Quick natural homemade cold remedies really can kill colds fast.
At the first sniff of a cold in my family we whip up warming mugs of homemade cold relief tea.
It is super comforting and relieves symptoms fast – especially overnight – but has NO fancy ingredients!!
It just uses natural decongestants, throat soothers & bug fighters we already have in our kitchen.
So if the cold virus has hit your home make some now. I swear by it.
Homemade Cold Relief Tea
This cold relief tea recipe is super flexible. It includes swaps for basic ingredients so you can make it from the barest of cupboards.
- 1 mug of water per person
- Half a lemon
- 1 teaspoon of honey per mug
- Cold relief spices (see below)
- OR cold relief herbs
- Optional apple cider vinegar ACV
I make our cold relief tea either spicy or herbal as they’re not nice mixed. Spicy is a warming overnight remedy whilst herby is fresher for daytime.
Spicy Cold Relief Tea
Add 2 or 3 of these decongestant and anti-inflammatory spices:
- 1 teaspoon ginger
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- A pinch of cayenne pepper
- A pinch of turmeric (with a turn or two of black pepper)
You can use fresh ginger or sticks of cinnamon but dry spices are great.
Herbal Cold Relief Tea
For the herbal cold relief tea use 2 or 3 of these herbs :
They are also decongestants and see off knock on infection – e.g. sinus, throat, ear – triggered by the virus.
I grow oregano, thyme, rosemary & mint but dried herbs work great.
These swaps will all work if you are missing basic ingredients :
- Lemons : other citrus fruit, fruit juice not from concentrate, frozen berries, apples, tinned pineapple.
- Honey : molasses, maple syrup.
- Herbs & spices : hot lemon & honey alone will give instant cold relief but it is worth stocking the herbs & spices above as they are natural antibiotics & anti fungals that ease everything from gastritis to dandruff and athlete’s foot.
If you have none of these check out the quick cold remedies below using other kitchen ingredients.
How To Make Cold Relief Tea
This cold relief tea could not be easier to make, simply :
- Zest half your lemon
- Then cut in half
- Squeeze juice into pan
- Cut lemon half into pieces
- Put zest & lemon pieces in pan
- Add cold relief spices or herbs
- Add a tablespoon of ACV (optional)
- Add water
- Heat gently for 10-15 minutes giving lemon pieces some firm prods to extract more juice
- Whilst heating put a teaspoon of honey in each mug you’re making
- Strain cold relief tea through a sieve into a jug or a second pan
- Then pour into mugs & stir well
- Sip down as soon as cool enough for instant cold relief.
A mug of this homemade cold relief tea about an hour before bedtime really will ease symptoms overnight.
But for extra relief I have more quick remedies here including :
- More overnight home remedies
- More ways to fight colds fast
- Extra remedies for sinus congestion
- Extra remedies for sore throats
- PLUS other cold relief recipes
Overnight Home Remedies
Sleep is a wonderful medicine for colds but blocked sinuses, headache and fever keep us awake.
For more cold relief overnight :
- Keep air moist : with a damp clean kitchen cloth placed on your radiator as a DIY humidifier.
- Don’t over heat : sleep with as few covers as you can to ease fever.
- Onion by bed : put half an onion, cut side up, on your bedside table as a natural decongestant.
- Mint humidifier : soak a clean hankie in mint tea, ring to damp & then put on radiator for a natural decongestant humidifier.
Ways To Kill Colds Fast
We can never avoid colds totally – we all get them – but we can help our body to kill colds fast by :
- Reducing inflammation
- Feeding our gut
- Resting properly
Lots of us have low level inflammation that makes our body over react to bugs with crazy levels of mucous. The quickest ways to reduce inflammation are :
- Ditch sugar AND sweeteners
- Especially sodas!!
- Go easy on acids e.g. avoid gallons of juice & tomatoes every day
- Spend an hour outside daily
- Aim for steady as it goes success not adrenalin fuelled all nighters!!
- Exercise by walking rather than high stress routines.
Feed Our Gut
Gut health has become a bit of a fad but our gut is a vital part of our immune system. Feeding our gut can help our bodies fight colds fast without over reacting. Easy ways to restore gut health are :
- Seasonal berries & dark fruit e.g. blackberry, elderberry, cranberry, rose hip, sloe, damson
- Quick DIY leafy green soup
- Sheet pans of mixed vegetables
- Kefir porridge with ginger, cinnamon & turmeric
- A small daily side dish of pickled vegetables e.g. sauerkraut.
We need to rest properly when we have a cold to kill it fast. And we need to convalesce properly after a cold to get our energy back.
But we also need better rest full stop.
Lack of sleep and over busy lives in which we never slow down all undermine our immune system and our body’s ability to kill colds.
Use these simple tips to build some slow time into your life …
Quick Home Remedies For Sinus Congestion
The quick cold relief tea is brilliant for sinus congestion.
