Bee Thoughtful: Not all Honey is created Equal

Not All Honey is created Equal

In 2016, Food Safety News revealed a study that claimed over 76% of honey sold in your average store is “fake”, full of toxic syrups and sugars. They are also supposedly rotten with antibiotics and heavy metals.

It starts with the diet

Without a strong nutritional foundation, bee colonies will suffer greatly. They greatly rely on carbohydrates, as they are a key source of energy needed for foraging and hive activities. Honeybees naturally find their carbohydrates when collecting honeydew and nectar.

Unfortunately, many commercial honey manufacturers supplement their colonies with sucrose solution, inverted sugar syrup, or syrups like starch syrup and high fructose corn syrup. As you can imagine, the kind of honey produced is not anywhere near what you’re led to believe and it has no nutritional value.


While the intentions may be good, the high doses of antibiotics given to honey bees for disease prevention are a huge disadvantage in many ways. These veterinary antibiotics, such as chloramphenicol, streptomycin and sulfonamides can do great harm to humans in large amounts. For example, chloramphenoicol could cause cancer and aplastic anemia. It is simply “unnatural” to be treating honey bees in this way and it directly negatively affects not only bee colonies, but their honey product as well.


Anyone in tune with the state of our environment knows pesticides are to blame for a lot of our problems. That’s why it drives me nuts to read that the European Food Safety Authority labeled clothianidin as too dangerous to be used on crops, yet the U.S. remains deaf and blind to the risks.

Quite frankly, America isn’t paying attention, as that very chemical is still used on nearly 143 million acres of our crops. This and other pesticides like imidacloprid and thiamethoxam are not only linked to death but are still widely used in the U.S. – failing to follow other countries lead in banning them. This is no joke.

It’s just… fake

Honey should have bee pollen. That’s how this whole thing works in the natural world. However, in the land of greed- commercial honey manufacturers use special equipment to extract the pollen. They then mix in honey from other countries (which, is illegal!) – leaving people with absolutely no idea where it came from. Very shady stuff.

How do you know it’s fake?

-Artificial honey will stay in tact if you put a drop on your thumb, whereas fake honey will spill and spread quickly,

-Pour a glass of water- and drop a teaspoon of honey into it. If it quickly dissolves, you have fake honey on your hands. Real honey will stay solid and will fall to the bottom of the glass in tact.

-If you’ve had your honey on the shelf for a long period of time, you should see that it has crystallized if it is real. Fake honey will look like plain old syrup forever and ever.

-Be careful if you try this one- it is said if you dip the tip of a matchstick in honey and then go to light it- the flame will burn off of the honey. If it’s fake, it won’t light because of its “moisture”.


Not All Honey is Created Equal

While we do not yet make our own honey (we’re learning!), we only source ours from the best. All natural, delicious, and rich with REAL nutrients!


Baking with Honey instead of Sugar

Baking with Honey

More and more I am reading about people swapping out traditional white sugar for honey- usually raw. If you’re anything like me, that probably sounds a little bit too daunting. After doing some research, incorporating honey over table sugar may be worth it.
Not only are the antioxidants a good reason to make the switch, but honey’s sweetness means you get to use less in your recipes!

Baking with Honey


Choose Your Flavor

If you’re looking for a potent and more sweeter flavor, experts seem to suggest purchasing a darker honey. Light honey will have a more subtle flavor.

Plan Ahead

Since honey is going to stick to your measuring cups, be sure to have some oil, egg whites or even water ready to use as lubricant. This will not only assist with getting the honey out, but it will ensure more accurate measurement.

You may also want to study the recipe before beginning so you know how much honey you’ll need. All recipes that call for 1 cup of sugar will translate into 1 cup of honey. Anything beyond a cup of white sugar will get more complex. It is said you should use around two-thirds as much honey to sugar- three-fourths if you’re baking a really sweet treat!

Adjusting the Recipe

We already mentioned you will work on the proper levels of honey to use based on how much sugar is called for. For every cup of honey used after the first, you will need to reduce the liquid ingredients measurements by 1/4 cup. Baking with Honey will almost always result in a very moist end result. Limiting the other liquid ingredients in relation to potentially excess honey will ensure a balanced cook.

Also, if baking soda is not already in the recipe, be sure to add 1/4 teaspoon to your batter for every cup of honey. It will cut the acidity of the honey.


Other than what’s described, you should be good to go! I know I will be giving it a try and will document the experience for a later post. Experts do suggest monitoring the cooking more than usual as it may brown faster. You want to give yourself time to adjust the temperatures if necessary.

What are your experiences baking with honey? I would love to hear the good, the bad and the delicious!