Nigella Sativa Tea a.k.a. Black Seed Tea


Black seed tea has been appearing more and more on the web and in home brews for good reason! The plethora of health benefits associated with black seed are so abundant, it’s been called “The Blessed Seed” in Middle Eastern cultures. Yet, it only took a mere three millennia for the rest of us to get wind of it. Actually, black seed, which comes from the Nigella Sativa plant, is steeped (no pun intended) in Egyptian culture as far back as Pharaoh Tutankhamun’s time, suggesting the ancient Egyptians were one of its earliest cultivators. It’s even said that the prophet Mohammed, at a later point, made the assertion that black seed is ‘The remedy for everything but death.’  Scientific study is still confirming this!

Now, it’s not exactly a tea as most people know it, which is a finely ground blend of herbs and leaves taken from known ‘tea’ plants. Rather, it’s a hot drink made with whole or ground black seeds, namely black cumin, coriander, caraway, sesame, and onion. While raw seeds have a strong taste, their tea counterpart has a rather mild flavor profile reminiscent of chamomile or green tea. Personally, I take unsweetened hot tea, but, as with all teas, black seed tea can be enjoyed with any sweetener you like.

So where can I get it?

Local Middle Eastern markets may carry it in teabag form, which is probably the quickest way to prepare it. If you’re looking to make it from scratch, raw seeds, seed oil, powder, and oil supplements can be obtained online or at a health food/vitamin store. As potency goes, it seems black seed oil contains the highest concentration of phytochemicals. Ongoing research shows that thymoquinone, the most active ingredient, contains high antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties, but more importantly, the health advantages found in black seed oil go far beyond this already impressive list of benefits.

Another wonderful aspect of black seed itself is the many culinary applications it has. In addition to drinking it as a tea, ground seeds can be added to baked goods’ batter or used as a topping. You can also use it in your favorite honey, so you can sneak in a spoonful every now and again! Black seed oil can also be added to honey and used to sweeten other teas or beverages–iced tea being my personal favorite–and still provide its benefits. For the die-hard tea enthusiast, black seed tea preparation is relatively straightforward. Simply combine one and a quarter cups of water with two teaspoons of raw seeds in a small pot and bring to a boil. Remove from heat and cover to steep for about ten minutes. Strain with a wire mesh and mix with Manuka or ginseng-infused honey, and take in the goodness! 

It should be noted that a study conducted at the United Arab Emirates Department of Pharmacology and Therapeutics determined that heated Nigella Sativa seeds contain the same potency as raw seeds, meaning that boiling them does not diminish any of their nutritional content.

Organic Black Seed Tea
A home-made tea recipe using brewed Organic Black Seeds.
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  1. 12-ounces of water
  2. 2 tsp. Organic Black Seeds
  3. Raw Manuka Honey (taste)
  4. 2-3 Whole Cloves (opt.)
  5. 1-2 Star Anise (opt.)
  6. Black Seed Oil (opt.)
  1. Combine water, seeds, and cloves (or anise), and bring to a boil for 6-7 minutes.
  2. Remove from heat and cover to steep for 10 minutes.
  3. Strain with a wire mesh, and add 1 clove or anise for garnish, if desired.
  4. Sweeten with honey to taste.
  5. Enjoy the healthy goodness.
  6. **Alternatively, you can mix together 1 tsp. Black Seed Oil with 1-2 tbsp. honey and add to your preferred tea or beverage to obtain the benefits of Nigella Sativa.
  1. ✓ Available for purchase in the PureFormulas Store