They recipe is here! Feel free to dance.
You see, I was unsure of what to say, and what not to say.
As a blogger, getting into health related things scare me. I can say things like “eat less processed foods” or “we need to avoid gluten because it makes my daughter break out in eczema” a WHOLE LOTTA EASIER then I can say “These are the first vitamins my kids have ever have.”
Wait a second…
I said it?
Ok, that was not too bad.
You see, I have done a bit of research, I have read posts by braver people then me talking about why their family does not take (synthetic) vitamins, and I have come to a the conclusion that we would not do (synthetic) vitamin supplements. Please note, this is what Debra has decided for Debra’s family. It is what works for us. If you decide differently for your family YEAH! Go you!
Because of this I was super happy when I saw Kate’s, from Modern Alternative Mama, post about a herbal multivitamin tincture. Kate knows her stuff, and I got to tincturing. The mix of herbs provide a nice assortment of vitamins, in a whole food, natural source, which really helped me during my last pregnancy.
I am not too fond of glycerin personally* (and it is hard/expensive to find corn free) so I made it with Apple Cider Vinegar, and while I could choke it down, I did not even try it with the kids.
*It can coat your teeth making it hard for your teeth to remineralize.
So, fast forward a few more months and I saw this idea for making homemade vitamins from Wellness Mama. I loved the idea, but found the instructions for the vitamins a little vague. I decided to make a concentrated tea version of Kate‘s herbal mix.
So, what are these exactly?
First, let us look at what these are vs. what they are not.
- They are: A stevia sweetened gelatin “candy” that is full of herbal vitamin-y goodness.
- They are not: Full of massive doses of (synthetic) vitamins.
- They are: a good supplement to your diet.
- They are not: A substitute for healthy eating :D
- They are: Getting the vitamins through a concentrated tea (it is not as strong as making a tincture)
- They are: full of vitamins.
- But, they do not: come with a list of how much is in each bite.
I am a mom, and these were made from my experience, the experience of others, and a desire to get some supplemental vitamins in my kids without reaching for synthetic stuff. I am not a scientist– or able to hire a scientist. I am even new to using herbs and essential oils for health, I will gladly accept any (kindly written) advise.
What are the herbs in this?
- Alfalfa – Contains Vitamin A, Vitamin K, Riboflavin, Vitamin C, Niacin, eight of the essential amino acids, and a one of the best plant sources of chlorophyll (source/read more about it)
- Dandelion Leaf– Contains Iron and Vitamin A (source/read more about it)
- Catnip Leaf– Traditionally used to help fight flues and colds and helps to relieve stress; Vitamin B(source/read more about it)
- Nettle – Contains Vitamin C, Vitamin A, Calcium, Silicon, and Potassium Chloride (source/read more about it)
- Spearmint– Vitamin A, Vitamin C, Magnesium, Copper, Iron, Potassium, Phosphorous, and Calcium. (source; read more about it)
Did I miss anything? Feel free to ask any questions you might have, and I will do my best to answer them.
- 3 tablespoon dried alfalfa tea
- 3 tablespoons dried dandelion leaf
- 1½ tablespoon dried catnip leaf
- 1½ tablespoon dried nettle leaf
- 2 teaspoons dried spearmint tea
- 2 cups boiling water, divided
- ½-1 teaspoons liquid stevia extract
- 4 tablespoons cherry juice concentrate
- ¼ cup raw, unfiltered, organic apple cider vinegar
- A pinch of real salt
- ⅔ cup gelatin
- Mix the herbs in a quart size jar. Boil 1½ cups of the water and pour over the herbs, add the vinegar. Let sit in the fridge for 24 hours, strain away the herbs squeezing out extra water.
- Bring ½ cup of water and the concentrate to a boil. Quickly stir in the gelatin, until dissolved, then the rest of the ingredients starting with a tiny amount of stevia. Stevia is pretty finicky, so increase to taste. We used 1 teaspoon of a alcohol based extract. (Note: if you are using a different kind of stevia you will probably need a very different amount from what we used, but I only have experience with alcohol based stevia extract).
- Pour the gelatin in a loaf pan. Refrigerate for 2 hours.
- Cut into small pieces.
- Using them: I basically just let the kids have a few pieces here and there. Our jar of them lasted a week in the fridge.
Experiment with other flavor combos. I put the ACV in there as a probiotic, but it is not necessary (but increase the liquid if taking out).
Use other kinds of juice concentrates if desired, or even steep the tea in pure juice (remember to increase the liquid by 3 tablespoons if doing that though).
Use other herbal mixes as desired.