DIY Herbal Honey Throat Spray Recipe

DIY Herbal Throat Spray surrounded by fresh thyme, sage, and lemon balm leaves, and fresh peach blossoms

Today, I’m sharing how I make customized herbal honey throat sprays to treat my family’s sore and scratchy throats.

I use raw honey in these, but you can substitute vegetable glycerin for a vegan product. Also, remember that honey should not be given to children under a year old.

I base my throat sprays on a recipe found in Rosemary Gladstar’s book: Medicinal Herbs, A Beginner’s Guide. (This is a fantastic book for those looking to build your personal library! It has lots of beautiful photographs and easy to follow recipes.)

The recipe revolves around using tinctures, but if you prefer to avoid alcohol completely, you can substitute a strong herbal tea instead.

I’ll give more details on that below, along with a list of herbs to consider using when designing your spray.

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bottle of throat spray made with herbs and honey on a wooden background with fresh lemon balm leaves, thyme, sage leaves, and tiny blue wildflowers

DIY Herbal Honey Throat Spray Recipe


  • 2 tablespoons total of herbal tincture(s) or tea – see list below
  • 2 tablespoon raw honey (or vegetable glycerine)
  • 1 tablespoon warm water
  • 1/8 to 1/4 teaspoon peppermint extract

Directions to Make

Mix all of the ingredients together and pour into a 2 ounce glass spray bottle. I buy glass spray bottles at Specialty Bottle.

Directions to Use

Spray into your mouth, directed towards your throat, as needed. When made with tinctures, this throat spray will last for several weeks, stored in your refrigerator.

Herbal Tea Variation

If you don’t want to use alcohol based tinctures, you can make this recipe with a strong herbal tea instead. Just be sure to keep the resulting spray in your refrigerator and be aware that the shelf life will be reduced to about 2 days.

To  make a strong herbal tea: put 1 or 2 tablespoons of dried herbs, or 2 to 4 tbsp fresh herbs, in a heat proof jar and pour a cup of simmering hot water over them.

Let this steep for at least an hour, or more. The longer it steeps, the stronger the tea will be.

Strain and use in the recipe above instead of the tinctures and water. Extra tea can be frozen in ice cube trays for later use.

herbs for throat spray

Herbs to Consider Using in Your Throat Spray Recipe

Be sure to research each herb before use to ensure that it’s not contraindicated for your personal health situation. A persistent or severe sore throat can be a symptom of serious illness and may need evaluation and/or treatment by a health care professional.

Tinctures can be found at your local health store, online (I like Herb Pharm or Mountain Rose Herbs brand), or you can make your own by following the directions HERE, using the herb(s) of your choice.

  • Spilanthes – My favorite addition! It adds a tingly numbness that is exceptionally helpful when dealing with a raw feeling throat. It’s anti-microbial and antiviral in nature and helps when your stomach is upset. You can buy a high quality tincture/extract at Mountain Rose Herbs or make your own. (Spilanthes is easy to grow!)
  • Echinacea – is another one good to help with throat pain. It also helps boost your immune system. You can buy a tincture at Mountain Rose Herbs or check your local health store.
  • Violet – one of my favorite all around plants. Soothes inflammation and heals. I also used this in a spray I made to help my husband when he quit tobacco, since it’s purported to fight oral cancers. Make your own tincture from violets growing in your yard or buy Herb Pharm’s brand at Amazon.
  • Rose petals – are cooling and astringent. Make your own tincture easily by covering fresh or dried organic or unsprayed rose petals with vodka for four to six weeks.
  • Marshmallow Root – excellent at coating and soothing inflamed throats. You can buy marshmallow root tincture/extract at Mountain Rose Herbs.
  • Thyme – good for bronchitis and upper respiratory infections. (Herb Pharm has some available on Amazon.)
  • Elderberry – The classic antiviral, very effective against influenza. (You can buy tincture/extract at Mountain Rose Herbs, or make your own using my directions HERE, or check your local health store.)
  • Schisandra – A favorite adaptogen, it helps the body cope with stresses & illness. (You can buy at Mountain Rose Herbs or make your own with dried berries, soaked overnight.)
  • Astragalus – My other favorite adaptogen! It gives a subtle boost of energy and increases the ability to fight off colds. (You can buy it from Mountain Rose Herbs.)
  • Lemon Balm – is  antiviral, calming, soothes nervous stomach and powerful against cold sores. It’s easy to make your own if you grow lemon balm in your garden, but you can also find the extract/tincture at Mountain Rose Herbs.
  • Ginger – is antibacterial, helps upset stomach, nausea and chills. It’s super easy to make a tincture using ginger root bought from your grocery store or find ready-made at Mountain Rose Herbs.
  • Purple Dead Nettle – sometimes used for allergies or inflammation. (Gather from your yard in spring.)
  • These are just a few ideas; there are many more options to mix and match. Invest in a reference book such as Making Plant Medicine by Richo Cech. It lists many plants, their uses and contraindications, and will give you direction on other herbs to try out. Hands down, it’s the most loved and used book in my personal library!

