How to make honey, lemon and ginger cough drops
by Tobias • 4 minutes read
Last updated: 26 Oct, 2022
The nights are drawing in and the weather is getting colder. We are going through that magical period where the leaves turn into magnificent shades of brown, orange and red and everyone that has been sniffling with hayfever throughout summer are now starting to sniffle from the cold and damp. Try our cough drop recipe to help ease the symptoms of all those coughs and colds.
For this recipe we would definitely recommend using fresh ginger, straight from the ginger root if you can find it. If you were to use dried ginger, the taste would be similar but a lot of the beneficial effects of ginger would be lost. Ginger has been used for centuries for it's beneficial properties such as aiding digestion and regulating body rhythms.
With some companies such as Active Root even using ginger to create creating and selling ginger supplements, so if you wanted to take the easier option and just buy a product that offers the efficacy of ginger with none of the effort.
In this recipe we use lemon juice in this recipe you can substitute this for other citrus fruit juice such as orange, which could provide a more festive taste, or even something more unusual like lime.
We don't use any sugar in this recipe and instead only use honey. One key benefit is that honey has a lower glycemic index (GI) than granulated sugar, so it will have a lesser effect on blood sugar. Honey has a myriad of health benefits as we have already written about here, including anti-inflammatory properties as shown in this study. The main benefit for honey in this recipe is its time proven use as a cough suppressant.
Although this is technically a "sugar-free" recipe as it doesn't contain sugar as an ingredient, it does contain a fair amount of honey, which has sugar in it, so for those that are diabetic or pre-diabetic it's definitely advisable to minimise the amount of these you eat. But we are health and wellness site, not your parents, so really you can do what you want.
Talking of parents, the ginger in these cough drops has been shown to help with morning sickness. A study found taking 1000mg of encapsulated ginger daily significantly reduced nausea and vomiting in 67 women who were around 13 weeks pregnant, when compared to a placebo. So even if you don't have a cough the ginger could help your morning sickness.
When you are separating the honey mixture you can either carefully drop a lozenge sized amount from a tablespoon or you can do it the cheat way and do what we did and just buy a cheap candy mould to make it all a lot easier, or if you are feeling a bit *Extra* you can buy these cute pumpkin shaped moulds perfect for spooky season.
You'll probably find these cough drops a lot more effective than the regular store bought ones as the ones in stores can often contain processed honey, ginger extract and citric acid so although the taste is similar the key vitamins and minerals will be missing. You will also be 100% certain of what ingredients will be going into these cough drops so there is no chance you consume something that could cause an adverse side effect.
Warning: As with all products that contain honey, we recommend to not give these to a children under the age of 1 as there is a chance that honey can contain a bacteria that causes infant botulism.
- 1 Cup (340g) Honey
- 4 tbsp Ginger grated
- Juice from 1 lemon
- heavy saucepan
- candy thermometer
- parchment paper or candy moulds
- Pour the honey into a heavy saucepan and bring it to a boil over low heat. make sure to stir constantly so the honey doesn't burn. Using a candy thermometer, heat the honey until it reaches a temperature of 300-310°F (148-54°C), this should take about 5 minutes.
- Remove the pan from the heat, quickly add the lemon juice and grated ginger and mix in thoroughly. Once thoroughly mixed set the pan aside for a couple of minutes to thicken slightly.
- Lay out some parchment paper. Use a tablespoon to drop a small amount of the mixture onto the parchment paper or you could pour a small amount into the candy moulds, I particularly like these honeycomb shaped moulds.
- Leave the cough drops to cool and harden completely, which should take about 30 minutes.
- To prevent the cough drops sticking together you could dust them in some powdered sugar, or you could remain virtuous and rustic and wrap them individually in wax paper.
- Store in an airtight container, like a glass jar, and store in a dry, cool place.
- Effect of Honey, Dextromethorphan, and No Treatment on Nocturnal Cough and Sleep Quality for Coughing Children and Their Parents - https://jamanetwork.com/journals/jamapediatrics/fullarticle/571638
- Effects of ginger capsules on pregnancy, nausea, and vomiting - https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/19250006/
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