Essential oils are expensive to buy, a 150-milliliter bottle can cost you around 10 to 15 US dollars. But why would you buy a bottle when you can make your own, at home, for practically no money.
A pressure cooker – if you don’t own a distiller – can be used to extract essential oils from the peppermint, rose, and lavender plants growing in your backyard. Or if you don’t have these plants in your backyard, you can ask someone else and pay them back with a bottle. Also, buying fresh/dry plants can get a bit tricky, but they’re still a lot cheaper than buying a commercialized bottle.
The main advantage of making your essential oil is not a lower cost, it’s having control over what you’re making and eventually using. If you are growing your very own lavender, extracting essential oils from that plant will allow you to know that the oil you are using is pesticides and preservatives free.
Essential oils are highly volatile aroma liquids, meaning they are vaporized when subjected to higher temperatures and are mainly used as natural perfumes. As a result of them being highly volatile, we can use pressure cookers to extract them from their parent plants.
Oil Extraction Feature In Pressure Cooker
Pressure cookers have two handy features that are extremely essential for oil extraction, high temperatures, and a steam releasing vent.
Temperatures around 100 degrees Celsius allow plants to release their essential oils, and it’s a temperature the pressure cooker can easily provide. To separate oil from the plant you are required to vaporize it, and a pressure cooker can do that as well. Now for the last part, you will need a mechanism that will transfer the essential oil-infused hydro vapors into a condenser. The valve on top of the pressure cooker allows for efficient vapor transfer. Thus due to all of these benefits, a pressure cooker can be used to extract essential oils from the comfort of your home.
To extract essential oils from your plants, you will need a few more things. A copper/steel rod, a rubber pipe, a tub, and a filter.
The rubber pipe is what you will fix tightly onto the steam releasing valve. The metal pipe – that has to be either a copper or a steel pipe – will work with the tub and act as a vapor condenser. And lastly, the filter will separate the essential oil from water. Only by having all of these components and a working pressure cooker will you be able to extract essential oils from your plants.
We will give you a slight overview of how to extract essential oils from your plants. But for more in-depth instructions make sure to Google a well-researched article.
To start the oil extraction process, fill the pressure cooker with enough water just slightly more than half. Before placing the dry plant into the cooker, make sure all the other components are ready and in their places. Place the plant inside the pressure cooker and close the lid whose steam valve is securely connected to a rubber pipe. The steam will go through the metallic pipe placed inside the tub filled with ice water. From the other side, a trickling stream of water and oil will fall into the filter thus providing you a small amount of essential oil.