I’m continuing with my crafty Christmas DIY’s and today I’m bringing you a DIY Stovetop Potpourri idea! I didn’t know what stovetop potpourri was until I was researching for this recipe but it’s either dried or fresh fruits/herbs/spices that you simmer in a pot on the stove. It will have your house smelling like Christmas all day! I just tried out my stovetop potpourri and OMG – it FILLS the house with scent. It’s much stronger than a candle!
This stovetop potpourri also makes a nice inexpensive gift to give out to friends and family. All you have to do is package it up nicely in a glass jar, add some ribbon, and wrap it up!
DIY Dried Stovetop Potpourri
All you need for this recipe are dried apple and orange slices, cinnamon sticks, and spices. I used whole cloves and star anise because I love the smell and they look festive! You can buy all of this items already dried in bulk, including the fruit slices, OR you can dehydrate your own fruit slices. I decided to try to dry my own fruit slices this time but honestly, it might be easier to buy in bulk if you are planning on making a lot of these for gifts.
Ingredients + Materials
- Cinnamon Sticks
- Whole Cloves
- Whole Star Anise
- Mason Jar
- Small ornament or charm for decoration
Directions for Drying Fruit
Slice fruit into even 1/4 inch thick slices. I placed my fruit slices on a paper towel to try to absorb as much juice as I could before putting them in the oven to dehydrate. If you have the time, you can leave the fruit to dry on the counter on a paper towel for a couple hours. The drier they are before you put them in the oven, the quicker they will dehydrate.
I lined a baking sheet with foil and then placed a rack on top of the sheet (you can see the rack above). Then I placed the oranges on top of the rack and put it in the oven and baked them at 200 degrees for maybe 2 hours.
The idea is to go low and slow. You want to bake them on the lowest heat until they dry all the way out. I checked on the slices every half hour and flipped them. Once I saw that they were getting drier I started to check more often because I didn’t want them to burn. Some of the orange slices did end up turning brown/black so I wasn’t able to use them. Drying time really depends on your oven and how dry the slices are before you put them in the oven. So I recommend checking/flipping the fruit often!
I did the same thing for the apple slices. I cut the slices thin, patted them dry, and baked them at 200 degrees until they dried out. I found the apple slices were less finicky to dry out than the orange slices.
I just used 1 orange and 1 apple for this jar. I wasn’t that great at cutting even, thin slices so I couldn’t use several of the slices. I ended up with about 9 orange slices from the whole orange and 3 ended up burning in the oven. The apple was even harder for me to slice for some reason. I only ended up with 5 slices from the whole apple…haha. But all of them made it out of the oven!
Assembling the Potpourri Jar
Once you have all your dried fruit and spices just fill up your glass jar or mason jar! You could also fill little cellophane baggies with the mix to give away as gifts but I like to avoid plastic. The glass jars are nice because the recipient can reuse them! I put my potpourri mix in a mason jar. I found a larger jar with a wider mouth works best because some of my orange slices were pretty wide. I like to attach a little ornament to the lid using some string or twine. I found inexpensive mini star ornaments at Michaels Craft Store that I tied to the lid of my jar.
You can be creative with your potpourri mix too. Use whatever fruits/spices/herbs you have lying around the house! Dried rosemary, lemon slices, dried cranberries, bay leaves, etc. You can also add drops of essential oil (like orange essential oil) to your mix for an extra kick. I would have loved to add dried cranberries to my mix for some festive color, but I didn’t have any.
How to Use the Potpourri
To use the stovetop potpourri, pour the mix into a saucepan and cover with water. Simmer the mix on the lowest setting. That’s it! I would place the saucepan on the back burner since it will be on for hours. You will also need to check the saucepan every once in awhile to make sure the water doesn’t get too low. You can reuse the potpourri too! Just pour out the excess water from the saucepan, put leftovers in a sealed container, and put it in the fridge to store it.
I hope you enjoyed this DIY! Let me know if you plan to try it out! Check out my Holiday Tab for more holiday inspired recipes and gift ideas!
More Holiday Gift Ideas and Recipes