Recipe: Turmeric Switchel

updated May 1, 2019
Turmeric Switchel
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(Image credit: Emily Han)

This bright new riff on the classic switchel features turmeric, which is a powerful anti-inflammatory and antiviral agent. I love sipping turmeric switchel after a workout, or using it as a cocktail mixer with fresh sugarcane spirits like cachaça and rhum agricole.

(Image credit: Emily Han)

I highly recommend using fresh turmeric, which has a livelier flavor than the dried version. Look for the fresh rhizomes, which resemble orange knobs of ginger root, at health food stores or at well-stocked grocery stores and Asian and Indian markets.

For an extra-spicy kick, add a tiny pinch of black pepper to the turmeric switchel — it’ll increase the bioavailability of curcumin, an anti-inflammatory compound found in turmeric.

Tip: Fresh turmeric can stain clothes and other items, so be careful if you’re grating it on or around porous kitchen surfaces and tools. Wear an apron, too!

Turmeric Switchel

Serves 1 to 2

Nutritional Info


  • 1 tablespoon

    (20 grams) honey, or more to taste

  • 1 tablespoon

    (15 milliliters) apple cider vinegar

  • 1/2 teaspoon

    freshly squeezed lime juice

  • 1 teaspoon

    grated fresh turmeric or 1/3 teaspoon dried

  • 1 teaspoon

    grated fresh ginger

  • Tiny pinch of freshly ground black pepper (optional)

  • 1 cup

    (235 milliliters) water

  • Ice


  1. Combine the honey, apple cider vinegar, lime juice, turmeric, ginger, and black pepper in a jar or glass and stir to dilute the honey. Add the water and stir to combine. Cover and refrigerate for at least 2 hours and up to a day. The longer it steeps, the stronger the turmeric and ginger flavors will be.

  2. Strain the mixture through a fine-mesh strainer; discard the solids. Taste and sweeten with additional honey, if desired. Serve over ice.

Recipe Notes

Reprinted with permission from Wild Drinks & Cocktails: Handcrafted Squashes, Shrubs, Switchels, Tonics, and Infusions to Mix at Home by Emily Han, copyright (c) 2015. Published by Fair Winds Press.

(Image credit: Emily Han)

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