Cinnamon toothpicks are a natural breath deodorizer and popular with those trying to diet or quit smoking; best of all, they are tasty and easy to make at home. Cinnamon has also been found to have numerous health benefits. As little as 1/2 tsp. daily may lower LDL cholesterol in addition to having a positive regulatory effect on blood sucrose levels. In addition, cinnamon has been shown to have an anticlotting effect on the blood and to reduce the number of leukemia and lymphoma cancer cells, according to a study conducted by the U.S. Department of Agriculture in Maryland.
The first item you will need is cinnamon bark oil, which is readily available for purchase online or in some pharmacies and health food stores. Prices vary, but you can usually find a 4 oz. bottle for around $15. You may also find artificial cinnamon flavoring, but this is not as strong as the oil and will not soak in as well, although it is much less expensive to purchase.
Choose flat-sided toothpicks, as they absorb the oil better and are easier to chew. These may be purchased in any grocery store. Lastly, you will need a jar with a wide opening and lid, such as a small Mason jar.
Pour 2 oz. cinnamon oil into the jar, and cover the oil with toothpicks. It is best to flavor the toothpicks in small batches rather than larger ones, because it requires less oil. Additionally, the oil is also reusable from batch to batch, so you will save money by not having to purchase a lot of it. Secure the lid, and turn the jar upside down to soak the toothpicks overnight. The longer you soak them, the hotter they will be, so be sure to know your tolerance level and do not overprocess.
After they have soaked for the allotted time, remove the toothpicks from the jar, and allow them to dry on a nonabsorbent surface, such as a plate or a pan. You can also begin using them before they have dried completely if you are in a hurry. Avoid placing the wet toothpicks on paper plates or towels, as they will absorb the cinnamon oil from the toothpicks, causing you to lose much of the flavoring. Air-dry the toothpicks completely, then keep them in a sealed container so they stay fresh. A zippered baggie or small container that is clean is sufficient.