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Where can I buy menthol?

Hi I've been looking all over the place to buy menthol. (The closest thing I found were menthol crystals for saunas and it says "for external use only".) I would like to make menthol sorbet or menthol chocolate chip ice cream. To be clear, it's definitely pure menthol and it looks like it's not available on a retail basis.

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  1. Menthol? Why not simply use peppermint oil?

    1. Do you mean mint?? When I hear menthol I think of cigarettes and vick's vapo-rub.
      If you have a recipe, please share it and maybe we can come up with an alternative for you.

      1 Reply
      1. re: iluvcookies

        I'm wondering if menthol is a UK way of saying peppermint/mint? Just a wild guess but I don't think there's much difference between menthol and peppermint.

      2. From dictionary.com:
        Also called hexahydrothymol, peppermint camphor. Chemistry, Pharmacology. a colorless, crystalline, slightly water-soluble alcohol, C10H20O, obtained from peppermint oil or synthesized: used chiefly in perfumes, confections, cigarettes, and liqueurs and in medicine for colds and nasal disorders for its cooling effect on mucous membranes.

        1. I've heard of (or rather seen) references to menthol's use in some Indian sweets, but - unhelpfully, I know - I've never seen even a hint of anyone finding it outside of India.

          1 Reply
          1. re: MikeG

            When I visited Thailand last year I was really surprised to find they ate menthol flavored candies. It was kind of like a sweeter version of a Hall's cough drop. Menthol sorbet would be interesting to say the least, I'd definitely try it.

          2. My mother is an amateur perfumer and I make soap. We order our essential oils from Liberty Natural, and I know I have seen Menthol crystals in their catalog. Whether they are food safe or not, I don't know. But I wouldn't doubt it, as I know LN sells food grade essential oils.