Air drying and oven drying are some methods for drying fresh basil. Air drying takes up to three weeks and oven drying takes one to two days. For both methods, first wash and pat dry the basil leaves.
To air-dry basil, tie the stems together to create a bundle of leaves. Hang the bundle in an area with plenty of sunlight and air circulation. Check the leaves after two weeks. When they are dry and brittle, crumble and store them. This may take an additional week.
To oven-dry basil, preheat the oven to 200 degrees Fahrenheit or its lowest setting, and bake the leaves for 20 minutes. Turn off the heat, and allow the leaves to rest in the oven overnight. If they are not brittle the next day, repeat the process.