrid between sweet basil (Ocimum Americanum ) and African basil (Ocimum basilicum .) But it is said to be native to Asia and northeast of Africa and has been used for ages.

Many cultures around the world have been using this magical plant in so many different ways. India is one to be known to harvest the herb the longest where it has been growing wildly for centuries. But Laos cuisine, known as Pak I Tou Lao, is the most famous cuisine for the usage of lemon basil.

Laos is such a small country in Asia. Since it is economically poor, Laotians have been depending on their own harvest and home gardens.

Lemon basil is one of those herbs which you can find growing in most homes in Laos and used in their daily cooking. Laos cuisine is popular for having complex flavors in its dishes, with lemon basil as the main herb in the creation of traditional soups, stews, and grilled meats.

This flavorful herb was introduced to the USA in the 17th century. However, it was still unpopular, farmers didn’t really depend on growing the seeds. Currently, the idea of growing lemon basil in gardens has been popularized a little. It is very easy to grow in home gardens and care for it.

Lemon Basil Uses

This amazing herb, lemon basil, has various ways of usage:

Lemon basil In Food

Out of the many uses of lemon basil, it is very popular in cuisines. As I mentioned earlier, lemon basil is very known in Asian and Arabic cuisines; Indonesian, Filipino, Lao, Malay, Persian, and Thai.

I, personally love to include it in my dishes once in a while. It adds a great strong rich flavor. What I find so great about this herb is that you can add it randomly to any dish your desire. You do not need a specific recipe for it.

It works great with grilled meat, soups, rice, pasta, curries, salads, and stir-fries. You can even make pesto with it and many other recipes as you can use it either fresh or cooked. And also as a garnish for many different dishes.

If you’re looking for a simple and delicious recipe that you can cook in 15 minutes, try my Lemon Basil Brown Rice recipe and you won’t regret it.

Lemon Basil In Drinks

Lemon Basil Tea

Many people drink Lemon Basil Tea during winter. This herb helps with the flu and keeps the body warm. It has different properties which contribute to a healthy and strong body during cold weather. It prevents many illnesses such as the flu. Preferably, drink it while it is hot.

The flavor of lemon basil tea is very similar to lemon verbena tisane, only lemon basil tea has a hint of naturally sweet flavor.

It is very simple to make. All you need to do is:

  1. Boil some water.
  2. Add your fresh or dry lemon basil.
  3. Let them boil for about 3 minutes then turn off the heat.
  4. Let them sit in the water for 5 minutes then remove the lemon basil.
  5. Pour the tea into a cup.
  6. It is optional if you want to add some sugar or honey to sweeten the taste. However, if you’re on the healthier side like me, you can skip the sugar.

Lemon Basil Infused Water

We recognize how important it is to drink water daily. Making a detox drink of infused water can help you enjoy adding water to your diet. Lemon Basil Infused Water as detox is one option of many. There are many different ingredients to add to making infused water and lemon basil leaves are at top of the list. It is very refreshing and really healthy.

It even works with stubborn kids or adults who do not like drinking natural water.

  1. Add lemon basil leaves to cold or room temperature water (not hot water. Hot water will break down the vitamins and the enzymes).
  2. Let it infuse for about 1 hour or so and it should be ready to drink. It adds a natural and sweet flavor to the water which makes it very desirable to drink.

You can add other ingredients to your water such as cucumber, mint, strawberry, kiwi, or oranges. They all add a wonderful flavor. Infused water is really healthy and great for diets. If you’re planning to start drinking infused water, lemon basil is waiting for you.

Lemon Basil Essential Oil


Lemon basil essential oil is said to be very beneficial for the skin as it works as a great moisturizer for oily skin. It contains compounds of terpenes that fight acne and promote smooth soft skin. It can also eliminate redness, environmental damage, fine lines, and sunspots.

Lemon basil is rich in a compound called citral, which has antimicrobial properties. These properties get rid of imperfections and make the skin glow.


I must note that the effectiveness of lemon basil essential oil is not proven scientifically. Many dermatologists highly disapprove of the application of direct oils onto the skin. As oils tend to clog pores and prevent the skin from breathing. This results in creating more imperfections and acne.

However, Lemon basil essential oil can be used for massages or as a relaxing element while taking a bath. A few drops can do a lot. Its citrus strong fragrance will for sure make you feel at your best while taking your bath.


I like feeling fresh all the time, and one of the things that help me obtain that feeling is surrounding myself with a refreshing scent. You can also use lemon basil’s essential oil as a freshener for your home. I use it all the time. All you need to do is add a few drops of the essential oil into your diffuser and spray. It really does brighten the mood and gives positive energy.

Lemon Basil Nutrition

Lemon basil is rich in vitamins and minerals. It contains It contains vitamin K which is good for speeding the process of wound healing, rich in iron, magnesium, manganese, calcium, vitamin C, and copper.

This herb is also a great source of beta-carotene, a compound that the body converts into vitamin A. Beta-carotene is found concentrated in carrots, and it helps to protect against vision loss. Additionally, it is an excellent source of limonene and citral compounds, all of which are anti-inflammatory.


This wonderful plant is a gift from God. It is absolutely one of my favorite herbs to plant at home. I must conclude that lemon basil uses include cuisines, as a natural home refresher, in baths, or as massaging oil. If you don’t have the intention to use it and profit from it, you can always use it for decoration. It is indeed beautiful.

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