But these other quick home remedies will also help :
- Warm compress over face
- Gentle steam
- Chest & back rub
- Foot massage (strange huh?)
Best Spices For Sinus Congestion
Garnishing food with any of these spices helps with a blocked nose :
- Cayenne pepper
- Black pepper
Herbal Teas For Blocked Sinus Congestion Relief
These herbal teas will all relieve the pain of blocked sinuses :
For more help check out this big guide to sinus congestion remedies.
Quick Home Remedies For Sore Throats
We can easily end up with sore throats from colds if we don’t kill them fast as inflammation and mucous from our sinuses moves down our throat and into our chest.
It then becomes a vicious circle as coughing from a sore throat triggers more inflammation and mucous in our sinuses. The honey and lemon in the quick cold relief tea recipe will ease a sore throat fast.
But you can also use these quick home remedies for sore throats :
Herbal Teas For Sore Throats
These herbal teas will also all provide quick relief for sore throats triggered by your cold:
And for even more relief check out this big guide to home remedies for sore throats which covers everything from sore throat smoothies and slushies to popsicles …
More Quick Homemade Cold Remedies For Fast Relief
It always helps to have a bunch of homemade remedies to hand as it means we can get relief fast with what we have in our cupboards.
These remedies made from kitchen basics will all ease your cold fast.
Garlic Tea Cold Remedy
This garlic tea cold remedy is great for colds getting onto your chest …
Hot Molasses Cold Remedy
This traditional cold remedy really packs a punch with bad colds …
Blackberry Cold Remedy
Blackberries – and other fall fruit – are full of antioxidants that seem to help see off viruses. It is worth keeping some in the freezer for delicious anti-inflammatory smoothies and porridge toppings PLUS this blackberry cold remedy …
Elderberry Cold Remedy
If you’ve got elderberries of any sort in your cupboards – dried or syrup or tea bags – you can make this elderberry cold remedy …
Whisky & Rum Hot Toddy Overnight Cold Remedies
There’s a bit of a debate about taking alcohol for colds but many people swear by the decongestant powers of both whisky and rum as overnight cold remedies.
I am a whisky fan – I adore Scapa from Orkney – so personally would opt for this whisky hot toddy …
But you could make it with rum with this recipe if you prefer …
Onion Tea Cold Remedy
This onion tea cold remedy is another classic homemade cold remedy that can help with a set in cold getting onto your chest.
It’s ideally made with red onions and apples but use any onion you have – even onion powder – and apple juice or cider vinegar if that’s all you have.
Onion Soup Cold Remedy
If you are flush with onions, a classic onion soup is easy to make and is wonderfully anti-inflammatory if your body’s gone a bit bonkers fighting the cold virus.
This recipe is super flexible so you can make it with what you’ve got …
Chicken Soup Cold Remedy
Chicken soup is another traditional home remedy for colds that is full of natural decongestants.
It’s obviously wonderful made fresh but it’s worth freezing in small bowl batches so all you have to do is heat it up when a cold hits …
Fire Cider Cold Remedy
Fire cider has become super popular as a potent homemade remedy for cold symptoms. But the classic recipe is not quick and needs steeping for a month!!
Not ideal when you need an overnight cold remedy fast.
As an alternative try this fire cider recipe that still packs a serious punch but can be whipped up in 15 minutes. It is based on fresh pineapple but canned is great …
If you do want a make ahead fire cider recipe to keep in stock for future colds try this …
And there you go, loads of quick homemade cold remedies for fast overnight relief that you can whip up super speedily from what you have in your cupboards.
Do save this post for next time you have a cold!!
And check out my other natural remedies. They are all about the simple natural antibiotics, antihistamines & anti-fungal ingredients we have in our kitchens that can fight common bugs :
You can also follow my Pinterest board for even more homemade remedies …Photos: Jar with Spoon by Sunny Mama,Golden Honey Pouring From The Spoon and Top view of a jar of acacia honey with green branch by Marco Verch, cut lemon under Creative Commons 2.0
Works great!!! I added turmeric to it but I can feel the relief already
So glad to hear that Kim. If I am just making for me I chuck some turmeric in as well but haven’t quite convinced the rest of the family on the flavour … yet 🙂
If you decide to add turmeric, make sure to add a dash of black pepper to activate the turmeric.
It’s a bit of a complicated one I think Jackie as there is research that suggests the pepper makes no difference to turmeric absorption https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/22725836/. Also worth knowing that pepper may be problematic for anyone with digestive problems like gastritis as over doing it may damage the intestinal wall.
Wouldn’t it work better if you don’t heat up the honey, but add it straight to your mug once your tea is cold enough to drink? Heating up honey diminishes its healing properties and turns its nutritional value into the same as plain white sugar..
Ellen, if it were me, I’d warm the honey by setting it in warm water just so it flows easier. I do agree with you that heating it diminishes the value of it.
Perhaps heating is too ambiguous, perhaps warming should have been used to convey the idea.