Spicebush, A Warm Fall Woodland Spice

eattheplanet.org is an affiliate marketer. We may earn commission from links to products and services on this page.

our facebook page for additional articles and updates.

Follow us on Twitter @EatThePlanetOrg

If you can’t find Spicebush (Lindera benzoin) in the wild you can purchase seeds or plants here:
Spicebush (Lindera benzoin) – 25 seeds
Spicebush (Lindera benzoin) – 10 plants (1′-2′ tall bare root)
Spicebush berries and leaves
Spicebush berries and leaves (Photo By: Cody Hough, college student and photographer in the Michgian area)

Spicebush(Lindera benzoin) is a shrub native to north eastern United States.  It is a common woodland shrub that can be identified easily by the fragrance of its crushed leaves.  The leaf shape is difficult to distinguish, especially for beginners.  This plant produces red berries in summer which is a prized item for wildlife.  The species is dioecious which means that male and female plants exist and berries only form on female plants.

Edibility and Culinary Use

The leaves and berries of this plant can be eaten raw or cooked.  A tea can be made from all parts of this plant, most commonly twigs and leaves, it has a refreshing flavor and texture.  Also the berries that ripen in early fall have a taste similar to allspice, it is a warm spice that can be used in baking and pies.  They are usually used fresh or frozen for later use.  The leaves can also be eaten raw, usually as a condiment, and the young bark is said to be good to chew on.

Health Benefits

This plant is known for its use in the treatment of colds, fevers, dysentery, and internal parasites.  This safe plant with no knows hazards is a traditional medicine of the Native Americans and is known for its powerful health benefits.  This plant should be studied more for its beneficial compounds.


This is a safe and delicious plant that is typically hidden away in the forests of the North East.  But it is easy to find in the under story of the woods since it only grows about 5’ tall.  Yet another plant that is often underappreciated and undervalued by most people, adding this plant to your diet will be a great experience with good health benefits.

Featured Videos - eattheplanet.org

Many of our readers find that subscribing to Eat The Planet is the best way to make sure they don't miss any of our valuable information about wild edibles.

Subscribe to our mailing list

our facebook page for additional articles and updates.

Follow us on Twitter @EatThePlanetOrg

Smilax rotundifolia - Greenbrier Leaf
Greenbrier – Winter and Spring Wild Edible
Read more.
Siberian Elm (Ulmus pumila) inner bark
5 Trees With Edible Inner Bark
Read more.
Berberis thunbergii, Japanese Barberry fruits and leaves
5 Easy to Forage Edible Winter Plants of the Northeast
Read more.
First Cultured Hamburger
5 Reasons Why Lab Grown Meat is Better
Read more.
Queen Anne's Lace Flower
Wild Carrot – Queen Anne’s Lace
Read more.
Allium vineale, Wild Garlic
Broccoli and Wild Garlic Recipe
Read more.
Elaeagnus umbellata, Autumn Olive fruit
Autumn Olive Fruit Leather Recipe
Read more.
Linden Tree, Tilia cordata, Small leaved Linden leaves and flower bunches
Linden Flower Tea Recipe
Read more.
Rhus typhina, Staghorn Sumac fruit cluster
Staghorn Sumac Tea
Read more.
Musa basjoo, Japanese Banana growing in USDA Zone 5
Veggie Banana Leaf Tamales Recipe
Read more.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>