Sassafras albidum, commonly known as simply sassafras, is an herb once used to flavor root beer.
Sassafras contains about 0.02% isoquinoline-type alkaloids: boldine, isoboldine, norboldine, cinnamolaurine, norcinnamolaurine and reticuline.
The root of sassafras contains 5-9% essential oil. The essential oil of the root once used to flavor root beer contains several allylbenzenes. Safrole is the main allylbenzene present at 80-90% of the essential oil. It also contains as minor components the allylbenzenes anethole, apiole, asarone, elemicin, eugenol, methoxyeugenol and myristicin. Other components found in the essential oil include camphor, caryophyllene, coniferaldehyde, copaene, menthone, x-pinene, a-and p-phellandrene, piperonylacrolein and thujone.