Is Honeycomb Edible and How - Smiley Honey
When glancing at the bottles of honey high on the grocery store shelf, do you wonder what it took to get them there? Did you know that all honey comes from honeycomb? Where can you even buy honeycomb? For most of us, honey is a great topping for our breakfast toast, good for soothing a sore throat, or even a reminder of a certain honey hungry bear from our childhood. Over 157 million pounds of honey are produced annually in the United States, and it all begins with the fascinating honeycomb.
The beauty and complexity of the honeycomb is unmistakable. Its intricate hexagonal design specifically allows honeybees to expend less energy building and spend more energy foraging and producing honey. If you’ve ever wanted to buy honeycomb for its many uses, here is some essential honeycomb knowledge to satisfy your curiosity.
What is honeycomb?
Honeybees create this delicate structure of hexagonal wax cells within their hive to raise new bees and to store honey and pollen. It normally takes a few weeks for bees to make new sections of honeycomb. The honeybee consumes honey and digests it, converting it to beeswax through a series of glands on the abdomen. A bee has to consume up to eight pounds of honey to produce one pound of beeswax. The wax is secreted as little white flakes through pores on their abdomen. Worker bees will chew the wax flakes off one another. This chewing mixes enzymes from their saliva and softens the wax that is then added to the comb, building on the hexagonal shape. Honeycomb serves as the internal structure of a honeybee hive. It not only provides storage for eggs, larvae, wax, pollen and honey, it also provides protection for the beehive
How do you use honeycomb?
Honeycomb is a unique and tasty component that can be enjoyed straight from the hive. It is entirely edible including the prismatic cells of honey, pollen and royal jelly. You can buy honeycomb raw, break it up and sprinkle it on your favorite yogurt, or even combine it with other ingredients to make several dishes and beverages. Buy honeycomb to add to your favorite hot drinks. It is a wonderful sweetener for coffee and tea.
When your friends ask is honeycomb edible, serve them a charcuterie board with honeycomb and salty cheeses such as Parmigiano-Reggiano, goat cheese or blue cheese. Fancy up the plate with nuts, berries and even chocolate. Honeycomb pairs perfectly with many flavors. Buy honeycomb and put it on a sandwich with avocado and tomatoes. That gooey goodness will have you coming back for more.
Is eating honeycomb good for you?
Honeycomb’s gifts keep on giving in the form of benefits to your wellbeing. The components of honey, beeswax, propolis and royal jelly each have unique properties that are good for you, and you’ll be adding “buy honeycomb” to your to-do list right away.
A common question asked by first-time consumers, is bee honeycomb edible? For the most part, yes, honeycomb is edible. Raw honey isn’t processed, so it retains its natural amino acids, vitamins, minerals, other nutrients and antioxidant properties. Natural honey from bee honeycomb is edible has been used as a natural remedy for cough and sore throat for hundreds of years. Its coating properties may even help symptoms of gastroesophageal reflux and other digestive issues. Raw honey can be an integral part of an overall healthy diet and exercise plan.
Can you eat beeswax? Many famous chefs use beeswax for its subtle honey flavor, especially in glazes for meat and candy. When consumed as part of raw honeycomb, beeswax extracted from the comb might help to lower cholesterol levels or reduce swelling and inflammation. Because honeycomb is edible, as organic products increase in popularity, don’t be surprised to find beeswax on the list of ingredients for everything from chewing gum to cheese.
Another ingredient in bee honeycomb is propolis. Bees produce this compound from the sap of evergreens or other trees that produce needle-like leaves. Propolis found in raw honeycomb has an abundance of polyphenols. These are powerful antioxidants that help fight off disease and inflammation in the human body. Propolis has also been shown to reduce glycemic levels in patients with Type 2 diabetes.
Also nestled inside of bee honeycomb is royal jelly, secreted from honeybee salivary glands. It is highly nutritious and provides nutrients to the queen and honeybee larvae as they develop. Royal jelly has antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory properties. Royal jelly made from bee comb may even have properties that help regulate the sleep wake cycle
Dangers of raw honey
Raw honeycomb is a rare treat but before you buy honeycomb you should know that it is not for everyone. Infants under 12 months of age should not eat any raw products from a beehive, including raw honey and raw honeycomb. It’s important to be aware of raw honey dangers, especially for those who have compromised immune systems. Avoid honey and honeycomb if you are allergic to it. Consult your healthcare professional if you have any concerns about consuming raw honeycomb.
Is honeycomb vegan?
In the strictest sense, the answer is no. Practicing vegans note that bees are living creatures, and that eating something produced by a living creature is not acceptable. Basically, you cannot drink the milk of a cow, so you shouldn’t eat honey from a beehive. If you are a vegetarian or otherwise prioritize thoughtful food production, be sure to make sure the source of your honeycomb practices balanced and sustainable forms of beekeeping and production.
How much is honeycomb worth?
It’s worth its weight in honey gold! When you buy honeycomb, expect to pay between $16 and $45 per pound. Comb honey can be up to three times as expensive as liquid honey. You can buy honeycomb in many forms. Chunk comb is where one or more pieces of honeycomb are placed in a jar with the empty space around the comb filled with liquid honey. Cut comb is a square or rectangular piece of honeycomb placed in a plastic container. You can purchase honeycomb in small or large quantities. When stored in appropriate temperature and humidity, it never expires.
So now you’ve heard the buzz on the awesome and delicious qualities of honeycomb. The next question is “Where do I buy honeycomb?” Look no further than Smiley Honey.