Saturday, November 21, 2015

This holiday, shop local - give honey!

Gift giving couldn’t be easier this year at the Minnesota Honey Company. Shop online at, or come into our retail store and discover hundreds of gifts and treats for all ages.

A few quick tips to make holiday shopping and gift giving easy this year:

  • Make a list of the people you want to shop for - What would they enjoy receiving? What would you enjoy giving? (Print out the Holiday Shopping Guide to start your list.)
  • Mark which folks live out of town - do you want to do the packing and shipping yourself or have someone else do it for you? (Find stores that will ship for you (we do!); come in or Shop Online)
  • Create gift packages, or choose from pre-designed sets - if you enjoy searching for gifts and filling the boxes and bags, bee-utiful! If not, seek out packaged gift sets. (Click here for a list of gift categories and vendor products you’ll find at the Minnesota Honey Company)
  • Look for places that help you wrap the gifts - packaging can help tell the story (we offer complimentary decorated boxes and bags with each $20+ gift). You'll also find in our store a kids' gift wrapping station with complimentary little red foil bags and tags - perfect for small gifts to give family, friends and teachers.
  • Shop local; support small businesses!

In a hurry?  Choose from a wide variety of ready-to-go gift boxes, bags and sets.
Want to DIY it?  Pick out your gift items; complimentary decorated boxes and bags with each $20+ gift
Prefer to shop from home?  Click the Shop Online tab at and use the LOYALTY code to save 10% on all orders through 12/15.

At the Minnesota Honey Company, you’ll find a variety of food gifts, beauty care products, honey candies and a large selection of bee- and honey-themed ceramics (deviled egg plates too!).

Upcoming Events

Nov. 20 - 22 Shop & Stroll (businesses at 50th & Xerxes ) - 20% off all purchases
Dec. 3, 10, 17 Free Thursday Happy Hours - 4-8 pm - free gift with $20+ purchase

As a small business, we’re proud to support other small businesses, beekeepers and farmers, and we thank YOU for your business.

Friday, November 6, 2015

Honey 'Cakeovers' - Baking cakes with honey

Authored by Diane Fluin for Minnesota Honey Company

Baking with honey is an easy and healthful way to reduce the amount of processed sugar in recipes. We recently tried a “cakeover” – a makeover of a favorite cake recipe using Minnesota Honey Company Meadow Wildflower honey in place of some of the processed sugar.

We replaced half of the sugar with honey, so our version had equal amounts of honey and sugar. To prevent overbrowning, we reduced the cooking temperature by 25 degrees Fahrenheit, but to compensate for the extra moisture content from the honey, we added ¼ cup of flour to the recipe and gave it about 20 minutes more baking time. The results were both delicious and interesting!

Dark Chocolate Cakeover: honey-sweetened version
on left; original recipe on right

The honey-sweetened cake:
  • was definitely more moist - the original recipe developed a crusty exterior along the top edges, but the honey cake remained moist all across the top.
  • rose higher than the original, creating a lighter crumb and airier texture than its denser counterpart. Perhaps the honey was more reactive with the baking powder, but since a taller cake equals more cake, we decided to just enjoy the cake and not overanalyze the chemistry.
  • was a little less sweet/a little more rich. While the difference in flavor is hard to describe, it was noticeable in a side-by-side comparison of the cakes. Both were chocolaty and sweet, but for bakers desiring a richness and a little less blatant sweet flavor, the honey was a great modification. And for bakers who merely want to reduce the amount of processed sugar and/or use more natural sweeteners in a recipe, they won’t sacrifice flavor by using honey.
  • tasted even better when drizzled with a Minnesota Honey Company infused honey!

Honey-sweetened Olive Oil Dark Chocolate Cake
Recipe adapted from Diane’s Food Blog
Authored by Diane Fluin for Minnesota Honey Company

½ cup Dutch-processed cocoa powder (1¼ oz)
5-6 tablespoons boiling water
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
½ teaspoon almond extract
1¼ cups all-purpose flour (4½ oz), plus enough for dusting the pan
¼ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon baking soda
3 large eggs plus 1 egg yolk, at room temperature
2/3 cups quality olive oil (extra virgin preferred), plus 1-2 T or so for the coating the pan
2/3 cups MN Honey Company wildflower honey
2/3 cups sugar
¼ cup confectioners’ (powdered) sugar for dusting (optional)
One 8” x 2” round cake pan; parchment paper for lining the pan

Preheat oven to 300°F and place oven rack in the middle position. Generously oil/spray the pan with olive oil and line the bottom of the pan with parchment or waxed paper. Oil the paper and dust it lightly with flour.

In medium bowl, mix together the flour, salt, and baking soda.

