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Herbal Cold and Cough Care Syrup and Tea

Herbal cough and cold care ranges from off the shelf products like Traditional Medicinals Gypsy Cold Care to a mix of homemade recipes tailored to your specific symptoms. The sore throat syrup has a mild licorice taste that is quite palatable. I think even kids would take it without a fuss. The cold and flu herbal tea recipe below has more of a kick.

Herbal Cold and cough care - Cough-Be-Gone and Sore Throat Syrup and Cold and Flu Tea recipes with natural antihistamines and soothing herbs.

Cold and Cough Care Sore Throat Syrup Recipe

Adapted from Rosemary Gladstar's “Cough-be-Gone and Sore Throat Syrup”

In Rosemary's book, she lists the ingredients as follows:

To make 1 quart of herbal infusion, Rosemary recommend 2 ounces of herb mixture to one quart of water. To get roughly the right weight, I used 2 tablespoons fennel seed, 1 tbsp licorice root, 1 tbsp, slippery elm bark, 1 tbsp valerian, 1 tbsp wild cherry bark, 1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon bark, 3/4 teaspoon ginger root and 1/4 teaspoon orange peel. All measurements were a little generous so I had enough to get 2 ounces.

Over low heat in a heavy bottom pot, simmer the herbs and water until it is reduced by half, so that you have one pint of liquid.

Strain the herbs out of the liquid, rinse chunks out of the pot, return the liquid to the pot.

For each pint of liquid, add one cup of honey. You may go up to a one to one ratio for a sweeter syrup (1 pint honey to 1 pint liquid).

Heat gently and mix until the syrup is well blended.

Herbal Cold and cough care - Cough-Be-Gone and Sore Throat Syrup and Cold and Flu Tea recipes with natural antihistamines and soothing herbs.

Add a small amount of brandy, if desired, to help preserve the syrup and act as a relaxant.

Remove from heat, bottle and label. This syrup should last for several weeks, even months, if refrigerated. (Most herbs have preservative qualities.)

Herbal Cold and cough care - Cough-Be-Gone and Sore Throat Syrup and Cold and Flu Tea recipes with natural antihistamines and soothing herbs.

Rosemary suggests taking 1 to 2 teaspoons every hour or two throughout the day, or as needed for cough.

Cold and Flu Tea Recipe

Adapted from Healing Naturally by Bee

For one mug of tea use:

Herbal Cold and cough care - Cough-Be-Gone and Sore Throat Syrup and Cold and Flu Tea recipes with natural antihistamines and soothing herbs.

Place herbs in mug and cover with boiling water (leave enough room for your lemon juice). Cover and steep for 5 to 10 minutes. Strain herbs, mix in lemon juice and sip slowly. The warmth and natural antihistamine action of the herbs is great for congestion and runny noses. You can adjust the amount of the herbs a bit to taste. I was a little generous with the cayenne in the photo above – too hot for me! *Note:  I had originally listed larger portions of the herbs, but with the dried herbs, I think these amounts will probably be better for most people. You can use more to taste.

Longer steeping will give a stronger brew, but if you leave it too long it may become more bitter, so no more than 15 minutes is recommended. Covering the tea while it's brewing will help to trap “the good stuff”. πŸ™‚

You may also find our other Cold and Flu Remedies useful, including:

Herbal Cold and cough care - Cough-Be-Gone and Sore Throat Syrup and Cold and Flu Tea recipes with natural antihistamines and soothing herbs.

Originally published in 2012, updated in 2017.

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  1. I loved Mt Rose Herbs! They’re my go to place for anything herbal. One thing I’d love to have more of is info on herbal digestive help.

  2. We do use some herbal remedies already but I’d love to learn more! We use elderberry syrup regularly and horehound and honey and a few other things here & there πŸ™‚

  3. I’m so excited I found this site since I just hear someone cough and it seems like I am ill too. I can’t wait to make the syrup and tea!

