Honey Syrup and Other Simple Syrup Recipes

This honey simple syrup recipe is a great example to show you how easy it is to make simple syrups that you can use in cocktails and cakes. Check out the variations below. And don’t be afraid to experiment with making simple syrups in the flavors that you love!

What is simple syrup?

In its most basic form, a simple syrup is white sugar dissolved in water. Classic simple syrup recipes call for combining equal volumes, like 1 cup of sugar and 1 cup of water. This is a so-called 1 to 1 simple syrup ratio, sometimes written as 1:1.

a chai bourbon old-fashioned made with honey syrup and garnished with orange peel.

But that is just the beginning of how you can make simple syrups. If you want less liquid, you can make a “rich” 2 to 1 simple syrup using twice as much sugar as water. Or you can change the type of sweetener you use, like in this honey syrup recipe.


Tips and tricks for this honey syrup recipe

There’s nothing complicated about this honey simple syrup. Combine equal amounts of honey and water in a small pot and heat on low heat just until the honey dissolves into the water. If you cook it at a full boil, the water will begin to boil off and the sugars in your syrup will start to caramelize.

a quarter measuring cup of honey and a quarter cup of water.

Pour the warm honey syrup into a clean jar and let it cool. The jar doesn’t have to be sterilized like if you were canning because it’s just going to be kept in the refrigerator just a few weeks. A 2 to 1 sugar syrup will usually keep longer than a 1 to 1 simple syrup. Either way, if it’s cloudy, toss it and make a new batch.

honey syrup in a clean jam jar.

Honey syrup cocktails

The cover photo of this post is a chai bourbon old-fashioned made with honey syrup infused with chai (see recipe variation). It’s 2 ounces of your favorite bourbon, a half ounce of the chai honey simple syrup, 2 dashes of Angostura bitters, and garnished with orange peel.

I have also made a Flip using honey syrup. But, really, you can use a honey syrup anywhere that calls for a simple syrup and you want the greater depth and floral flavor of honey.

Other simple syrup recipes for cocktails

Now that you’ve made a honey syrup, now it’s time to have fun! Try different types of honey and see if you can taste the difference between a lavender honey syrup and one made with clover honey. Or use demerara sugar, an unrefined brown sugar.

Here are some other suggestions for cocktails that use simple syrups:

a purple lavender gimlet in a lowball glass garnished with lime and lavender.

Using simple syrups in cakes

Sugar syrups are often used in cake baking to bring moisture to a cake. They can be used to soak layers in multi-layer cakes or the top of a loaf cake. Some times the liquid is water, but it also can be sweetened coffee or lemon juice or any of a number of liquids.

For whichever use, these syrups are made in the exact same way as a simple syrup for use in cocktails. Here are some examples of my cake recipes that use syrups:

a loaf of blackberry lemon bread with four slices and surrounded by a few lemons and blackberries.

FAQs about this honey syrup and other simple syrup recipes

Is heating honey safe?

Yes, there are no concerns in the scientific community about the safety of heated honey in 2022. But it really is true that you should never give honey to a child under 12 months old because of concerns about infant botulism. In young kids, ingestion of Clostridial spores in honey can lead to intestinal bacterial growth and toxin production. This is different from foodborne botulism, which occurs when improper canning allows for anaerobic bacteria growth and toxin production in the food.

Can I freeze simple syrups?

You can try to freeze your simple syrup in an ice cube tray. Know that they will take longer to freeze than plain water or they may never freeze completely because the dissolved sugar lowers the freezing point.


Honey Syrup and Chai Honey Syrup Variation

5 from 1 vote
Category: Drinks
Cuisine: Unspecified
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 15 minutes
Servings: 8
Calories: 32kcal
This honey simple syrup recipe is a great example to show you how easy it is to make simple syrups that you can use in cocktails and cakes. Check out the variations below. And don't be afraid to experiment with making simple syrups in the flavors that you love!
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  • ¼ cup water
  • ¼ cup honey


  • Combine the water and honey in a small pot and heat over low heat until the honey dissolves into the water.
    ¼ cup water, ¼ cup honey
  • Pour into a small jar and let cool.
  • Honey syrup and other simple syrups should be stored in the refrigerator.


Variation: Chai honey syrup. Add the honey and water to the pot and combine them as described in the base recipe. Immediately after turning the heat off, add a chai teabag or two to the pot and let the tea steep until cool. Discard the teabag and store in the refrigerator as directed in the main recipe.


Calories: 32kcal | Carbohydrates: 9g | Protein: 1g | Sodium: 1mg | Potassium: 6mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 9g | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 1mg | Iron: 1mg
Love this recipe?Mention @Uglyducklingbakery or tag #uglyducklingbakery!

What’s next

If you make this honey syrup for a cocktail, please comment or leave a rating here. Want to read more about syrups? Check out this amazing resource.

Love cocktails and want to explore more? Read all about classic cocktails and bartender basics or join this year’s 52 weeks of cocktails challenge!

I’ve started a new Facebook group for home cooks, bakers, and cocktail makers. Please join the conversation!

Are you an adventurous home cook looking for inspiration in your weeknight meals and weekend baking? Get inspiration here:


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