Honey is available in many distinct forms. These forms can have different textures and, depending on where the bees got the nectar to make the honey, can even have different flavors and aromas.
Honey also has incredible health benefits, and learning about the different types of honey can help you choose one that’s healthy and delicious.
Processing Raw and Creamed Honey
Raw honey is exactly what it sounds like. It’s honey that has been taken directly from the beehive.
Most raw honey is run through a simple filter to remove any particles, such as beeswax before it’s packaged.
Otherwise, it isn’t heated, filtered, pasteurized, or otherwise further processed or altered.
Creamed honey can be found in two forms. Raw creamed honey is much like raw honey in that it hasn’t been heated or pasteurized.
To make creamed honey, after the honey is run through the same simple filter, it’s put into a container and spun rapidly.
All honey naturally develops crystals over time, and this can cause raw honey to solidify, giving it an almost hard or chunky texture.
When raw honey is spun rapidly, however, it encourages the formation of crystalizes, but the process allows the formation of crystals to be controlled.
This means smaller, smoother crystals are encouraged to form, and in return, the final creamed honey retains its smooth, creamy texture.
If nothing else is done to honey that has been stirred or spun in this way, this type of honey is called raw creamed honey.
However, if the honey is heated, pasteurized, or processed further, it’s simply called creamed honey.
Raw honey crystallizes on its own if it’s left at room temperature for a long enough time.
Exactly how quickly raw honey will crystalize depends on the type of nectar that was originally used to make the honey.
Crystalized honey is perfectly safe to eat, and some people prefer the slightly thicker or crunchier texture.
However, if your raw honey has crystallized and you don’t like that texture, you can very gently warm the honey until the crystals dissolve.
Be careful not to overheat the honey, however, because heating honey too much can take away some of the honey’s natural benefits.
Honey is basically just pure sugar. It has no fat, proteins, or fiber.
However, because it’s distilled directly from plants, it carries many of the same nutrients and polyphenols that plants do.
Raw honey is known to have a wide range of health benefits.
Raw honey contains a variety of essential nutrients, including calcium, potassium, magnesium, zinc, niacin, and riboflavin, which are more commonly known as vitamins B6 and B2.
Raw honey is also packed with antioxidants, which help to decrease inflammation in the body and can also protect against cell damage, which may help to prevent conditions such as heart disease and even cancer.
Because it can be so good at reducing inflammation, it’s thought that raw honey may also boost brain health.
Raw honey also has antifungal and antibacterial properties. It’s thought that honey might be useful in treating some internal infections, and it can also be used to help heal wounds.
These properties, combined with honey’s anti-inflammatory properties, may also help in treating gastrointestinal issues.
This is also why honey is so great when it comes to soothing coughs and sore throats.
Creamed honey has most or all of the same benefits as raw honey, as long as it’s raw creamed honey.
However, if the honey has been heated or pasteurized, it may have lost some of its nutrients or benefits.
Although honey is sugary and can be caloric, honey is known to be better for blood sugar levels than other types of sugars.
Honey is even thought to help protect against type 2 diabetes and could help to improve blood sugar regulation.
However, honey should always be eaten in moderation, as too much honey can cause weight gain, which can increase the risk of conditions such as type 2 diabetes.
Many people feel that raw honey has a better flavor than pasteurized honey. The flavor is said to be more complex, and it’s often easier to taste the flavor of whatever plant the bees collected nectar from.
Raw honey is also often sweeter than filtered, pasteurized honey. Depending on what flower the bees collected nectar from, raw honey can range from pale gold to rich brown in color.
If creamed honey is left raw, it will generally taste almost the same as raw honey, but it can often have a much smoother texture.
Creamed honey usually has a more velvety texture than any other type of honey, and it’s a bit thicker.
Creamed honey is also often lighter in color due to the formation of the particular crystals that give creamed honey its texture.
Like raw honey, creamed honey is often even sweeter than pasteurized honey.