  4. Headaches, sore throat, muscle aches. Love to learn as much about herbal remedies as possible! Thanks for the giveaway opportunity as well!

  5. I would like to have more info regarding the slippery elm bark from Mountain Rose simply because whenever I’m looking for info on natural product, I will invariably find myself on Mountain Rose’s site if for no other reason than to make sure the other sites are telling the truth. I trust Mountain Rose info and use them as a guide to all things herbal. (I just wish that I could order way more than I do; but its coming…)

  6. It seems whenever someone I love gets an illness, I go all in to find Herbal answers. Hep C is my mission now. Learned about Milk Thistle and would like to about other herbs to support the liver and kick Hep C’s butt πŸ™‚

  7. I an so new to herbal remedies I don’t know which I would like to learn more about except all. Maybe headaches, sinus infections, inflammation, seasonal allergies. Those are regular issues in my family it seems.

  8. Thanks for the giveaway. I’d like to learn more about making teas for health. Maybe something to help relax at the end of the day (maybe even something breast feeding mamas can drink).

  9. Herbs are like second nature to me but I’d like to delve into learning more about identifying them in the wild.

  10. have been wanting to try this type of health items but cant find any near by got fingers crossed to win ty for this chance

  11. Nice giveaway. I need to increase my natural remedies supplies and these Mountain Rose herbs would be a great start. Thanks for the opportunity.

  12. Perfect timing! A few friends and I are getting ready to order herbs together from Mountain Rose Herbs in order to prep for winter. This is such a generous giveaway! Whether I win or not, the Cough-be-Gone syrup and Cold & Flu Tea are going on my to-make list!

    1. Oh, I almost forgot ~ I’d love to learn about long-term remedies that could help with symptoms for autoimmune disorders, if any exist.

  13. I would like to learn about immune enhancing herbs and herbs that help digestion. My 4 year old had cancer when he was 6months old so we really try to use natural remedies, he always seems to get everything that goes around so pediatric immune enhancing herbs would be me largest interest.

    1. Organic India teas are indeed organic – and tasty. Another option is to buy bulk tulsi and make your own blends, or grow your own. MHR has bulk tulsi, tulsi capsules, hydrosols, oil, and seeds.

  14. I use Mt. Rose Herbs too. I love how quick and easy it is to find things on their website and I’ve always been very pleased with their prices and quality. I could sure use the cough and cold collection right now. I am up late because I can’t quit coughing. Need to go for a long walk tomorrow and see if I can’t find any mullein…

  15. Love, love this post and love, love Mountain Rose Herbs – a vendor I know I can trust! I’m thrilled to have the chance to win either prize…

  16. Cough be gone sounds tasty. Between allergies and colds we have here- I plan on trying it. Thanks for sharing.

  17. I would like to know more about natural remedies for diabetes. Every member of my husband’s family has to use insulin as well as other medicines.

  18. I love learning about about how to use common herbs and spices for healing common childhood illnesses as well as herbs for tonics and building immunity. I really like Mountain Rose’s products! Thanks for the giveaway!

  19. I would LOVE to learn more about how to use common “spices” as healing herbs. I love that the cold and flu recipe was mostly stuff I’d already have and not need to order. More of that.

  20. I would like to learn about all of them! I am currently an herbalism student (working toward my certification slowly but surely) and my current focus is on herbs that help repair the gut, as my children suffer from celiac and I am looking for ways to help them heal. Thanks for having this giveaway!

  21. I love Rose Mountain! I have received only fantastic quality from them. It would be great to win the cough syrup ingredients as we head into the germ-iest time of the year! We are both pediatric nurses, so our family ends up exposed to all kinds of cooties! Thanks for the great blog; we love your herbal info.

  22. I would like to know more about pain remedies for little ones. My 5 and 3 year old boys are getting lots of bumps and bruises and I want to help them when they feel pain!

