Wild Herb & Garlic Butter (using »weeds«)

reading time: 4 min

This homemade wild herb & garlic butter is bursting with tons of fresh herbs and "weeds" (!), and crushed garlic. It's the perfect quick and easy-to-make homemade condiment to eat with toasted bread, baked or mashed potatoes, grilled vegetables, or even with pasta.

The beautiful thing about making homemade herb butter is that any blend of fresh herbs can be used! If you don't care for parsley, dill, or dandelion, feel free to swap them out for something you enjoy.

In terms of foraging, late spring / early summer is my favourite time of the year! Wild herbs and so-called "weeds" are shooting up everywhere, trees are budding, and birds are chirping their beautiful songs. It's pure joy to go on an extended walk, maybe to a nearby forest or a secluded meadow to pick some edible spring-blooming flowers, herbs, and greens.

And of course, is there anything better and more rewarding than getting your hands dirty and planting your own (balcony / windowsill) garden in return for an abundance of fresh fruits, herbs and vegetables?

My favourite wild herbs and "weeds" to forage for during spring & summer are
- dandelions
- daisies
- garlic mustard
- goutweed aka ground elder
- garden sorrel 
- plantain

If you are wondering why I use "weeds" in my herbed butter, that's because wild herbs (and any wild plants) which are usually
considered unpleasant "weeds" – like nettle or chickweed – are actually more nutrient-dense and potent than their counterparts! Wildcrafted herbs are also naturally organic and often more chemically diverse. Stinging nettle for example can be used in recipes as a substitute for spinach, but has a wider variety of nutrients, including vitamins A, C and K, as well as several B vitamins, high levels of calcium (822 mg / 1 oz), zinc (0.13 mg), magnesium (243 mg), potassium (496 mg), iron, phosphorus, various fatty acids and polyphenols, and all of the essential amino acids (aka protein)! It's a true superfood. Plus, it's just the most satisfying feeling to go out and harvest your own – free! – food from nature's abundance. It's also a way of re-connecting with Mama Earth :)

General Foraging Guidelines:

  • You should be 100 % certain you are identifying the correct plant. If you do not know what it is, DO NOT eat it! Do not pick if you're in doubt!

  • Don't harvest from contaminated areas such as busy roadsides, near industrial facilities, where dogs pee, along the edges of agricultural fields, old landfill sites etc.

  • Be mindful & harvest sustainably. Only pick from areas that have a plentiful supply, and never more than 1/4 of a plant, ideally only about 5 %.

  • Leave the harvesting area litter-free.

As for "cultivated" herbs, unfortunately I currently only grow a couple of them on my balcony and in-doors: parsley, dill, cilantro, mint and sage. Our rosemary keeps dying on us, so for now we'll only stick to those, but I'm really hoping that we'll be able to grow more herbs such as rosemary, chives, oregano, and basil in our future backyard.


Preparation time: 10 mins (+ 2 hours chilling time)
Main ingredients: (vegan) butter, herbs, garlic
difficulty level: easy
makes: 1 cup of herbed butter
suitable for: vegan, lactose-free, gluten-free, soy-free, sugar-free, yeast-free


1/2 cup (vegan) butter, unsalted and at room temperature * (I use the German brand Alsan bio)
1–2 cloves garlic, minced
1 cup fresh herbs, finely chopped
(e. g. 1/2 cup culinary herbs such as parsley, dill, thyme, cilantro, rosemary, basil, sage, tarragon, oregano, wild garlic and/or chives + 1/2 cup wild herbs such as garlic mustard, goutweed, stinging nettle leaves, chickweed, stickyweed, creeping charlie, sorrel, and/or lady's smock, and even edible flowers such as
dandelion flowers, daisies, violets, tulips, marigolds, pansies, nasturtium, anise hyssop, onion flowers, and/or borage)
1 green onion, finely sliced
1/2 tsp sea salt, or to taste *
freshly ground black pepper, to taste
freshly squeezed lemon juice, to taste

* If using salted butter, omit the additional salt!

The herb butter in these photos has parsley, cilantro, dill, sage, garlic mustard, dandelion leaves, stinging nettle, sorrel, goutweed, stickyweed, creeping charlie, daisies, and red clover flower.


Cream room temperature butter (we're using the vegan kind). Add crushed garlic cloves and finely chopped fresh herbs. I use a fork to mix everything together until well incorporated.

Place the herbed butter on a piece of parchment paper or wax paper, and shape it into a log. Wrap tightly, and twist the ends until tight. It will look like a Christmas cracker or a huge wrapped candy.

Place in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours before unwrapping and slicing to serve.

Serve your nutrition-packed masterpiece with pride. Best when smeared onto fresh bread or crackers, yum!

Keep in an air-tight container in the fridge for up to 2 weeks, or store in the freezer in an additional ziplock-bag for up to 6 months.

Obviously you don't need to shape your herbed butter into a log!
You can simply transfer it to a container of your choice, and serve :)