This article was originally published January, 2014 and updated March, 2020.




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bottle of herbal honey throat spray surrounded by fresh peach blossoms, thyme, and sage leaves on a wooden background
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  1. HI, Jen,
    I’ve been looking for a simple throat spray recipe. I’m going to try this next time anyone in my family gets a sore throat.
    Thanks for all the wonderful recipes you share.
    How is the Herb course going?

  2. thanks for all the wonderful information that you provided in your article. I always feel its better to use a natural when possible for any ailment. Thanks for sharing. Visiting from Wildcrafting Wednesdays. Have a wonderful healthy day!

  3. I just started making home made soap and I’m so enjoy it ..but I love your recipes & thx for sharing them…

    1. Hi Stella, I’m so happy that you’re enjoying making soap! I’m also glad to know that you like the recipes too! :)

  4. Thanks for sharing your remedies & recipes. I’m a Licensed Nurse, & have had Physician Assistants, Physicians that have recommended some of these for throat irritations & for soothing stomach discomfort. I do a lot of crafts, soap & candle making, lotions & body scrubs, scrapbooking, floral arrangements. Many blessings to you.

    1. Hi Darlene, Thanks for the kind words! It sounds like you have lots of great hobbies (some of my favorites too!) :)

  5. Hi Jan, I am going to make a hair / scalp tonic spray using “liquid herbal extracts ” and ” EO ” , with a vodka / aloe base. I will be using a 4 oz spray bottle.

    How many droppers of each “herbal extract” in the bottle ?
    How many drops of each “EO” in the bottle ?


    1. Hi Oren! It’s hard to say, without knowing a lot more details. A lot will depend on if you’re using water-based extracts or oil-based extracts, how concentrated they are & how many you want to add.
      For example, this goji berry extract from Lotion Crafter is water-soluble and you can add it up to 5% of your recipe.
      However, this aloe extract from Bramble Berry is oil-based and you can use up to 2 to 12% in your recipe.
      Oil-based extracts aren’t going to mix in well with aloe and vodka, so you’ll want to double check that yours are water-based (water-soluble) ones.
      If you look up the manufacturer of your extracts, they usually have suggested usage rates on their web site or if you call their customer service number they can let you know the best amount to use.
      For essential oils amount, that will depend on what types you want to use and how many different types you’re adding to the spray.
      Here’s an excellent article on dilution rates of various essential oils, that will help you decide how much of each one is safe to use:
      I hope that helps a bit as you create your hair tonic spray! :)

  6. Hi.

    I used to work for Julique and they had a spilanthes tincture that one of the executives told me to use for cold sores, etc. They had told me to apply it over the area where i felt one coming up. When I did, it went away and never came through. Once my daughter and I started using the splinathes tincture, we never had cold sores again. Have you had anyone else have this same experience?

  7. Do you use only one of these herbal tinctures or can you blend the herbs to make on tincture? The only one I don’t have is schisanders, the rest I have?

  8. Hi Jan, can you tell me why this recipe (using a propolis tincture) has a short shelf life? Shouldn’t it be good forever? Thanks!

    1. Hi Melissa! Once you dilute the tincture with water & honey, it has a lower level of preservation (alcohol percentage) than straight tincture does. I’ve used propolis tincture in a lotion and sadly it got moldy within a month or so, so it’s a lot less effective when diluted. However, there’s a good chance these throat sprays (at least the tincture based ones) last longer than a few weeks, but I like to play it on the safe side and try to use them up by that time. :)

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