Lemon Honey Cough Syrup


The other evening as I was driving home, I got that nagging little tickle in the back of my throat. A little scratchy, a little burning. For me, that’s the first signs of a cold coming on – as if I have time for a cold. That tickle will quickly morph into sinus congestion, post-nasal drip, cough and just lots of phlegm – gross, I know, but it’s the truth. As a budding herbalist, I’m still playing around with a lot of my remedies and trying to identify what works best for me. So as soon as I got home, I started going through what I had in my fridge and pantry. The first thing I found was some garlic – so I immediately took a small clove, peeled it and downed it like a pill – I did this about 3 times a day.  I spotted my Licorice root tincture and added some Echinacea and Astragalus to it. These were going to help keep the duration of this bug to a minimum, but I needed something immediately to get rid of that nagging tickle in my throat. HONEY! There she was, I spotted her on the shelf. But I wanted more than just honey. Should I add some onion and warm it up – nope didn’t have the time. How about infusing with some Thyme and Mint – nope, no time for that either. Maybe  I could do a quick tea and add the honey. Oh and maybe some LEMON. No time for tea, so let’s just cut out the middle man – LEMON HONEY! So simple. So quick. So delish. And totally helps to sooth my throat.

Benefits of Lemon: high in Vitamin C which is used to boost the immune system – exactly what you need when fighting a bug.

Benefits of Honey: coats and soothes an irritated throat and has antioxidant and antibacterial effects.

So just how easy is it to make this wonderful concoction, you ask…

Thoroughly rinse your lemon. Ideally an organic lemon would be best, since you’re leaving the peel on. If you don’t have organic lemons, make sure to really rinse the lemon well.

Quarter one lemon horizontally and slice thinly (try to remove any seeds you can).


Place sliced lemons into an 8oz glass jar.


Cover the sliced lemons with honey. Raw (unheated, unpasteurized, unprocessed, unfiltered) honey is preferred.

Fill the jar to the top.

I used a wooden skewer to make sure the honey was getting to the bottom of the jar – you just kinda get in and mix the lemon and honey around a little bit.


Boy – that was tough wasn’t it…not!

The Lemon Honey is ready to use. I think all told, it took about 5 minutes (which is mainly washing and cutting time). As soon as it was mixed, I took about a tablespoon of the Lemon Honey – perfect and nearly instant relief for that tickle.

Make sure to seal your jar. You could leave this out in a warm spot to help the lemon infuse in the honey, but I wanted mine to be a bit cool since my throat and cough were hot, so I placed it in the fridge. One trick I found, was to store it in the fridge upside down. When I had it right side up, the juice from the lemons seemed to be on the stop and the honey on the bottom. Whereas if I flipped upside down to store, when I’d turn it right side up to open the jar – the juice and the honey would be mixed better.

I’ve been taking about a tablespoon at a time as needed throughout the day. You can also eat the honey soaked lemons if you want. They are still quite tart, but the coating of honey makes it pretty yummy.You can also add this to a nice hot cup of tea. You could also add some sliced ginger or cinnamon too to ramp up the healing potency (and yumminess factor).

As I’ve been using the Lemon Honey, I’ve been refilling the jar with more plain honey.  Little Bug can attest to the yumminess of the Lemon Honey, as this morning as I was taking my spoonful, I offered him a taste. His response “yummy honey mommy“!  This would be a perfect recipe for when your little one gets a sore throat – although remember not to give honey to children under the age of one. I think this is a remedy that I will make sure to always have on hand.


What’s your go to sore throat/cough recipe?

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  1. I love the idea of storing this upside down in the fridge! Thanks for the tip!

  2. Hi, I was about to make this, but was wondering what the shelf life is? Any idea?

    • About 6 months in the fridge, however I used mine so frequently that it was never in there that long. Basically you could make now and use until the spring without problems.

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