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sleep / wellness

Bedtime Drinks that Promote Good Sleep

by BetterSleep
Mar 21 2022 • 7 min read

A good drink is always a great way to end the day. But what if your drink could help you sleep better? Some bedtime drinks can promote better sleep, whether that’s tea, warm milk, or a glass of wine.

Below, find some of the best bedtime drinks to help you sleep soundly through the night. We will also share tips on making these drinks even more effective and some recipes to make your blends.

How Drinks Affect Bedtime

Good sleep hygiene means developing a pattern of behaviors that help you fall asleep faster, sleep more deeply, and stay asleep all night. When you go to bed, bedtime activities, and what you eat and drink in the evening all matter when it comes to better sleep.

And because drinks are such a big part of our nightly routines, they can significantly impact how well we sleep. Water, of course, is the best choice for overall health. But other drinks can help you relax and prepare for the night ahead.

Here are some key things to keep in mind when choosing a bedtime drink:

Certain Drinks are Best Left for Earlier in the Day.

Anything with caffeine, for instance, is best avoided from mid-afternoon onwards. Caffeine can hide where you don’t expect it. A cup of green tea before bed might seem relaxing, but it contains caffeine.

Avoid Alcohol, Which Many People Find Soothing and Relaxing.

A glass or two of wine can help you fall asleep, but ultimately it reduces sleep quality. You’re likely to wake up more frequently.

It’s Important to Stay Hydrated.

Drink plenty of fluids during the day. But avoid drinking too much fluid in the evening, as this can lead to nighttime trips to the bathroom.

A Bedtime Routine can Help Promote a Better Night’s Sleep.

This may include taking a bath, reading a book, or drinking a relaxing bedtime drink.

Bedtime Drinks to Improve Sleep Quality

A sip, a swallow, or a gulp before bed can help you relax and get ready for sleep. Here are some of our favorite bedtime drinks that promote rest. Whether you need to wind down after a long day or you’re struggling with sleep disorders like insomnia, these drinks can help.

Chamomile Tea

Chamomile tea is a soothing, mild drink made from small, daisy-like flowers. People have long used chamomile tea to reduce anxiety, relax, and improve sleep.A study of 80 women drinking chamomile tea daily found that the tea reduced their symptoms of insomnia. Furthermore, those with cold symptoms may find some relief by drinking chamomile tea, which can help reduce congestion.

The smell of chamomile is also relaxing, making it a good choice for an evening beverage. Chamomile tea is widely available and easy to find at most grocery stores.

Sleepy-Time Tea

This classic blend is also an herbal tea designed to soothe the mind, relax the body, and prepare you for sleep. Often sleep teas contain chamomile, spearmint, and lemongrass. Another common ingredient in sleep and calming teas is valerian, an herb long used as a sleep aid.

Avoid adding too much sugar when drinking tea, as this can have the opposite effect and keep you awake.

Valerian Tea

Valerian is a medicinal herb used for hundreds of years to treat insomnia. Some people also use it to manage depression, anxiety, and PMS. Studies of valerian and sleep are inconsistent, but many do show a connection between using valerian and getting better sleep.

Valerian tea is readily available online and at some health food stores. It’s important to start with lower doses of valerian, as it can cause some side effects like headache and dizziness in some people.

Hot Lemon Water Before Bed

If you are not a fan of the flavor of herbal teas, a cup of hot water with a bit of lemon has a surprisingly similar effect. The warmth of the drink is what soothes. A cup of hot lemon water before bed also aids digestion, which can help you sleep better if you have a sensitive stomach.

Lemon is also a natural antacid, which can help if you suffer from heartburn at night.

A Milk-Based Bedtime Drink

For many people, there’s nothing better than warm milk before bed. This classic bedtime drink has been around for centuries, and there’s a reason why.

Milk contains tryptophan, an amino acid that the body converts into serotonin. Serotonin is a neurotransmitter that helps regulate sleep. Drinking warm milk before bed may help you fall asleep faster and sleep more soundly. Studies back up what moms have long known, that warm milk does support sound sleep.

Some mix their warm milk with a bit of honey to boost relaxation. Others add spices like cinnamon or nutmeg.

If you are on a dairy-free diet or lactose intolerant, many lactose-free milk options are available, such as almond and soy milk. You can also find tryptophan supplements at most health food stores.

