Pros: Thick, sweet, great for making honey butter
Cons: It can be very expensive when you go through as much as we do!
For the past few years my husband has been on a real honey binge. Seriously, he put honey on breads, in his oatmeal, and even in his coffee. I don't know how this habit started, but I know it's costing me a small fortune to keep him supplied with his honey!
Because honey seems to be much more expensive than normal, I don't buy any honey without comparing prices, and usually stock up when my local grocer has a good sale. A couple of months ago Fred Meyer had their 8 ounce bottles of honey on sale for 2 for $3.00, which made them only $1.50 each. The normal retail price is almost $4.00 here in Alaska!
Although many honey bottles are shaped like the popular honey bear, this bottle is more traditional, with a flip cap top. The label refers to it as a premium honey, and is a US Grade A pure honey. Sue Bee honey has a light amber color, like most honey made from clover.
I have purchased generic and store brands of honey, as well as honey sold in the natural foods department of my Fred Meyer store, and honestly I cannot really tell much of a difference in taste. They are all thick and sweet with the unique smell of honey.
Nutrition wise, my husband feels honey is healthier to eat than sugar, but if you are counting calories, honey is actually more fattening, as just one tablespoon of honey contains 60 calories, but one tablespoon of sugar has 45.
Occasionally I get a bottle that may be a little old, and the honey will start to crystalize in the bottle, and turn a light tan color. When this happens, I put the bottle in a pan of boiling water and let it sit until the crystals have melted and become liquid again. It's interesting to note that the label warns consumers not to microwave the bottle.
There are other warnings as well, such as not to feed honey to infants or children under one year of age. I remember a friend telling me this years ago when my daughter was born, but I had a hard time remembering why this was important. According to the Sue Bee website: "Infant Botulism is a rare but very serious disease affecting the nervous system of infants. Honey and other raw agricultural products may contain bacterial spores from Clostridium botulinum that could cause Infant Botulism".
I've purchased honey that was produced from flowers other than the common clover, such as the blackberry honey that is sold in our natural foods department. A friend of mine makes fireweed honey, fireweed is a plant that grows wild all over Alaska. The taste of the honey is influenced by the different type of flowers or plants.
Sue Bee Honey contains 0 fat, o mg of sodium, 17 grams of carbs, 16 grams of sugar and 0 protein. It's definitely sweet and can be fattening if you over do it! I love to make honey butter to serve with my cornbread, and I simply mix equal parts of honey and softened butter and this makes a great treat for a wide variety of breads.
Sue Bee Clover Honey is mild tasting, and very sweet. I mainly use it in my cup of tea, but do appreciate it as a honey butter. Although you can substitute honey (cup for cup) for sugar, I rarely bake with honey. Liquid measurements need to be reduced, and cooking temperatures adjusted. It's just not worth the extra work in my opinion.
I have found one very good use of honey, and that is using it to help calm a cough or tickle in the throat. I've used this method numerous times instead of taking a cough syrup. The thick sweet honey coats my throat, giving me relief from that tickling sensation. It works almost every time! It may not give me the long lasting relief that a medicated syrup would, but it's long enough to allow me to get to sleep.
To conclude, I like Sue Bee Honey, but I honestly don't see a big difference in the taste as compared to cheaper brands of clover honey. I buy whatever is the cheapest at the time, and when they go on sale (like Sue Bee did), I buy as many as I can (often times they are coupon specials with a limit of 4).
Sue Bee us a brand that has been around for years, and it's as good as any other clover honey that I have purchased, but I would have to say that I prefer the taste of blackberry honey when I can afford it.
Here's a little bit of trivia for you! This honey was originally named Sioux Bee. The company was founded in Sioux City Iowa, but the name was changed to the familiar Sue Bee in 1964.