Lemon, Honey, and Ginger Soother for Colds and Sore Throats

I’m doing a little bonus post this week! Yes, I normally post on Tuesdays and Fridays, but just for this week I’m throwing in one extra. Because who couldn’t use a little help like this during cold and flu season. And, besides…this mixture just tastes good!

I’ve known about this little sore throat soother and cough remedy for years. I think my Mama even gave us something similar when we were children. You can keep a jar of this in your pantry or refrigerator and use it any time you start to feel that little tickle in your throat. You know that little tickle? The one that says “Get ready. I’m a nasty cold and here I come?” Yuck.

I know people who swear that taking a spoonful of this mixture every day will keep colds away. I don’t know about that, but some of them are pretty adamant about it.

Now, I am NOT giving anyone medical advice here. As Paula Deen famously said, “I’m your cook, not your doctor.” I’m just sharing a little something that might make you feel better if you’re under the weather. And, by the way…don’t give this to infants. Honey is not safe for them.

Guess what else? If you completely forget that this is in your pantry, after a while it turns into the most delicious marmalade! Yep.

Assembling a jar of lemon, honey, and ginger cold and cough soother

All you do is take a clean pint jar and cut up a couple of lemons and pack them into the jar. I take out the seeds, but whatever. About halfway through filling the jar with lemons, grate in about a 1-inch piece of fresh ginger. Finish filling with the lemons. Now, slowly pour the honey in giving it a little time to settle between all the lemon pieces. Put the cap on and let it sit for about 24 hours before you start using it. If you can get some local honey all the better.

Most people stir a spoonful of the mixture into a cup of boiling water, let it steep a few minutes, then strain it and sip it. I actually prefer it in hot tea. And, if you’re really feeling under the weather, adding a little spoonful of whiskey won’t hurt a thing.

Enjoy and feel better!

Lemon, Honey, and Ginger Soother for Colds and Sore Throats
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
A lemon, honey, and ginger soother for colds and sore throats.
  • 2-3 lemons
  • 1" piece fresh ginger root
  • 1/2 to 1 cup honey
  1. Wash the lemon and cut into slices or wedges. Pack the wedges in a clean, dry jar.
  2. Grate the ginger root into the jar with the lemon wedges.
  3. Fill the jar with honey.
  4. Close the jar and let stand for at least 24 hours before using.
  5. Store in refrigerator or dark, cool pantry.
Note: honey is not safe for infants. This recipe is not be construed in any way as medical advice.

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  1. Miss P says

    If I feel really really really yucky, I use rum instead of whiskey. There is less taste, but you get the same sleep factor.


    Miss P

  2. Garrett says

    I’m touring with a children’s musical that requires me to wake up early every Monday-Friday for the next few months. Usually waking up at 6:00 am makes my voice stage a protest, and I kept finding myself with a sore voice when the weekend rolled around. I’ve been sipping this stuff with hot water on a pretty much daily basis, and I haven’t had a problem since. I’m pretty sure this will be a permanent addition to my fridge. Thanks!

  3. says

    We originally saw this recipe on Facebook. I googled and it led me to you. On the Facebook posting it said to refrigerate it. You talk of keeping it in the pantry. Does it keep well on a shelf unsealed? What would you say the “shelf life” is?
    Thanks, Tim

    • says


      You can keep it either way. Most people choose to refrigerate it. Even though honey is one of the world’s best preservatives (they’ve found it still edible in tombs in the pyramids), there could be some kind of contaminants on the lemon skin and refrigeration slows down bacterial growth. For that reason, most people would refrigerate it.

      Shelf life? I can’t say exactly but it’s a very long time.

  4. Gisele DeAngelis says

    Made some today and it tastes wonderful – also made some for gifts – can’t wait to give it too – Merry Christmas

  5. Paula G says

    OMG. . . this sounds wonderful. I am going to make some for myself and it will definitely be in my Christmas goody baskets next year.

  6. Jenny says

    I have always made a “tea” with these ingredients, one cup at a time. Now, to think I’ll have it on hand all the time?? Fantastic, thank you!

  7. Tereze says

    I read somewhere that you are not suppose to mix honey with hot water or any liquid for that matter as the heat destroys all the goodness in the honey. Can anyone here confirm that to be a fact?

  8. C. Thompson says

    I just put a jar together yesterday. Is it supposed to be liquidy? Also, should I stir it all together before using it or just take out a spoonful? Thanks. :)

  9. Angela says

    So, my ginger went bad because I left it in a sealed plastic bag on the counter…..oops. I was wondering if ground ginger would be recommended to substitute. If so, how much would you suggest? Thanks

  10. Angela says

    I could leave the ginger out but want to add it later. Do you think adding it to the honey/lemon mixture in weeks time would be alright?

  11. Katrina Phillips says

    Made this the on Tuesday, and I used ginger in it. I was wondering how long do you leave the lemon in it or do you strain it and keep it like that?

  12. listya says

    can i change the lemon into lime? i know is different kind of citrus and the formula–idk what it called–is kinnda different. but can i? or i should change the recipe to match the citrus i use? thankyou

  13. jayne says

    As a person who gets a lot of sore throats all year round, I tried this mixture and it works so well. I just have a couple of teaspoons at a time, and it soothes my throat straight away, it also tastes amazing. I wouldn’t be without it. Thank you so much for posting this.

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