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About Raw Honey

What Is Raw Honey (and What Makes It Better!)

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About Raw Honey

Jar of Honey

Photo © James Ross

When you buy local honey from small beekeepers, you're almost always buying "raw honey." Unlike large-scale commercial honey which is pasteurized (heated) to kill bacteria and extend its shelf-life, raw honey contains all of its natural enzymes and flavors.

Raw honey is neither pasteurized nor filtered. It can get hard and grainy if exposed to moisture, so it needs to be kept well sealed in a cool, dark cupboard if at all possible. While it may look gorgeous to leave jars of raw honey on a window sill to sit in the sun, doing so will cause the honey to crystallize before its time.

If your raw honey does get grainy, you can "liquify" it again by simply letting the jar sit in a bowl of warm water until it all "melts." Note that this is but a temporary solution; the honey will turn grainy again when it cools back down.

Raw honey tends to have a more complex flavor profile than pasteurized honeys, so take advantage of it by serving it simply. Sure you can stir it into tea or use it to sweeten salad dressings, but try raw honey drizzled over plain yogurt or spread on whole grain toast to appreciate its full flavor. Or try one of these Simple Honey Recipes.

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