Red Raspberry Leaf Tea Recipe

Red Raspberry Leaf Pregnancy Tea Recipe

I have used Red Raspberry Leaf for years. It is an amazing multi-purpose and highly-nutritious herb with a delicious taste similar to regular black tea (but without the caffeine).

Now that I’m pregnant, I’ll start using Red Raspberry Leaf Tea as part of my pregnancy blend in my late second trimester and third trimester. Though Red Raspberry Leaf Tea is often recommended and touted for its ability to increase uterine contractions and shorten labor, its primary benefit might be in its nutrition value.

Why Red Raspberry Leaf Tea During Pregnancy?

Red Raspberry Leaf tea is most often recommended during pregnancy, and statistically up to 63% of midwives recommend Red Raspberry Leaf to their clients.

The research is somewhat divided about how much Red Raspberry Leaf consumption during pregnancy can benefit a woman in labor, but recent clinical studies have concluded that:

The findings suggest that the raspberry leaf herb can be consumed by women during their pregnancy for the purpose for which it is taken, that is, to shorten labour with no identified side effects for the women or their babies. The findings also suggest ingestion of the drug might decrease the likelihood of pre and post-term gestation. An unexpected finding in this study seems to indicate that women who ingest raspberry leaf might be less likely to receive an artificial rupture of their membranes, or require a caesarean section, forceps or vacuum birth than the women in the control group. (source)

While Red Raspberry was not found to shorten the first stage of labor, it did shorten the second stage of labor (pushing) by almost ten minutes and reduced the risk of forceps delivery with no adverse effects for mom or baby. (source)

Another study in rats showed that RRL could both strengthen or lessen contraction intensity, but that it did not affect the body’s ability to go into labor or duration. (source)

The important takeaways are that Red Raspberry leaf did not have any adverse affects for mom or baby in any of the published studies available and it showed a potential positive affect. Though many scientists would not consider a ten minute reduction in second stage labor statistically significant, I know most pregnant women would consider pushing for almost ten minutes less VERY significant (including myself).

Additionally, while it may not have a strong history of medical or clinical use, Red Raspberry leaf does have a long history of use by many midwives and pregnant women. Many claim that RRL helped improve their labors and recovery, compared to previous labors when they had not used it. This was my personal experience as well, and I always turn to RRL during pregnancy for this reason.

Skeptics might counter that this could be largely the placebo affect, but in the absence of any adverse effects and considering that placebo works a significant percentage of the time, I’d still consider it worth a try.

We will hopefully see continued research about the ways that RRL may or may not act on the uterus or affect the strength of contractions, but the available research indicates that it is at least safe to consume and doesn’t have any adverse effects.

In my opinion, the real benefit of Red Raspberry Leaf is its nutrition content, as nutrient demand is especially high in pregnant women in second and third trimesters. It is especially high in nutrients that are important in pregnancy, including Iron, B-Vitamins, Vitamin C and Magnesium. It is also high in anti-inflammatory tannins and can have a soothing affect on the digestive system.

Red Raspberry Leaf Pregnancy Tea Recipe

Many midwives recommend RRL in combination with other herbs to further increase the nutrient capacity, and my favorite Red Raspberry Leaf Tea recipe for pregnancy includes several nutrient-dense herbs…

Ingredients:

Instructions:

Mix all ingredients together and store in an air-tight container. I store in a large glass mason jar.

How to Brew

Pour 8 ounces of boiling water over 1 tablespoon of the tea mixture and let steep for at least 5 minutes before drinking.

To brew a large batch that can be consumed cold, Add 3/4 cup tea mixture to a pot with 1 gallon of boiling water. Stir and let steep as it cools. Strain out the herbs and store in a pitcher or glass jar in the fridge to consume cold as desired.

Why Add Other Herbs?

Red Raspberry Leaf is very nutritious on its own and can absolutely be consumed alone, but I prefer to add the three additional herbs for their nutritional benefits:

Alfalfa:

Alfalfa is known as the “Father of all Foods” and is rich in many nutrients including magnesium, calcium, iron, potassium, silicon, and trace elements as well as Vitamin E, Vitamin C and Vitamin K, which is necessary for blood clotting. Read about the benefits of alfalfa here.

Nettle:

Said to be anti-inflammatory, immune boosting, and good for digestion, nettle is another power-packed herb.

Dandelion Leaf:

Dandelion is also high in many vitamins and minerals and is also said to be good for the blood. It may have a normalizing effect on blood pressure and help with digestion and urinary heath (all beneficial during pregnancy).

