Homemade cough syrup

3-ingredient Homemade Cough Syrup

March 21st may have come and gone and it may now officially be spring in the Northern Hemisphere but you wouldn’t know that with the nasty drizzle we’ve got this week. So hearing a little someone cough early in the morning is still a semi-regular occurrence and while I was remaking a batch of this homemade cough syrup, I figured it was probably not too late to share this recipe. Sigh…

Honey and onion cough syrup with thyme
Simple cough syrup

But first you may be wondering why you may want to make your own cough syrup. If you have been following this blog, you are probably on board with feeding your family real whole foods. And why should medications be an exception?

The truth is, many over-the-counter medications for the common cold and flu are not only chock-full of complicated-sounding chemical ingredients, they are actually poor substitutes for what you can concoct safely, cheaply and deliciously in a well-stocked kitchen.

There is so much more power in the lowly contents of the pantry than in the aisles of the pharmacy. When reading an excipient list starts getting me dizzy, I would much rather call upon trusty home remedies. So here are the top contenders for today’s post: onions and raw honey with their anti-bacterial, anti-viral and immune-boosting properties and all-around wholesome goodness. Two ingredients you may not initially think to put together but, hey, it is medicine after all!

This recipe is really easy to whip up and will last you a long time. It is of course safe for kids and adults alike (although it’s best to avoid honey for babies until one year of age).

3-ingredient Homemade Cough Syrup

3-ingredient Homemade Cough Syrup


  • 1/2 cup raw organic honey
  • 1/2 yellow onion, finely diced
  • 2 teaspoons dried thyme or sage, crushed into small pieces


  1. If the honey's more solid than liquid, gently heat it in a double boiler.
  2. Add the onion and the herbs to the honey and mix well.
  3. Leave the mixture on the countertop overnight.
  4. The next day, strain the honey into a glass jar. Your cough syrup is ready! Use 1 or 2 teasponfuls as needed.


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