5 Herbs Used in Smoking Mixtures

Kicking Tobacco and Nicotine With Herbal Smoking Substances

If you been told that you need to stop smoking or really think it is time to stop, it can seem like a huge hurdle. The idea of going cold turkey can keep you from even attempting to quit. Nicotine addiction is only one component of smoking. For others, it is a soothing act, a time for contemplative relaxation or an oral habit used for self-soothing.

If your road to quitting smoking means you start by replacing tobacco cigarettes with herbal ones, herbal substances seem apparently less harmful than tobacco.

Take a look at a sampling of herbs that can be used for a smoking mixture. For an exhaustive list, learn more with the help of Howie Brounstein.

illustration of popular herbs for smoking mixtures
Illustration: © The Spruce, 2018
  • 01 of 05


    Georgian Mullein in a field

    Bob Gibbons/Getty Images

    Think of mullein as the neutral base in any herbal smoking mixture. It adds bulk, a very light smoke, and not much else to the flavor.

    Mullein is also used in smoking mixtures for smokers who are trying to bring up congestion. Be aware that this technique is not to be used by someone who is not a smoker. The resulting coughing fit will not benefit any respiratory illness.

    Dry mullein will go up in a puff of smoke and taste too harsh to be enjoyed at all. Use the fuzzy leaf, when it is dry but still very pliable—think too moist to store in a jar.

    To prepare mullein leaf, allow it to dry slightly and then rub it as you would sage to produce a light, fluffy herb. For instructions on how to hand-rub mullein, see hand-rubbed sage.

  • 02 of 05

    Raspberry Leaves

    Raspberry growing on a tree

    Junji Oda/EyeEm/Getty Images

    Used for flavor, raspberry leaves also add some body to the smoking mixture. It is usually the next largest amount of herb that is added to a smoking mixture.

    If you are quitting smoking, you may find that you need much more red raspberry leaves in the beginning. Eventually, you can try scaling back this ingredient as it becomes easier to smoke less.

    Use dried leaves that are thoroughly dried and lightly spritzed with water to refresh them. Herbs that are too dried out taste harsh and will not be enjoyable. The remedy is a light misting with water and allow the leaves to absorb just a bit.

    When making a smoking mixture, hand-tear the raspberry leaves. This produces a larger piece that can be better blended into the mixture.

  • 03 of 05


    Close-up of a catnip plant
    Linda Lewis/Getty Images

    Catnip adds a relaxing note to the smoking mixture. Catnip is a very useful herb to have at your disposal. It is gentle and can be effective to take the edge off the craving for tobacco. It can be a little too harsh once that craving abates. When adding catnip, use a light hand—it is an acquired taste for many.

    It is also easy to grow indoors.

  • 04 of 05


    Spring of sage on wood

    Roland Krieg/Getty Images

    Sage is an herb that will enhance the smoke of your mixture. All varieties of sage can be used. Each variety has its own unique flavor. Try a few types before settling on your favorite.

    Continue to 5 of 5 below.
  • 05 of 05

    Lemon Balm

    Close-up of lemon balm

    Michael Peuckert/Getty Images

    Lemon balm is an unusual flavoring for your herbal smoking mixtures. It does add to the recipe by creating a heavier smoke, but the lemon flavor might be offputting to some.