Ever taken Red Raspberry Leaf Tea? How did you use it?

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Reader Comments

  1. I used red raspberry tea during my second pregnancy, just drinking it twice a day starting around 33 weeks of pregnancy. I also drank stinging nettle but separately from the red raspberry tea and I started it earlier on than the red raspberry.
    I was able to have a natural pregnancy this time around versus my first time where I took the epidural. I do believe the tea helped me, plus my consumption of dates starting around 35 weeks. Also, as I am currently breastfeeding, I still drink the red raspberry tea because I heard it helps with your supply (breastfeeding for 3 months now, no supply issues), plus I like the taste.

  2. Would really like to find the nutritional information on this tea. Do you have a factual site for reference?

    • You could just use a search engine yourself.

      • Well Carol I have and can find no and I mean no nutritional information on this tea. Since this site recommends it I thought maybe they could provide some sort of reference.

  3. I bought mountain rose herbs’ “fecundi-tea” which has raspberry leaf in it. I love it, and my husband loves saying the name in front of guests. Ha.

  4. Is there a reason you weren’t taking this in your first trimester?

    Also how many servings of this do you drink a day/is safe to consume?

    Thanks!

    • The research is divided on taking RRL in the first trimester, so I always just wait to be safe.

      • With my last and current pregnancies I have used it in the first trimester with no problems.

        • I did 1 cup per day in the first trimester, 2 cups per day in the second and 3 cups per day in the third trimester of this tea blend with the blessing of my midwife for both my pregnancies. With my first baby it was 1 hour 33 min t go from 4 centimeters to birth, with virtually no pushing, baby just popped out. And with my second baby it was 33 min from 4 centimeters to birth, again with virtually no pushing. In fact in the case of my second pregnancy, I went from 7 centimeters to birth in 3 min. Again baby just popped out. I will definitely use this tea if I have any more babies.

          • Total labor for both pregnancies was under 6 hours each.

  5. Great piece! Curious about whether those with autoimmune disorders should include alfalfa, I believe it can sometimes aggravate those that suffer from them? Also, congratulations on your pregnancy 🙂

  6. I think the extra vitamins and just having a warm, caffeine free, risk free tea to drink while I’m pregnant is wonderful!! Plus it tastes great and every little bit helps when it comes to labor! I didn’t drink it with my first (31 hr labor 2.5hrs pushing) but did with my second (15 hr labor 16 minutes pushing). Although there were many other differences with the pregnancies and labors, I wouldn’t doubt it if RRLtea made a difference 🙂

  7. My wife drank red raspberry leaf at the end of her last pregnancy. Our little girl wasn’t growing so fast, so we waited on the tea. Baby needed to cook a bit longer. At 41 weeks, my wife decided it was time for the tea 🙂

  8. Whether it’s just placebo or a real thing, who cares! As long as is not harmful, it’s worth trying. I think every woman will agree that after a few (or a lot of) hours in labor, if you can shorten it by 10 seconds, it’s a win-win!
    Also, I think those are male scientists. Or maybe females, but not moms. No, definitely not moms!
    I would take it for sure, if I could find it here in Brazil. But I haven’t seen RRL here.

  9. Do you know of herbal teas/supplements I could try to help GET pregnant?

    • Are you eating grains that contain gluten? There is a lot of research now that suggests gluten may prevent a woman from getting pregnant. It might be worth a try to cut it out for a month or two and see if that helps. I’ve read testimonies that said it took only a month, but no result is typical so it could take a bit longer.

      • I took organic Maca pills daily for one month before getting pregnant. My partner did as well. There are ones made for female and male, not sure 100% what the differences are but it is known to boost fertility by balancing your hormones. It has many other great benefits. Check it out 🙂 hope you are able to conceive soon !!

  10. I have been drinking pregnancy tea (with RRL) since the beginning of my second trimester and I am now 30 weeks. While this is my first pregnancy, so I can’t report on my labor, I did just get my iron levels checked and my doctor said I have the highest level of any pregnant woman she’s ever seen. She asked me to share my diet, LOL. I do eat a whole-foods, paleo-esque diet, but I wonder if the tea helped to boost my levels.

    • I’m sure it did! I ALSO eat the same diet and my midwife said I had perfect labs which she has absolutely never seen before but my iron wasn’t significantly higher or anything…and I am not currently drinking any tea…but I will now! Making this mix up tonight.

