Honey and Lemon Cough Syrup with Coconut Oil

Honey, Lemon & Coconut Oil Cough Syrup

This week my three year old daughter was sick with a bad cold. Poor little thing, this is the first bad cough she has had. I always have a hard time when my babies are sick. I do my best to care for them. I’ve spent a good part of this week snuggling her and feeding her nourishing food.

My daughter, Naomi, didn’t sleep well the other night due to her sore throat and cough. Being the “natural mama” I am, I decided to make her a cough syrup rather than purchasing medicine.

I did some research and this is what I learned…


Honey has powerful anti-viral and anti-microbial properties! In clinical studies, honey has shown to be just as effective in alleviating coughs as over the counter cough medicine. Honey is also known to help alleviate allergies. According to this article, taking a few teaspoons of local raw honey a day prior to pollen season can be effective in boosting your immunity to pollen!

Lemon Juice

Lemon juice is often used in home remedies for a good reason! It is known to help boost the immune system and also has antiviral and antibacterial properties. I personally like to drink lemon juice when I have a stuffy nose. It helps to clear my sinuses so I can breathe better.

Coconut Oil

Coconut oil is rich in antioxidants and contains lauric acid, which is antibacterial and antiviral. Coconut oil can be used to help prevent colds by boosting the immune system. Once the cold is set in, coconut oil can help reduce the length of sickness and can be quite soothing when added to warm honey-lemon water or tea.

Mix these three ingredients together and you have yourself a super immune boosting syrup that will help alleviate coughs and sore throats!

Honey and Lemon Cough Syrup with Coconut Oil

Honey and Lemon Cough Syrup with Coconut Oil



1. Mix all the ingredients together in a small saucepan and heat over low until coconut oil is melted.

2. Take warm syrup by the spoonful as desired. You can also mix the syrup into hot water or tea.

3. Once the syrup is cooled the coconut oil will harden. Gently warm the syrup up before using. Store in refrigerator for up to a month.




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About the author: Tiffany is a real food mama who lives in Oregon. She is a stay at home mom of three coconut babies. She is passionate about traditional and healing foods. As a true believer in the health benefits of coconut, she uses coconut products in almost all her cooking. Subscribe to The Coconut Mama’s Newsletter for more articles like this one.
122 comments… add one
  • Sela Young January 30, 2013, 5:47 pm

    Thanks for the recipe! I need it this week for my 6 and 3 year olds (and myself as well). I am going to add cinnamon, though, and see if that helps too! In the past, I’ve just done honey with cinnamon which helps some, so I’m hoping with the added ingredients, it will help even more! :-)

  • Lexie January 31, 2013, 8:06 pm

    My kind of recipe! Love it. 

    xoLexie | Lexie’s Kitchen

  • Smilespeacejoy February 4, 2013, 10:17 am

    I would advise when melting this together to only heat until mix is lukewarm. Heating honey kills the good enzymes, if over a certain temp. I will try this recipe. Sounds yummy enough to not mind taking a dose!!

    • Tara June 25, 2013, 9:39 pm

      You Are Right About Heat Killing The Good Enzymes In Honey. Coconut Oil Melts At 75 Degrees. It Wont Take Much Heat To Melt The Oil.

  • Mom of 9 February 4, 2013, 6:27 pm

    Eucalyptus essential oil on the soles of the feet will help to calm a cough.  Apply liberally and then put on socks.  Works like a charm!

    • angela March 5, 2013, 8:12 am

       Just make sure that you apply the eucalyptus with a carrier oil like olive or almond oil. E

    • missyasche November 5, 2013, 10:41 am

      Also, Vicks works the same way.

  • Pam February 5, 2013, 6:16 am

    Please note that honey can be fetal to infants! I’m not real sure what age it is safe to give to a child, but 34 years ago I made the mistake of putting a dab in my infant son’s  cereal and I almost lost him. He spent 8 days in the Hospital, but finally recovered.

    • Michelle G. October 18, 2013, 6:47 pm

      I think you meant to say “fatal.”

    • missyasche November 5, 2013, 10:40 am

      One year is the general rule.

    • Aurora July 1, 2014, 11:58 pm

      Good remark, while it might be obvious for some people, not everyone knows that babies under one year must not be given honey. Pity there’s no mention of it before your comment.

    • Francine October 23, 2014, 11:10 am

      It’s babies under a year old.

    • kimberly December 10, 2014, 9:13 am

      honey in infants can cause a Botulinum toxin (botulism)

  • Thethirtyeightshop February 7, 2013, 1:04 pm

    Man did I need this week with my 3 yr old daughter.  We do vicks on the bottom of her feet at night which works wonders!!! I have seen natural homemade recipes for it too but during the day, using this instead of the natural honey syrup I buy would have been great! Thank you for sharing!!!

