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How to use Roselle Hibiscus: 5 Tasty Recipes

How to use Roselle Hibiscus: 5 Tasty Recipes

You’ve grown roselle hibiscus… but now you aren’t sure what to do with it.

Learn how to use roselle hibiscus and how to incorporate it into your diet with 5 tasty recipes that use roselle hibiscus.

Roselle hibiscus, red sorrel, Jamaican sorrel, and Florida cranberry are a few of the many names for “Hibiscus sabdariffa”, which is a tasty and stunning addition to the garden.

Best recipes for roselle hibiscus

Best recipes for roselle hibiscus

Roselle is a prolific producer. One plant produces dozens and dozens of calyces over the course of the season.

These are my picks for the best recipes to help you use the roselle calyces that are growing in your garden.

1. Rosella Jam – This Australian favorite has quickly become our favorite way to use roselle. 

2. Roselle Citrus Tea – Refreshing and delicious. Brisk mornings are perfect for a warm cup of this delicious tea. It’s made from freeze-dried or dehydrated roselle, lemon verbena, stevia, lemon grass, and lemon peel. 

Roselle Hibiscus Holiday Sauce

3. Hibiscus Holiday Sauce – This Hibiscus Holiday Sauce has replaced traditional cranberry sauce at our house. I’d love for you to give it a try.

4. Hibiscus Syrup – Use this versatile syrup as a beverage concentrate, pancake or ice cream topping, or as a flavor base in savory dishes. 

5. Jamaican Sorrel Drink – Arguably the most well-known and popular way to use roselle hibiscus. This drink, often called “Rosa de Jamaica”, is a Christmas tradition in Mexico, Central America, and the Caribbean. In Mexico or in Mexican restaurants in the United States, the beverage is known simply as “Jamaica”.

The flavor of the roselle calyx is similar to cranberry but less bitter with lemon undertones. To use the calyces, cut open the calyx, remove the white seed capsule, and rinse before using.

Add roselle hibiscus to your favorite recipes ​

How to grow Roselle Hibiscus: Growing Jamaican Sorrel
Dehydrated calyxes
  • Use roselle in smoothies. Remove calyces from the seed pod, and use fresh or frozen in smoothies. (Don’t forget that the leaves are also edible and an easy addition to smoothies.)
  • Add roselle to your favorite sauces. Roselle adds a distinctive flavor and color; it is a tasty addition to sweet and savory sauces.
  • Dehydrate or freeze hibiscus leaves to use later. 

The blooms, leaves, and pods are also edible

The leaves taste like spicy spinach and are frequently used in many cultures around the world. 

How to grow Roselle Hibiscus: Growing Jamaican Sorrel

Use the leaves in salads, as cooked greens, for tea, and in jam.

How to store roselle calyces until you’re ready to use them

When not stored properly, roselle calyces often become moldy. Here are two tips to lengthen the storage life of your harvested roselle:

  • Remove the blossom from the inside of the calyx. If left in place, the blossom often becomes moldy.
  • Store calyces in the refrigerator in these containers for the longest storage life.

How to grow Roselle Hibiscus_ Growing Jamaican Sorrel

Want to learn more about growing roselle hibiscus? This article is a good place to begin. 

Purchase seeds for roselle hibiscus here

If you enjoyed this article, please share it:


Saturday 9th of December 2023

Any recipe you have to make a liqueur? Any I have seen have been from dried hibiscus but looking to make with fresh that I picked up at the farmers market. Thanks!

Angela Judd

Wednesday 13th of December 2023

I don't have one - sorry!

Laura Marie

Wednesday 22nd of November 2023

Angela, thank you so much!! First timer here, made 2 batches of the jam already, getting ready to make the holiday sauce for tomorrow, I can't wait for family and friends to try this it is so good and easy to make!! I will also be making the tea, and giving jam and tea for Christmas gifts. We're addicted so thanks again : ) Enjoy thanksgiving!!

Angela Judd

Friday 24th of November 2023

Hope you enjoy it! Happy Thanksgiving!


Thursday 2nd of November 2023

We just harvested out first batch of Roselle! You mention the seed pods being edible. Do you have any more info on that? What they taste like, or how best to prepare them?

Thanks for always being such an amazing resource!

Angela Judd

Thursday 2nd of November 2023

I don't. I use them for jam, but haven't used them other ways. Maybe a quick google search could bring up some ideas. If you find ways you enjoy, please let me know.

MaryElizabeth Calais

Thursday 19th of October 2023

Hi Angela, I first tasted Roselle in a delicious Asian salad at my Son's home when I was visiting from out of State. He had picked up a to-go salad on the way home from work. Bright red Roselle garnished the lovely green salad. It tasted like pickled in vinegar with a twinge of sweet flavor.

I purchased seeds to grow the treat in my garden. Became ill and wasn't able to plant in my garden. Your video makes me excited to plant them next spring. I'm going to try pickling them, maybe similar to Bread & Butter pickles that I used to make? Yummmm. A 6th recipe to add to your repertoire of Roselle Recipes from MaryElizabeth Calais :) P.S. I was a subscriber to your YouTube and so enjoyed. Then had cancer, but starting to garden again. God is Good to me. And you're in good hands with Kevin..... I've following him for years. Blessings! Keep up the good Gardening..... :):):)


Thursday 3rd of November 2022

Do you have any tips on dehydrating the calyxes for someone who doesn’t have a dehydrator?

Angela Judd

Monday 7th of November 2022

You could look up how to dehydrate using your oven. It may work to use your oven on it's lowest setting.