Simmer pots are not just for winter. When you use fresh herbs from the summer garden, simmer pots are a great way to freshen your home when you’re keeping the windows closed with the AC on. People have been scenting their homes with herbs for centuries and even used to sprinkle dried herbs on clean floors to keep their homes smelling fresh and clean. This is why Sarah Munro–my PhD historian and heroine in book 2 of the Deadly Force series, ONE DARK WISH–has a list for summer-scented simmer pots in her collection of DIY herbal recipes.

The recipe below uses fresh lemons, rosemary, and vanilla extract. But I have also used a few other combinations like:

  • 6-10 pine or cedar twigs, 4 bay leaves, and 1 teaspoon grated nutmeg.
  • 1 orange (sliced), 1 teaspoon grated fresh ginger, and 1/4 teaspoon almond extract.
  • 1 fresh lime (sliced), 4 thyme sprigs, ten mint leaves, and 1/4 teaspoon pure vanilla extract.
  • 1 orange (sliced), 2 cinnamon sticks, and six cloves.
  • 1 lemon (sliced) and 20 mint leaves,

When you put all of the ingredients in a glass jar to sit, these herbal room scents also make lovely gifts for friends and family.


  • 1 pint (2-cup) glass jar with a tight-fitting lid
  • 1 lemon, washed and sliced
  • 6 sprigs of fresh rosemary
  • 1/4 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • filtered water


Fill the jar with the lemon slices, fresh rosemary, and a 1/4 teaspoon of pure vanilla extract. Fill the jar with filtered water.

Cover the jar with a lid and let sit for 12-24 hours—or give as a gift to a friend.

When ready to use, pour the jar’s contents into a small pot on the stove. Bring to a boil and then lower to a simmer. This simmer pot should last about an hour and will spread the scent throughout the first floor of a house or apartment.

Watch the water carefully and turn off the pot just before all the water boils away. (You don’t want to burn the pot!)

You can double or triple this recipe if you want a larger, longer-burning simmer pot.


I am not a medical professional and nothing written on this blog is medical advice. None of my statements have been evaluated by the FDA (I am legally required to give you this disclaimer).

It is important to do your due diligence before foraging, harvesting, and/or consuming any type of medicinal plant.

  • If you are taking any medications, talk to your doctor about any potential drug interactions.
  • If you are allergic to anything, make sure whatever you are foraging is not in the same family. Example: While dandelions are typically considered safe, those who are allergic to ragweed, latex, daisies, or any other plants in the same or similar families, may not be able to consume dandelion.

Always research potential side effectsdosage recommendations, and how to properly prepare and consume each medicinal plant.

Always make sure you are foraging what you believe to be. Fully prepare and study the anatomy before harvesting wild plants.

Always make sure your kitchen/work area is clean and that all materials are sterilized.

Do not forage plants from areas that have been sprayed within the past 2 years at the very least.

I am not legally or morally responsible for the health of any of my readers. Please do your own research!

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