I have to say, the number one question I get asked is “what are my top recommended herbalism books for a beginner”. I absolutely love when people ask these questions, so I took a little bit of time to put together my top list!
Books are not only a wonderful resource and enjoyable to read, but they are also the gateway to your herbal education. When I started to get into herbalism myself, I started by just reading a few books. I have to say, those few books turned into a small library. While I enjoy so many books, I decided to share my favorites. These books are helpful for anyone who is just getting started or wants to learn a new skill. I’d love to know what you think as well and if you have a favorite I may have missed. Let me know in the comments below or reach out on Instagram (@mytinylagunakitchen).
Like I mentioned, there are so many amazing books out there on Herbalism! Below are my recommended herbalism books to get you started on your own journey.
Home Remedies and Herbal Medicine
Healing Herbal Infusions – Simple and Effective Home Remedies by Colleen Codekas the Founder of Grow Forage Cook Ferment. This is the number one book that I recommend to anyone who is new to herbalism. Colleen does an amazing job breaking down all of the Herbalism information into accessible knowledge. The book is filled with gorgeous, easy, and accessible recipes with stunning photos. Whenever I need a little inspiration without getting overwhelmed this is the book I pick up.
Body Into Balance An Herbal Guide to Holistic Self-Care by Maria Noel Groves. When I worked at my corporate job, I was constantly searching for any new self-care and helpful remedies I could find. Herbal remedies and self care routines that are easy to implement fill this book. I love that this book has beautiful illustrations and education from cover to cover.
Herbal Healing for Women, Simple Home Remedies for Women of All Ages by Rosemary Gladstar. One of the first herbalism books I picked up, and one of the most influential. I was called to this book because it went through a handful of women’s health topics that are not often talked about. I learned a ton while reading this book.
Alchemy Of Herbs by Rosalee de la Forêt. Beautiful recipes, foundational herbal inspiration, and bountiful knowledge! Whether you are a newbie herbalist or someone who has been on the path for awhile, I highly recommend this book being in your herbal library. The recipes are unique and inspiring.
Medicinal Herbs A Beginners Guide by Rosemary Gladstar. I can never choose between which Rosemary Gladstar books to choose from! Like her other books, I believe this book is a must to have on hand. Especially if you are just beginning. This book introduces you to some new and familiar plant friends, but approaches them by highlighting their healing qualities!
Plant Spirit Medicine by Eliot Cowan. A beautiful resource for learning more about plant spirit medicine, and how the plants call out to us. In this book you learn how we can treat plants with respect, form a relationship with the plants, and also learn about the land and indigenous practices.
The Witch’s Herbal Apothecary Rituals & Recipes for a Year of Earth Magick and Sacred Medicine Making by Marysia Miernowska. Marysia is only a short drive from where I live and all of her work is just such an abundance of inspiration and learning. The aspect of the book I especially love is how it’s geared toward the idea of the wheel of the year. This book guides you through seasonal herbal practices and recipes.
Medicinal Herbs for Immune Defense: 104 Trusted Recipes for Fighting Colds, Flus, Fevers, and More by JJ Pursell. Filled with educational content about how to use medicinal herbs for immune defense, this is a must have. The recipes are easy to follow, and such a great resource when looking to learn how to support your own immune system. Oh, and the photos are absolutely stunning! I also really enjoy Medicinal Herbs for Family Health and Wellness a book by the same author JJ Pursell. The book is laid out in a similar way just focusing on family health and wellness.
Natural Body and Skincare Books
Botanical Skin Care Recipe Book By The Herbal Academy. A beautiful book filled with hand-drawn illustrations an abundance of herbal skincare recipes. From front to back the book is filled with recipes that are easy to make. It also covers a wide variety of common skincare products that you can make at home. It’s a lovely book to turn to when you are needing a homemade skincare or self-care recipe. This is one of my highest recommended herbalism books for skin care.
Natural Homemade Skin Care By Militza Maury. By the blogger Little Green Dot, her book is filled with recipes for skin care that require simple and easy-to-find ingredients. I love how simple, gorgeous and accessible all of Militza’s recipes are!
Recommended Herbalism Books For the Kitchen
Recipes From The Herbalist Kitchen by Brittany Wood Nickerson. I found this book at our local farm stand. There’s no better way to learn how to prepare locally inspired, herbal recipes than with local produce. This book covers a wide variety of recipes and is my go to when I’m in need of some inspiration.
The Kosmic Kitchen Cookbook: Everyday Herbalism and Recipes for Radical Wellness by Sarah Kate Benjamin. A very vibrant book filled with both unique and familiar recipes to weave into your everyday life. From breakfast and lunch to dinner and dessert there’s something for everyone. This book is also a lovely to include if you are a beginner herbalist. Sarah goes over foundational herbalism principles to start you off. If you are familar with herbal studies, there’s new principals for you as well. And the recipes are amazing for anyone! One of my top recommended herbalism books for the kitchen.
While learning about herbalism, I’ve found that many of us have ancestral connections to working with the plants. It’s really important and special to learn about our past connections. Not only as a way to honor the ones who have come before us but also to tap into another way of being. Whether it be a past life and/or ancestral work, it’s such an honor to read about the traditions and folklore of your own lineage. This allows us to learn and practice in a way you can teach to not only yourself but the future generations to come.
For years, I couldn’t find any herbalism books connecting me to my Polish Roots. That was until I found Polish Herbs, Flowers & Folk Medicine. If you are Polish, like myself, and are looking for ways to connect to your traditional heritage, I couldn’t recommend this book enough! It’s absolutely amazing to learn from your heritage and see patterns from your ancestors.
I am also on the search for more folklore and herbalism books based on Celtic Traditions. If you know any, please reach out in the comment section below or on Instagram (@mytinylagunakitchen). If you have any recommended herbalism books from any other traditions, please share those as well and I can pass them along to other folks. I believe in the magic of learning from your ancestral traditions and carrying those on.