Cherry Juice

Try cherry juice before bed if a hot beverage isn’t your cup of tea. Tart cherry juice, in particular, contains significant amounts of the sleep-regulating hormone melatonin. In a study of 30 people who drank tart cherry juice twice daily, researchers found they had improved sleep quality and woke up less during the night.

Cherry juice is available year-round in most grocery stores. It’s also easy to find online. You can drink it straight or mix it with seltzer or sparkling water for a refreshing bedtime drink.

Kava Tea

Kava tea is made from the kava plant, which is native to the South Pacific islands. Kava has a long history of use as a ceremonial drink for relaxation. Today, it is used to treat anxiety, stress, and insomnia.

You can find kava tea online and at some health food stores. However, it’s important to note that kava can interact with some medications you may be taking, so check with your doctor before drinking it.

Vegetable Smoothies

Smoothies made with ingredients like kale, spinach, carrots, and beets are healthy and can help you sleep better. The nutrients in these vegetables help the body produce serotonin and melatonin, which regulate sleep. The magnesium in leafy greens is also a natural muscle relaxant.

For a bedtime drink that will help you sleep, try these recipes:

Bedtime Tea Recipe

This bedtime tea recipe combines many sleep-promoting ingredients we’ve already discussed. It includes chamomile, valerian, lemon balm, and a few other calming herbs.


  • 1 teaspoon chamomile flowers
  • 1 teaspoon valerian root
  • 1 teaspoon lemon balm leaves
  • 1/2 teaspoon passionflower leaves
  • 1/4 teaspoon lavender flowers
  • Honey (optional)


1. Combine all ingredients in a cup or mug.

2. Pour boiling water over the herbs and let steep for 10 minutes.

3. Strain and sweeten with honey if desired.

4. Drink 20-30 minutes before bedtime.

You may also want to mix things up and try a bedtime smoothie. This one combines many of the same ingredients as the tea recipe above, plus a few others that promote sleep.

Bedtime Smoothie Recipe


  • 1 cup almond milk
  • 1 banana
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1 teaspoon chamomile flowers
  • 1 teaspoon valerian root
  • 1 teaspoon lemon balm leaves


1. Combine all ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth.

2. Drink 20-30 minutes before bedtime.

3. Enjoy!

How to Develop a Good Sleep Hygiene

It’s not enough to just drink one of these bedtime drinks before you sleep. You also need to have good sleep hygiene if you want to get the best night’s sleep possible. From avoiding sleep deprivation to setting a regular sleep schedule, there are many things you can do to improve your sleep hygiene.

Get Enough Sleep

One of the most important things you can do for your sleep is to ensure you’re getting enough of it. Most people need seven to eight hours of sleep per night. If you’re not getting enough sleep, try to change your habits. Go to bed and wake up simultaneously each day, avoid caffeine and alcohol before bed, and create a relaxing bedtime routine.

Make Sure Your Bedroom is Comfortable

The bedroom must be a comfort haven if you want deep, restful sleep. The ideal bedroom temperature is between 60 and 67 degrees Fahrenheit. The room should also be dark, quiet, and clutter-free. Consider using earplugs or an eye mask if you have trouble sleeping in a noisy or light environment.

Let Go of Stress

Stress can wreak havoc on your sleep. If you’re stressed about something, try to find a way to let go of that stress before bedtime. Write down what’s on your mind in a journal, talk to a friend, or try relaxation techniques such as yoga or meditation.

Create a Relaxing Bedtime Routine

A soothing bedtime routine can cue your body that it’s time to sleep. This could include taking a warm bath, reading a book, or stretching. Find what works for you and stick to it every night. This is where your bedtime drink can come in. Sipping on chamomile tea while you read or take a bath with lavender-scented products can help you relax and prepare for sleep.

When you develop good sleep hygiene habits, you’re more likely to get deep, restful sleep. This can lead to improved energy levels, mood, and overall health. Plus, your body’s sleep/wake cycle is more likely to stay in sync if you have good sleep habits.

Final Thoughts

Bedtime drinks can help you relax and fall asleep more easily. But, they’re not a cure-all for insomnia. If you’re still having trouble sleeping, talk to your doctor. There may be an underlying cause that needs to be addressed. In the meantime, keep up with your good sleep hygiene and enjoy your bedtime drink of choice. Sweet dreams!

Better sleep is possible with various strategies like soothing and sleep-promoting beverages before bed. Combine this with other healthy sleep habits: meditation, exercise, soothing music, and a comfortable bed. Put all the elements together for your best night of sleep yet.

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