When it’s chilly out, there are few things more rejuvenating than a steaming hot drink that warms your core. However, if you’re out hiking or backpacking in the woods, it’s not as easy as stopping by the local drive-thru coffee joint for a latte. Those of us who carry coffee or tea bags in our packs can cook up a drink over the campfire, but it’s wise to know how to improvise some beverages as well. Rose hip tea is a great example — it’s easy to make, tasty, and packed with healthy nutrients such as vitamin C, beta carotene, and lycopene.

Rose hips from a Beach Rose bush (Source: Morn the Gorn, Wikimedia Commons | CC BY-SA 3.0)

Rose hips are simply the fruits of the rose plant, which form in spring or summer and typically turn red, soften, and ripen by the fall. They often remain on the plant through late fall or early winter. A handful can simply be steeped in boiling water for about 10 to 15 minutes until the desired tea color and flavor are achieved.

Most varieties of rose hips are filled with small seeds, so you’ll probably want to strain them before drinking. These fruits can also be preserved for future use by drying them in an oven (or over hot coals) and grinding them into a powder.

The 3-minute video above from The Outsider shows the basics of finding and harvesting wild rose hips, as well as how to make rose hip tea. For more information on another traditional winter beverage, check out our previous article on Boilo.

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