7 Hot and Cold Drinks to Soothe a Sore Throat

Throat discomfort could be a symptom of the common cold and, although highly annoying, it's possible to soothe a sore throat with some natural remedies. Let's find out what they are.
7 Hot and Cold Drinks to Soothe a Sore Throat

Last update: 26 May, 2022

You must pay attention to and soothe a sore throat. It’s one of the most common symptoms of flu and certain other illnesses, to prevent major consequences. You may not be aware of it but this part of your body gives early signs of a flu and more serious problems.

There are various medications to soothe a sore throat. However, you can always resort to some homemade natural remedies like the hot beverages we’re about to discuss here today.

The Causes of a Sore Throat

Sore throat is one of the most common conditions you can get when exposed to weather changes or a virus. According to a Mayo Clinic publication, the causes could be:

  • The common cold
  • Influenza, known as flu
  • Mononucleosis
  • Measles
  • Chickenpox, also known as varicella
  • Croup, a common childhood illness characterized by a harsh, dry cough

Other less common causes are:

Depending on the origin of your sore throat, a doctor will often recommend treatment with antibiotics or mild painkillers to soothe your discomfort. Independently of these, you can also try some home remedies to help alleviate some of your symptoms.

The most important one is to drink plenty of fluids to keep your throat moist and prevent dehydration. We’re sharing other appropriate ones below.

The Best Hot and Cold Drinks to Soothe a Sore Throat

A woman holding her throat in pain.

1. Water

Overall, the best thing one can drink is water, whether it’s cold or hot. Furthermore, it’ll help to soothe a sore throat and any discomfort you have. You should drink at least eight glasses of water a day in order to remain well-hydrated and therefore healthy.

So that drinking enough water becomes a habit for you, carry a full bottle with you at all times. By always having access to water, you’ll feel the need to drink until it becomes a habit.

2. Natural Fruit Juice

Fruits can provide you with all of the vitamins and minerals that you need. Furthermore, they’ll help you remain strong and well-hydrated. This, in turn, this will alleviate your throat. However, it’s very important prepare this juice yourself to ensure quality ingredients and proper amounts.

Fruits such as pineapple, orange, lemon, lime, and cranberries are great options to consider due to their anti-inflammatory properties. The latter is an important antioxidant that contributes to the proper functioning of the immune system and, thus, protects the body from different diseases. At least according to this publication by the National Institutes of Health.

3. Tea

Tea is always a good choice. This is because it’s warm and thus helps relax your throat muscles. Depending on the herbs you use, it may also relieve your discomfort.

For this purpose, sage is an excellent choice because it’s a relaxing, anti-inflammatory herb that has everything you need to soothe a sore throat.

4. Water with Honey and Lemon to Soothe a Sore Throat

Honey and lime.

The combination of honey and lemon is one of the most popular remedies to relieve sore throat and other symptoms of flu or the common cold.

This combination is actually recommended by some health professionals. This is partly due to the cough-soothing properties of honey. In fact, a study with young children, over a year old, observed that taking up to two teaspoons of honey before going to sleep reduced coughing and helped them sleep.

Asa you can see, you might want to add a little honey and lemon to your herbal teas or any other drinks you use to soothe coughs.


  • 1 c. of water
  • 1 tbsp of 100% pure raw honey
  • 2 tbsp of lemon or lime juice


  • First, bring the water to a boil, add the honey and the lemon juice and mix it.
  • In addition to drinking it, you may also use it for gargling for better results.

Read this article: This Anti-Inflammatory Broth May Reduce Cancer Risk

5. Chicken Soup

As strange as it may sound, this is one of the most widely used natural remedies in popular culture to relieve symptoms associated with cold or flu. Chicken soup may have medicinal properties. One of the most prominent is a mild anti-inflammatory effect that can mitigate upper respiratory tract infections.

6. Thyme tea

The species of the genus Thymus have been used since ancient times for the treatment of a wide variety of ailments. Some diseases of the respiratory tract among them, thanks to the anti-inflammatory and antiviral properties of these plants.

As you can imagine, it’s an effective remedy to relieve sore throat, cough and cold. Not only that, it’s also good for asthma, whooping cough, and pharyngitis. However, it’s most commonly used as an infusion and safe in general.


