Yucky-tasting medicine goes down easier with a chaser of flavoring syrup

Amanda found a way to make medicine a little easier to take:

My kids have been sick all fall– finally they were prescribed Augmentin, which apparently tastes “gross and nasty.” It was too late to go back and have it flavored, and the price of the prescription is way to much to just get another bottle. Then it occurred to me that I could measure out the dosage, and then add a half an eyedropper full of vanilla flavored coffee syrup to the medicine. I get ours at Target to use in warm milk for special treats, so it wasn’t as if I had to buy a whole bottle of it just for making the medicine go down. Both kids lapped it up. Yay!

Working off this hack, I’m thinking maple syrup, honey, or even a sugar cube would work as well.


More: Best of Parent Hacks: Cold and flu season tips


  1. says

    My son is taking an antibiotic for his staph infection, which is some pretty strong stuff. The nurse at the hospital recommended chocolate syrup as a way to mask the disgusting taste of the medicine. In this case, NOTHING could cover up the taste and I’ve had to teach a 2.5 yr old how to swallow a pill, but I think chocolate syrup would be another good one to have in your arsenal. At least you can blame the kids’ medicine taking when the bottle is gone, not your late night ice cream habit…

  2. Amy says

    A teaspoon of honey is great for helping a child swallow a pill. Just squirt a little honey onto a spoon and plop the pill right in the middle. Sucking on the honey-coated spoon will help the pill slide right down.

  3. says

    We went through the Augmentin thing a couple of months ago with my 15 month old. Doctor recommended mixing it with yogurt to make it taste better, but then I worried about getting her to finish the whole thing. So I switched to one tablespoon of vanilla ice cream, mixed with Augmentin to make it kinda soupy. Big smiles now at medicine time!

  4. maso says

    I have a 13-month old, and when I picked up some antibiotics for an ear infection, the pharmacist asked if I would like to add extra flavor. It was a couple bucks extra, but it really made a difference when it came to medicine time!

    Also, in response to Amy’s comment: it should be noted that honey should not be given to children under 1 year, due to risk of infant botulism.

  5. Jeff says

    I just wanted to share what worked for us in case it was able to help anyone. Our 2 year old needed to take Augmentin. The flavor wasn’t bad (orange cream), but it is an oral suspension and the texture was nasty. It was chalky and made my daughter gag. After trying different things and after much crying, gagging, and even puking, my wife had a brilliant idea. She put the medicine in a Danimal yogurt drink. They are quite flavorful and thick, so it hides both the taste and texture of the medicine. They are also small, so there isn’t too much for them to drink since you need to make sure they finish it. I just take a syringe to measure the medicine, poke it into the foil top of the Danimal, inject, cover with thumb and shake, and then stick a straw in the hole to let her drink it. We are at the end of the meds and she has had every dose without any issues at all. I hope this helps someone!