Simmer pots (or “simmer potpourri”) are an increasingly popular way to give your living space a wonderful, completely customizable scent. They’re also incredibly easy to make and free of any artificial ingredients. So, what is a simmer pot & how to make one? Continue reading because this blog post will answer those two questions!
What Is a Simmer Pot?
A simmer pot is a DIY air freshener made by heating slices of fruits, bunches of herbs, cinnamon sticks, vanilla, and other elements in a saucepan or slow cooker filled with water.
Simmer pots are an easy, natural, and customizable way to get the sent you want to fill your home with while also avoiding the open flame of candles, harsh fragrances, and harmful ingredients. Because they’re made with just water and herbs, you can rest assured the whole family will be inhaling fewer toxins.
How to Make A Simmer Pot
What You’ll Need
- Medium saucepan or a slow cooker
- Cutting Board
Now for the fun part of the simmer pot process: combining ingredients! While you can find specific recipes for simmer pots, you can also throw in a bit of this and that and end up with a great scent.
I have a few simmer pot recipes: 4 Simmer Pot Recipes for Autumn, Old Fashioned Christmas Simmer Pot, and Apple Pie Simmer Pot Recipe. Feel free to try one of those, but for now here are some ideas for creating your own recipe:
- Fruit: apples, oranges, lemon, and cranberries
- Spices: cinnamon sticks, cloves, and star anise seeds
- Herbs (dried or fresh): lavender, rosemary, and eucalyptus
- Extras: sprigs from cedar trees, and vanilla
In a saucepan:
- Fill your saucepan halfway with water and bring to a boil.
- Add your scent ingredients and let the water continue to boil for a few more minutes.
- Lower the heat until your ingredients are—you guessed it—simmering. You can leave the pot simmering for a few hours at a time, as long as the heat stays low enough to keep it warm but not boiling.
Tip: To avoid running out of water or burning your pot, top it off with fresh, room temperature water every 30-45 minutes.
In a slow cooker:
- Add water and your ingredients until your slow-cooker is about half full.
- Put the cover on and turn on the heat.
- Heat until the pot starts to boil—you’ll be able to tell because the lid will have drops of water that roll down the sides from the steam condensing.
- Uncover and turn the slow cooker down to its Low, Warm, or Simmer setting.
Tip: Always remember to keep an eye on your pot and make sure the water isn’t evaporating too quickly; you can add more as needed.
Why Avoid Synthetic Fragrances?
Fragrance can also be labeled as ‘parfume’ and is considered a Trade Secret Ingredient. This means companies are not obligated to disclose exactly which ingredients make up the fragrance in their products. There are over 3,000 possible chemicals companies can chose from and hide under the term ‘fragrance’. These chemicals can cause health issues such as headaches, skin irritation, inability to focus, sinus and lung irritation, and may even be linked to more serious illnesses such as asthma, cancer, autism, birth defects, and allergic reactions.
The basic point is this. We, as consumers, are not told exactly what ‘fragrance’ means in a product. That is something I am not comfortable with, so I chose to rid my home (as much as I can) of those types of products and find replacements that are more natural. It gives me peace of mind to know what is in the products I place in my home, on my babies, and in my own body.
Living a toxic-free lifestyle is something we strive for, but please don’t simply take my word for it. I encourage you to do your own research and I believe you’ll find that my claims are not made up. In the end it is up to you to choose what things you fill your home with.
More Natural Home Recipes
- 4 Simmer Pot Recipes for Autumn
- Apple Pie Simmer Pot Recipe
- Old Fashioned Christmas Simmer Pot
- DIY Natural All Purpose House Cleaner
- Non-Toxic Glass Cleaner
- Homemade Toilet Bowl Cleaner