  11. I’m not a mother or a pregnant lady, but I have two friends who swear by this stuff!

  12. I drank a similar concoction for my two youngest of 4. That was 22 and 25 yrs ago. These two went on to have beautiful white teeth. My older 2 whom I did not drink this for had extremely stained teeth as they grew.

    I had much better and faster labors and delivery with the two whom I drank this for.

    • And by the way I drank a quart of it straight thru my pregnancy from as soon as I knew I was pregnant. Thanks Wellness Mama for sharing the benefits of these awesome herbs.

  13. Drinking as berry leaf tea to help with fertility. Would you recommend stopping it when I find out I’m pregnant til the late 2nd trimester? Thanks

    • The sources are really divided on this. The consensus seems to be that if you’ve been drinking it before conceiving, there is not supposed to be a risk of miscarriage because your body is already somewhat used to it and won’t have contractions just from starting. I’ve had a midwife tell me it is fine, but just to err on the side of caution, I’ve always stopped until second trimester just to be safe…

  14. Hi. I also was drinking RRL tea with my last 3 pregnancies, but only the day I knew I will have a baby. Even few cups of this tea helped me alot during the labor. My 5th baby was born in 5 min. after my water broke. Also before delivery I always ate about 5-7 oz. of the darkest chocolate bar. It gave me strenght and made the uterus open faster. I think its worth to try.

  15. Your recipe calls for 4 cups of RRL. But it does not mention if it is fresh or dried, And if it is fresh are all the other herbs fresh also? Thanks!

    • All dried. I should have specified. I’ll update it now 🙂

  16. Is there a difference between Red Raspberry leaf tea and just plain old Raspberry leaf tea? From all I’ve read, it seems like the two names are used interchangeably, but when I ordered mine, I didn’t realize til I got it that it was just plain Raspberry leaf tea. Will I still get the same benefits as I would have from Red Raspberry leaf tea?

    • Yes, they are used interchangeably… just avoid the “raspberry tea” that comes as a fake powdered (and artificially sweetened) mix 🙂

  17. How long do you steep the tea when making a large batch? You just said as it cools but I just can’t it it right so it’s either too strong or too weak.

  18. I read an article from the College of Natural Healing that says red raspberry leaf tea helps with negative side effects during menstration too.

    • I’ve been drinking it for the past year to help with PMS and it has made a big difference in helping with cramps..

  19. Can just Dandelion Tea be drank in the first trimester?
    I am really trying to not drink coffee at all but need something!

  20. I drank RRLT with my first baby in the last few weeks and had a quick and not too bad home birth (3 hours labour, 30 min pushing).
    I heard it can help with fertility and I love the taste, so I drank it daily while trying to conceive our second, and after 5 months trying and two months drinking the tea (and trying any other natural fertility boosters like EPO and gluten free diet), I got pregnant. 🙂 (currently 13 weeks). I love this tea!

  21. Hi, what tea do you drink in the first and early second trimester please? It’s autumn in the UK and getting chilly, it would be great to drink a hot tea that was caffeine free and safe for early pregnancy. Thanks! 🙂

  22. Please explain what this means:
    The findings also suggest ingestion of the drug might decrease the likelihood of pre and post-term gestation.

    Does that mean pre-term labor? Gestation means conception and pregnancy, so what does post-term gestation mean?

    My unborn daughter is almost 34 weeks old so if this is safe, I will start drinking it soon. I drank RRL starting in 2011 or early 2012 after a naturopath told me about it, and after drinking it consistently for a few months, my periods came back! I’ve drank it during periods fairly consistently and it might have helped me have not-so-heavy periods with very little cramping.

    I asked about it at the beginning of this pregnancy and was advised against it. I don’t remember the reasoning very well, but I think someone said that if I was taking it to help with periods, it wouldn’t be good during pregnancy. I will ask around and keep considering it, though, especially since I hope to give birth in a little more than a month. Thanks!

  23. Great info! Thank you.

  24. I haven’t had kids yet, but I drink RRL tea sometimes right before I start and then the day I start my period and it helps a ton with cramps. I haven’t had to take anything for pain in months because of it.

  25. I had seven children, and my longest labor was six hours. Twice I barely made it to the hospital. I never drank raspberry tea or any other tea.

  26. Red Raspberry Leaf tea along with the other herbs are borderline magic. I drank 3-4 cups of the tea every day during my third trimester while pregnant with my second child. I didn’t drink it with my first. I do believe the tea helped tone my uterus and enable my contractions be more effective. With my first child my labor was 10 hrs long including 1 he of pushing. My second labor was 4 hrs and pushed for 8 minutes. I labored entirely at home because I didn’t realize how far along I was. By the time I left the house to go to the hospital I was ready to push and feared giving birth in the parking lot.