In another medium bowl, sift the cocoa powder through strainer or colander. Add 5 tablespoons of the boiling water to the cocoa and stir until the mixture is smooth and glossy (if it clumps, add up to 1 tablespoon more boiling water, but only enough to smooth it out – don’t let it get too wet). Stir in the vanilla and almond extracts, then set the mixture aside to cool slightly. 

In a large bowl, using a mixer on medium-high speed, beat the eggs, egg yolk, olive oil, honey and sugar until thick and creamy, about 2 to 3 minutes. Scrape down the sides of the bowl. Reduce the mixer speed to low and gradually add the warm (not hot) cocoa mixture until well combined, scraping down the sides of the bowl. Keeping the mixer on low, gradually mix in the dry ingredients until just combined – do not over mix.

Pour the batter into the prepared cake pan and bake in the center of the oven for 60-80 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out mostly dry, with only a few moist crumbs clinging to it. Place the pan on a cooling rack and carefully run a butter knife around the inside edge to loosen the cake from the sides. Let cool for 10 minutes. 

Place a second rack over the cake pan and, holding the racks and pan together carefully, flip the pan over. Carefully lift the pan off the cake and gently peel off and discard the paper liner. Using the first rack, gently sandwich the cake again and flip it over, right-side up, and let cool completely on the rack. Once cooled, slice, serve and enjoy!

Try an optional topping:
Dust lightly with sifted powdered sugar

Drizzle with additional Minnesota Honey Company Meadow Wildflower honey, or try any of their infused honeys to really step up the flavors!

Monday, October 5, 2015

An Italian Dinner with Honey - Thurs., Nov. 5, 2015

Join us November 5th for a delicious evening of Italian cuisine and conversation about cooking with honey. Author Sue Doeden will be there with her book "Homemade with Honey." Register early; seating is very limited! Books can also be pre-ordered. To view the menu and register, go to:
(Registration deadline is November 2nd)

We hope to see you there!

What do you do with 300 pounds of honey?!

If you’re the Minnesota Honey Company, you thank your loyal customers by giving it away. Seven months ago, the retail store kicked off its Honey Lovers Club punch card program, and as of the end of September, over 300 pounds of honey have been given to members. There are no plans to change this popular program. Stop in today to start a punch card or add to your existing card.

Here’s how the punch card program works: For every $5 spent on honey, club members receive a punch. With 10 punches, members earn a pound of Meadow Wildflower honey. New members receive one free punch, and all members are invited to keep their card on file here in the store. Now, how sweet is that?!

Our Second Anniversary!
Minnesota Honey Company opened its doors on October 30, 2013, and as a new business, it was a time of great excitement and risk. Two years later, YOU, our valued customers, have rewarded us with business, words of encouragement and referrals. We couldn’t be more grateful. As we move into our third holiday season, we extend a hearty THANK YOU!! and invite you to visit again soon.

Monday, September 21, 2015

Peruvian Skirt Steak with Roasted Potatoes, Peppers and Onions

Adapted from the "Homemade with Honey" cookbook by Sue Doeden
Authored by Diane Fluin for Minnesota Honey Company

1½ to 2 pounds skirt steak (or flank steak)

1 cup fresh flat-leaf parsley, leaves only
9 cloves garlic, smashed 
½ cup extra-virgin olive oil
3 tablespoons white wine vinegar or red wine vinegar 
2 tablespoons MN Honey Company Meadow Wildflower honey
1 jalapeno pepper, seeds removed 
1 teaspoon dried oregano 
1 teaspoon sweet paprika 
1 large (gallon) resealable plastic bag

½ cup extra-virgin olive oil 
½ cup fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves, finely chopped 
¼ cup white wine vinegar or red wine vinegar 
2 tablespoons minced garlic 
1 teaspoon dried oregano 
1 teaspoon MN Honey Company Meadow Wildflower honey 
¼ teaspoon salt 
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Roasted Vegetables 
12 ounces fingerling potatoes (or other waxy potatoes, like Yukon Gold)
2 large red onions
1 green bell pepper 
1 yellow bell pepper 
1 red bell pepper 
1-2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

Marinate the steak

Place all marinade ingredients in a blender or food processor and process until garlic, parsley and jalapeno are finely minced and the marinade is mixed well.

Use skirt steak (top) or flank steak (bottom) for this dish. Pound to uniform thickness and cut into smaller pieces, if desired, to make them easier to fit in the gallon-sized plastic bag.

Place steak in bag, pour in the marinade and seal. Squeeze bag to thoroughly coat all sides of the steak and keep refrigerated for 6 to 12 hours.

Prepare the dressing

Place all the ingredients in a tightly lidded jar and shake well. Keep refrigerated until ready to use; shake well just before serving.