  • Eco Chic Rachel February 19, 2013, 7:35 am

    Great post, thanks for the idea… I’m off to make some now! 

  • Stephany February 20, 2013, 7:30 am

    How much did you give & how often?  Love this recipe!!  I am a huge believer in the benefits of coconut oil & raw honey!!

    • The Coconut Mama February 22, 2013, 4:41 pm

      I gave my daughter a few tsp at a time. I took several tbs when I was sick.

      • Victoria February 6, 2015, 2:23 pm

        A few tsp at a time – do you mean a few tsp a day or a few at any one time?

  • holblevgirl March 19, 2013, 2:48 pm

    will this help with strep too?

    • LSS October 26, 2014, 8:00 pm

      RE: the comment about strep, I imagine it would help relieve the symptoms, but PLEASE make sure that anyone with strep see a doctor immediately. Untreated, it can cause permanent problems (leads to rheumatic fever, which can cause heart damage). Antibiotics need to be prescribed for strep!

  • Marya March 23, 2013, 8:39 am

    Thank you for that – what we do is heat raw milk and add honey to the cup – my family loves it. This
    syrup will be a great addition to us as well.

    • Marya March 23, 2013, 8:40 am

      Raw honey

  • Colleen April 15, 2013, 11:17 pm

    My Ayurvedic doctor advised me never to heat honey as it can become toxic. Also, she advised that heating lemon or lime juice makes it bitter. Better to add both of those ingredients cold. If you want to store it, warm the coconut juice, add the honey and lemon juice cold, then let cool. When you want to use them, add the mixture to tea or hot water.

    • Sam March 29, 2015, 8:14 pm

      Adding it to tea or hot water is still heating it.

  • Lisa August 12, 2013, 3:01 pm

    I’m using a glass jar like the one in the pic so I just dunked the jar it in a cup of warm water to melt the coconut oil like a mini double boiler. Im lazy and didnt feel like dirtying up a sauce pan lol. Plus I didnt want to cook away the enzymes and all the good stuff. I also added some cinnamon and ginger.

  • TJ August 23, 2013, 8:20 pm

    I started using this last fall and all I can say is THANK YOU! May son has horrible horrible allergies. He had croup twice at 2 and 3 and the steroids he had to take left a lasting impression on him. He refuses to take anything that might be a medicine. But THIS…THIS he ASKS for. I can not thank you enough!

    • Glenda January 29, 2015, 2:48 pm

      What lasting effects did the steroids leave? curious becarse my 3 yr old was treated same for croup.

  • Melissa September 4, 2013, 8:04 pm

    I just used raw honey for my first time as a treatment for my son’s cough (he is 2). usually, he would get a runny nose and it would settle into ears while sleeping and develop into an ear infection. This time though it didn’t! After 2-3 days of giving him 1tsp of honey before nap and bed his cough was gone and he got all better without a trip to the doctor. I will definetley be trying this recipe. Thanks for sharing!

  • Rachel September 4, 2013, 8:10 pm

    I just made this earlier and my kids loved it! We all have allergies so I am hoping this works. Thanks so much for the recipe! I love your blog. :)

  • Sharon B. October 18, 2013, 8:55 am

    I use Braggs ACV in place of lemon juice when I have hot tea, along with raw honey as a sweetener. I think I’ll try this, since I also love coconut oil. Thanks!

  • Inde&Avi's Mum October 20, 2013, 7:41 pm

    Thank you for this recipe!! I just wonder if it’s okay to warm and cool repeatedly or will this negate the benefits? I usually store it in small containers that will be used within the day but made a larger batch this time since we’re all sick and don’t have that many small containers so put it in a larger container. Now that the coconut oil is hard, the whole thing needs to be warmed. Any ideas on the safety of this? Thanks!!

    • Julie December 18, 2014, 6:46 pm

      Wondering if you couldn’t just pour this into ice cube trays freeze or chill till hardened and then store in a ziplock in the fridge. Pop in the mouth or in your hot tea!

  • missyasche November 5, 2013, 10:19 am

    As others have commented, the heat can kill some benefits of the honey. Why not just warm the coconut oil and then add the melted coconut oil to the other ingredients and mix well. When you need to warm the entire product for use, just use very low heat and only heat until coconut oil starts to melt and stir well to continue melting the oil. It melts so easily that once it starts to melt, you can turn the heat off and it should continue to melt while you stir it up.

