Smoothies & Drinks

Homemade Cold Tonic

Homemade Cold Tonic combines different aromatic spices to keep you hydrated, boost your immune system and possibly prevent cough and cold.

…So much has happened since the last time we talked, which was more than 15 days ago. I graduated (finally), I am flying to New York for a very short trip, and currently I am down with nasty upper respiratory infection. Meanwhile, “21 Days to A Happier & Healthier You” challenge is almost finalized so If you haven’t signed up yet, do so right now  as the deadline is tomorrow (Friday, December 30th). Life has been hectic (in a good way) although my body is signaling me to rest and nourish it adequately. That is why I have been sipping on Homemade Cold Tonic (courtesy of my mom) to fight this upper respiratory infection because I want to ring in 2017 on a stronger note.



Homemade Cold Tonic is not a replacement for your medicine or a cure for your cold, flu, congestion. It’s a therapeutic + aromatic drink that my mom makes whenever we get sore throat, flu, cold, congestion. Homemade Cold Tonic is made with several spices boiled in water, so I think it’s the adequate fluid + magical healing powder of spices (hello antioxidants) that helps fight the cough and cold.


You can pick and choose spices of your choice but do not skip turmeric and carom seeds (ajwain/jwano). Turmeric is known for its anti-inflammatory, anti-bacterial and anti-viral properties which probably helps reduce inflammation and relieve cough by getting rid of phlegm. Carom seeds have been long used in Ayurvedic medicine for treating many health conditions including cough, cold, and respiratory infections. Carom seed is a natural decongestant and expectorant, which is why it helps clear congestion and help discharge mucus from the lungs.



Homemade Cold Tonic is definitely an acquired taste but you can play with other spices to suit your taste such as cardamom (anti-inflammatory, stress-reliever, and good for sore throat), cloves (expectorant), cinnamon (antioxidant), cumin seeds (anti-inflammatory, lots of vitamins/minerals to strengthen immunity). Some other addition to Homemade Cold Tonic includes ginger and honey, both of which are known to help soothe the throat.



The recipe I am providing below is the ratio I typically use at home but feel free to adjust per your needs. I like to make a big batch of Homemade Cold Tonic (for 2-3 cups at once) and reuse the spices for one more batch.


Homemade Cold Tonic

Serves: 2-3


  • 3 cups water

  • 1 teaspoon turmeric powder

  • 1 teaspoon carom seeds

  • 1/2 teaspoon cardamom seeds

  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin seeds

  • 1/2 teaspoon cloves

  • 2 cinnamon stick

  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper

  • 1/8 teaspoon salt


  1. In a large pot, add water and other ingredients.

  2. Let it simmer until it comes to a rapid boil for 3-4 minutes.

  3. Strain the water.

  4. Reserve the remaining seeds for later use.

  5. Drink warm.

*** Homemade Cold Tonic is not based on any scientific or medical evidence. It is simply a homemade remedy that my mom has been making for us. Please do not use this as a substitute for treating your cold, cough, flu. 

Have a wonderful New Year and I will be back next year. Don’t forget to sign up for  “21 Days to A Happier & Healthier You” challenge as the deadline is tomorrow (Friday, December 30th).

Dixya Bhattarai

Dixya Bhattarai

Written by

Thank you so much for visiting Food, Pleasure, and Health.