Do smoothies help a sore throat?

Quick Answers

Smoothies can help soothe a sore throat in several ways. The cold temperature and smooth, easy-to-swallow texture provide temporary relief. Ingredients like honey, lemon, ginger, and turmeric also have anti-inflammatory properties that can reduce pain and swelling. Smoothies rich in vitamin C from fruits and vegetables help boost the immune system to fight the infection causing the sore throat. Overall, smoothies are a nutritious option that can aid in recovery when you have a sore, scratchy throat.

What is a Sore Throat?

A sore throat refers to pain, itchiness, or irritation of the throat. It is usually caused by:

  • Viral infections like cold or flu
  • Bacterial infections like strep throat
  • Environmental irritants like smoke or allergies
  • Overuse of the voice from yelling or singing

The most common cause is viral infections. Sore throat often occurs at the onset of a cold or flu, but can also occur on its own.

With a viral infection, the sore throat is usually accompanied by other symptoms like:

  • Runny or stuffy nose
  • Cough
  • Congestion
  • Mild fever
  • Fatigue
  • Body aches

Bacterial infections like strep throat cause more severe sore throat along with fever, swollen tonsils, and white patches in the throat. Allergies, smoking, yelling, or acid reflux can also irritate the throat and cause soreness without other infectious symptoms.

Why Do Smoothies Help a Sore Throat?

There are several reasons why smoothies can help soothe a sore throat:

Cold Temperature

Drinking a chilled smoothie can numb the throat and reduce pain and inflammation, especially if you use frozen fruit. The cold soothes irritated throat tissues.

Smooth Texture

Smoothies have a thick, smooth consistency that’s easy to swallow. This avoids aggravating the tender throat tissues, unlike rough foods or beverages.


Staying hydrated is key when you have a sore throat. Smoothies provide hydration from their high water content.


Fruit and vegetable smoothies provide many nutrients, especially vitamin C, that can help boost the immune system to clear up the infection faster.

Anti-Inflammatory Ingredients

Some smoothie ingredients like honey, lemon, ginger, turmeric, and pineapple have natural anti-inflammatory compounds. These help reduce swelling and irritation in the throat.

Coats and Soothes Throat

The mucilage in smoothie ingredients like aloe vera, flax seeds, and marshmallow root coat and soothe the irritated throat tissues.

Best Fruits for Sore Throat Smoothies


Pineapple is rich in bromelain, an anti-inflammatory enzyme that helps reduce throat swelling. It also contains vitamin C.


Strawberries are packed with vitamin C, an antioxidant that fights infection and inflammation.


Blueberries are high in antioxidants called flavonoids that have anti-inflammatory effects. They also provide vitamin C.


Raspberries are another berry rich in vitamin C and antioxidants called anthocyanins that help decrease inflammation.


Kiwis are an excellent source of vitamin C and act as a coolant for the throat. They also contain antioxidants and enzymes like bromelain.


Mangoes are high in vitamin C and the enzyme amylase that helps reduce throat inflammation.


Cantaloupe melon has vitamin C, vitamin A, and the antioxidant beta-carotene to fight infection and soothe the throat.


Honeydew melon has a high water content to keep the throat hydrated. It also provides vitamin C and soothing mineral potassium.

Fruit Healing Compounds
Pineapple Bromelain
Strawberries Vitamin C
Blueberries Flavonoids
Raspberries Vitamin C, Anthocyanins
Kiwi Vitamin C, Bromelain
Mango Vitamin C, Amylase
Cantaloupe Vitamin C, Beta-Carotene
Honeydew Vitamin C, Potassium

Best Vegetables for Sore Throat Smoothies


Tomatoes contain lycopene, an antioxidant that fights inflammation and infection. They also provide vitamin C.


Carrots are packed with vitamin A, a nutrient important for immunity against throat infections. They also have anti-inflammatory properties.


Spinach provides vitamin C, vitamin A, antioxidants, and folate to boost the body’s infection-fighting ability.


Kale is high in vitamins A, C, and K. It contains potent antioxidants to reduce throat swelling.


Broccoli has vitamins A, C, E, and K. It supplies antioxidants like sulforaphane that combat throat irritation.

Red Bell Pepper

Red bell peppers are loaded with vitamin C. They also contain the antioxidant beta-carotene.

Sweet Potato

Sweet potatoes provide vitamin A in the form of beta-carotene. They also have anti-inflammatory benefits.

Vegetable Healing Compounds
Tomatoes Lycopene
Carrots Vitamin A
Spinach Vitamin C, Vitamin A, Antioxidants
Kale Vitamins A, C, K
Broccoli Vitamins A, C, E, K, Sulforaphane
Red Bell Pepper Vitamin C, Beta-Carotene
Sweet Potato Vitamin A, Beta-Carotene

Best Herbs, Spices & Supplements for Sore Throat Smoothies


Honey has antimicrobial and soothing properties that coat and heal the throat. It also contains antioxidants.


