Honey in Coffee, Why Didn’t I Think of That?

Though Buddy the Elf was onto something when he put syrup in his coffee, I can do you one better.  Honey in coffee.  There’s a big difference between honey and syrup.  There are also certain types of honey that might work better in your coffee than others.  Let’s take a look at some of the benefits of putting honey in your coffee and what to look out for.

Honey and Drip Coffee

Drip coffee is a staple in coffee shops and morning routines all across the world.  It has a different flavor based on the origin and how it was crafted.  Similar to coffee, honey is produced in regions all around the world.  The flavor of honey is mostly dictated by what flowering plant the bees are pollinating.  With so many underlying flavors of both honey and coffee, it can be overwhelming knowing what to choose

When we think of drip coffee, people most commonly add “cream and sugar”.  Sometimes this “sugar” comes in the form of real sugar and sometimes it is an artificial sweetener.  However you like to dress up your coffee, you might want to give honey a try.  The best type of honey to use would be local honey.  Local honey often contains small bits of local pollen.  Consuming small amounts of pollen can help reduce seasonal allergies.  Different honeys have different flavor profiles, similar to coffee.  In general the darker the honey is, the stronger the flavor.  This is not always true but it is a decent rule of thumb.  The taste of the honey is determined by the types of flowers that bees pollinate as well as the time of year.  A lot of honey from the Missouri area is either clover or wildflower.  The clover honey will be lighter in color and in taste while the wildflower usually appears darker and has a much more bodied taste.

If plain honey isn’t your thing, you could try adding infused honey for an even more flavorful cup of joe.  If you want to enhance certain flavor profiles within the coffee, you could try adding a complementing infused honey.  Here are some pairs we recommend:

Chocolate Honey & Sumatra or Breakfast Blend
Vanilla Honey & Guatemala
Strawberry Creamed Honey & Ethiopia

Milk and Honey (and Coffee)

Whether you prefer to add a splash of milk in your coffee or a splash of coffee in your milk, honey can add a creamy sweetness to your cup.  You can add a lighter honey to add sweetness to your cup or a darker honey to add a more bodied sweetness to complement your coffee.  If you enjoy hot lattes, we recommend trying a honey latte.  This combination works especially well with oat milk, giving your latte a hint of a sweet oat flavor.  We recommend a honey latte using our Black Stallion espresso and Route 66 Honey’s Cinnamon Vanilla Creamed Honey.

If iced lattes are more your thing, you might consider trying an infused honey iced latte.  The floral flavors of summer pair with this chilled classic for a combination that tastes like a breath of fresh air.  We recommend using Route 66 Honey’s Lavender Honey or Hawaiian Hibiscus Honey.  

Honey vs Sugar

The difference in health benefits for honey and sugar have been debated for decades.  Which one is healthier?  Which one helps with weight loss?  Let’s look at a comparison of the two.  A serving of honey is one tablespoon.  A serving of sugar can vary, but is usually 1-2 teaspoons.  One tablespoon of honey typically has around 60 calories.  Comparatively, a tablespoon of sugar has around 48 calories.  While the quick answer would be that sugar is healthier, there are more factors to consider.  While sugar can provide a sweetness to your food, it is also providing your body with glucose.  This is an important source of fuel for your body.  While sugar is a source of glucose, you can also find it in many fruits and even in honey.  With both sugar and honey providing glucose, we can turn to their processing.  The sugar you can find at the store has been heavily processed and bleached to get to small white granules.  These processes can reduce the health benefits from the raw sugar cane.  The same is true for honey.  The honey you see on the big store’s shelves is always very clear and of uniform color.  This is due to large amounts of processing to create a perfectly uniform product for the masses.  Raw, local honey will be a little cloudy and it will contain small particles of pollen from the bees.  This pollen is great to help combat seasonal allergies.  In addition to the health benefits, there are other benefits to using local honey.  Buying local honey supports a small business within the community.  Bees pollinate around 80% of flowering plants including many fruits and vegetables.  Supporting the local bees gives beekeepers the ability to expand, thus increasing their contribution to pollinating local plants.  You get a sweet treat to put in your coffee and the local ecosystem thrives, seems like a win-win!  

From honey to sugar, to cream and sugar, to syrup and coffee, there are countless ways to enjoy your cup of joe.  No matter how you take your cup, morning coffee has been a staple for centuries.  Do you have a favorite way to enjoy your coffee?  Comment your favorite recipe!

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