  • Jeannie November 13, 2013, 12:32 pm

    I would appreciate a dosage recommendation

    • Tiffany @ The Coconut Mama November 13, 2013, 12:46 pm

      Hi Jeannie,

      I don’t feel comfortable recommending a dosage. I’m not a physician. Sorry I can’t be of more help .:(

    • Julie December 18, 2014, 6:51 pm

      That’s the great thing about natural remedies – they’re not so concentrated that you can easily OD. Most natural remedies it’s recommended to take pretty frequently – like every couple hours (or even every hour). Coconut oil, lemon juice & honey – goodness – I really can’t imagine taking too much! I guess with the essential oils you need to remember to only take a drop or 2, but this recipe doesn’t even contain EOs.

  • Homeschooling6 Mom December 14, 2013, 6:53 pm

    Thank you for the recipe. For those who don’t want to warm up and reheat, try MCT Oil. It doesn’t harden like coconut oil but has super coconut+ benefits. This is how I made mine. I put it in the fridge and just had the kiddos take it cold. They loved it.

    • Tiffany @ The Coconut Mama January 1, 2014, 9:02 am

      MCT oil doesn’t have all of the benefits of coconut oil and it can make you feel sick. Be careful when using it.

  • Jess December 14, 2013, 11:12 pm

    I just mixed this into some warm water and it is so yummy! Thanks!

  • harsha77 December 15, 2013, 10:04 pm

    I believe when we need warming, we should NEVER use microwave. I see that warning for all VCO (Virgin Coconut OIl) packings/blogs as it destroys much of the healing properties of VCO

  • Radha Krishna January 4, 2014, 6:28 am

    Does anyone know how and if Nyquil reacts at all with (extra virgin coconut oil + wild organic honey + lemon juice mix)?

  • Manuela January 7, 2014, 9:23 am

    beautifuk recepie. But you have to consider thet honey looses most of his properties with high temperatures, so you shouldn’t warm it up more then 45C ! :-)

  • Dr. Nayyar Hashmey January 8, 2014, 5:39 am

    This blend of Coconut oil, honey and lemon is highly effective against coughs and soar throats, bt there is another blend of Honey, apple vinegar and garlic whih I have found highly efficacious for arthritis, general body toning up and numrous other ailments. Many call it home magic remedy. I use it early in the morning before ma breakfast and it works wonders..

    • Joyce February 8, 2015, 9:46 am

      Good recipes

  • sarah January 13, 2014, 4:34 pm

    Could you add raw peeled garlic cloves to this and still be able to store in fridge?

    • Lori September 2, 2014, 11:56 pm

      Just last week I made a mix of honey, garlic, and lemon juice, blended it up in the food processor, and stored it in the refrigerator, got over a cold in record time, next time I’ll add the coconut oil too.

  • Ivonne January 17, 2014, 5:53 pm

    Also if you have a mean cough add some aloe vera. Great recipe!

  • Kristina Steffen January 25, 2014, 6:38 pm

    I made up a batch of this when my kiddo started coughing like crazy. Works better than I would have thought. We only use it at bedtime, but the kiddo (and me!) is almost guaranteed at least 2 hours of solid sleep. Instead of heating the honey, I just warmed the coconut oil and used that to warm the honey. Thanks for the recipe and the breakdown of why each ingredient is beneficial!

  • coffeewithus3jamie January 26, 2014, 4:36 pm

    Thanks for sharing this recipe! I shared it on my blog along with another cough syrup recipe that was handed down to me from my mom. I made sure to link back to you!

  • Amar February 15, 2014, 11:03 am

    if you cannot consume coconut oil and other coconut products, what would you recommend as a substitute? ghee?

    Thank you kindly


  • Nancy Gregg March 25, 2014, 6:52 am

    I was wondering if this mixture must be refrigerated? I’m hoping to make a batch to take with us on vacation and not sure I’ll have access to a fridge or stove? Any ideas?

  • zaira April 10, 2014, 1:05 pm

    Question. …should the syrup be pretty oily? And is it true that heating honey is dangerous?

  • Natalie Kemp April 11, 2014, 8:49 am

    Thanks for sharing this recipe Tiffany!

  • Susan Mayer April 11, 2014, 9:42 am

    I have been using cinnamon mixed in raw honey at the first sign of a sore throat or sniffle for about the past year with excellent results. I have a compromised immune system and can not fight off any sort of infection, which has always meant antibiotics after a few days of a simple cold turning into a chest infection. I have not needed antibiotics in the last year at all! I will be adding coconut oil and lemon to my mix……sounds even better!

  • Ashley May 15, 2014, 1:52 am

    Thanks for this post. I tried it today and my boys love it and it seems to be helping with a bad cough. My boys can’t have certain additives so we haven’t been able to buy cough syrups. This is much nicer anyway and I’m much happier giving them something natural.