  23. I was going to say allergies, but after reading through comments it looks like you’ve already got a post – I’ll have to read through, thanks! So, my next request would be anti-inflammatory ideas. I know of a few, but have MS, so really need to put some time into learning more, especially easy recipes/ideas to incorporate them more frequently. There is a limit to what you can add turmeric to, at least in my mind! πŸ™‚

  24. I would like to know more about herbal remedies for ezcema in children, colds and flu, weight loss, hair loss, seasonal allergies, sinus infections, ear infections….. I have decided to toatally get away from all bad chemicals and I am always seeking alternate ways to take care of my family. Thanks so much for this great offer!!

  25. I would like to know more how to best care for scrapes cuts and that kind of wound. What keeps it cleanest and what helps seal it and finally what helps keep scarring to a minimum. Thanks!

  26. Is there any type of herbal relief for someone with bad psoriasis? My husband has suffered for decades with it and I’d love to help him heal!

  27. My fav herb is raspberry leaves. I would def add them to this cold and flu recipe. Raspberry leaves will help with upset stomch (that can come with the flu) and I have also cured my sons strep throat by making a tea gargle with raspberry leaves and 2 drops of tea tree oil. This should be used as a gargle only! Raspberry leaf tea works wonderful on upset stomachs. πŸ™‚ Take care and live well. Peace and Balance to all, Jodee

  28. I usually make fire cider- I still need to make some this fall but you steep together apple cider vinegar, cayenne pepper, ginger, horseradish, garlic and onion for three weeks and then strain out the liquid, throw away the solids and use the liquid a teaspoon or two at a time mixed with honey. It gets rid of colds and flu really well, especially congestion.

  29. I would like to learn about the joint pain also. I have RA. Most of the medications are pretty bad. Thanks for the giveaway. πŸ™‚

  30. We were just looking up natural remedies last night to see what we needed to make our own. Thanks for a great giveaway!

  31. I would really love to learn more about herbal remedies to treat my animals. such as ringworm, ear mites, a natural heartworm formula, hotspots, snake bites, wound care.

  32. I also have lupus so I would love to see something on pain relief for joints although I use Tiger balm now which does help sometimes. I would also love to see something for winter dry skin, I get itchy patches with the onset of the cold weather so a good lotion of some type would be wonderful. Really either of these items with a warming effect is awesome in the winter. I use to buy this oil and lotion combo that warmed when you used it and had the most amazing pine/foresty scent. The company went out of business and I have never found anything to replace it. That set was my after bath oil and daily moisturizer for the entire winter and I sure do miss it. Thanks for asking what we would like to see posted!

  33. I would love to see more information about making glycerites or maybe using glycerine + ACV as substitute solvent for alcohol. Luv your blog πŸ™‚

  34. Trying to accumulate natural remedies for cold/flu season as well as other ailments! Thanks for the recipes!

  35. I would love to learn more about remedies and treatments for common dog problems! (fleas, thyroid etc. etc.) Thanks for the opportunity to win!

  36. I’d love to learn more about herbal remedies for sinus congestion. I am allergic to epinephrine. which is in every cold medication it seems.

  37. I would like to learn more about pain relief for teething and calming toddlers. I currently buy teething tablets but I’d feel more comfortable if I made my own remedy (and it would also be better than running to the store late at night to buy more tablets!)

  38. I’m so thankful that more and more people are interested in herbal healing for common ailments instead of running to the pharmacy. Thanks for these informative posts on spices and herbs.

    1. Don’t forget to watch for monthly specials. I list a few on the sidebar, but if you visit their site they have a whole page of listings. In October, soothing herbal bath salts are on sale, too.

  39. I love to learn about all the herbs you are sharing about! Wonderful! I guess if I had to pick one thing right now, maybe something that would continue to boost our immune system through the winter months. Thanks!

  40. What a wonderful recipe. I love Rosemary Gladstar. I’ve been reading her books for a long time. Thanks for these recipes and the chance to win!

  41. I’d like to learn more about natural remedies for all the basics like colds, sore throat, coughs, cuts/scrapes, bug bites, etc.

