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What is Honey Mustard?

By J. Beam
Updated May 16, 2024
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Honey mustard is a mustard-based condiment that is most often used as a dip for finger foods, a salad dressing, or as a glaze or marinade for meat. Unlike many other varieties of mustard, this one derives its name from the combination of flavors rather than from the growing location or variation of the plant used as the main ingredient.

Honey mustard is a combination of mustard, usually a mild variety, and honey or artificial honey flavoring. Though some types are made from hot mustard and some vary in tang, sharpness, and spiciness, the addition of honey or honey flavoring naturally gives the mustard a sweeter flavor than the mustard base alone would have.

Some popular varieties of this condiment include hot honey mustard and honey Dijon mustard. While some people enjoy the flavor of honey mustard on a variety of foods, it is most frequently offered at restaurants as a condiment to accompany onion rings, french fries, chicken, and salads. It also makes a good accompaniment to soft baked pretzels.

In addition to its use as a condiment, honey mustard also adds flavoring to marinades and glazes for meat. It's often used in chicken recipes, but can also work well with pork dishes; and certain varieties also compliment beef and vegetable dishes, such as stir fry.

Honey mustard is sold in stores in prepared forms in plastic squeeze containers as well as glass jars. It may also be sold in sauce form. While most people find plain mustard varieties compliment other condiments such as ketchup and mayonnaise, honey mustard is typically favored as a single condiment used alone. As a glaze or marinade, it may be combined with other ingredients or spices to further enhance the flavor of the meat to be cooked.

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Discussion Comments
By julies — On Nov 22, 2012

I don't go out of my way to use regular or spicy mustard, but do enjoy the taste of honey mustard. When I am ordering a sandwich at a deli or restaurant, I always request honey mustard on my sandwich.

I have seen people eating honey mustard sauce with french fries, but that is pushing it too far for me. I still like to eat ketchup with my french fries.

I think mustard is healthier for you than mayonnaise and doesn't contain as much fat. It also adds a nice kick to a sandwich that you don't get with other condiments.

By golf07 — On Nov 22, 2012

I love to use honey mustard as a marinade for chicken. All I do is put some in a zip-lock bag along with the pieces of chicken, and put it in the refrigerator for a few hours.

The best way to prepare this is on the grill. The honey mustard marinade not only adds some great flavor, but also makes the meat tender and juicy. Sometimes chicken breast can get dried out, but with a good marinade like this, it makes a big difference.

By bagley79 — On Nov 21, 2012

I love mustard on a burger or a tenderloin, but my husband never cared for the taste of mustard until I introduced him to honey mustard. The honey really sweetens the mustard taste. Now when he orders chicken tenders at a restaurant, sometimes he will order honey mustard instead of choosing barbeque sauce.

By donasmrs — On Nov 18, 2012

Dijon honey mustard with olive oil and poppy seeds is the best honey mustard ever. I can put it on anything and everything-- steak, chicken, salads, hamburgers, vegetables, kabobs, potatoes! Everything tastes better with honey mustard.

By SteamLouis — On Nov 17, 2012

@MikeMason-- That depends on the product, they all vary, so I can't tell you exactly.

But mustard in general is a healthy condiment, much healthier than mayonnaise. Some say that mustard helps burn fat but I have no idea if that's true.

You will probably get a much healthier honey mustard if you make it at home. I'm sure that mixing a good quality, natural mustard with honey to make honey mustard is a lot better than the ready-made stuff at the stores. They put all kinds of additives and preservatives in those.

By stoneMason — On Nov 16, 2012

Does anyone know about the fat and calorie content of honey mustard?

By BAU79 — On Oct 25, 2012

I know a lot of people who make their own honey mustard because they want to use a specific kind of mustard. The weird thing is that they often use the same cheap honey. You can greatly improve the flavor if you use organic, raw honey. It doesn't even compare to the stuff that comes in the little bear.

By jonrss — On Oct 25, 2012

I used to work for a pizza place that offered a salad topped with a honey mustard vinaigrette.

It was one of our most popular salads. I worked the salad station for a while and some nights I felt like 4 out of the 5 salads we served had that dressing on top. It was actually really good on the pizza too.

By whiteplane — On Oct 24, 2012
This is a little bit weird, but one of my favorite snacks is to take a Ritz cracker, put a slice of cheddar cheese on top and finish it with a dab of honey mustard. It is a full flavor experience. You get the richness of the cracker, the sharpness of the cheese, and the sweet-strong flavor of the honey mustard. Plus, it is quick and cheap which is always a bonus in a snack.
By Charlie89 — On Oct 14, 2010

If you want to get really fancy with your honey mustard making recipe, you can try this 7 ingredient one that I learned in college (to impress a date, why else?)

OK, you take a fourth a cup of olive oil, two tablespoons of red wine vinegar, one tablespoon of honey, a half a teaspoon of salt, a fourth a teaspoon of pepper, and an eight of a teaspoon of nutmeg.

Mix it all together, adding the ingredients in the order listed. Then cover it and let it chill before you use it. It can last up to four days in the fridge before you need to make a new batch.

This is one of those great "secret weapon" recipes that sounds so, so much more impressive than it is -- so use it wisely!

By zenmaster — On Oct 14, 2010

I have to say that I've never been a huge fan of honey mustard -- mayonnaise has always been more of my thing.

One thing I really do like, though, is a spicy honey mustard horseradish sauce.

It is an awesome marinade or sauce to use when you need a dressing like honey mustard, but with a little more kick.

I usually use it on top of baked pork chops, or to marinade a tenderloin for baking. I would definitely recommend trying it as a substitute for any recipe that calls for honey mustard, as long as you can stand for the kick.

By yournamehere — On Oct 14, 2010

I love honey mustard dressing for salads and to use as a dip, so I finally asked a buddy of mine who is a chef how to make it.

I had no idea it was so easy -- to make a creamy honey mustard dressing, all you have to do is take five tablespoons of honey, three tablespoons of mustard (he said using Frenchs for honey mustard was the best), and two tablespoons of rice wine vinegar.

You mix it all together and whisk the mixture until it gets smooth and creamy, and there you go -- restaurant-style honey mustard dressing at home!

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