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Types of honey by flower source and flavor; and where to get them

Honey gets its color, flavor and odor from the nectar of flowers visited by the bees that made the honey. So, there are literally as many types of honey as their are different types of flowers. It is estimated that there are more than 300 unique types of honey commercially available in the United States. That said, there are certain types of honey that stand out for their superb flavor or medicinal qualities. We'll explain in the table below which types of honey are best for each purpose.

Other Attributes

Colors of honey

Honey is typically an amber shade and translucent, but it can range from almost clear to dark brown. In general, lighter-colored honeys have milder flavor, while darker-colored honey have stronger flavors.

Seasonal Variations

Keep in mind that honey is a bit like fine wine: seasonal variations, climate, soils, etc. affect the flavor of the nectar in the flowers, and thus the honey, too.

So even honey from the same hives in the same location, visiting the same plants can vary from year to year, or even throughout the season.

"Flavored" honey

Most honey is naturally flavored, with the flavor, as described on the label, like "Orange Blossom Honey", coming from the flavor of the flowers from which the bees collect the nectar.  A more recent trend is to add flavor extracts (natural or artificial) to honey to give it a flavor.  We have NOT included artificially flavored honey in our list below.



Description and Flavor

Typically from

Kitchen uses

Unusual health or medicinal properties

Where to purchase online

Acacia honey light amber Acacia honey is very sweet neutral flavor with a high concentration of fructose, and low sucrose level, Black Locust trees in Europe and North America. Used in tea anti inflammatory, improves liver function, and helps digestive tract
Alfalfa honey white or light amber  Mild sweet neutral flavor   Everyday uses  
Apple Blossom light to medium amber. Light apple flavor.      
Avocado honey darker amber  Rich, buttery taste.   Used in salad dressings and sauces  
Basswood Honey Whitish Basswood is a tree native and abundant in Wisconsin, which is also known as the Linden tree. The honey from its flowers is watery consistency with a strong, biting taste. Basswood / Linden tree blossoms    
Beechwood honey, (aka, Honeydew honey)   , is sourced from  It is an extraordinary varietal that comes from the sap produced by aphids on the bark of beechwood trees and collected by bees. An aromatic, dark amber honey, it is often mixed into smoothies, sauces, and used as sweet drizzle for pancakes and fruits. This honey is also a popular supplement for improving the body's immunity and digestive system. Details on Beechwood honey in: Honeydew Honey - More Than The Spectacular Work of Bees.
New Zealand's South Island.    
Blackberry honey very light amber  
A light, sweet aroma.

