DIY: Mullein Cherry Bark Cough Syrup |

DIY: Mullein Cherry Bark Cough Syrup

Sarena-Rae Santos August 17, 2022

By Sarena-Rae Santos, contributing writer

As a child, I was famous for having chronic bronchitis annually. There’s nothing like a booming cough to alarm the school nurse, resulting in a doctor’s visit and a prescription-grade cough suppressant and steroids.

Chronic bronchitis is a constant irritation or inflammation of the lining of the bronchial tubes. It isn’t contagious, but it is uncomfortable and relatively long-lasting. Chronic bronchitis typically lasts at least three months, with recurring bouts occurring for at least two consecutive years. Chronic bronchitis symptoms include:

  • Cough
  • Production of mucus (sputum), which can be clear, white, yellowish-gray, or green, can rarely be streaked with blood.
  • Fatigue
  • Shortness of breath
  • Slight fever and chills
  • Chest discomfort (1)

Little did we know, I probably only needed some mullein leaf.

Why We Love Mullein

If you read our Mullein Herbal Profile, you know mullein leaves, flowers, and roots have been used for centuries to help coughs, bronchitis, asthma, and just about every respiratory issue under the sun. Mullein was traditionally used for tuberculosis (2). The flowers and leaves contain saponins that help rid the body of phlegm and mucilage, which soothes irritated membranes. 

Native Americans often smoked the plant to cure asthma and used a tea of the roots to calm coughs. Mullein holds expectorant and demulcent effects, which accounts for this herb’s documented use as an antidote for the respiratory tract (3).

Cherry bark and mullein make an excellent team to alleviate the winter cold and cough. Take twice a day, when waking and going to bed, when a persistent cough arises.

I highly recommend  Earthley’s Cough-B-Gone if you’re not a DIY person.

DIY: Mullein Cherry Bark Cough Syrup

DIY: Mullein Cherry Bark Cough Syrup


  • 1 pint distilled water
  • 1/8 cup dried wild cherry bark
  • 1/8 cup dried mullein leaves
  • 1/2 cup raw honey


  • Warm one pint of distilled water over medium-low heat before adding the dried cherry bark and mullein leaves into the water. 
  • Allow to heat for at least 20 minutes, up to two hours (on lower heat). The longer you warm the herbs, the stronger the cough syrup. 
  • Strain out the herbs, and add the raw honey to sweeten (and for additional benefits). 
  • Upon completion, bottle, refrigerate, and be prepared for the winter cough!


You can make a large batch and freeze it, then warm it when needed. It will keep in the refrigerator for up to one month and in the freezer for 8-10 months.

*Cherry bark shouldn’t be consumed for more than 14 consecutive days.

This homemade cough syrup will do the trick whether you’re struggling with bronchitis or a seasonal cold. Don’t buy the toxin-filled over-the-counter syrups when you can make a restorative remedy in a matter of minutes. 

What’s your favorite way to alleviate a cough?

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Sarena-Rae Santos is the founder of The Holistic Hipppie blog, dedicated to natural health and plant-based eating. Her journey to natural health began in 2019 when she swayed away from allopathic medicine after becoming wheelchair-bound due to the side effects of 20+ medications. Complex Regional Pain Syndrome (CRPS) and dizziness due to nystagmus were the sources of her many health complications. Sarena's symptoms diminished after adopting a healthier lifestyle surrounding whole foods and herbs, leaving her a fantastic quality of life and a passion for educating people.

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Hi, I’m Kate.  I love medical freedom, sharing natural remedies, developing real food recipes, and gentle parenting. My goal is to teach you how to live your life free from Big Pharma, Big Food, and Big Government by learning about herbs, cooking, and sustainable practices.

I’m the author of Natural Remedies for Kids and the owner and lead herbalist at EarthleyI hope you’ll join me on the journey to a free and healthy life!

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