15 Best Herbs to Smoke

by Kat Austin August 03, 2022 5 min read

15 Best Herbs to Smoke - Vida Optima™

There are many different plants that can be smoked in a pipe or rolled into herbal cigarettes and enjoyed for their aromatic properties, but which are the best herbs to smoke? From hemp to holy basil, many herbs are easy to acquire and offer therapeutic benefits that can make them a useful part of your daily routine.

Whether you're looking for something to take the edge off of stress, a replacement for tobacco cigarettes, or just want something enjoyable to puff during the day, here are the 15 best herbs to smoke (safely and legally):

Key Takeaways 

  • Hemp, a non-psychoactive relative of cannabis, is featured for its high CBD content and potential relaxing effects, including mild psychoactivity with certain strains.
  • Some herbs, like Calamus and Catnip, are recommended as alternatives to smoking and can aid in quitting tobacco or cannabis.
  • Herbs like Calendula and Holy Basil have historical medicinal uses, but more research is needed to understand their full benefits when smoked.
  • Each herb has a unique taste and consistency when smoked, making them suitable for different preferences and purposes.


Therapeutic Properties:

Calamus is known for its clarifying benefits that can help detox and reset the body and mind. It’s often recommended as a supplemental smoke for when you want to quit smoking, although it’s also popularly used during tolerance breaks from cannabis.

Taste and Consistency:

Calamus is bold and slightly spicy and is a great, aromatic smoke on its own or paired with some milder herbs.


Therapeutic Properties:

Calendula has an ancient history of medicinal use for calming inflammation and pains and helping to boost mood. Most research on calendula involves using it topically, so more information is needed to understand the full benefits of smoking calendula. Calendula is also one of the best herbs for men's health.

Taste and Consistency:

Calendula has a bright, slightly sweet flavor with a medium body smoke

A few indoor-grown hemp flowers just before harvest


Therapeutic Properties:

Hemp is the non-psychoactive cousin to cannabis (marijuana) that carries a slew of therapeutic effects thanks to it’s high CBD content. Depending on the terpene profile of the particular hemp strain you choose, you can enjoy relaxing benefits of uplifting effects.

With hemp-derived THC products like Delta-8 and THC-O on the market, you can even enjoy a hemp smoke that’s mildly psychoactive, but federally legal and able to be shipped to your door. Check out our Elev8 Collection to learn more.

Taste and Consistency:

Hemp has the same flavor profile as high-THC cannabis products–grassy and sometimes floral, but the depth and direction of the aroma depends on the particular hemp strain you choose.


Therapeutic Properties:

Catnip is a mildly psychoactive herb that's known as being a sort of "cannabis for cats." It won't have quite the same effect on humans, but it is known to be slightly sedating and incredibly relaxing. It may make a good addition to the stress relieving herbal blend.

Taste and Consistency:

Catnip is a grassy herb that offers a medium-body smoke. It makes a good addition to blends alongside light-bodied herbs.


Therapeutic Properties:

Although research is limited, Mullein has historically been used as a tonic for the lungs. Smoking mullein is associated with improved lung health, possibly making it a good alternative to cigarettes. Some reports suggest that it can help to soothe a cough, even if it sounds a bit counterintuitive.

Taste and Consistency:

Mullein produces a light smoke that's easy on the lungs and nearly flavorless.

Echinacea cone flowers and dried echinacea that can be used for smoking


Therapeutic Properties:

Echinacea is thought to help fortify the immune system and support respiratory health. Many people consider it a good herb to smoke in lieu of tobacco when trying to quit smoking.

Taste and Consistency:

Echinacea is a bold and fragrant herb with floral notes and pine undertones. It produces a heavy bodied smoke that’s usually cut down with softer herbs.

Skullcap (Scutellaria spp.)

Therapeutic Properties:

Skullcap is known to decrease stress and produce a sedative-like, calming effect.

Taste and Consistency:

Skullcap has a mild smoke with an earthy but neutral flavor.


Therapeutic Properties:

Chamomile is an ancient herb with lots of uses, but it’s primarily used to relieve aches and provide a sense of calm.

Taste and Consistency:

This herb provides a smoke that is bold and earthy with a hint of sweetness.

Coltsfoot (Tussilago farfara)

Therapeutic Properties:

Coltsfoot is another lung-supporting herb that acts as an expectorant, meaning it can help clear mucus from the body.

Taste and Consistency:

Coltsfoot is another mild herb with a neutral flavor, but it can produce a harsh smoke output when used in large quantities.

Mugwort (Artemesia vulgaris)

Therapeutic Properties:

Mugwort is one of the herbs on this list that's technically psychotropic, although the effects are minimal and can be gently relaxing when used in mild doses. Some reports claim that mugwort can invite vivid dreams.

Taste and Consistency:

This herb produces a light smoke with an earthy, sweet flavor.

Holy basil leaves and dried holy basil herb for smoking

Holy Basil

Therapeutic Properties:

Holy basil, or tulsi, is a popular herb in Ayurvedic practices. Its often used to help calm stress and support immunity. It’s often considered an adaptogen, or a substance that supports the body’s stress response.

Taste and Consistency:

Holy basil is a full-bodied herb with a spicy, menthol-like flavor.

Uva-Ursi (Arctostaphylos uva-ursi)

Therapeutic Properties:

Research regarding uva ursi's benefits is limited, but it's been linked to potential immune boosting effects. Some reports also suggest that it can help support a healthy urinary tract.

Taste and Consistency:

Uva-ursi provides a medium smoke with a bold, earthy flavor.

Mint (Mentha spp.)

Therapeutic Properties:

Although mint may have its own therapeutic properties, it's traditionally used to help flavor smoking blends, adding a menthol-like flavor profile. Some mint varieties may help with nausea or to promote energy.

Taste and Consistency:

Varies by species, but all plants in the mint family have a similar minty aroma. Some are sweeter where others are robust, so you’ll just want to choose one according to your liking.


Therapeutic Properties:

It may not surprise you that lavender’s claim to therapeutic fame is its calming properties. This smoke can help to stave off stress and may even have a sedative effect of sorts.

Taste and Consistency:

Lavender’s flavor is unique and boldly floral on its own, but it can be added to an herbal blend to add just a touch of sweetness.


Therapeutic Properties:

Yarrow is a traditional medicinal herb that’s often used to help ease inflammation, pain, and anxiety. It makes a good daytime smoke thanks to it’s stimulating effects.

Taste and Consistency:

Yarrow is a slightly sweet and bitter herb that produces a medium body smoke. It makes a good addition to daytime blends with other light to medium-bodied herbs.

A variety of different herbs you can smoke, each with their own therapeutic properties.

Conclusion: What are the Best Herbs to Smoke?

Cannabis isn’t the only herb you can smoke–there are many more smoking herbs and herbal blends to choose from. Whether you go with hemp (or hemp-derived THC), or something on the floral side (like lavender), you can mix and blend the herbs above to your hearts content.

Most of the herbs above can be easily ordered online, but if you’re looking for hemp flower products, we recommend checking out our Elev8 Collection.

At Vida Optima, our hemp-derived products are all 100% Farm Bill compliant and made according to the industry’s most stringent quality standards. Check out our Cannabis Encyclopedia to learn more.

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