Bee Friendly, Celebrate National Honeybee Day

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National Honey Bee Day, the third Saturday in August, was started in 2009, when a small group of beekeepers petitioned for and obtained a formal proclamation from the USDA honoring honeybees and beekeeping. The purpose of the celebration is to bring together beekeepers, bee associations, and other interested groups to connect with the communities to advance beekeeping, using a united effort one day a year. What better way to celebrate the honorable honeybee than to enjoy their delicious honey!

Bees and other pollinators are crucial to agricultural production across the globe. Approximately 35% of crop production worldwide is directly affected by these bumbling and buzzing friends.

The Lenoir County Farmers Market will celebrate National Honey Bee Day on Saturday August 19, 2023 from 9:00 a.m. – Noon. The market is located at 100 North Herritage Street in downtown Kinston. At this event you will be able to

  • Watch honeybees up close and safely in an observation hive
  • See how honey is extracted from the honeycomb
  • Sample local honey produced by members of the Neuse Regional Beekeepers
  • Learn how you can protect our pollinators
  • Ask beekeepers questions
  • Learn about plants that are pollinator friendly

The health benefits of honey are numerous

  • Aids in the prevention cancer and heart disease,
  • Reduces ulcers and other gastrointestinal disorders,
  • All honey is anti-bacterial and anti-fungal,
  • Increases athletic performance,
  • Reduces cough and throat irritation,
  • Heals wounds and burns,
  • Is a natural probiotic, and
  • Helps improve skin.

If you want more fun with Honey, you might want to check out the NC Honey Festival on September 9, 2023

I say the best way to celebrate is to use all natural and local honey in planning your summer meals!!

Honey Whipped Feta


  • 12 ounce crumbled feta
  • 8 ounces cream cheese
  • 4 tablespoons local honey, plus extra for drizzling
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla
  • ¼ cup roasted salted almonds, finely chopped
  • Serve with crusty bread or apple slices


  1. In a processor, finely pulse the crumbled feta. Add the cream cheese, 4 tablespoons honey, and the vanilla and blend until smooth, about 5 minutes.
  2. To serve, transfer the whipped feta to a bowl or plate. Drizzle with honey and top with the almonds. Serve with slices of crusty bread or apple slices.

I made something similar for our Super Saturday at the market last year and it was very popular.

Melt in Your Mouth Honey Butter


  • ¾ cup butter, room temperature
  • ¼ cup honey
  • Combine honey and butter until smooth.
  • Cover and store in the refrigerator.

Serves 8. Each serving contains Calories 185, Fat 17g., Carbohydrates 9g., Protein 0g.

Honey Lemon Chicken


For the Chicken

  • 1 ½ pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into bite sized pieces
  • 3 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1 tablespoon Olive oil

For the Honey Lemon Sauce

  • ¾ cup chicken stock
  • ¼ cup fresh lemon juice
  • 3 tablespoons local honey
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • Zest of 1 lemon
  • Pinch of ground ginger
  • Sriracha, optional for heat


  1. Combine the chicken, soy sauce and rice wine vinegar to a large zip-lock bag, and toss until the chicken is evenly coated. Refrigerate for at least 10 minutes, or up to 8 hours.
  2. When you are ready to cook the chicken, drain and transfer it to a separate plate. Season the chicken on both sides with a few generous pinches of salt and pepper. And in a separate bowl, whisk the honey lemon sauce ingredients together until combined.
  3. Heat oil in a large sauté pan over medium-high heat. Add the chicken and sauté for 5-7 minutes or until it is cooked through and no longer pink inside, stirring and turning the chicken occasionally for even cooking. Transfer the chicken to a separate (clean) plate with a slotted spoon.
  4. Pour the (whisked) honey lemon sauce into the empty sauté pan. Cook over medium-high heat for 2-3 minutes, or until the sauce reaches a low boil and thickens. Add in some sriracha if you would like for extra heat, to taste. (Feel free to also season with extra salt and pepper, or extra honey or lemon.)
  5. Add the chicken back into the pan and toss until it is evenly coated with the sauce.
  6. Remove from heat and serve the chicken immediately, topped with optional toppings if desired.

Slow Cooker Heat and Honey Game Day Dip


  • 1 ground chicken or pork
  • 1 package cream cheese, 8 ounces
  • 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
  • ¼ cup chicken broth
  • 2-4 tablespoons Sriracha sauce, more or less to taste
  • 2 tablespoons local honey
  • Chopped green onions, optional for topping
  • Chips for serving


  1. In a large skillet, cook chicken or pork over medium heat until no longer pink, 6-8 minutes, breaking it into crumbles; drain. Transfer to a greased 3-qt. slow cooker. Stir in cream cheese, cheddar cheese, broth, chili sauce and honey.
  2. Cook, covered, on low 3-4 hours, until cheese is melted, stirring every 30 minutes. Serve with tortilla chips. If desired, sprinkle with green onions.

Honey Cake with Vanilla and Orange

(adapted from an @herbalacademy recipe)


For the Syrup

  • ½ cup cane sugar
  • ¼ cup freshly squeezed orange juice
  • ¾ cup water
  • 1 cup local honey

For the Cake

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup almond flour
  • Zest of one orange
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 3 eggs, at room temperature
  • 4 ounces butter, melted
  • 1 cup local honey
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • ¼ teaspoon pure almond extract
  • ½ cup Greek yogurt


  1. Preheat the oven to 350° F.

To prepare the syrup

  1. Combine the sugar, orange juice, and water in a small saucepan. Stir and slowly bring to a boil.
  2. When the sugar is fully dissolved, remove the pan from the heat and stir in the honey. Set aside to cool.

To prepare the cake

  1. Combine the flour, baking powder, and orange zest in a large mixing bowl.
    In a separate mixing bowl, combine the eggs, butter, honey, vanilla extract, and almond extract, and whisk until smooth.
  2. Fold in the yogurt and add the blended flour mixture in batches to combine. Do not over mix.
  3. Pour the cake batter into a greased 9-inch round baking pan.
    Bake on the center rack of the oven for 45-50 minutes. Insert a toothpick in the center of the cake to ensure it comes out clean.
  4. Immediately after removing the cake from the oven, poke it in several places with a toothpick. Pour the cooled syrup over the cake and set aside to cool for about 2 hours before serving.