    Long story short, RRL for pregnancy is awesome.

  27. I’ve never been pregnant, but I drink red raspberry leaf tea the two weeks prior to my period. It REALLY helps my cramps (I have endometriosis, so the cramps can be tremendous). I read somewhere that it acts as a xenoestrogen (it mimics estrogen in the system), which is why it helps mitigate symptoms of PMS which are caused by the sudden drop in estrogen as the body prepares for its menses. Does anyone know more about this? I’m concerned I have estrogen dominance, so I’m trying to avoid xenoestrogens. I love red raspberry leaf – would hate to give it up!

    • Plant based estrogens are called phytoestrogens and have a protective effect against xeno-estrogens (chemical/synthetic based estrogens) as they occupy estrogen receptor sites, like a blank key, which blocks harmful xeno estrogens from taking hold in the receptor sites. If you have estrogen dominance then consuming plant based or phytoestrogens would be very beneficial for you.

  28. I am pregnant and just started my third trimester, so I would really love to try this recipe, but alas! MRH is all out of red raspberry leaf! Does anyone know of a place I could get my hands on red raspberry leaf of similar quality, or perhaps a ready-made tea that is similar to this recipe?

  29. Does Dandelion Tea act as a blood thinner?
    Then should I stop drinking it once the birth approaches??

  30. Would this tea be good for after the childbearing years? I’m finished menstruating, but do have hot flashes off and on.
    Thank you!

  31. Hi Katie,
    I take an infusion steeped overnight of nettles, oatstraw, alfalfa, red ras leaf, red clover, and a pinch of peppermint. I take the RRL and the red clover for fertility, the rest because I crave them (weird, but when I was a kid I wanted to eat the horses’ oats and alfalfa cubes). I think I might (might!) be pregnant — do you think this is safe to continue drinking (about 2 cups a day)? I ask with the understanding you are not a doctor (but you do have 5 children and write this fantastic blog) so no worries.
    Appreciate what you do for us all,
    Anna

    • I’d check with a doc or midwife to be sure. My midwife was ok with RRL throughout pregnancy, but some are much more cautious… Congrats on your pregnancy if you are expecting 🙂

  32. Do you receive the same benefits when adding sweetener such as honey?

    • Honestly I find the tea tastes great without a sweetener (and generally avoid sweeteners when I can anyway) but I don’t think it would remove any benefits…

  33. Love the tea. I used to use it all the time whenever I had menstrual cramps. It’s the natural midol. It works miracles.

  34. I believe RRL tea significantly helped progress my second labor! My first child came after a very long induced labor and 2.5 hours of pushing, but my second came 3.5 hours from the 1st contraction and in 3 pushes. What a difference!! I didn’t know about the tea until my second pregnancy and then drank 2 cups daily starting at 36 weeks. I’m a believer and will definitely be drinking my tea with any future pregnancies that we are blessed with!

  35. How many weeks into the second trimester should I begin drinking RRT? It would be nice now that we’re in the winter months. Where do you find organic dried loose tea leaves?

    • I’d ask your midwife. Mine is fine with a cup a day in the second trimester and beyond, though I back off if I start having too many braxton hicks contractions. I get the loose leaf tea here.

      • They have been sold out of their tea for some time now….anywhere else you recommend getting it from?

  36. HI!!! I was wanting to get the seeking health vitamins you recommend (I am 7 months pregnant and still nursing my 2 year old) but I see the milk thistle in there…I”ve read controversy things on it….how do you feel about it…did you use that vitamin for all of your pregnancies? I am currently taking Rainbow light ones (not that great I know but I was on a budget lol)….So now time for new ones and I am considering that one you suggest or Zahler (the two a day I have taken many times and love)…..but feel like I need more ???? Thanks for your response!!!

  37. Hi Katie, I have followed your blog for awhile now. I really strive to male sure my family is healthy and with all that you share it makes it so easy. My question is this: are you aware of cholestasis of pregnancy? I have had it with all three of my pregnancies and was told by my doctor that “I had to be done having babies.” This was heartbreaking for me as I would like to have at least one more. So I’m determined to find a way to heal and make it possible to have another. Was wondering if you had any thoughts on cholestasis and what I could do to heal my liver and gallbladder?

