Recipes for natural expectorant

Updated April 17, 2017

Just as a cough happens to be one of the commonest complaints anywhere, ingredients for remedies of the same are also commonly found in any home. While breathing in steam, refraining from smoking, consuming spicy foods, using a humidifier, and drinking a lot of water prove beneficial, you can expect better and longer lasting results with a few homemade remedies as well.

Traditional Remedies

A cough benefits from a mixture of equivalent parts of honey and aloe juice and a mixture of carrot juice and honey in warm water. Dried bee balm leaves soaked in hot water not only act as expectorant, but also provide relief by healing infections as they have some antiseptic qualities too. Mixing cayenne pepper or Tabasco sauce in water to use for a gargle clears mucus congestion. You could also grind a few garlic cloves, add a cup of grape juice, or mix freshly squeezed lemon juice with honey, or sip on ginger tea throughout the day for instant expectorant action. Honey helps against the constant throat irritation and guards against infection because of its antibacterial features. Another honey remedy would be to boil a lemon for a few minutes and then squeeze the juice in a mixture of honey and a little glycerine and sip on it. Onions are known to have expectorant properties as well. Boil an onion for a quarter of an hour and take the resultant broth as many times as you want through the day to get relief from your congested throat. Even a mixture of the juice of a raw onion and honey is beneficial in the same way. Apart from chamomile tea, tea prepared with angelica leaf or root, wild cherry bark, red clover, slippery elm, peppermint, rosemary, or thyme, provides huge relief from cough. Some have also benefited from sprinkling apple cider vinegar on the pillowcase before resting for the night. Vinegar, like honey, is useful as an expectorant. Mixing it with water or honey provides instant relief as it breaks down mucus and brings down inflammation. An early morning remedy would be taking a clove of garlic that had been swathed in honey and kept overnight. Liquorice root, which is known to soothe the inflamed throat, could be powdered and taken with honey several times a day.


While breathing in steam, you can try adding a few easily available ingredients for a more potent inhalation. You can add a few drops of cypress, oil of juniper, and ginger for an effective concoction or merely add a few drops of eucalyptus oil to boiling water for instant relief from cough. Rubbing your chest with a mixture of cedar or myrrh with olive or jojoba or almond oil can prove beneficial. Adding a few drops of heated jasmine or essential pine or thyme oil to a handkerchief and inhaling the fumes will also act as natural expectorants.

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About the Author

Rajrupa Ghosh has been writing since 2002. With two master's in literature and journalism (Jadavpur University and Indian Institute of Mass Communication) she has been published in "The Telegraph" and "The Statesman," designed e-learning courses at Tata Interactive Systems and developed marketing collaterals for Tata Consultancy Services and Hewlett Packard.