Roast the vegetables

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Rinse potatoes and slice lengthwise into ¼-inch wedges. Toss lightly with olive oil.

Cut peppers into large pieces and remove seeds and membranes; lightly brush both sides with olive oil. Slice the onion into 1-inch pieces and toss lightly with olive oil.

Spread potatoes in a single layer onto a foil-lined baking pan. Place peppers skin-side down in the same baking pan with the potatoes. Bake 15 minutes, then place the onions in a single layer on the same baking pan. Bake another 15 minutes, or until potatoes are tender and lightly browned and peppers are softened (about 30 minutes total).

After cooking, slice the peppers into ¼-inch wide pieces and arrange all vegetables on one half of a serving platter. Cover with foil to keep warm.

Grill the steak

Preheat grill to about 400 degrees F. Remove the steak from the marinade, scraping off as much marinade as possible. Season both sides with kosher salt and pepper.

Place onto hot grill and cook to desired doneness (about 3 minutes per side for medium rare). Remove steak, cover with foil and let stand for 10 minutes before slicing.

While the steak rests, take the dressing out of the refrigerator to allow it to come to room temperature. Transfer to a serving bowl, if desired, to pass at the table.

Slice the steak across the grain and arrange on the platter with the potatoes, onions and peppers. Allow guests to serve themselves by passing platter and the dressing at the table.

Got leftovers? Try one these tasty alternatives:

In a tortilla

Dice the steak and vegetables into small cubes and heat in a pan with leftover dressing over medium heat.

Keep stirring and tossing, and when thoroughly reheated, use as a filling for tortillas.

On a salad

Reheat steak and vegetables and serve over salad greens (romaine, butter lettuce) topped with dressing.

Monday, September 7, 2015

About a beekeeper that kept more than bees!

The vintage ceramics in our upcoming Showcase event were previously owned by an avid MN beekeeper, Ron Griffith, who managed about 500 colonies on five different farms south of Red Wing. His family business of nearly 30 years extracted honey out of a round barn (now bed and breakfast).  In addition to honey- and bee-themed ceramics, he amassed a beautiful collection of deviled egg plates! These pieces are looking for new, loving homes.

Start your holiday shopping early - celebrate the bees and give a gift that tells a story! Join us for the October 3 & 4, 2015 Vintage Ceramics Showcase. You’ll have a chance to read the full story about Ron’s life.

Event Invitation
Vintage Ceramics Showcase & Sale
When: Saturday, Oct 3 (11 am - 6 pm) & Sunday, Oct 4 (12 - 5 pm)
Over 200 honey- and bee-themed vintage ceramics and deviled egg plates will be featured in the store.

Event Drawing - register early! Stop in the store anytime between now and October 4th, and register to win one of two great prizes (see pictures)! One entry per person in either the adult or children’s category. No purchase is necessary, and you need not be present to win. Drawing will be held at the Showcase event on Sun. afternoon, Oct. 4 at 4 pm.

Adult category prize: matched-set honey pot & deviled egg plate
Children’s category prize: ceramic bee coin bank


On the heels of National Honey Bee Day in August, September continues the focus on honey bees and what they bring to our lives - delicious and healthful honey! And, if it weren’t for the beekeepers, we wouldn’t be able to enjoy all the sweet treats that bees manufacture...naturally!

Honey is harvested throughout the growing season here in Minnesota, and because it doesn’t spoil, we here at the Minnesota Honey Company can keep a variety of honeys on our shelves all year round. At the heart of our mission, we’re making sure you have access to raw, local honey long after the growing season ends.

Taste Notes
We know that taste is important to you, and different flavors can occur from season to season.

As flowering areas mature and the composition of flowers change over time, honey flavor variations occur naturally. That’s what keeps honey so interesting. Honey samples are always available in our retail store so you can determine what fits your palate, recipe or use.

Beekeepers selectively decide what types of honey they want to collect. Accordingly, they set their bee boxes and extraction schedules. For example, because clover flowers early in the spring (before other bee-favorite flowers bloom), beekeepers will extract clover honey early in the summer. On the other hand, later summer harvests might reap honey made from diverse floral sources - a wildflower variety.

In certain situations, bee boxes might be positioned in an area where one single flower source is available. Orange blossom honey is one interesting example. We have Minnesota bees that snowbird to Florida because their beekeeper is contracted by an orange grove for pollination services. The bees collect the nectar, and we get to enjoy this unique honey back here in Minnesota AND, at the same time, support a Minnesota small business.

Honey for All Reasons
Whether you use honey in the kitchen for eating and cooking, keep it in the medicine cabinet for natural health remedies, or give it as ‘sweet’ gifts to friends and loved ones, keep Minnesota Honey Company in mind as your go-to source for local honey. We have a variety of honeys to offer all year round and are here to serve you!