Free radicals induce numerous diseases by lipid peroxidation and DNA damage. It has been reported that some of the extracts from plants possess antioxidant properties capable of scavenging free radicals in vivo. Vetiveria zizanioides belonging to the family Gramineae, is a densely tufted grass which is widely used as a traditional plant for aromatherapy, to relieve stress, anxiety, nervous tension and insomnia. In this regard, the roots of V. zizanioides was extracted with ethanol and used for the evaluation of various in vitro antioxidant activities such as reducing power ability, superoxide anion radical scavenging activity, deoxyribose degradation assay, total antioxidant capacity, total phenolics and total flavonoid composition. The various antioxidant activities were compared with suitable antioxidants such as butyl hydroxy toluene, ascorbic acid, quercetin, alpha tocopherol, pyrocatechol and curcumin respectively. The generation of free radicals O2-, H2O2, OH and NO were effectively scavenged by the ethanolic extract of V.zizanioides. In all these methods, the extract showed strong antioxidant activity in a dose dependent manner. The results obtained in the present study clearly indicates that V. zizanioides scavenges free radicals, ameliorating damage imposed by oxidative stress in different disease conditions and serve as a potential source of natural antioxidant. The study provides a proof for the ethnomedical claims and reported biological activities. The plant has, therefore, very good therapeutic and antioxidant potential.