A friend called the other day wanting to know what she should do with some fenugreek seeds she had sitting around. Well, as it turns out, my family and I happen to use fenugreek seeds pretty often.
Fenugreek is one of those really valuable herbs with multiple uses and benefits. It's too much to try to remember all at once, so I'm writing it all down. It's definitely worth the effort so that everyone can have a handy reference.
But before I get started on the things I have learned, here is what fenugreek seeds look like. You'd never guess from their appearance, but they are part of the legume family!
Common Name - Fenugreek
Latin Name - Trigonella foenum-graecum
Part Used - Seeds
Herbal Uses - Nutritive, emollient, mucilaginous, mild laxative, restorative, digestive, galactagogue, febrifuge, hair conditioner
Nutritive - fenugreek is a very nourishing herb. Amazingly, up to 27% of its seed weight is easily assimilated proteins. It also contains vitamins, iron, phosphorus, and sulfur.(1) That makes it valuable for children and people who need to gain weight.
Emollient - soothing and softening for the skin. The Back to Eden suggests making a fenugreek poultice with ground fenugreek seeds and charcoal. Add water to make a thick paste. It is good for ulcers and swellings.(2)
Mucilaginous - mucilaginous herbs soothe inflammed mucous membranes. For sore throats, gargle with some of the infusion (see below for recipes) and drink the rest 30 minutes before a meal. The tea also helps to clear mucus from the bronchial passages.(3)
Mild Laxative - The mucilaginous nature of fenugreek makes it great for relieving constipation. It is very soothing, healing, and lubricating for the bowels.
Restorative - Noah Webster's 1828 dictionary says that a restorative is "A medicine efficacious in restoring strength and vigor, or in recruiting the vital powers." Sounds good to me! This is great for people like me who are recovering from chronic fatigue or burnout.
Digestive - Fenugreek helps to quicken the digestion. It also promotes the metabolism of other foods.(4)
Galactagogue - helps to increase the flow of milk in nursing mothers.
Febrifuge - fenugreek infusion helps to break up fevers.
Natural Hair Conditioner - Some people use the tea as a natural conditioner for their hair. I have used it before and it does help to soften the hair.
Ways to Enjoy Fenugreek:
Note: You can easily make your own fenugreek powder by grinding a few tablespoons of fenugreek in a coffee grinder. Store in a glass jar in the fridge.
Infusion - Pour just boiled water over 1 tsp of ground fenugreek seeds. Steep for 10 - 15 minutes, or until it is warm. Drink plain or sweeten with a spoonful of raw honey 30 minutes before a meal.
Nourishing Fenugreek Drink - To make a nourishing warm drink, bring some non-dairy milk of your choice to a boil. Pour it over the seeds and stir. Steep for 10 - 15 minutes. Drink it plain, or sweeten to taste. I haven't had this in a while, but it is super good! It kind of reminds me of malted milk drinks. The powder forms a gel like mass which you can eat with your meal. Or you can drink the whole thing, ground seeds and all as a meal replacement.
Warm Sprouted Fenugreek Milk Drink - to make a raw version of the Nourishing Fenugreek Milk, blend 1/2 cup of fenugreek sprouts (see next recipe) and 10 oz of water together until creamy. Strain, or if you'd like, drink the whole thing for added nutrients. Warm it up to the temperature you like. Drink it plain, or add raw honey to your liking.
Fenugreek Sprouts - it's easy to sprout fenugreek seeds! Rinse 1 - 2 tablespoons (or more) in a strainer. Place them in a glass jar or sprouter and cover with distilled or any water you would drink. Soak for 8 hours or overnight. Pour off the soak water (see next recipe) and rinse the seeds. Set aside to sprout. Rinse and drain twice a day, morning, and evening. Sprouts take about 3 - 6 days to grow. Store them in the fridge once they are ready.
Fenugreek Soak Water - I have started drinking the soak water about 30 minutes before my savory meal after hearing in a lecture that it helps to flush the immune system. I have noticed that the soak water also helps to improve my digestion. I don't do this every day, just whenever we start a new batch of fenugreek sprouts.
Sprouted Fenugreek Treat - stir a spoonful of raw honey and a tiny pinch of sea salt into a small bowl of fenugreek sprouts. This makes a sweet nourishing treat after a savory meal.
Sprouted Fenugreek & Avocado Salad - mash a serving size of avocado with a handful or more of fenugreek sprouts. Add a pinch of sea salt, and a squeeze of lemon. Mix and enjoy!
Tasty Ingredient Addition to Salads, Soups, or Sandwiches - fenugreek sprouts are delicious in salads, or a filling in savory sandwiches. Back when I was eating some cooked food here and there, I really liked adding them to my split pea soup just before eating it. So good!
Have you tried fenugreek before? What is your favorite way to take it?
Follow my journey as I return to the original plan for living and eating...
This website and blog is where I share my personal experiences as I go back to our Creator's original plan for eating and living as found in that greatest of all textbooks, the Bible. It is for information and educational purposes only, and in no way should be taken as medical advice. For the diagnosis or treatment of disease and for medical advice, see your doctor or qualified healthcare practitioner. To come into harmony with God's true principles and methods for health, see the Great Physician.
Bless the LORD, O my soul: and all that is within me, bless his holy name. Bless the LORD, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits: Who forgiveth all thine iniquities; who healeth all thy diseases; Psalm 103:1-3
If thou wilt diligently hearken to the voice of the LORD thy God, and wilt do that which is right in his sight, and wilt give ear to his commandments, and keep all his statutes, I will put none of these diseases upon thee, which I have brought upon the Egyptians: for I am the LORD that healeth thee. Exodus 15: 26