Mother Earth Living

Healing “Four Thieves” Vinegar Recipe

According to French folklore, during the 17th century this concoction of herbs and vinegar kept four thieves (grave robbers, actually) from contracting the dreaded black plague. It was said that by dousing face masks with this brew, the thieves were able to rob the graves and houses of the recently deceased without falling ill. I believe it—these herbs are potent antivirals, anti-inflammatories and immune-boosters. When you feel colds, flu or (heaven forbid) the plague approaching, douse your salads and veggies in this (actually quite tasty) vinegar. You can also take it by the tablespoonful in warm water with a dash of honey and lemon.

Healing “Four Thieves” Vinegar Recipe

• 2 tablespoons dried rosemary
• 2 tablespoons dried sage
• 2 tablespoons dried lavender
• 2 tablespoons dried wormwood
• 2 tablespoons dried peppermint
• 1 quart raw, organic apple cider vinegar
• 2 tablespoons fresh garlic, chopped

1. In a clean, quart-size glass jar, combine the first five herbs and apple cider vinegar. Cover and steep in a cool dark place for about 2 weeks, shaking daily.

2. Strain out herbs and return vinegar to jar. Add garlic and cover. Let steep for a few days more and strain again. Store in the fridge for up to 6 months.

Note: Wormwood is not recommended for pregnant or nursing women, and could be problematic for those with a kidney disorder, a seizure disorder, porphyria or a ragweed allergy.

Discover some the best natural remedies for wintertime health in The Best Herbal Remedies for Winter.


Recipe excerpted fromHerbal Goddess: Discover the Amazing Spirit of 12 Healing Herbs with Teas, Potions, Salves, Food, Yoga, and More by Amy Jirsa.

  • Published on Oct 7, 2015
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