If you saw a jar labeled “honey mustard” what would you expect the ingredients to be?
I dunno. Maybe I’m weird, but I thought honey and mustard would be pretty much the top of the list. Maybe some vinegar too.
Here’s the list of ingredients for Billy Bee Honey Mustard, a popular brand sold at most grocery stores:
Water, Sugar, Dextrose, Mustard Seed, Honey, Vinegar, Salt, Modified Tapioca Starch, Titanium Dioxide (For Color), Spices, Caramel Color, Garlic Powder, Yellow #5, Natural Flavor.
Now, if you think that rather lengthy list is an anomaly, here’s the list for French’s Honey Mustard:
Distilled Vinegar, Water, High Fructose Corn Syrup, #1 Grade Mustard Seed, Sugar, Corn Syrup, Salt, Carrot Oleoresin (Color), Honey, Spices And Garlic Powder.
And if you’re concerned that I picked cheapo brands, check out the ingredients in Inglehoffer Sweet Honey Mustard, a higher-priced brand.
Water, Sugar, Honey, Wheat Flour, Mustard Seed, White Distilled Vinegar, Soybean Oil, Salt, Lemon Juice, Xanthan Gum, Eggs, Onions, High Fructose Corn Syrup, Citric Acid, Garlic, Turmeric, Spices, Calcium Disodium Edta (Retains Product Freshness), Natural Flavor, Annatto.
I’m on board with some spices and seasonings, but …. ummm…why do you need other sweeteners besides honey? Why do you need High Fructose Corn Syrup, Dextrose, Sugar, emulsifiers, GMOs, and preservatives? And what about food dye? Is the yellow from the mustard and the turmeric just not yellow enough?
You seriously don’t need all of those ingredients. It is super easy to make honey mustard from, well, honey, and mustard. My sweet mother-in-law always has a jar whipped together in her fridge and showed me how to make it 20 years ago. Once you try the homemade version, you’ll never be willing to settle for the icky store-bought concoctions again. After you master the basic mixture, you can easily make variations, listed below.
The great thing is, even choosing the highest quality organic ingredients you can get your hands on, it will still be cheaper than the nasty stuff you buy at the store.
First, the ingredients for basic honey mustard:
- 1/4 cup of dry mustard powder
- 1/2 cup of raw honey (Support local farms and get it from a beekeeper if you can!)
- Optional: You can also add 1-ish tbsp of apple cider vinegar – add more or less to adjust your mustard to the desired consistency
- In a pint jar, use a fork to mix the honey and mustard powder until well combined.
- If you’re using vinegar, you can drizzle in just a little bit at a time, while mixing with a fork, until you reach the consistency you’d like.
- That’s it! Your homemade honey mustard stores in the fridge for a very long time. If it gets too thick, you can add more vinegar.
PS: You haven’t LIVED until you’ve made deviled eggs with honey mustard instead of regular yellow mustard.
You can add any of the following spices (The links are to high quality, bulk, organic products):
- Turmeric (this will make it more yellow)
- Garlic powder
- Onion powder
- Crushed chili peppers
- Cayenne Pepper
You can add the following “wet” ingredients, but be sure to adjust the vinegar or it will be too runny:
- Pureed chipotle pepper
If you want whole grain mustard, that’s easy too.
- Soak whole brown mustard seeds overnight in water.
- Once the seeds are soft enough that you can squish them in your fingers, drain them well, then put them in your food processor. Using the pulse option, make them as smooth or chunky as you desire.
- Using the pulse option, make them as smooth or chunky as you desire.
- Replace 1 tbsp of the mustard powder with 2-3 tbsp of your mustard seed puree.
See what I mean? This couldn’t possibly be easier, particularly if you stick with version #1!
Kick the grocery store habit!