Eat your herbs: nettle salt.

Nettle seeds are amazing for people who are seriously exhausted and drained of energy (tired to the bone, dry skin, brittle nails and hair). I love to preach the gospel of nettle seeds, but people sometimes complain that they’re too gritty and “strange” to chew.

Enter nettle salt. It tastes green and salty, and it’s not gritty. You can sprinkle it on all kinds of food (I really like it on bread and butter), or just eat a bit now and then. (Quite a few people who need nettle seeds also need salt — think low blood pressure, generalized dryness.)

Just take some nettle seeds and grind them up with some good-quality salt (unrefined gray sea salt or another high mineral salt). You can play with the proportions until you get a taste you like. I generally use somewhere in the range of one part coarse salt to four or five parts nettle seed (by volume).

Grind them until they’re nice and powdery — I use a little electric coffee grinder that I save for herbs and spices — and sprinkle them wherever you like!

If you want to learn more about the many virtues of nettle seeds, there’s an exhaustive discussion between herbalists on the herbwifery forum.

UPDATE: Fall is the time to harvest nettle seeds. Pick them when they’re fully ripe, and dry them in a well-ventilated place out of direct sun.


  1. Lisa Z said,

    September 15, 2008 @ 8:22 pm

    Thanks for that information. I didn’t know about nettle seed salt. This may seem like a dumb question, but do you dry the seeds first? I really really want to do this!

    Lisa in Minn.

  2. crabappleherbs said,

    September 15, 2008 @ 8:52 pm

    Hi Lisa. I put an update about harvesting and drying in the main post. Yes, you want to dry them before you grind them with the salt.

  3. Kiva Rose said,

    September 15, 2008 @ 11:01 pm

    ah yes, I love doing this… I also make a nettle seed gomasio with sesame, nettle seed and salt….

  4. crabappleherbs said,

    September 16, 2008 @ 10:02 am

    Hi Kiva!

    Do you powder the nettle seed for the gomasio or just grind it coarsely like the sesame seeds? I’d worry about it being too gritty…

  5. Lisa Z said,

    September 16, 2008 @ 12:46 pm

    Thanks for your answer to my question. I’m going to go get some nettle seeds. Your blog, btw, is fabulous! I have it linked on both of my blogs. Thanks for all you’ve put into it. I’m really trying to find time to put more into my herbalist blog, but life is sometimes so overwhelming and it takes a lot of thought to put herb info. out there in a helpful manner. You’ve done it so well!


  6. Sarah Head said,

    September 16, 2008 @ 12:48 pm

    Thanks for giving us another way of using nettle seed, Rebecca. So far I’ve always added the dry seeds to my porridge/oatmeal in the morning when I’ve needed it. I’ve made a fresh nettle seed tincture for the first time this year and am looking forward to trying it out. I have nettle seeds drying at the moment waiting for me to put them away for the winter when I return from holiday

  7. crabappleherbs said,

    September 16, 2008 @ 4:49 pm

    Lisa: Thank you!

    Sarah: How do they taste in the oatmeal? Are they gritty at all? That’s the main complaint I get…

  8. Kiva Rose said,

    September 17, 2008 @ 11:48 am

    I powder it, Rebecca…. otherwise yeah, too much grit. Seems to work fine when ground up finely though.

  9. crabappleherbs said,

    September 19, 2008 @ 2:06 pm

    Thanks, Kiva!

  10. Heidi said,

    September 27, 2008 @ 9:38 pm

    Hello again. ๐Ÿ™‚

    I just love reading your blog.

    Question: Does a fresh nettle seed tincture have the same type of affect as eating the dried seeds in the seed salt? (support for people with deep fatigue, etc..) If so, that sounds very intriguing. Do you tincture with alcohol? If so, what type?

    I love to eat my medicine whenever possible, but sometimes it is easier to put a couple of drops of tincture sub-lingually (spelling?) for quicker absorption.

    Thanks for the fresh ideas! I’m a fan. ๐Ÿ˜‰

  11. Sarah Head said,

    September 30, 2008 @ 6:34 am

    Hi Rebecca – sorry it’s taken me a while to answer your question. I wouldn’t have applied the term “gritty” to nettle seed on porridge. You can taste them and they add texture to the porridge, but nothing to catch in your teeth and make you wince as a piece of grit that you have to remove might. I shall try grinding them beforehand next time I use them and report back.

  12. Clara said,

    October 10, 2008 @ 11:00 am

    Wow, yet another use for nettles. It’s may have to rival comfrey as my favorite herb.

  13. kristine said,

    October 21, 2008 @ 10:52 pm

    ahhhh, just what i need! i have low blood pressure & dryness…but darn it! i haven’t been able to get my nettles re-established! hopefully next year will be my lucky year.

  14. sam said,

    June 4, 2009 @ 4:10 am

    I have heard of properties of nettle seed powder, but have been trying for the better part of 6months to find a UK supplier. Does anyone know where i can buy it from locally. I have found a Turkish supplier, but it is so expensive to have couriered so need a local supplier.
    Please help

  15. lisa chane said,

    October 12, 2010 @ 3:23 pm


    How do you know when nettle seeds are dried, mine are very green. Also, do I need to remove the prickly outside part of the seed. I read they can be very itchy and need to be handled with gloves.

  16. susan said,

    December 5, 2010 @ 4:53 pm

    i just ordered some nettle seed from pacific botanicals, and am wondering if it’s ok to use these as is, for this recipe or any other. i saw on some other herb site that even the seeds had some stinging properties and needed to be desensitized somehow. any thoughts?
    thanks susan

  17. Butterpoweredbike said,

    June 28, 2011 @ 11:51 pm

    Hi there. I cohost a foraging recipe challenge called Wild Things. We like to encourage people to get out there and forage, and then cook and make medicine from forage. The featured herb for the month of June is nettle. I’d really like to include your recipe, as it is so unusual, using nettle seed. If you’d like to participate, could you please email a link to this page to ?

  18. Louise said,

    December 9, 2011 @ 5:01 pm

    Hi, great site!

    I love wild food and will make a nettle seed salt mixed with bull kelp powder instead of salt and then sprinkle it on my salads and rice.

    We harvest the wild seaweed in BC Canada from our business called BC KELP.

  19. marcia said,

    December 30, 2012 @ 1:51 am

    I know nettles supposedly grow EVERYWHERE – but I have yet to find any and have been looking for a couple years. I’m in NJ and have access to a large garden plot and adjoining aboretum. Organic. Loads of thistles grow in my garden – that I did have as tea once – fine, green tasting. BUT WHERE ARE THE NETTLES and how do you tell them apart? Acres and acres to check here – but………. frustrating. Everywhere? Where?


  20. Iola Millington said,

    April 29, 2013 @ 2:04 am

    Coffee is a brewed beverage with a distinct aroma and flavor, prepared from the roasted seeds of the Coffea plant. The seeds are found in coffee “berries”, which grow on trees cultivated in over 70 countries, primarily in equatorial Latin America, Southeast Asia, India and Africa. Green (unroasted) coffee is one of the most traded agricultural commodities in the world.’

    Till next time

  21. Sheryl Gallant said,

    April 29, 2013 @ 10:31 am

    Does anyone know where I can buy dried green nettle seed for ingestion, not growing?

    Thank you!

  22. Brendon Studivant said,

    June 22, 2013 @ 10:12 pm

    While some people may dismiss herbal remedies as quackery, the use of botanicals is well rooted in medical practice. Ancient doctors methodically collected information about herbs and developed well-defined pharmacopoeias to treat a variety of ailments. More than a quarter of all drugs used today contain active ingredients derived from those same ancient plants.;:*`

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