Long before modern medicine offered shelves of over-the-counter cold medicines at local drug stores, mothers and grandmothers had natural remedies to help alleviate the discomfort of a common cold. Crowning that list is a cocktail of sorts that soothes a sore throat, aides in relieving sinus pressure, and acts as a sleeping agent to combat the disquieting body aches typical of the worst colds. Make no mistake, we run to the drug store as quickly as you do when we aren't feeling well, but there's a level of comfort in sipping something warm, delicious, and wildly helpful in squelching the biting symptoms of a seasonal sickness in addition to taking the cold medicine working in our systems. Lemon and honey coat the throat and cut through the unpleasant mucus lingering in the head, the cinnamon offers nothing more than sweet warmth to the beverage, and the bourbon takes a more aggressive approach in combatting congestion. After drinking the whole Hot Toddy, the 1.5 oz of bourbon in the concoction both puts you at ease and helps you drift into sleep so your body can recover. Admittedly, even if you're not feeling sick, the drink is tasty enough to make for simple enjoyment on a cold evening. Whether it's for yourself or for a loved one, we recommend keeping this recipe in your back pocket. 

Micah A Leal


Credit: Micah A. Leal

Recipe Summary test

10 mins
10 mins
1 hot toddy


Ingredient Checklist


Instructions Checklist
  • Bring water to boil, remove from heat, add tea bag, and allow to steep for 5 minutes.

  • Remove and discard tea bag. Transfer tea to a drinking glass or mug and microwave for 20 seconds to reheat. Add honey and stir until dissolved. Add lemon juice, bourbon, and cinnamon stick. Stir and let sit for 1 minute. Add lemon slice and serve.