Honey is a wonderful garnish for many meals and snacks. However, you may not always want to eat honey made from bees the traditional way, whether it be due to dietary restrictions or personal preference. Alternatively, you can make honey without bees, creating a vegan friendly condiment that still tastes great and is nutritional.
Why Isn’t Natural Honey Vegan?
Some may be surprised to learn that natural honey that comes from bees isn’t, in fact, vegan. However, because it’s harvested from bees—a living creature—it doesn’t fit the vegan bill. This substance is used in many sauces and toppings that would otherwise be vegan, but luckily a bee free alternative is possible. This alternative uses apples—a healthy fruit with many nutritional properties.
Benefits of Apples
You know the old saying, “an apple a day keeps the doctor away”. But you may wonder what makes an apple so healthy that it can ward off sickness. Well, they contain antioxidants, vitamins, and dietary fiber. Regular consumption of apples is proven to aid in warding off dementia and helping your neurological health. Eating these fruits on a regular basis is also heart healthy and helps keep cholesterol at a healthy level.
Making Bee Free Honey
To make bee free honey, you’ll need eight medium sized apples, a cup of water, a cup of sugar, and a teaspoon of lemon juice.
Step 1 - Cut the Apples
First, cut the apples into small chunks. Do not peel the apples, as the natural and fibrous qualities of this material help to create the desired consistency of honey. Take the seeds out of the apple pieces as you cut.
Step 2 - Blend the Apples
Next, place the apple chunks in a blender with a cup of water. Blend until the apples turn into a chunky puree. You’re aiming to make apple juice, so don’t worry if the chunks in the puree are quite large. This will help make it easier to strain the juice.
Step 3 - Strain the Juice
Use a strainer to separate the pulp from the juice. For this recipe, you should end up with about two cups of apple juice. As a tip, if you want to skip these steps, you can start the recipe with step four by using store-bought apple juice.
Step 4 - Combine and Boil
Now you want to give your juice a more syrupy consistency, since that better mimics honey. The first step to achieving this is to combine the apple juice you made with the teaspoon of lemon juice and a cup of sugar in a pot. Bring this mixture to a boil. Once this occurs, lower the heat to medium and let the mixture simmer.
Step 5 - Allow Substance to Thicken
Continue allowing the mixture to simmer, reducing the juice and causing the substance to thicken. Watch the pot closely. While you can stop this process once the substance reaches your desired thickness, most people allow this to go on for about 20 minutes. If you let the pot simmer too long, the syrup will boil over and create a sticky mess, so be careful not to let that happen.
Step 6 - Allow Substance to Cool
Now, pour your honey into a heat safe container and let it cool. Once that’s done, enjoy your bee free honey however you choose.
How to Use Bee Free Honey
There are so many ways to use bee free honey that are delicious and nutritious.
Pour it Over Fruit
Want to make your morning bowl of fruit even sweeter? Pour some bee free honey over a bowl of strawberries, melon, and berries. Mix in granola and you’ll have some good fuel for the day and a delicious meal.
Add It to Pizza
Whether you’re eating regular or vegan pizza, honey has become an interesting way to add something sweet to a savory meal. A drizzle of honey will give the perfect contrast for this dish.
Add It to Tea
Use your bee free honey in a traditional way! Add it to your tea for something refreshing and comforting all at the same time.
As a Bread Topping
Sometimes you're in the mood for a doughy piece of bread as a treat. Add a touch of honey to the top of a piece of cornbread or whatever other bread you like to enjoy something sweet.