Straining Fresh Food Glycerites: Two Results From One Batch

Above, the beginning of a glycerite with fresh raspberries. To get the most out of fresh fruits, I generally crush them before adding glycerine. Some fresh foods - such as these raspberries - are easily mashed with a spoon, while others are chopped in a grinder/chopper first. 

Once the glycerine is added, this mixture is going to look a lot like a raspberry coulis.

While this method makes for a potent (and immensely fragrant glycerite), straining can be a challenge if you want a see-through and uncloudy end product. 

Today, I'm going to give you a little glycerite straining tip that gives you the best of both worlds. 

One Batch - Two Straining Methods

Below is the result of this batch after straining. The glycerite in the bottle on the right is see-through while the glycerite in the bottle on the left is quite cloudy. 

I placed a twig of dried lavender behind the bottles so you can see the difference. You can also see the inside bottom of the bottle on the right - but not the left.  

The bottle on the left is not the kind of cloudy that will clear up over time. Sometimes when making an infusion/maceration/extraction, residue plant material will settle to the bottom and leave a clear liquid on top. This batch stood untouched for weeks with no change. 

The reason? Because of the straining method used for the bottle on the left vs the straining method used for the bottle on the right. 

It's quite simple really. Here's how.

How to Strain One Batch of Glycerite Two Ways

  1. Place 2-3 layers of cheesecloth in a strainer over a bowl and pour the batch into the strainer. 
  2. Allow the liquid to drip through without any assistance. No pressing or squeezing!
  3. At one point the dripping will stop even though there will still be plenty of material left. 
  4. Bottle the liquid that has passed through the strainer. 
  5. Now, gather up the sides of the cheesecloth and twist to press out as much of the remaining liquid as possible. This is going to result in a cloudier glycerite, but a satisfyingly good batch yield. 

Where to Use Clear and Cloudy Glycerites

A few years ago, I was convinced a cloudy glycerite was simply not good enough to be used in anything, but working with them non-stop has made me discover otherwise. A cloudy glycerite definitely has its uses! 

Match the glycerite to the product. Some products are more appealing with a clear look while with other products, it's not at all critical. 

Clear glycerites are great for products such as skin tonics, toners, gels, clear serums and anything where the contents is packaged 'to be visible'. A clear, clean look is both sellable and appealing. 

Non-see-through glycerites are ideal for lotions, creams, serums, masks, or anything where the end product is opaque. The inherent cloudiness disappears into the product without affecting the end result. 

You Can Do This Too

Want to learn how to make your own glycerites with everything from fresh foods to dried herbs?

This book shows you how. 

Do Tell

Do you use glycerites in your products? How do you strain yours? Please feel free to share in a comment below.


Unknown said…
I need to learn how to do this! Last summer my raspberry canes produced 200pints! Now I can use some of them for glycerite!
LisaLise said…
Hey there Unknown — how wonderful to have a generous source! Enjoy!
JustineA said…
Did you ever taste your glycerites? I was researching tooth paste recipes and was wondering if I could use a glycerite for flavouring it for my kids...
LisaLise said…
Hi Justine — since glycerine /glycerol is a common toothpaste ingredient, I don’t see why you wouldn’t be able to use a glycerite. If I were making a glycerite for toothpaste, I would be inclined to make a self preserving one 😊
JustineA said…
Thanks, I know it is a common toothpaste ingredient. I actually wanted to know if your raspberries glycerite also tastes like raspberries. My daughter insists on strawberry flavor in her toothpaste 🤷‍♀️
LisaLise said…
Justine - I must admit I have not tasted my raspberry glycerite but judging from the strength of the scent, I imagine the taste is also there. And I am not going to be tasting my next batch! I'd love yo hear how it works out for you if you give this a try.
LisaLise said…
HI Justine -_ Forgive me - I just saw you wanted strawberry - not raspberry. For optimal fragrance, I find fresh strawberries (in season) are the most potent. :)
Anonymous said…
What will be the formula to make 10ml blueberry glycerine. I'm making so less because I'm new at learning. 80 percent of 10ml is 8gm glycerin and 19 percent fresh fruit which comes to 1.9 percent means only two blueberries.ia that enough I'm so confused
LisaLise said…
Hi Anon — You might want to start a bit higher as there is some loss during straining. To make things easy, do 100 grams. Then your percentage and grams are the same. Have you checked my website I wrote a book about making glycerites with calculation charts and formulas that you might find very helpful 😊
Anonymous said…
Do you count the glycerite as the glycerine in the formulation or just an extract in the cool down phase?

LisaLise said…
Hi Anon- yes, I do count the glycerite as glycerine in most instances. This will of course depend on how much you want to add. :)
Anonymous said…
Hi Lisa,

Do you think this would work for an irish moss based hair conditioner?
Soak the moss, blend then strain?
I often find small bits in my home made gels and am wondering if this might be the soltution. Though I think the nature of moss and flaxseed gels might produce small bits in the hair regardlesss?

LisaLise said…
Hi Unknown - That's an interesting question. I have never worked with fresh Irish moss so have no input as to how this might work with that. I have found if you have something really hard to strain that using a piece of old cotton bedsheet or something of the same nature helps keep a lot of smaller particles back, but it is a bit of an exercise in patience straining this way.
Sandra said…
Why wouldn't a small salad spinner work for straining using cotton material? Like a centrifuge.
LisaLise said…
HI Sandra

Intriguing idea! If I had one I'd certainly give it a try. :)