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4 Cold-fighting hot drink recipes

Rachel Dreskin is a Brooklyn gal with a passion for seasonal eating, local wine and vintage fashions. She makes regular visits to her local green markets and is constantly in the kitchen experimenting. You can find her favorite tips and ...

4 Hot drinks that boost immunity

With our busy schedules, staying in bed for a few days to get over a winter cold isn't really an option. It's harder to stay healthy when the temperatures drop, but having a few antioxidant packed cold-fighting drink recipes on hand certainly won't hurt your chances of beating those winter sniffles.

Ginger spiced tea

Instead of running to the drug store and picking up an expensive cold medication that only masks symptoms, try sipping one of these simple antioxidant packed hot drinks instead. Pomegranate juice, citrus, ginger, green and black tea, cayenne and cinnamon are a few ingredients that are loaded with antioxidants and are proven to be effective at boosting your immune system. Here are four delicious drink recipes that incorporate one or more of these powerful cold-fighting foods.

Ginger spiced tea recipe

Ginger is another powerful antioxidant and anti-inflammatory and has been shown to have soothing effects on cold symptoms. Green and black teas are also rich in antioxidants and help keep the immune system in top fighting shape. For a video tutorial on how to make this tea drink, click here.

Serves 2 

Ingredients:

  • 3 cups filtered water
  • 1-1/2 inch piece fresh ginger
  • 1 (heaping) tablespoon green or black tea leaves
  • 1/2 cup whole milk
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • Dash of cinnamon

Instructions:

  1. Peel and slice ginger into thin rounds. Bring water to a boil, add ginger and let simmer for 10 minutes. Lower heat, add tea leaves and let steep for 10 minutes.
  2. Strain into a blender. Add in milk and honey and blend well. Return to pot and rewarm over low heat. Serve topped with a dash of cinnamon.

Honey cayenne tea recipe

Cayenne pepper naturally does what many cold medicines try to do. It effectively breaks up mucus and helps clear your respiratory passages, giving you quicker relief from cold symptoms. It also has immune strengthening and antimicrobial properties, making it a great food to consume to help prevent a cold from even coming on.

1 serving

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup water
  • 1 black tea bag
  • 1 teaspoon honey
  • Pinch cayenne pepper

Instructions:

  1. Heat water on the stovetop and steep the tea for about four minutes. Remove bag and combine tea with the honey and cayenne in a mug.

Hot pomegranate cider recipe

Pomegranates, which are in season during the winter months, are one of the most powerful known sources of antioxidants. Combine with apple cider and comforting spices for a tasty immune strengthening beverage.

4 servings

Ingredients:

  • 3 cups apple cider
  • 1 cup pomegranate juice
  • 3 cinnamon sticks
  • 4 cloves

Directions:

  1. Heat all ingredients in a saucepan and simmer for 10 minutes. Remove cloves and cinnamon sticks and serve.

Virgin orange chamomile Hot Toddy recipe

Many people swear by the popular Hot Toddy's ability to soothe and relieve cold symptoms. The traditional version combines whiskey with lemon and honey for a soothing and citrusy hot beverage. For those cases where you just don't feel like the booze, or if you're making this kid-friendly, try this Hot Toddy recipe. The antioxidant quotient is bumped up by the addition of fresh orange and chamomile tea.

Serves 1

Ingredients:

  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • Juice from 1/4 lemon
  • 1 orange wedge
  • 2 cloves
  • 1 chamomile tea bag
  • 1 cup water

Instructions:

  1. Coat the bottom of a mug with honey and squeeze in the juice from the lemon quarter.
  2. Stud the rind of the orange wedge with the cloves. Heat the water on the stovetop and add the tea bag and the studded orange wedge and let steep for five minutes. Remove the tea bag and orange and pour the steaming liquid into the glass. Stir and serve.

More winter drink recipes

3 Baileys and coffee recipes
Creamy hot buttered rum
Warm things up with Mexican hot chocolate

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