What is in Horehound Candy?

Have you ever wondered what's inside horehound candy? Whether you're a fan of herbal remedies or just love the taste of traditional sweets, horehound candy is worth exploring. In this article, we'll dive into the world of horehound candy, uncovering its ingredients and potential benefits. So, let's get started!

What is horehound candy?

Horehound candy is a type of confectionary that is made using the horehound herb. It is typically used as a natural remedy for coughs and sore throats. The candy has a distinct flavor that is both sweet and herbal. It can be found in different forms, such as hard candy or soft chewy candy.

Horehound candy has a long history and can be traced back to ancient times. It was used by the ancient Egyptians, Greeks, and Romans for its medicinal properties. In the past, horehound candy was commonly used to soothe digestion issues, coughs, and even as a general tonic. Today, it is enjoyed both for its potential health benefits and its unique taste.

Ingredients in horehound candy

The main ingredients in horehound candy include:

Horehound herb

The key ingredient in horehound candy is the horehound herb itself. This herb is known for its distinct, slightly bitter taste and its potential therapeutic properties. The horehound herb is often used in traditional medicine to help with respiratory issues, digestive problems, and even as an anti-inflammatory.

Sugar or alternative sweeteners

Most horehound candy is made with sugar, which adds sweetness to balance the herbal flavor. However, for those looking for healthier options, alternative sweeteners like honey or even sugar substitutes can be used as well.

Flavoring agents (optional)

Some horehound candy may also include additional flavoring agents to enhance the taste. Popular choices include anise, mint, or lemon extract, which add a refreshing twist to the candy.

Other possible ingredients in horehound candy may include corn syrup, honey, or herbal extracts. These ingredients can vary depending on the recipe and the brand of candy.

Health Benefits of horehound candy

Horehound candy is not only delicious but can also offer potential health benefits. Some of these benefits include:

Soothes cough and throat irritation

The horehound herb has long been used for its soothing properties when it comes to coughs and throat irritation. Studies suggest that the herb may help reduce coughing and provide relief for sore throats.

Helps with digestion

Horehound candy has been traditionally used to aid digestion. The herb in horehound candy may help stimulate the production of digestive enzymes, which can support the breakdown of food and improve overall digestion.

Potential anti-inflammatory properties

Some research suggests that the horehound herb may have anti-inflammatory properties. These properties may help reduce inflammation in the body and potentially provide relief for conditions such as arthritis.

Nutritional Information

When it comes to the nutritional content of horehound candy, it's important to note that it is considered a treat and should be enjoyed in moderation. Here's a breakdown of the typical nutritional information for horehound candy:

  • Calories: Approximately 20-30 calories per candy
  • Total fat: 0g
  • Sodium: 0mg
  • Total carbohydrates: 6-8g
  • Sugars: 6-8g
  • Protein: 0g

Types of horehound candy available

There are different types of horehound candy available, catering to different preferences. Some popular options include:

Traditional hard candy

Traditional horehound candy is often made in the form of hard, individually wrapped candies. These candies have a firm texture and slowly dissolve in your mouth, releasing the herbal flavor.

Soft chewy candy

For those who prefer a softer texture, soft chewy horehound candies are a great option. These candies have a similar taste to their hard candy counterparts but offer a chewier experience.

Sugar-free options

For individuals watching their sugar intake or with dietary restrictions, sugar-free horehound candy is available. These candies are sweetened with sugar substitutes and can be enjoyed without the guilt.

Popular brands of horehound candy

Now that you know the different types of horehound candy, let's explore some popular brands:

Brand 1: Horehound Haven

Horehound Haven is known for producing high-quality horehound candy made with natural ingredients. Their candy is made using the finest horehound herb and is available in both hard and soft chewy varieties. You can find Horehound Haven candy in select specialty stores.

Brand 2: Old Fashioned Horehound Drops

Old Fashioned Horehound Drops is a well-known brand that specializes in traditional hard horehound candies. Their candies have a strong herbal flavor and are made using only the finest ingredients. You can find Old Fashioned Horehound Drops in various online retailers and specialty stores.

Brand 3: Grandma's Horehound Candy

Grandma's Horehound Candy is a family-owned brand that brings back the nostalgia of old-fashioned horehound candy. Their candy is made using a secret family recipe that combines the horehound herb with just the right amount of sweetness. Grandma's Horehound Candy is available in select local stores.

How to make horehound candy at home

If you're feeling adventurous, you can try making horehound candy at home. Here's a simple recipe to get you started:

Ingredients needed:

  • Fresh or dried horehound herb (approximately 2 cups)
  • Sugar or alternative sweeteners (approximately 2 cups)
  • Other optional ingredients: flavorings like anise or mint extract

Step-by-step instructions:

  1. In a saucepan, bring the horehound herb and water to a boil. Let it simmer for about 20-30 minutes.
  2. Strain the mixture to remove the herb residue, creating a horehound extract.
  3. Return the horehound extract to the saucepan and add the sugar or alternative sweeteners. Stir until the sweeteners dissolve completely, creating a sugar syrup.
  4. Optional: Add flavorings like anise or mint extract to enhance the taste of the candy.
  5. Continue to cook the mixture on medium heat until it reaches the hardball stage (around 300°F or 148°C) on a candy thermometer.
  6. Pour the mixture onto a greased surface or a silicone mold to shape the candy. Let it cool completely before enjoying.

Other uses for horehound herb

Horehound herb, the main ingredient in horehound candy, can also be used for various other purposes.

Medicinal uses

Aside from being used in candy, the horehound herb can be brewed into a herbal tea. This tea is often consumed to help with respiratory issues, digestion problems, and even as a general tonic. Additionally, the horehound herb is a popular ingredient in herbal remedies for coughs, colds, and bronchitis.

Culinary uses

In the culinary world, horehound herb can be used as a flavoring for beverages. It can add a unique herbal note to homemade sodas, cocktails, or even herbal infusions. Additionally, horehound herb can be used as an ingredient in baked goods like cookies or cakes, adding a subtle herbal twist to the sweetness.

Precautions and considerations

While horehound candy and the herb itself are generally considered safe, there are a few precautions to keep in mind:

Allergies and potential side effects

Some individuals may have allergies to horehound or other related plants in the same family (such as mint). It's important to be aware of any potential allergic reactions. Additionally, excessive consumption of horehound candy may cause digestive issues or an upset stomach.

Potential drug interactions

If you are currently taking any medications or have specific medical conditions, it's always a good idea to consult with a healthcare professional. Horehound herb may have interactions with certain medications, especially those related to blood pressure, heart problems, or diabetes.

Where to buy horehound candy

If you're not up for making your own horehound candy, you can easily find it in various places:

Local specialty stores

Check out your local specialty stores, health food stores, or candy shops. These establishments may carry horehound candy or be able to point you in the right direction.

Online retailers

Online marketplaces like Amazon or Etsy offer a wide variety of horehound candies. You can browse through different brands and options, read reviews from other customers, and have the candy delivered right to your doorstep.


In conclusion, horehound candy is not only a delicious treat but also a potential herbal remedy for various ailments. With its unique herbal flavor and potential health benefits, horehound candy offers a delightful and natural alternative to traditional sweets. Whether you choose to buy it or make it at home, exploring the world of horehound candy is a flavorful adventure worth embarking on.

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