Published on November 17th, 2011 | by Becky Striepe

Natural Cold and Flu Remedy: Tomato Tea

Battling the winter ick? Tomato tea might be just the thing to set you right!

I came down with some serious winter ick this week. Usually, I don’t get sick until later on in the winter, so this completely caught me off guard. As usual when I need natural remedies or food and drink advice, I turned to the awesome EDB Facebook community, and you guys had lots of awesome suggestions for natural food- and drink-based home remedies.

tomato tea

Fresh ginger steeped in hot water with a little agave nectar soothed my throat, and I was really intrigued with one other suggestion: Jean Woolhiser’s tomato tea! I called my husband at work to pick up some veggie juice and lemons, and when he got home I had a couple of steamy hot mugs full. I woke up on Wednesday morning feeling worlds better. I was still sick, but I was definitely past the phase that involves curling up on the couch and making groany noises.

My recipe was slightly different from Woolhiser’s, so I thought I’d share it here!

Healing Tomato Tea


  • 1 mugful vegetable juice (I used Knudsen’s, since it doesn’t have high fructose corn syrup in it.)
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • juice of 1/4 lemon
  • 1/2 teaspoon fresh or 1/8 teaspoon dried ginger
  • hot sauce, to taste

Cooking Directions

  1. Heat just the juice up in the microwave for 1 minute to 1:30. You want it steaming hot. If you’re not crazy about the microwave, the stove top works just as well, but let’s be honest: when you’re sick, convenience rules.
  2. Stir in the rest of the ingredients.
  3. Like Woolhiser says, you want to not only sip the tea, but breathe the fumes deeply, as well.

It sounds a bit odd, but it basically tastes like a mugful of extremely garlicky tomato soup. I had two mugs on Tuesday and already felt much better on Wednesday. Like she suggests in her instructions, I am still drinking the tea, because I’m feeling better, but not 100%. Call me a tomato tea convert!

Woolhiser has a couple of recipes and more detailed Tomato Tea instructions over at Earth Clinic. I definitely recommend checking them out!

Image Credit: Mug of Vegetable Juice photo via Shutterstock

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About the Author

My name is Becky Striepe (rhymes with “sleepy”), and I am a crafts and food writer from Atlanta, Georgia with a passion for making our planet a healthier, happier, and more compassionate place to live. My mission is to make vegan food and crafts accessible to everyone!. If you like my work, you can also find me on Twitter, Facebook, and .

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