    • A class of herbs called ‘alteratives’ are effective at purifying the blood and promoting bile flow. Milk thistle is one of these and is especially good at strengthening, protecting and detoxifying the liver and, improving a sluggish gallbladder. Doing a liver cleanse may help heal and restore your liver function. While it is not safe to do a cleanse when pregnant and breastfeeding another alterative product called Liquid Chlorophyll is safe to consume and is effective at purifying the blood, which is a type of cleanse that is safe to do while pregnant. It is actually highly recommended when p/b because it helps to reduce the load on your liver as your body has an added burden of trying to deal with the baby’s wastes as well.

  38. Hi Katie,
    I’m wondering how many cups of this tea you drink per day? I just mixed up a batch, with the addition of Rooibos tea (I saw the info on Rooibos in another of your posts!).
    Thank you! I love your website!!!

  39. My 9-YO daughter was diagnosed with ADD and I’m always trying to find natural ways to help her. RRT might be an option I’ve overlooked because it’s packed with a lot of those vitamins and minerals that are suggested for helping with ADD symptoms (iron, b vitamins , vitamin c and magnesium).

  40. Hi! I was wondering how much tea should I have a day? We are trying an IUI in a couple of months and would like to give it as much of a chance as possible! (I am sorry in advance if this info is somewhere on this page)

  41. Hi Mama! Thanks for this awesome recipe. I just got my shipment of teas, blended per your recipe, and now I am brewing a cup. Thank you!!

  42. Could I make the tea minus the RRL and drink it throughout? Add in the RRL later on in pregnancy?

  43. Thank you for this recipe, I just got all the herbs and made up a big batch. Just curious how many TBS you were steeping/drinking each day in your last trimester? Thanks!

  44. Hi Katie!

    I was wondering.. why don’t you consume Red Raspberry Leaf tea in the first trimester?
    Just curious!

    Thanks!
    I love your blog!

    Bethany

    • Because of its ability to strengthen the uterus in preparation for labor, I avoid it during the first trimester before the baby is big enough to not be harmed.

  45. Is it safe to start drinking it in 22 week?

  46. I just gave birth to a 9 lb 6 oz baby boy on May 6th. I drank organic RRL tea in my thrid trimester one cup every day or other day. I pushed for exactly 20 minutes and had to push very hard because he was so big. I am glad that I did not have to push another 10 minutes. Whether it was the tea or not, I do not know, but it was worth drinking it if it saved me from pushing longer or having to have assistance or a C section. My son was 5 days overdue and the actual labor was just under 20 hours from start to finish. My recovery has not been too bad. The main issue has been sore abdominal and back muscles from pushing so hard, so very thankful the pushing wasn’t longer. Best wishes to you all! Drink the tea!!

  47. Have you continued to use RRL tea while breastfeeding?

  48. I wonder, if it can increase labor contractions, could it make period cramps worse? I drink raspberry leaf tea in the hope of regulating my periods/hormones after being on birth control and antibiotics from my dermatologist for years, but my last period was HORRID, the cramps were so bad, they felt like contractions. I felt like I HAD to push, even though it was just a period. It was the weirdest (and extremely painful) sensation.

  49. I would love to take this while pregnant, I use it in the winter for immune support. My last baby was born at 35w 5d. I’m currently 36 weeks pregnant and spent 12 days in hospital for preterm labor. Would this tea be off limits for someone with a history of preterm labor? I stayed away from it because I was scared to try it for fear of stirring things up. What would be beneficial for someone with preterm labor? I have been dilated to 5 for 5 weeks now 😮 I’ve been pushing hydration and using magnesium oil and rest.

  50. Hi Katie! I am having a hard time drinking Red Raspberry Leaf tea during this hot summer, are capsules a good alternative? Thanks for your expertise!

    • I like to ice mine during the summer 🙂

  51. I made a mistake and have Nettle Root instead of Nettle Leaf – will root be beneficial to add instead of leaf? 🙁

  52. I gave birth to my first child 3 months ago, and I drank pure rrl tea for the last two months of pregnancy, one cup each day. I had a very easy and quick labor, effective but not so painful contractions. Pushing only lasted for 13 minutes, he was out in 3 contractions. My midwife said my uterus was very strong, since my body pushed on its own, I didn’t really need to push 🙂 quick births run in the family, but I like to think the tea did help. If not, it is still delicious to drink, a good coffeinfree drink for pregnancy!

  53. I love this tea! I wasn’t expecting the taste to still be good after adding dandelion, but it was still very tasty.

    Any chance you can convert cups to mass (weight)?
    I feel like a cup of RRL can be packed or fluffed. I want to make a huge batch.

    Thanks a bunch!