All, Recipes

How to Make Homemade Cough Sweets

Looking for a natural alternative to shop-bought cough sweets? Discover how to make homemade cough sweets using your favourite herbal tea.

At this time of year, our immune systems take a real hit, with cold after cold and virus after virus. If you feel like you’ve been coughing non-stop for months, you’re probably looking for a way to soothe your throat and stop that irritating tickle.

For those who like get creative in the kitchen, our homemade cough sweets are the perfect solution. They are simple to make, require just a handful of ingredients, and mean you’ll have something on hand to calm your next coughing fit.

Plus, there’s something pleasingly potion-like about this process that appeals to the child (or the budding herbalist) inside us all.

Our recipe also gives you a new way to enjoy your favourite herbal tea, as we’ll be using it to make these homemade cough sweets. And that means the cough sweets will contain all that herbal goodness to ease your cough.


What You’ll Need

To make your homemade cough sweets, you’ll need the following equipment:

  • A tall saucepan – the mixture is going to boil and froth up, so you want to have a tall enough pan that it won’t boil over
  • A candy or jam-making thermometer
  • A silicone sheet or small silicone moulds (a small ice tray is ideal if you don’t have other moulds)
  • A wooden spoon


You’ll also need your ingredients:

  • 120 ml of honey (1/2 a cup)
  • The juice of 1 large lemon
  • 1 tsp of fresh grated ginger
  • 240 ml of strongly brewed herbal tea*


*For your herbal tea, we recommend choosing a blend that contains herbs which soothe the throat and ease a cough. Our favourite one to use for this recipe is Mullein Leaf & Thyme, as both herbs are great when you have a cough.

Alternatively, you could try our Lemongrass & Ginger flagship tea to give you that classic ginger and lemon experience.

Brew your tea more strongly than usual – we suggest using two tea bags instead of one to make the mix stronger.



£5.99 or subscribe and save up to 15%
Add to basket



Place your herbal tea, honey, and lemon juice into the saucepan over a medium heat. Bring the mixture up to a rolling boil and add your grated ginger.

Using your thermometer, heat the mixture until it reaches 150˚C. It should take about 20-30 minutes. Stir frequently and stay with the saucepan the whole time – it is easy to miss the moment the mixture meets the right temperature.

If the mixture looks like it is about to froth over the edge of the pan, lift the pan off the heat briefly to allow it to subside, then place it back on the heat. You may need to turn the heat down if this is happening very frequently.

Once your mixture has reached the right temperature, remove it from the heat and allow it to cool for a couple of minutes. Then, pour it carefully into your moulds. If you are using a silicone sheet instead, use a teaspoon to drop the mixture onto the sheet, allowing space between for the mixture to spread a little.

Allow the cough sweets to cool until they are hard. Dust them with icing sugar or cornstarch to stop them from sticking, and store them in a cool, dry place in a container with a tight-fitting lid.