Homemade cough drops recipe using only a few simple ingredients. This cold remedy is a great way to soothe your sore throat and stuffy nose naturally with honey, lemon, ginger and cinnamon.
With 7 kids in our family, someone always seems to have a runny nose as soon as flu season hits. We used to take cough drops like candy. (literally, my kids thought they were candy)
But after doing some research into the side effects of the most common ingredient found in over the counter cold medicines, we started trying natural cough remedies instead.
Have you tried making homemade vapor rub yet?
Homemade hard candy is not as complicated as it sounds. I’ve made plenty of honey lollipops, so I knew I could easily make my own cough drops too by just adding a few beneficial ingredients.
Lemon and honey are the most common natural ingredients in any homemade cough remedy you’ll find and they’re the base of these cough drops too.
Lemon helps to break up mucous and boost the immune system while honey coats and soothes scratchy throats.
I add ginger and cinnamon as well since they are known for their immune boosting benefits and have been used in folk medicine for centuries.
NOTE – I am not a medical professional and this is not medical advice. Contact your child’s doctor and seek medical attention if symptoms are severe or worsen. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends waiting to give honey to babies until they are 12 months old.
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why you’ll love making homemade cough drops:
Store-bought cough drops usually lists a cough suppressant called dextromethorphan as one of the active ingredients.
Dextromethorphan is a narcotic related to opium that can have side effects such as blurred vision, dizziness, nausea and stomach pain to name a few. The use of dextromethorphan as a hallucinogenic is rising and the drug administration has labeled it a “gateway drug.”
This homemade cough remedy is made with ingredients that are right in your pantry! No chemicals or artificial ingredients!
safe for kids
These DIY cough drops are made with just honey, sugar, lemon, ginger and cinnamon. Nothing to be worried about so you can feel totally at ease giving it to young children!
Keep in mind that honey isn’t recommended for babies before one year of age.
easy to make
Making homemade cough drops might sound complicated, but you’re basically just heating the ingredients to 300 degrees and pouring them into candy molds. Super simple!
Unlike over the counter cough medicines that actually just make you drowsy and block your body’s cough reflex, this natural cough remedy coats and soothes your sore throat while at the same time boosting your immune system.
what you need to make homemade cough drops:
honey – buckwheat honey or manuka honey are the best types of honey to use for health purposes because they are higher in antioxidants than other kinds. But organic raw honey will also work in this natural cough syrup.
sugar – as much as it would be ideal to make cough drops without sugar, unfortunately it’s necessary to use some granulated cane sugar to make the cough drops hard.
ginger – a large chunk of fresh ginger root.
cinnamon – it’s best to use organic ground cinnamon in natural home remedies.
lemon – either lemon zest or “food grade” essential oil, or both.
how to make homemade cough drops:
WARNING – Making cough drops, you will be working with extremely hot ingredients. Be very careful not to burn yourself!
Prep – Set out the candy molds. For easy clean up, lay wax parchment paper under them.
Heat – In a small saucepan, heat the honey, water, ginger, cinnamon and lemon zest (if using) and sugar over medium-high heat. Using a candy thermometer, watch it, stirring frequently until the thermometer reads 300 degrees (hard crack stage). As soon as it reaches 300 degrees, immediately remove from heat. Let the sugar syrup sit a few minutes until the bubbles go down.
Stir – Add in the lemon essential oils (if using). Stir to mix.
Pour – Working quickly and VERY carefully, spoon the hot honey mixture into the candy molds. Fill all of the silicone molds to the tops.
Let Set – Let the cough drops sit for 30-60 minutes until they are completely hardened. Pop out of the molds and take as needed.
tips for success:
To Use – Take one cough drop as needed until symptoms improve.
To Store – To keep your cough drops from sticking together, it is best to store them in a mason jar in the fridge. Or wrap each one in a little piece of parchment paper.
Substitutions – 1 teaspoon of ground ginger can be used in place of fresh ginger.
Variations – For a different flavor, use food grade orange essential oil or orange zest instead of lemon.
FAQ about homemade cough drops:
is cinnamon good for a cough and cold?
Cinnamon is rich in antioxidant polyphenols and proanthocyanidins that boost your immunity naturally. It is also packed with antiviral, antibacterial and antifungal properties.
does ginger break up mucus?
Fresh ginger has anti-inflammatory, antioxidant and antimicrobial properties, making it very helpful in fighting infections. The anti-inflammatory properties of ginger can help soothe a sore throat by reducing inflammation and itching.
is lemon good for a cough?
Lemon zest and juice are very effective at breaking up mucus. Because fresh lemons are loaded with vitamin C they help to boost the immune system and strengthen the body’s ability to fight off infection.
can honey stop coughing?
Studies done by the mayo clinic have shown that honey is as affective as dextromethorphan (the active ingredient in conventional cough syrups) when treating a sore throat. Honey coats the throat and soothes the mucus membranes, making a person cough less.
how long do homemade cough drops last?
Homemade cough drops will last for up to 6 months when stored in an airtight container in the fridge.
How Many cough drops can you take in one day?
While there isn’t a specific number of cough drops you can take in a day, it’s best to use them just while your symptoms last and not to take more than you need to since they do contain sugar.
Are there any natural remedies for a sore throat besides cough drops?
Throat lozenges aren’t the only way to naturally treat a sore throat:
- drink a glass of warm milk
- use a cool-mist humidifier
- take a tablespoon of a natural cough suppressant like my homemade cough syrup
- use a natural vapor rub on your chest, back and soles of your feet
- sit in a bathroom for 15 minutes while a warm, steamy shower is running
- drink lemon ginger tea
More Homemade Natural Remedies On The Blog:
If you liked making honey cough drops, I think you’ll really enjoy these other healthy recipes on the blog!
- Old Fashioned Cough Syrup Recipe
- All Natural DIY Vapor Rub
- Lemon Ginger Hard Candy
- DIY Essential Oil Insect Repellent
- Apple Cider Vinegar Gummies
I hope you love this recipe for natural cough drops! If you make it, I’d love for you to come back and leave a comment and rating so that I know how you like using it!
Pin these steps to try later. Tag @athomeontheprairie on Instagram to share what you’ve made with us!