How to Prepare Horehound


A perennial herb found in temperate climates, horehound presents itself as a decorative ground cover as well as a homeopathic health product. It produces thick, spike-like shoots that produce green foliage and small purple blossoms. Horehound, or white horehound, is prepared in a number of ways, from teas and desserts to syrups and taffy.

Step 1

Add 5 pounds of white horehound to a stockpot. Fill the stockpot three-quarters full of water. Approximately 7 qts. of water are needed.

Step 2

Turn the stove on medium heat and put the cover on the stockpot. Allow the pot to cook on the stove for approximately 25 minutes.

Step 3

Smash the horehound down with a wooden spoon in the stockpot. Smash the horehound as much as possible and then cover the pot. Lower the heat to a low setting and allow the pot to simmer for another 30 minutes.

Step 4

Smash the horehound with the wooden spoon again, turning the botanical material into a slimy green pulp. Turn the stove off.

Step 5

Strain the liquid resulting from the simmering horehound into a glass mixing bowl. Make sure to smash the pulp against the strainer to extract as much of the juice as possible. Discard the horehound pulp.

Step 6

Fill the bottom chamber of the double boiler three-quarters full with water. Sit the boiler on the stove.

Step 7

Place the top receptacle in the double boiler, and pour the horehound juice into it.

Step 8

Add the sugar and molasses to the horehound juice.

Step 9

Set the heat on the stove to medium, allowing the double boiler to come to a slow and steady boil. Stir the contents of the upper chamber thoroughly and slowly with the wooden spoon.

Step 10

Allow the horehound, sugar and molasses to sit atop the boiler for approximately 40 minutes. Stir the mixture frequently, making sure to stir slowly.

Step 11

Pour as much of the mixture as you can into a glass, heat-safe canning jar. Let the syrup cool before putting the lid onto the jar.

Step 12

Introduce one more pound of sugar to the remaining horehound syrup. Stir the sugar into the concoction quickly allowing it to dissolve as the syrup bubbles and thickens.

Step 13

Allow the mixture to thicken into a thick caramel like texture. Turn the heat off of the boiler and allow the mixture to cool and set for approximately 30 to 60 minutes.

Step 14

Scoop out the thick, taffy like contents from the top chamber of the boiler and spoon it onto a sheet of waxed paper. Wrap it with another layer of waxed paper to preserve it.

Step 15

Place both the syrup and taffy in your refrigerator for future use.

Things You'll Need

  • Horehound (5 lbs)
  • Granulated sugar (3 lbs)
  • Black strap molasses (16 ounces)
  • Double boiler
  • Glass mixing bowl (1)
  • Stock pot (8 qt)
  • Strainer
  • Wax paper roll
  • Glass jar (8 oz)
  • Wooden spoon


  • A Modern Herbal: Horehound
Keywords: horehound preparation, horehound candy, herbal cough remedy

About this Author

Chelsea Hoffman is a professional freelance writer with works published both on the Web and in print. She currently resides in Las Vegas. The author of the new series of horror novellas, titled "Fear Chronicles," Hoffman's work can also be found on environmental websites like, where she helps spread environmental awareness with her mighty pen.