What is a Basil Seed – A Tropical Plant

Of course, you know basil, that sweetly scented leaves used in everything from Thai food to Margherita pizza to pesto. The lovely herb is one of the most used and cherished in the world.

If you’re not cooking with basil leaves, you’re missing out. Yet, there’s more to basil than you can imagine. Basil seeds are the new thing, and they’re still undiscovered by many.

Today we’re changing all that because the secret is out. Basil seeds are awesome: tasty and healthy, so here’s all you need to know about them. What is a basil seed? You’re about to find out.

What are basil seeds? Let’s start with basil

First things first. Basil is a tropical plant that comes from Southeast Asia and Central Africa. Yet, there’s more than one type of basil. The most common varieties are the sweet basil, which you might find labeled as Genovese basil — think pesto — the Thai basil, the lemon basil and the holy basil. Together, they’re the most traded types of basil, and although some are minty and others are more earthy, they all have one thing in common — addictive flavors and aromas.

Basil seeds

The fragrant plant grows in France, Egypt, Hungary, Indonesia, Morocco, the United States, Greece and Israel. Being the USA the largest basil market. Basil seeds, though, are more widely used in India and Southeast Asia. As the world discovers these tiny seeds, they will become more widespread.

Basil seeds, black gold

Basil leaves are bright green, but the plant’s seeds are black and very small. They’re very similar to Chia seeds. It comes without saying growing your own basil at home is quite easy if you have a fistful of seeds. But if you don’t want to plant them, you might want to eat them instead.

Basil Seed Plant

When basil seeds are soaked in water, they expand and become gelatinous while retaining a nice crunch. They’re natural thickening agents for drinks and can be used to substitute chia seeds. Of course, basil seeds are more than a substitute; they have their own merits.

How to Cook with basil seeds?

Basil seeds are called sabja in India and are used in many popular beverages, such as the faluda, a dessert drink made with rose syrup, vermicelli rice noodles and milk. The drink has a long history and goes back all the way to the Persian empire.

The Turkish Sharbat, a fruit-based drink livened with flower petals and sweet syrups, is served with basil seeds too. Of course, you can add the contrasting seeds to ice cream, salads, lemonades and iced tea. Combining basil seeds with coconut milk and sugar renders a lovely pudding-like dessert. You must try this one.

Muffins, pudding, pancakes, bread, soups, yogurt, milkshakes or smoothies, everything tastes better with a small bunch of basil seeds.

Basil seed health benefits

Health benefits

Interestingly, these versatile dark seeds are more than a fun ingredient to play with; they’re quite healthy and have been used in traditional medicine for centuries. Here are some of their most impressive benefits.

  • Nutritionally, one tablespoon of basil seeds adds 2.5 grams of healthy fat to your diet, along with 7 grams of dietary fiber and 2 grams of protein.
  • Essential minerals in basil seeds are mostly calcium, with 15% of your daily needed intake, iron and magnesium, the last two with 10% of what you need in a day.
  • Basil seeds are consumed mostly for their fiber. They keep your arteries clear from cholesterol; they support your gut health, help you feel satisfied and even promote adequate levels of blood sugar levels.
  • If you want to complement your diet with antioxidants, then basil seeds are for you. They’re a fantastic source of flavonoids and polyphenols. These molecules will bind with free radicals in your bloodstream.
  • Finally, there’s the Omega-3 fatty acids. You can only get these essential compounds from fatty fish, like tuna and salmon, but also few other foods, including basil seeds.

Start enjoying basil seeds, and you’ll never look back

The best part is that, despite being little-known, basil seeds are easily found in specialty health stores, Asian markets, and online.

Once you start cooking with these crunchy, jelly-like seeds, you won’t stop. Their versatility is endless, and with that texture, they just make everything taste better.

Add basil leaves to your diet because they’re tasty and fun and benefit from the seeds’ nutritional properties at the same time. That’s a win-win proposition.

You might just end up loving basil seeds more than the plant’s aromatic leaves. Why not enjoy both? Checout our curated list of basil seeds to buy.


Highly Rated – Social Media Chatter on Basil Seeds

Taking a #basilseed break! These little guys are loaded with fiber, omega-3s, minerals, polyphenols & even a natural beauty secret! And, unlike their trendy cousin the chia seed, basil seeds are #lectinfree. I mixed mine with some unsweetened coconut milk. It makes a fun, refreshing afternoon pick-me-up. More basil seeds in your diet for the win! Support a small, female-owned business & get some zenbasil. (No affiliation) ...

