Tarragon is a top culinary herb, but it has other benefits as well. Learn more about the medicinal uses and health benefits of tarragon.
When I first started growing tarragon I didn’t really know what I was going to use it for. The seeds were included free as a part of my order, so I gave it a try. Tarragon is easy to grow, and is a visually appealing perennial with green foliage and little yellow flowers. It’s perhaps best known for its culinary uses.
Tarragon is an aromatic herb used to add flavor to many dishes and sauces.
But like oregano, tarragon has many other uses than just adding flavor to your favorite meals.
It has a slight licorice flavor, and if possible should be used fresh as drying destroys much of the natural health benefits.
Health Benefits and Medicinal Uses of Tarragon
Nutritional and Health Benefits of Tarragon
While tarragon is usually used in too small of quantities to contribute much nutrition, it does sport some nice nutritional qualities.
Tarragon is an excellent source of minerals such as magnesium, iron, zinc, and calcium.
The herb is rich in Vitamin A and Vitamin C as well as B-6.
Tarragon contains antioxidants that help to neutralize free radicals in the body.
Tarragon helps to support cardiovascular health. When eaten regularly it can help reduce the risk of blood clots, stroke, and heart attack.
The compounds present in tarragon can lower blood sugar levels naturally.
Tarragon contains many health promoting essential oils.
It in a natural diuretic and can help reduce water retention.
Medicinal Benefits of Tarragon
Tarragon can also be used in medicinal quantities to support your health for a variety of ailments and health problems.
Tarragon can be steeped in water to make a tea, as an infused oil, as an essential oil or chewed fresh.
Here are a few of the medicinal uses for tarragon:
Tarragon can be used to reduce mouth/tooth pain. Due to the presence of eugenol, tarragon has a pain relieving or numbing effect. You can drink tea or simply chew the leaves to help with mouth pain.
Drinking tarragon tea before bed can help with insomnia. Because of its calming affect tarragon can also help to relieve anxiety.
Tarragon essential oil can help fight bad breath, as well as reduce body odor and microbes on the skin. If you make your own deodorant- add a couple drops of essential oil to get these benefits.
Tarragon has been traditionally used at an appetite stimulant for those with poor appetite or even help those with symptoms of anorexia.
Tarragon can be uses to maintain the health of the female reproductive tract, and can be used for those who have suppressed menstruation. It should not, however, be used if you are pregnant or nursing.
Recent studies have shown that tarragon can help promote muscle growth by aiding in creatine absorption.
Preparing Tarragon Medicinally:
Make tarragon infused oil: Fill a jar halfway with wilted or dried tarragon leaves. Fill the jar with olive oil. Place in a sunny window or other warm area to infuse.
Make tarragon tea. 1 tablespoon of tarragon in a cup of boiling water. Steep for 5 minutes. Here’s more on making and using tarragon tea.
You can also chew the leaves fresh from the plant!
Notes on Using Tarragon Medicinally:
Tarragon is a member of the Asteraceae family.
If you are sensitive or allergic to other plants in this family such as ragweed, daisy or marigold you should take caution when adding tarragon to your diet either as a culinary herb or medicinally.
As I mentioned previously, do not use tarragon if you are pregnant or nursing.
3 Types of Tarragon
There are 3 types of tarragon- all with subtle differences in growth, flavor, and uses.
French Tarragon: Artemisia dracunculus: This generally considered true tarragon and is the preferred type. It has the purest flavor and the most benefits.
Russian Tarragon: Artemisia dracunculoides Pursch: While Russian tarragon is still a true tarragon, it is virtually flavorless, but can still be used medicinally.
Mexican Tarragon: Tagetes lucida: Mexican tarragon isn’t a true tarragon, but belongs to the marigold family. It has a close flavor to French tarragon, making it a good substitute for it in dishes. It still has medicinal qualities- especially for gastrointestinal symptoms.
Are you ready to add more tarragon to your life? Here’s how to get it:
Grow it yourself. Growing your own is the best way to get a plentiful supply of any herb. Here’s how to grow tarragon.
You can buy Mexican tarragon seeds or French Tarragon plants.
Buy it. When purchasing herbs, always make sure you are buying from a reputable source. You can get dried tarragon at Mountain Rose Herbs or Starwest Botanicals.
Do you grow tarragon or use it in your kitchen? Have you ever used it as part of your natural health medicine cabinet?
This article is meant to be informative only. Please use your best judgement or consult a professional before using tarragon in medicinal quantities.
Great post! I can count on one hand the amount of times I have used tarragon, but I didn’t realize it was good for tooth pain! (I ALWAYS have something crazy goin’ on in this mouth of mine LOL) This is making me want to start an herb garden even more!
You should! Herbs are some of the easiest things to grow and have so many uses!
Where can I buy Tarragon essence and the oil please
Thank you for this information. I love learning about medicinal benefits in herbs and I did not know that tarragon had medicinal qualities! I am excited! Thanks again.
Thanks! I love finding out the alternative health uses for the culinary herbs I grow!
There are a lot of uses for it – I take it in a capsule every morning! I love using natural herbs to keep healthy :)
GREAT post… I just shared this on facebook. I saw it last week, but didn’t have time REALLY read it. Glad you reposted it on facebook because it reminded me to go back to it. Thanks!
Great info. I did not know all the benefits of Tarragon.
I really enjoyed your post. I just found you over at the From The Farm blog hop and would love for you to come share at my Saturday Spotlight Blog Hop! Hope to see you there. :)
Good to know! I like the smell and taste of terragon. Visiting from the blog hop.
I LOVE tarragon! Love it in chicken dishes, salads, SO many things,,,,which is odd because I am NOT a fan of licorice. Not one bit. But tarragon I can’t get enough of…and I too am thinking about an herb garden right in my kitchen.
Very helpful! I just started growing tarragon and came across your site doing research for an article I’m writing. You expanded on some more general information I was finding, so this was great! I bet tincturing in glycerin could help more people get some quality nutrition out of tarragon!
Yes is love & i use tarragon tea the smell is very good & amazing effect.. I am asking my boss & some of my friend where i can find the said tree or seeds cos i will plant even in the pot to put up in the front of my terrace house..thinking someday i will help my friends & fellow neighoor as well..
Recently had some chicken salad with tarragon. Great taste and I am particular!! Getting ready to move to N.C. Hopefully i will start a a herb garden. When living in Fla. I was able to grow everything outside, but NC will be quite a temperature change. Are there certain herbs that can survive cold temperature.? I really don’t know how to start an indoor herb garden. Can u recommend a
book or web sight ? Thanks!
Most of of the perennial herbs- thyme, sages, rosemary, lavender, oregano will die back some during the winters but are still usable especially if they are large established plants. Others like basil you can grow on your windowsill.
Where can I buy seeds for French Tarragon? I live in spain.
I dry out my Tarragon at the end of the season, so as to have enough for the winter months ….
I live in Vermont and tarragon is a perennial here, meaning it comes back every year unlike tender plants like basil. I love it for its blue/grey color and delicate leaf structure. I cut sprigs and put it in white vinegar to make tarragon vinegar. I use it in coleslaw and salad greens, and whenever I’m working in the garden, I pick some leaves to eat on the spot. I love licorice and I love tarragon. Good to know it’s so healthy.