I’ve been cooking with basil for years … in the summertime, there’s nothing like a Caprese Salad with fresh tomatoes from the garden, some mozzarella, balsamic vinegar and fresh basil leaves. Or pasta topped with lightly sautéed tomatoes, mushrooms, garlic and basil. But over the past five years, I’ve been using basil to do more than make my food taste great – it offers some amazing healthy benefits – and it also prevents and repels mosquitoes.
Mosquitoes are warded off by the fragrance of basil – so the more aromatic your basil plant, the better. You can plant basil near outdoor eating and sitting areas to keep mosquitoes away, and you can also create your own homemade mosquito repellent with fresh basil leaves. This particular concoction isn’t sticky and only lightly scented with basil – but it keeps mosquitoes away. (Cover all exposed body parts with the repellent, being careful to avoid your eyes, nose and mouth.)
- Place a handful of fresh basil leaves into a glass measuring cup. Pour one-half cup of boiling water over the basil. Let the leaves steep for two to four hours.
- Squeeze the basil leaves to get out as much of the liquid as possible. Pour the infused liquid into a spray bottle. Add ¼ teaspoon essential basil oil if you'd like to increase the potency.
- Add one-half cup witch hazel or vodka to the squirt bottle. Shake gently to mix the contents.
- Apply this all-natural insect repellent by spraying it on your skin. Be sure to spray it where you’d like to repel mosquitoes … they may end up biting on skin that’s not coated with the basil mixture.
What’s your favorite way to use basil?
Disclosure: Affiliate links are included in this post. Purchasing items through this post results in a commission for Accidentally Green. Thank you so much for your support of this website!
Latest posts by Hilary Kimes Bernstein (see all)
- The Day I Realized Healthy Choices Don’t Guarantee Health - July 21, 2015
- Avoid Synthetic Bug Sprays with All-Natural Repellents - July 16, 2015
- The Day I Learned I Could Cook Real Food - July 13, 2015