When I first discovered the wonders of apple cider vinegar as a sore throat remedy, I was both amazed and, honestly, a little disgusted. You see, I have never been a huge fan of the smell or taste of vinegar. I find it pretty off-putting. However, after using this gargle recipe for sore throat for several years, I know that the benefits are more than worth it. So it’s ranking a little higher in my book!
I know that there are some people out there who just love vinegar and everything about it. That’s not me, but maybe you are! If so, then you will appreciate this sore throat gargle recipe even more. And one positive thing about apple cider vinegar is that it is sweeter and slightly less pungent than other vinegars.
This remedy may not be something I would choose to use when feeling well due to the taste and smell, but that’s part of why it’s a remedy! And I can testify that this gargle recipe is the absolute best thing for a sore throat. Even if you dislike vinegar, making and using this gargle is totally worth it because it is effective. It works, people! If you really can’t stand the taste, you can certainly cut the recipe with a little extra water if it makes taking it easier for you. It may not be quite as effective, but it will still help a lot.
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Why this gargle recipe for sore throat is so great
My husband and I will use this gargle recipe at the first sign of a sore throat, because it also prevents illnesses from progressing. Now, my husband likes the taste, but as I mentioned before, I do not. I will admit, there have been times where I’ve avoided doing the gargle as long as possible. The good news for me is, even if I wait to do it until I’m in the worst part of an illness, it starts kicking the pain and swelling in my throat fast.
Another thing I love about this gargle recipe is that even if you aren’t sick with a sore throat, it is so healthy and natural! It is safe to use at any time, if you would so choose. There are actually some really yummy, gut-healthy drinks that can be made with honey and apple cider vinegar. I may leave the cayenne out for those though.
Let’s talk a little bit more about the ingredients in this recipe and why they work so well.
Apple cider vinegar for sore throat
Apple cider vinegar has immune-boosting properties, especially when it’s raw and unfiltered. One of the main reasons is because it is a probiotic. The beneficial bacteria it contains makes it effective at killing the bad bacteria that may be present with a sore throat, like strep, for example.
It is also a natural antimicrobial, which means it has the potential to kill viruses. So even if your sore throat is not due to bacteria, using apple cider vinegar is beneficial. In either case, it lessens any irritation in the throat that we desperately want relief from!
Honey for sore throat
Raw and unfiltered honey offers the most inflammation-busting benefits. This is because in its most natural form, raw honey is antibacterial and antimicrobial. It still contains the bee pollen and propolis that carries these properties.
If you can’t get your hands on any raw honey, don’t worry! Any type of honey will help to coat the throat and offer temporary relief from soreness. It also makes this gargle more palatable, for those of you who don’t care for vinegar. Maybe when you’re suffering from a sore throat, the honey flavor will help motivate you to gargle more often.
But for future reference, consider purchasing your honey raw and unfiltered from here on out! It has so many more health benefits and can be used in other natural remedies as well.
Cayenne pepper for sore throat
The kicker ingredient in this recipe is cayenne pepper. Is gargling with cayenne pepper pleasant? Nope, not really. But if you are serious about getting rid of a bad infection in your throat, you will not want to leave it out.
Cayenne pepper is anti-inflammatory, improves circulation, and can even relieve pain. In other words, using this gargle recipe for sore throat will make swallowing easier, which is the worst part of having a sore throat!
Last year I had a horrible case of strep that left the back of my throat white and infected. Trust me when I say, I was miserable. But after consistently gargling with this recipe every couple of hours, my throat was clear and barely sore. I am convinced that the cayenne in this recipe is what specifically cleared up my strep in a matter of 24 hours.
Any ground cayenne pepper will work for this recipe, and you only need a tiny bit.
How to make this gargle recipe for sore throat
This recipe couldn’t be simpler or quicker to put together. Which is a good thing, because who feels like concocting something complicated when you’re dealing with a bout of sore throat?
Just add all of your ingredients to a mason jar, and shake it up. I do like to shake together my honey and warm water first so that the honey properly dissolves, then add my other ingredients.
How to use sore throat gargle
Obviously, once you make this simple gargle, you just need to get to gargling! Whenever I get a sore throat, I make this recipe and keep it right by the most convenient sink so I’ll remember to use it often. My husband actually prefers just drinking it, which you can also do. But I like to gargle because I feel like it keeps the beneficial ingredients on the affected area for more time. Not to mention, I don’t really care for the taste enough to drink it… haha. If you do, more power to you!
How to store leftover sore throat gargle
This gargle recipe for sore throat makes enough to fill a half-pint sized mason jar, which is perfect for storing. The great thing about the mason jar is you can just put all your ingredients straight in, shake it up, then use! If you prefer the gargle to be chilled, you can store it in the fridge, but it isn’t necessary. I usually wait to stick it in the fridge until after my illness is over, if I still have any gargle left.
Now, let’s get to the recipe!
All-Natural Sore Throat Gargle
- Half pint mason jar with lid
- 1 tbsp honey raw is best
- 1 tbsp warm water
- 2/3 cup apple cider vinegar
- 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
- Add honey and warm water to your mason jar or vessel of choice. Feel free to use a little extra honey if you desire more sweetness.
- Stir or shake until honey is dissolved.
- Add apple cider vinegar and cayenne pepper.
- Stir or shake again. It's ready to use!
- This gargle does not have to be refrigerated, but you can if you like!
- Remember to shake well before each use.