  42. I would love to learn more about herbal remedies for “that time of the month” and herbal remedies for improved concentration and remedies for relaxation.


  43. I would love to make either of these for use this winter, but especially the herbal syrup. I would also be interested in herbal preparations for arthritis. Thanks for the giveaway!

  44. Would love to learn more about cold remedies…I see that you have been listing some links in reply to other comments so I will be checking those out!

  45. I have made a few of my own herbal tinctures and syrups. I love the idea of having a good general immune boosting remedy that my kids will willingly take!

  46. All of them. I’ve been a gardener for years, but have only dipped my toes into the pool of wisdom that is herbs. I dream of a home apothecary. Getting recipes to try – one or two at a time- makes me feel less overwhelmed by the vastness of it all.

  47. Oh gracious, what herbal remedies would I NOT like to know about? πŸ˜€ I think sore muscles and arthritis helps for my hubby would be great, and like others have said, seasonal health and wellness. Anything for the flu?

  48. All herbal remedies are really interesting and are ones I want to be aware of – but coming into winter, I’m especially wanting to know about seasonal health issues and remedies.

  49. both these recipes sound like something I can do! I like the idea that I can make such remedies at home, and know what’s in them.

  50. Love this post!

    I have found a super simple way to help coughs, colds, and stuffy heads: mullein leaf tea. I buy it in bulk when it is available, have used commercially available tea bags, and even learned what it looks like and foraged for some of the common mullein that grows everywhere here.

    Just breathing in the steam from a hot cup of mullein tea starts the sinuses clearing, and because it has expectorant properties, it will get everything flowing quickly.

  51. Love love love herbal healing! I would like to learn more about allergies, so far what has worked the best is a clay water cure during my hay fever sneezing, but I wonder if anything else would help ease symptoms as well?

  52. I would love to learn of something palatable for pain. I have a crampbark tincture I use regularly, but I have fibromyalgia, arthritis, corporal tunnel and migraines. When I have a bad flare up I can be down for a few days at a time.

  53. I would love to see a herbal remedy that would help someone suffering from GERDS and for a chronic sinus infection. I love this cough remedy!!

  54. Did you have a post about allergies yet? Always trying something or other here! Thanks for these ‘receipts’.

  55. I would like to learn more about elderberry syrups and what they are good for and if there are other ways to use them.

  56. I’d love to know more about allergy (stuffy nose) remedies, pain remedies for neck and back issues and also, would love remedies for toddlers who have issues falling to sleep, some sort of calming remedies??

    1. I do have something for allergies now –

      Will have to work on the toddlers remedies in the future, but a dream pillow (mesh bag filled with herbs, or herbs stitched into a bag so your toddler won’t open it and make a mess) might be an open.

      There are some dream pillow herb ideas

      Catnip: Relaxing, helps bring deep sleep.

      Chamomile:Calming, relaxing, and said to keep bad dreams away.

      Cloves: Brings warmth and an exotic feeling to dreams, add only 2-4 per pillow.

      Hops: Relaxing and brings peacefulness.

      Lavender: Soothing, relaxing and eases headaches.

      Lemon Verbena: Uplifting, used to add β€œlightness” to dream blends.

      Mugwort: Greatly enhances lucid dreaming and helps with remembering of dreams.

      Peppermint or Spearmint: Enhances clarity and vividness in dreams.

      Rose petals: Brings warmth and love, may be used to evoke romantic dreams.

      Rosemary: Traditionally used to bring deep sleep and keep away bad dreams.

  57. I would really like to see some ideas on pain relieving things. I have arthritis, work in retail (read: on my feet a lot), and my wife has fibromyalgia. Anything to help these would be AWESOME!

    1. Yes, there are several methods for treating pain naturally. But I don’t have the knowledge those at Mountain Rose have.

  58. I am just now accumulating my herbs for cold and flu, only a week late. Had the flu last week :(. I WILL be prepared next time.