  • 1 c. of water
  • A tsp. of thyme
  • Honey and lemon (optional)


  • Firstly, bring the water to a boil, add the thyme ,and turn off the heat when it reaches boiling point.
  • Then, let it steep for about five minutes. After this time you can strain it and drink the liquid hot or warm.
  • You can add a little squeezed lemon and a teaspoon of honey right before you drink it.
  • Finally, you may take one or two infusions a day. However, consult a doctor before taking it if you’re afflicted by any special medical conditions or are under medication.

7. Licorice infusion

Infusions made with this root are a common and effective remedy to improve sore throat. It’s best to take them hot and sweeten them with a little honey if you wish.

The possible uses of this infusion go beyond, though. You can also use it for gargling (in which case you must wait until the infusion cools down to a lukewarm temperature).

As this study shows, licorice gargles made five minutes before anesthesia are effective in attenuating the incidence and severity of post-surgery sore throat.



  • Boil water and licorice in a saucepan for two or three minutes. Then, turn off the heat and let it steep for another two or three minutes. It’s now ready to drink.

This plant is considered safe as a food ingredient but can there may be side effects such as increased blood pressure or decreased potassium values in some people. Especially when consumed in large quantities or for long periods of time.

This is why you must use it responsibly and consult a doctor if you have doubts about whether it’s right for you or not. Don’t drink it if you’re pregnant, lactating or have a history of hypertension, heart or kidney disease.

Other good ways to soothe a sore throat

Try these tips from the professionals at the Mayo Clinic in addition to drinking some of above beverages:

  • Ensure adequate sleep and voice rest
  • Do gargles with a mixture of salt and water
  • Humidify your environment or inhale the steam from a hot shower
  • Avoid irritants such as tobacco smoke and the use of certain cleaning products
  • Suck on lozenges or candies (containing menthol if possible)

When to consult a doctor?

You may notice relief from sore throat and some symptoms associated with this condition after drinking some of the above beverages. However, consult a doctor to rule out a major health problem and find the right treatment if the discomforts lasts many days or if your symptoms are recurrent.

Consult them immediately is you have any of the following symptoms in addition to your sore throat: difficulty breathing, trouble swallowing, blood in saliva or phlegm, dehydration, inflammation and joint pain, and a rash or excessive drooling in children.

Finally, you can enjoy any of the drinks above as a snack or to comfort you on a cold day in addition to using them to improve the condition of your throat. You may share these new recipes with your family and friends to encourage them to take care of their health as well.

All cited sources were thoroughly reviewed by our team to ensure their quality, reliability, currency, and validity. The bibliography of this article was considered reliable and of academic or scientific accuracy.

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  • Centros para el Control y la Prevención de Enfermedades. Dolor de garganta. Junio 2015. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.
  • Clínica Mayo. Dolor de garganta. (2020). Recuperado el 9 de junio de 2020. https://www.mayoclinic.org/es-es/diseases-conditions/sore-throat/symptoms-causes/syc-20351635.
  • Del Mar, C. B., & Glasziou, P. P. (1998). Antibiotics for sore throats? Journal of Paediatrics and Child Health. https://doi.org/10.1046/j.1440-1754.1998.00304.x.
  • Kwakman, P. H. S., te Velde, A. a, de Boer, L., Speijer, D., Vandenbroucke-Grauls, C. M. J. E., & Zaat, S. a J. (2010). How honey kills bacteria. FASEB J. https://doi.org/10.1096/fj.09-150789.
  • National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health. Licorice Root. Agosto 2020. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.
  • Patil S. M, Ramu R, et al. A systematic review on ethnopharmacology, phytochemistry and pharmacological aspects of Thymus vulgaris Linn. Heliyon. Mayo 2021. 7 (5): e07054.
  • Quinlan, P., Lane, J., & Aspinall, L. (1997). Effects of hot tea, coffee and water ingestion on physiological responses and mood: The role of caffeine, water and beverage type. Psychopharmacology. https://doi.org/10.1007/s002130050438.
  • Rennard B. O, Ertl R. F, et al. Chicken soup inhibits neutrophil chemotaxis in vitro. Chest. Octubre 2020. 118 (4): 1150-7.
  • RxList. Thyme. Junio 2021.
  • Tanz, R. R. (2017). Sore Throat. In Nelson Pediatric Symptom-Based Diagnosis. https://doi.org/10.1016/B978-0-323-39956-2.00001-7.
  • Tosh P. K. Is it true that honey calms coughs better than cough medicine does? Mayo Clinic. Agosto 2020.

This text is provided for informational purposes only and does not replace consultation with a professional. If in doubt, consult your specialist.