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[Herbal Rootlets]: No. 116 – Making Herbal Honeys with Kids

If you have a picky eater who balks at any herbal remedy you attempt to offer them, try making an herbal honey to make the herbs more tempting.

As Mary Poppins sang, “Just a spoonful of sugar helps the medicine go down”!

Why use honey?

Honey is a great medium for herbs! It’s familiar, tastes sweet, and when purchased raw, packs its own benefits, in addition to the benefits of the herbs being infused.

Honey is antimicrobial, which can be used beneficially both internally for infections  and externally on wounds.

When applied to wounds, honey not only can help to fight and clear infection, it can also help to clean wounds, and reduce inflammation.

In addition, honey helps new skin to grow, encouraging wound healing at a quicker rate.

Why use herbal infused honey?

Combine the powers of honey with herbs and you have a great herbal remedy at your fingertips!

Herbal Honeys are one of the simplest forms of herbal medicine. In most basic terms, it is herbs suspended in honey.

Herbal infused honeys help to disguise the flavor of less than tasty herbs, making them easier to get down.

Herbal Honeys are usually added to teas for sweetening and adding a bit of medicine.

They can be eaten on toast with butter or used in any other manner you use honey.

A spoonful of medicinal honey can be used directly on wounds or swallowed to sooth sore throats and coughs, depending on the herbs infused in the honey.

Honeys can also be added to tinctures to make elixirs, which are sweetened tinctures, or can be added to vinegars to make sweetened vinegars known as oxymels, which have a sweet tart taste.

When powdered herbs are added to honey, they become a thick paste that can be rolled into pill form, to create herbal pills and herbal lozenges for soothing sore throats.

Herbs that blend well with honey

Herbs that work well with honeys are limitless. The following list is a few basic herbs that are often used. For more information on the medicinal uses of each herb, check out their corresponding issue.

Basil

Bergamot

Blackberry

Catnip

Cinnamon

Elder

Garlic

Ginger

Juniper

Lavender

Lemon Balm

Licorice

Marshmallow

Mints – Spearmint, Peppermint, etc.

Mugwort

Oregano

Peach

Pine

Raspberry

Red Clover

Rose

Rosemary

Sage

Thyme

Vanilla

Violet

Wild Cherry

How to make a herbal honey

Making an herbal honey is very easy!

Fill your jar with the herb you are using. Chop up the herb before filling. Fill your jar loosely. Herbs are best fresh but can be used dried as well.

Pour honey in the jar. Stir with a knife or chopstick to combine the herbs and honey. Top off with honey. Place the lid on your jar.

Label your jar.

Keep out of direct sunlight. Your honey will be ready to use in 4 weeks.

Once your honey is ready to use, you can consume it with the herbs in it, or gently heat it to thin it a bit and strain it through a cheesecloth.

How to make a herbal elixir

Brandy is often used when making an herbal elixir because it pairs well with honey though any alcohol that you usually use for tinctures can be used.

To make an herbal elixir, fill your jar half full of dried herb or full of fresh herb that’s been chopped and lightly packed into the jar. Fill it half full of brandy or vodka and top off with honey.

Stir well with a spoon to combine and encourage air bubbles to rise to the top.

Seal your jar and shake daily. It’s usually ready after 4-6 weeks.

Dosage is the same as for a regular tincture.

How to make a herbal oxymel

Oxymels are very versatile. They can be used just like syrups for making a refreshing soda-like drink, or they can be used as a salad dressing.

They can also be taken as is for the medicinal benefits.

To make an oxymel, you can follow the recipe for making a tincture but replace the alcohol with apple cider vinegar. Decrease the vinegar to 1/4 and increase the honey to 3/4.

You can also combine a ready made herbal infused vinegar with a ready made herbal infused honey to make a quick oxymel. Add 3-4 parts honey to 1 part vinegar.

As you can see, herbal honeys are not only easy to make, but they are quite versatile when it comes to incorporating them in herbal medicine.

I hope this gives you a few ideas on how to create some pleasing concoctions that your family will like and not balk at taking!

Have you ever made or used herbal honeys? Let me know your favorite blends in the comments!

6 Responses to “[Herbal Rootlets]: No. 116 – Making Herbal Honeys with Kids”

  1. 1
    Dana

    Hello,

    How long will the herbal honey keep?

    Thanks,
    Dana

  2. 2
    KristineBrown

    Hi Dana,

    Herbal honeys will keep indefinitely. Honey is a natural preservative.

  3. 3
    Sonya Palumbo

    Thanks for another great lesson to pass onto my grandsons. We will be homeschooling our eldest grandson this year. He is 5 years old and loves to work with herbs. I’ve supplied him with his own nettle, hibiscus and lemon balm. He and his mommy make his own red tea. They let it steep and rest for several hours so that they can get all the goodness. It has really helped him be calmer during the day. On a side note… where did you get the awesome pottery tea pot with the cork? It’s awesome.

  4. 4
    KristineBrown

    Hi Sonya, Your grandson is so lucky to have you teaching him about herbs! I’m glad he’s learning that herbs can have a positive impact on his well being.

    I purchased that pot from a local artisan many years ago. It is one of my favorite little pots.

  5. 5
    Robin

    Do the fresh or dried herbs get ingested or removed before use? Sorry if that’s a silly question

  6. 6
    KristineBrown

    Hi Robin, Not a silly question at all! You can consume them or gently heat the honey and strain them out. I forgot to put that in, I will update the post!


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