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Penang’s legendary "Ais Tingkap" just celebrated its 100th year in business yesterday. The small stall tucked along the narrow Lebuh Tamil, next to Chowrasta market, has been operating since 1919 and is currently run by the fifth generation. The drink is said to be a cooling drink and it's made from rose syrup, basil seeds, coconut flesh and coconut water, topped off with shaved ice and some special fragrant Indian herbs. Have you tried it before?
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Ais Tingkap atau dikenali "Window Sherbet" merupakan salah satu minuman ais parut campuran istimewa yang hanya boleh didapati di Pulau Pinang. Gerai Ais Tingkap ini telah berniaga sejak tahun 1919 dan kini perniagaan dijalankan oleh generasi kelima keluarga. Minuman dengan resipi turun-temurun sejak 100 tahun lalu ini menggunakan campuran bahan seperti biji selasih, akar sarbat, kembang semangkuk, getah anggur, air dan isi kelapa serta ramuan rahsia. Pernahkah anda cuba minuman ini?
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吉灵万山旁淡米尔巷的“窗口冰”(Ais Tingkap)消暑饮料,一卖就卖了100年!这槟城独有的道地饮料从1919年开始卖,至今传至第五代了。Ais Tingkap饮料结合玫瑰露、椰肉和椰水,清凉解渴,最适合大热天时来一杯。您有喝过吗?
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Location 🍽️: Ais Tingkap (Lebuh Tamil)
GPS 📍: 5.418001, 100.331408
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Every Tuesday we will feature some famous & delicious foods in Penang using hashtag #penangfood. Follow our Instagram account 👉 i.love.penang 👈 and hashtag #ilovepenang for more updates too. 😊
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::Info Sehat Alami Wied Harry::
Diperkenankan dibagikan tanpa perlu izin
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SELASIH atau CHIA SEED?
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Keduanya masih satu keluarga besar, yakni famili Labiatae. Dalam keluarga besar mereka ada mint, basil, oregano, rosemary, thyme, sage, marjoram. Dibanding chia seed [Salvia hispanica], selasih [Ocimum basilicum] memiliki tali kekerabatan lebih dekat dengan kemangi, ruku-ruku, dan basil.
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Sepintas biji selasih dan chia seed sama, padahal berbeda. Biji selasih umumnya lebih mungil berwarna hitam legam, sedangkan chia seed berukuran lebih besar warnanya berbaur antara hitam, abu-abu, dan putih keruh. Kesamaannya, mereka sama-sama membentuk gel/lendir [mucilage] ketika direndam air.
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Jika dibandingkan per 100 g, biji selasih menyimpan kandungan serat sebesar 40,5 g, chia seed 34,5 g. Kandungan protein dalam selasih 20 g, dalam chia seed hanya 16,5 g. Persentase kandungan mineral terhadap AKG [Angka Kecukupan Gizi] harian: kalsium selasih 15%, kalsium chia seed hanya 8%; magnesium selasih 10%, magnesium chia seed 8%; zat besi selasih 10%, chia seed 9%.
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Baik selasih maupun chia seed sama-sama berlimpah lemak sehat omega-3. Kandungannya dalam chia seed lebih unggul. Agar omega-3 dapat diserap tubuh secara optimal, selasih maupun chia seed seyogyanya diasup raw setelah diulek kasar atau digrinder sesaat, bisa juga dengan cara dikunyah seksama hingga biji-bijinya hancur terbelah oleh gerusan gigi-geligi kita.
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Selasih maupun chia seed sebaiknya diasup setelah direndam dalam air hingga merekah. Jika diasup kering, selasih dan chia seed menarik terlalu banyak cairan dalam usus, sehingga berisiko sembelit dan mengganggu proses metabolisme.
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Kombinasi kandungan serat dan lemak sehat menjadikan selasih dan chia seed andal dalam membantu meningkatkan kesehatan usus, mengendalikan kadar gula darah dan kadar kolesterol darah, menurunkan risiko penyakit jantung dan kanker, serta membuat kita lebih mudah kenyang.
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Jadi, apa pilihan Anda: selasih atau chia seed? chia seed atau selasih?
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Foto: halodoc.com
Kiri selasih, kanan chia seed
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#selasih #chia #chiaseeds #basilseed #rawfood #smoothie #salad #jus #enzim #antioksidan #alkali #dietalkali #menualkali
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Sources:

  • https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Basil
  • https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/life-style/food-news/what-are-sabja-seeds-and-why-they-have-suddenly-become-popular/photostory/68170201.cms
  • https://food52.com/blog/22755-basil-seeds-explainer-what-is-it
  • https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/basil-seeds

4 thoughts on “What is a Basil Seed – A Tropical Plant

  1. Thanks for a comprehensive tutorial on the benefits of Basil Seeds to humanity! When I first started reading, the first thought that came up is how and where do I find these sweetly scented leaves called Basil Seeds? Is it something that can be found in any part of the world or only restricted to specific locations? Good to learn about Basil as a leaf that is so beneficial to man’s health!

    I know about some leaves that are really fun and tasty but do not offer as much health benefit as Basil does. Basil is a kind of vegetable plant that’s completely new to me. Glad I have access to some Asian stores where I can find these jelly-like, crunchy seeds! Thanks for the informative post!

    1. Thanks Michael. Basil seeds should be available everywhere. 

  2. Interestingly, I have grown and sown it at home in Serbia so many times and I have never tried to consume the seeds in any way in our country in Serbia. It is a very popular and famous plant. is in most Christian rites.So my question is whether this herb helps with axiosis and depression, thanks for the answer in advance. 🙂

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