I live on a small hobby farm in Northeast Minnesota where I raise laying hens for fresh eggs, and maintain a large garden for fresh produce. I’ve also had marginal success as a hobbyist beekeeper, and have recently learned how to make honey straws.
Beekeeping is a natural complement to a lifestyle rooted in sustainability and connection. The experience of managing a small apiary is both fulfilling and rewarding.
Beekeeping is an experience that helps me to connect with my surroundings. Since I started beekeeping I have become so aware and interested in the plant life that surrounds me. I am so appreciative of the gifts that I have been able to harvest from my hives — honey and beeswax.
I try to be resourceful and intentional on how I use the gifts from my hives. I recently had the opportunity to review the upcoming book Beekeepers Lab 52 Family Friendly Activities and Experiments Exploring the Life of a Hive by Kim Lehman. I found many great family activities to try out including recipes, tutorials and experiments that were very appealing to me as a beekeeper, mother and educator.
I am pleased to partner with Quarto Publishing to share this purposeful project from Beekeepers Lab: Honey Straws.
Honey straws are perfect snacks on the go. You can use honey from your own hives or honey purchased from a reputable beekeeper.
You Will Need:
6 plastic straws
6 raw unfiltered honey
in a squeeze bottle
6 damp cloth
1. Any plastic straws will work, but clear or translucent straws allow you to see the amount of honey in the straw. If using flexible straws, cut off the bendable part of the straws before filling. Cut the straws to the desired length.
2. Connect the opening of the squeeze bottle to the straw. The respective sizes of the straw and the bottle’s spout will dictate whether the straw will fit inside or outside of the spout’s opening. If possible, use a straw that will fit outside the bottle’s spout, as a straw inserted into the spout is more prone to drips.
3. Gently squeeze the honey into the straw, leaving at least 2″ (5 cm) of space at the top. As much as possible, avoid stopping and starting the honey flow, as it will result in air bubbles.
4. Carefully remove the straw from the bottle’s spout, keeping the straw level.
5. Pinch the clean end of the straw with pliers, exposing only a small amount of the plastic.
6. Tilt the straw so the honey flows toward the end with the pliers.
7. Light a candle. Carefully hold the pinched end of the straw in the flame until the plastic has melted. Remove the straw from the heat while continuing to clamp the pliers for a few seconds to complete the seal.
8. Stand up the straw, sealed-end down, to allow the honey to drain away from the unsealed end.
9. The second seal can be a little tricky due to the honey residue in the straw. To remove as much remaining honey as possible before sealing, pinch the end using the pliers, wipe the seeping honey from the straw’s opening with a damp cloth, and then hold it in the flame for a few seconds. If the seal isn’t complete after a few seconds, it may be necessary to hold the straw’s end in the flame a second time to complete the seal.
10. Rinse the finished honey straws in water before storing.
11. Slip a few honey straws into your backpack for a quick pick-me-up during a hike or day trip.
Photo Credits: Images 2-3: Megan Devine, Images: 4-8 Cory Ryan Photography