Blueberry honey light amber to amber-colored Beautiful sweet flavor with the taste of blueberries  from blueberry flowers, grown throughout the US and Canada toast, teas, sauces and baking.  
Buckwheat Honey very dark, like molasses Buckwheat honey has a very strong flavor and  a lingering aftertaste. New York, Ohio, Minnesota, and Pennsylvania from buckwheat flowers Making BBQ sauce, baking, mead and breads rich in iron, and has more antioxidants
Canola honey white to light amber  Very delicate flavor with low acidity. Crystallizes easily. Canola is a species of rapeseed. Canola honey is about 80% of Canadian honey sales. Honey from Canola does crystalize much more rapidly than other honey.
Chestnut Honey dark, almost brown strong nutty, spicy flavor n Italy. It possesses a unique aroma and some of its varietals are reported to taste bitter. This amber-color honey is mildly sweet and its low Glycemic Index makes it a honey suitable for diabetics. Get the full account in: Seriously Italian: Chestnut Honey.
chestnut tree flowers (popular in Italy)    
Clover Honey  white to light amber A very popular honey that is widely available from the nectar from the  white clover blossom.  Clover honey is ideal for baking and kitchen. It has a mild flavor with a slight tangy aftertaste. anywhere Baking and general cooking  
Coffee honey dark amber, almost brown Coffee honey has a rich, deep coffee-toned flavor. Coffee growing areas (Columbia, Ecuador, etc.)    
Cotton honey medium amber Made from the visiting the flavors of cotton plants, it doesn't taste light cotton, but rather has a complex flavor with both sweetness and tartness, unique and delicious Cotton growing areas (south Georgia, MS, AL, LA, TX etc.)    
Dandelion honey dark amber Strong flavored honey with the distinctive smell of dandelions  New Zealand's South Island, wide use Considered to have a broad range of healing properties in China, Tibet and India
Eucalyptus Honey amber, but can vary  As you would expect from the source, it has an herbal flavor . Australia and California Popular in tea Said to help with headaches and colds
Fireweed honey light amber A complex, buttery  flavor and a slightly buttery texture. Canada, and the Pacific Northwest paired with meats, often used in  marinades, glazes,  
Gallberry Honey  light to medium-light amber Gallberry blossomsMild to medium in flavor. The Gallberry Bush blooms in May.  The low flatlands of North Carolina, Georgia and Northern Florida.      
Goldenrod honey light amber Strong wildflower flavor      
Heather honey dark amber Slightly bitter strong flavor, goes well with Scotch whiskey Scotland, Greece    
Huckleberry  honey dark amber Full, strong flavor        
Key Lime honey Light amber Light, sweet honey with a flavor of key limes Key West, Florida    
Lavender honey medium amber It has the scent of lavender, medium sweetness
 lavender scented, and has a medium amber color.
Leatherwood honey   a type of eucalyptus honey with the unique strong, spicy flavor. south-west of Tasmania, cakes, muffins, coffee and tea. I  
Linden honey light yellow amber A light, delicate, woody flavor
Denmark Good with teas reported to have sedative and antiseptic qualities and the treatment of colds, cough and bronchitis.
Macadamia Nut honey dark amber a sweet, distinctive nut flavor Australia and United States paired with marinades for grilled meats, fruit and vegetable salads, ice-cream, toasts and herbal tea  
Manuka Honey medium amber  A very expensive honey, touted by Dr. Oz as being used as medicine to heal wounds. Manuka honey has a taste that is quite tart and string.  It isn't used for eating. New Zealand’s Manuka tree Not usually eaten antibacterial properties, said to be able to combat infections like MRSA
Maple honey medium amber Has the aroma of maple trees in bloom, with a sweet almost medicinal scent to it.  Maple Blossom Honey is only available during the earliest days of spring from the blossoms of big leaf maple trees. Where ever stands of maple trees grow Teas, fruit, pancakes, cheeses, crisp apples, nuts,   a
Orange Blossom light to medium amber Orange Blossom A wonderful sweet honey with the noticeable flavor of the orange blossoms from which it comes Florida, Texas, California, Brazil a great table honey, teas, baking  
Palmetto honey light amber A  mild flavored honey
Pinetree honey medium amber A bitter less sweet honey from Greece, does not crystallize easily. Also called forest honey, fir honey, honeydew or tea tree honey Greece    
Pumpkin honey dark amber Harvested annually in the Autumn when the pumpkins have bloomed, it actually does not taste like pumpkins but has a light aromatic flavor    desserts, or paired with savory or spicy foods    
Purple Starthistle honey  light to medium light amber Purple Starthistle is an invasive annual plant that blooms in summer. The honey has an unusual  mild pleasant taste.    
Rainforest honey light amber A  light fresh, floral scent with a flavor that can vary widely, deepening upon the source of the nectar.
from the rainforests of Brazil, Australia, Tasmania, Thailand, the US, Balanced with wide use  
Rapeseed honey white to yellowish RapeseedRapeseed honey aka rape honey, Color: , white. After crystallization the honey is whitish or dull ivory.
Aroma: floral - fresh fruit (fruity), warm, spoiled and vegetal
Intensity of odor: medium
Acidity: weak
Sweetness: low. Honeys, like acacia, with high fructose content are sweeter than those with high glucose content.
Raspberry honey light amber Raspberry - It has a slight raspberry flavor, and it will crystallize quickly, so its usually made into a creamed honey that has a light color.      
Rata honey light pale amber Rata honey has a mild, delicate flavor that crystallizes easily. West coast of New Zealand's South Island    
Sage honey white or water-white Sweet with hints of sage anywhere sage is grown often served with cheese  
Rosemary Honey light yellow It has a strong sweet flavor anywhere rosemary is grown   Said to assist with liver function, digestion, high blood pressure, and gout.
Safflower honey medium to very dark amber The flavor is described as herbal with hints of citrus.        
Saw Palmetto medium amber The saw palmetto, a miniature palm tree, produces fruit once a year, from the profuse flowers, which the bees visit. Florida    
Sourwood Honey  very light amber Sourwood BlossomsSourwood honey does not have a sour taste. It is spicy and sweet, like a buttery or caramel flavor.  Sourwood is a tree that grows 40 to 60 feet and blooms from late June through July. America, from sourwood trees in the Appalachian Mountains  (Northern Georgia up to Southern Pennsylvania) and from Brazil   Just exaggerated claims, not substantiated.
Tualang Honey medium amber It is claimed to contains more nutrients & minerals than Manuka Honey. Tualang Honey has one of the lowest glycemic index in honey, despite its savory sweet taste. Eating it does not spike your blood sugar levels as much as other honey. It has half the GI of table sugar and even lower than white bread, making it the perfect, super healthy alternative for table sugar and can be easily incorporated into any diet or recipe. Tualang Honey contains the highest amount of antioxidants & anti-inflammatory agents in honey.  It is so potent that 1 teaspoon of Tualang honey is equivalent to 1 tablespoon of regular raw honey. It improves cardiovascular health, stimulates fast wound healing, reduces scarring and is extremely effective against persistent coughs & sore throats or other viral-borne diseases. Malaysia   Tualang honey is said to contain 11 powerhouse phenolics and flavonoids plus other beneficial enzymes that promotes anti-aging and longevity of your organs.  It improves cardiovascular health, stimulates fast wound healing, reduces scarring and is extremely effective against persistent coughs & sore throats or other viral-borne diseases.
Tulip Poplar dark amber Tulip poplat blossomMedium and robust flavor. Dark honeys are usually due to high mineral content.  The Tulip poplar blooms from late April into May. Tulip poplar, sometimes known as Yellow Poplar, is a tree that grows to over 100 feet tall, and is found in Eastern U.S. deciduous woods    
Tupelo honey light amber A light,  balanced flavor.  Tupelo honey is very sought after.

The Tupelo tree grows in the swamps and along river banks in South Georgia and Florida. Also called Swamp Gum or Tupelo Gum.    
Wildflower honey medium amber The flavor depends upon the flowers that are in bloom and is typically light and fruity worldwide