Oil pulling.

I know. It’s so trendy.

And surely you have more important things to do than swishing coconut oil in your mouth in the morning.

You know. Like making a living or changing the world, but hear me out.

Self care. It’s vital.

You’ve probably heard about the importance of a healthy microbiome and how eating certain probiotic foods can populate your gut with beneficial microbes.

The maintenance of an ecologically diverse microbiome makes way for a powerful immune system, radical health, and you guessed it — it’s also the key to oral health.

The mouth is a microbial menagerie and like your gut, it has good microbes and bad microbes. Ideally we keep the good guys, and squash the bad guys.

Oil pulling, also known as "kavala" or "gundusha," is an Ayurvedic oral hygiene technique where you swish a tablespoon of coconut or sesame oil in your mouth on an empty stomach for around 20 minutes.

The oil supposedly pulls out toxins, but what is more interesting to me is what you can add to the oil to help build up healthy, bustling bacteria and promote diverse flora in the mouth.

The aromatic compounds of essential oils such as peppermint, frankincense, cinnamon, clove, tea tree, myrrh and, more can act as microbiome regenerators with antiseptic properties.

You can also add probiotics for a similar effect, baking soda for alkalizing the mouth, and activated charcoal - effective in absorbing plaque and other compounds that stain teeth.

After dorking out on all this information, I got inspired and put together a recipe for convenient coconut “tooth butter cups” you can store in your fridge and pop in your mouth first thing for oral swishing.

They are jam packed with a variety of essential oils, baking soda, and activated charcoal - all the toothy goodness!

I made them before bed and was so excited to wake up and use them for the first time that I woke up a whole 90 minutes earlier than usual before the sun. And I was not disappointed…

My mouth has never felt so fresh, clean, or alive!

Here is the recipe:

Probiotic Coconut Oil Charcoal Tooth Butter Cups


  • 1 silicone candy mold (15 molds)

  • 60ml coconut, MCT, or sesame oil, liquified.

  • 1 capsule probiotics

  • 1 tablespoon baking soda

  • 2 capsules activated charcoal (vegan - from coconut shells)

  • 15 drops of each essential oil:
    Tea tree

Go heavier on peppermint and cinnamon for flavor ;)


  1. Mix all the ingredients in a bowl and then pour even amounts into the candy mold.

  2. Place in the fridge or freezer to solidify.

  3. When solid, pop the butter cups into a glass jar and store in the fridge for your next oil pulling moment.

Makes 15 butter cups.

To oil pull safely: Place butter cup in mouth and let it dissolve into liquid, combining with your saliva. Swish the liquid around in your mouth for 20 minutes. Do not swallow. After 20 minutes, spit the oil into your trash can or outdoors rather than down the sink where it can harden again and mess with your plumbing!

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