Ginger has anti-inflammatory compounds like gingerol that can help reduce throat swelling and pain.


Turmeric contains the powerful antioxidant curcumin that decreases throat inflammation.


Cinnamon has antioxidant, antibacterial, and anti-inflammatory effects that help treat sore throat.


Lemon provides vitamin C and antioxidants. It creates an acidic environment to kill throat infection-causing germs.

Cayenne Pepper

Cayenne pepper contains capsaicin that temporarily relieves sore throat pain by depleting nerve endings of substance P, a neurotransmitter that sends pain signals to the brain.

Aloe Vera

Aloe vera gel coats and soothes an irritated throat. It also has anti-inflammatory properties.

Marshmallow Root

The mucilage from marshmallow root creates a protective layer on the throat to ease soreness and irritation.

Ingredient Healing Properties
Honey Antimicrobial, Soothing
Ginger Anti-Inflammatory
Turmeric Anti-Inflammatory
Cinnamon Antioxidant, Antibacterial, Anti-Inflammatory
Lemon Vitamin C, Antimicrobial
Cayenne Pepper Pain Relief
Aloe Vera Soothing, Anti-Inflammatory
Marshmallow Root Coats and Soothes Throat

Sample Sore Throat Smoothie Recipes

Berry Soothing Smoothie

– 1 cup frozen mixed berries
– 1 banana
– 1 cup coconut water or almond milk
– 1 Tbsp honey
– 1 tsp lemon juice
– Ice cubes

Berries like strawberries and blueberries provide vitamin C. Banana makes the texture smooth and creamy for easy swallowing. Coconut water keeps the throat hydrated. Honey soothes irritation, while lemon juice fights infection.

Pineapple Turmeric Smoothie

– 1 cup pineapple chunks
– 1 banana
– 1 cup unsweetened coconut milk
– 1 tsp honey
– 1 tsp turmeric
– Dash of cayenne pepper
– Ice

Pineapple contains bromelain to decrease throat inflammation. Banana provides creaminess. Coconut milk helps keep the throat moisturized. Turmeric and cayenne reduce swelling and pain.

Green Tea and Honey Smoothie

– 1 cup brewed green tea, chilled
– 1 banana
– 1 cup Greek yogurt
– 2 Tbsp honey
– Ice

The antioxidants in green tea fight infection. Banana makes the smoothie easy to swallow. Greek yogurt provides protein for healing. Honey soothes the sore throat.

Carrot Apple Smoothie

– 2 medium carrots, chopped
– 1 apple, cored and chopped
– 1 cup orange juice
– 1 tsp honey
– 1 tsp cinnamon
– Ice

Carrots supply vitamin A for immunity. Apple provides antioxidants. Orange juice offers vitamin C. Honey coats the throat, while cinnamon has anti-inflammatory properties.

Anti-Inflammatory Smoothie

– 1 cup almond milk
– 1 cup frozen mango chunks
– 1 Tbsp minced ginger
– 1 tsp turmeric
– Squeeze of lemon juice
– Ice

Almond milk provides hydration. Mango gives vitamin C and enzymes. Ginger and turmeric fight inflammation. Lemon juice boosts antioxidants.

Tips for Using Smoothies to Help a Sore Throat

Keep it Cold

Use frozen fruit and ice to make the smoothie chilled. This helps numb pain.

Don’t Irritate the Throat

Avoid ingredients like citrus fruits, alcohol, and spicy foods that may further irritate the sore throat.

Use a Straw

Drink smoothies through a straw to minimize contact between the beverage and throat.

Stay Hydrated

In addition to smoothies, drink lots of water, herbal tea, and broths to keep mucous membranes moist.

Get Plenty of Rest

Rest your voice and body to help your immune system fight infection faster. Avoid yelling or singing.

Gargle with Salt Water

Gargling 1-2 times per day with warm salt water can help reduce swelling and loosen mucus.

Suck on Lozenges

Lozenges provide temporary numbing and relief from throat discomfort. Look for natural options with honey or herbs.

Use a Humidifier

A humidifier adds moisture to the air, preventing dryness that can worsen throat pain.

See a Doctor if Symptoms Persist

See a doctor if your sore throat lasts beyond a week or has severe pain to get proper treatment.

The Bottom Line

Smoothies provide a simple, nutritious option for soothing a sore throat. They are easy to swallow to avoid aggravating throat pain. The cold temperature brings relief. Smoothies also allow you to combine multiple healing ingredients like vitamin C-rich fruits, anti-inflammatory spices, and soothing components that coat the throat. Drinking smoothies can help you stay hydrated and get nutrients necessary for fighting infection when swallowing solid foods is too painful. Make sure to include ingredients that fight inflammation and supply antioxidants. Focus on cold, smooth textures by using frozen fruit and bananas. Smoothies can aid in recovery in combination with rest, lozenges, humidifiers, salt water gargles, and other remedies. See a doctor if severe throat pain lasts more than a week. Overall, smoothies are a great dietary addition when you have a scratchy, irritated throat.


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