24 Jul 2013

Hibiscus: Herbs We Love For Summer

Hibiscus, also known as Jamaica flower, is one of our very favorite herbs for summer because, like spearmint, its flavor is easily infused into cold water—heating up a tea pot is unnecessary!

Hibiscus is a showy member of the Malvaceae (mallow) family native to subtropics and tropics around the world and appears in a variety of colors. The ruby-red hibiscus most of us are familiar is a popular beverage with a cooling, tangy-sweet flavor, delicious both hot and cold.

A number of research articles on hibiscus indicate that the flower is:

  • High in antioxidants (even higher than green tea!)
  • Anti-inflammatory
  • Helps lower blood pressure (in those with existing high blood pressure, not those with normal or low levels).
  • Lowers uric acid levels in people with gout
  • Improves cholesterol and triglycerides in those with pre-diabetes and diabetes

To add flavor and powerful antioxidants to your eight glasses of water a day, pop hibiscus cubes into your drinking glass instead of regular ice cubes. Simply make a hot or cold infusion (if hot, let it cool before freezing), pour into ice cube trays, then freeze.


Hibiscus tea with a kiss of lime is a traditional drink in Jamaica, and is not only delicious, but simply gorgeous with vibrant, rich colors.

Hibiscus cubes

Lime is cooling and refreshing, full of vitamin C , and alkaline forming. Use organic limes whenever possible, and be sure to peel if it’s conventionally grown.


If this hibiscus-lime combo is a bit too tangy for your taste buds, try adding a small amount of sweetener. You can also try adding fruit cubes to add a subtle, healthy fruity-sweet taste. To make, blend your fruit with a dash of water, pour into ice cube trays, then freeze. I used mango ice cubes in this recipe. A small pinch of clove magically ties everything together.

Hibiscus-Clove Cooler


1/2 to one whole lime, or to taste
4 – 6 hibiscus ice cubes
Cold water 
Tiniest pinch of clove
Dash of sweetener or 1-2 fruit ice cubes (optional)


Add lime slices or squeeze desired amount of juice into a tall glass
Add sweetener/fruit cubes if desired
Pour cold water over contents
Stir in tiny pinch of clove (optional)


HERBS we love for summer, hibiscus