How to Cook Raw Chinese Herbs in a Slow Cooker

Home » Patient Resources » Preparing Herbs » How to Cook Raw Chinese Herbs in a Slow Cooker

Cooking Chinese Herbs in Crock Pot

Properly cooking, or decocting, Chinese herbs is essential for accessing the full effectiveness of the herbs. Many raw Chinese herb formulas work just like a simple cup of hot tea, however, some require a more intensive cooking process.

In the past, cooking herbs could be tedious, time-consuming, and extremely fragrant—sometimes not in a good way! However, now there are several easy ways to prepare herbs that use equipment you have in your kitchen. Read below to see how to cook herbs using a slow cooker and browse other ways to prepare your herbs.

  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 4 – 8 Hours
  • Yields: 7 Cups

Benefits of Raw Chinese Herbs

Chinese herbal medicine has been used for thousands of years to safely expedite the healing process, strengthen, support and tonify the body. They are effective in not only treating the symptom but also in working to address the underlying root cause of various medical conditions, whether acute or chronic. Individual herbs are combined in order to enhance their actions and effects upon the body. When combined, a unique synergistic formula is created that amplifies the benefits of the formula. When prescribed and used correctly, Chinese herbal formulas rarely cause unwarranted side effects.

What You’ll Need

  • Slow Cooker
  • Raw Chinese Herbs
  • Water (Filtered or bottled is best) 
  • Wire-Mesh Strainer 
  • Funnel
  • Glass Storage Container(s) 


Clean your slow cooker and set it up in a place it can stay for several hours. Once herbs are cooking, make sure you have your storage containers clean and ready for the tea.  

Instructions for Cooking Chinese Herbs in a Crock Pot

A slow cooker is a great way to cook your herbs without burning them. Plus, the volume of the slow cooker makes it a good option if you want to create a bigger batch at one time. Note, this recipe makes about seven cups of tea. 

  1. Place the herbs in your slow cooker and add water. The water should cover the herbs and come up at least two more inches above the herbs. It’s better to add more water if you are unsure.  
  2. Set your slow cooker to low and cover it with the lid. Let cook for 8 hours. If using the high setting, reduce cooking time to 4 hours. The sizes of crockpots and the volume of herbal material can vary, so the timing is approximate. 
  3. Strain into a glass container when the herbs are finished cooking. Store the tea in the refrigerator. When the tea settles, there may be sediment in the bottom of the containers. Discard your herbs. 
  4. Enjoy! It’s best to drink the herbs warm; however, if you prefer, you can also drink them at room temperature. 

Ways To Prepare and Enjoy Chinese Herbs

There are several other ways to cook Chinese herbs. Although many patients love this slow cooker method, we know each person has a preferred preparation method. Click the links below to see which cooking technique works best for you. 

Better Health, Naturally

Cooking raw Chinese herbs is a time-tested method for unlocking the power of the Earth’s natural medicine.  Choose your favorite cooking method and enjoy the soothing practice of taking care of yourself through Chinese herbal remedies. 

Dr. Adam Miramon, DACM, DiplOM, LAc

Dr. Miramon is a Certified Acupuncturist and Herbalist who is the Chief Clinic Director & President at Transformational Acupuncture Clinic in Washington D.C. They have devoted their life to expanding their knowledge in a variety of facets from reproductive health, labor and delivery, to Chinese herbal knowledge. Through a desire to better serve patients and practitioners, they founded Transformational Herbal Pharmacy in 2023.

Transformational Herbal Pharmacy
Transformational Herbal Pharmacy logo
Monday 9:00 am – 6:30 pm
Tuesday 9:00 am – 6:30 pm
Wednesday 9:00 am – 6:30 pm
Thursday 9:00 am – 6:30 pm
Friday 9:00 am – 6:30 pm

1645 Connecticut Ave NW,
3rd floor
Washington, DC 20009
Get Directions