  • Lindsey June 12, 2014, 11:06 am

    I was glad to find this! As a breastfeeding mom, I always thought I was doomed to suffer through a cough/cold as there are so many things that could compromise my supply, so I never buy over the counter meds. I just made this 5 minutes ago and I already feel better! I’ve stopped coughing and it feels like my nose is clearing. Will also be giving to my two year old. THANK YOU FOR SHARING!

  • Patty White July 2, 2014, 7:54 am

    I always melt coconut oil in a glass jar on a heating pad. Also, if honey is toxic when heated, then how is it safe to use in in cooking?

    • Dr Wendy October 18, 2014, 4:41 pm

      It’s not toxic when heated, but heating it over 45C destroys the beneficial enzymes.

  • Lori September 3, 2014, 12:01 am

    last week after the grandkids brought home something from school and shared with me, I whipped up a mix of lemon juice, honey, and garlic, next time I will also add coconut oil, which I took separate this time, and some cinnamon, may also add some turmeric for good measure too.

  • Stevie September 7, 2014, 4:26 pm

    I have an anaphylactic reaction to cough medications and was just browsing the internet because I have a cough that is destroying my Sunday.
    I’m so grateful to have come across this recipe. My cough is tamed (and it tastes delicious!)

  • Marlo September 12, 2014, 3:28 am

    I pinned this a while ago and if came in handy today when I woke up with a sore throat. I took a spoonful immediately and then I put a couple spoons in some warm water and am sipping on it. Plan on using this on my boys since I hate giving them medicine. This taste so much better and the bonus is that it’s all natural. Thank you for sharing.

  • Patti October 5, 2014, 7:00 am

    Why can you only keep it a month? I like to keep stuff like this on hand, but if it’s only good for 1 month, not sure it would be worth it unless it is an immediate need.

  • Joyce October 25, 2014, 8:14 am

    Sounds good

    • Joyce October 25, 2014, 8:16 am

      It sure doesn’t take but a couple of minutes to make- if that!

  • Melody October 31, 2014, 9:37 am

    So heat the oil just to melting point, add ingredients . Once hardened, why couldn’t you just swallow a spoonful of the hardened mixture?

  • Cathy November 11, 2014, 11:55 am

    For heaven sake people, so much confusion as to “how” to prepare this…mix it up, freeze in ice cube trays, dump frozen portions in a freezer bag, keep in freezer (far longer than a MONTH) and take one out as needed. Either suck on it frozen like a popsicle (or put in sticks and make ACTUAL POPSICLES for the kids), let it warm to room temp & take it as cough syrup or drop it in a cup of hot water and DRINK IT…..Geeesh!!

    • Julie December 18, 2014, 6:56 pm

      And with that I’m off to make a batch to wait in the freezer, hoping we won’t need it for MONTHS…..! :)

  • Julie December 30, 2014, 9:04 pm

    Well Cathy, your idea sounded so great I went ahead and tried it! Problem is, there’s too much honey in this recipe & so the coconut oil floated to the top & hardened and the honey stayed nice and liquidy (thick liquidy) below. Argh. However, I guess that means one could still freeze the whole recipe (which isn’t much) in a container & just get a spoonful as needed w/o worrying about how long it will last, since it’s “frozen.”

  • jocelyn January 16, 2015, 8:05 am

    can i use olive oil instead of coconut oil? and turmeric powder to this mixture? because i have a daughter 4 years old and she have a very sticky plegm and she cough to much, i try to give her a under the counter medecine but it didn’t work… If i use this 4 kids lemon, honey, olive oil and turmeric together, is there any bad effect because of the combination??

  • therese jenck January 24, 2015, 1:04 pm

    i have an intolerance to lemons do you think pineapple juice would work? thanks therese

  • Ralitsa June 15, 2015, 8:03 am

    Hi, a folk medicine from my country is to mix walnuts, honey and lemon juice. There are different schemes of taking the mixture – 1 tsp in the morning(this usually is for kids), 1 tsp 3-4 times a day, and some people eat it as often as they like.

  • Nisha June 20, 2015, 1:37 am

    I heard its toxic if u boil or heat honey? Is this true

  • Emily September 17, 2015, 1:00 am

    I’m curious about heating it…doesn’t that destroy the nutritional value and healing properties of the honey?

  • Emily September 25, 2015, 6:28 am

    What about using fractionated coconut oil? Then it won’t need to be warmed up each time you wanna use it.

  • Kim September 29, 2015, 8:43 pm

    After you warm it up can you put it back on the refrigerator ?

  • Marc Plaisted October 24, 2015, 2:08 pm

    Your cough syrup sounds great, but one suggestion about the honey.
    If you combine the ingredients and heat, you could hurt the honey.
    Heating honey above 135f will start pasturizing the honey which kills all the good things about raw honey.
    Just a suggestion.
    Good luck
    Marc Plaisted
    P. B. Honey
    Beekeeper for 45 years


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