I'm all for a daily ritual over a week-long illness. Since no one has time for cold + flu season, we've gotta take care of our health now and give our bodies the best shot at staying healthy. This homemade elderberry syrup recipe is an easy edition to my morning routine during the school year and gives my body a much needed immunity boost. I'm going to teach you how to make elderberry syrup, along with 4 delicious ways to use this useful recipe.
Homemade elderberry syrup recipe
Making this elderberry syrup recipe isn't super difficult, and can be adjusted based on your preferences. Here are some tips on what to buy where, and how best to prepare this delicious syrup.
I buy elderberries from Mountain Rose Herbs because they are certified organic and I trust where they source their ingredients. I buy local, raw honey. It's most effective to buy in your current season, so it can help with any seasonal allergies you have, yet it's not necessary.
While ground ginger works great, fresh ginger root is even better + more nutritious. Grate your ginger and cook with the elderberries, then strain it during step 2. This will up the anti-inflammatory properties of your elderberry syrup recipe.
If you've got any other fresh ingredients (cinnamon, cloves, etc), then use them! You'll reap only benefits.
Benefits of elderberry
Elderberry is a berry that comes from a Sambucus tree. Used for centuries by people throughout North America, Europe, northern Africa, and parts of Asia to relieve pain, inflammation, and swelling, this isn't a new remedy. Raw elderberries are poisonous, so make sure they're properly cooked before consuming.
Elderberry isn’t just a flu fighting force. Cooked elderberries make delicious jams, pies, syrups, juice, and wine, just like other berries. While you might not find them in the produce section of your local grocery store, they can often be found in their dried form in health food stores, or at local markets. I order mine through Mountain Rose Herbs.
There is some controversy as to the effectiveness of elderberry in medicine, though it is one of the most common natural remedies found throughout history across multiple continents. A study by the US National Library of Medicine showed that elderberry significantly shortened the life of a cold. So keep this elderberry syrup recipe on hand!
The many uses for the elderberry plant
While the berries are most often sought after, other parts of the Sambucus tree can also be useful (and edible!):
- Both the berries and flowers are edible when cooked/prepared properly.
- Cook down the berries to make syrups (keep reading on how to make my elderberry syrup recipe below!), juices, or jams. These are both delicious and healthy.
- Boil the flowers into a soothing tea, or use raw on top of a salad.
6 Recipes using elderberry
I love using this homemade elderberry syrup in recipes; it's super simple to add and very effective. Here are a few of my fav ways to use it:
- Elderberry popsicles- make a batch and have on hand whenever you get a tickle in your throat
- Immune-boost smoothie- Drink on a weekly basis for an extra dose of nutrients
- Smoothie cube boosters- Once you freeze and store a batch, drop 4 cubes in a smoothie for a kick of health
- Fruit leather with elderberry syrup- 4 ingredient snack that your kids will love + it supports their immune system
- Berry Sangria uses elderberry syrup to brighten, add sweetness and also boost the benefits of this non-alcoholic mocktail
- Take 1 tablespoon a day using the recipe below (I usually take it in the morning) for daily support and prevention.
How do you like to use elderberry syrup? Leave a comment below and let me know any new recipes I need to check out!
This is a natural remedy that has been used for centuries for preventing and treating colds and flus.
Yes! As long as the elderberries are properly cooked, you can take a tablespoon per day, or add it to your fav smoothie recipe.
Black elderberries are loaded with antioxidants and vitamins that help boost the immune system and can also help with inflammation. The raw honey is anti-fungal, anti-bacterial and aids in digestion.
Elderberry Syrup RecipeRate this Recipe Print Recipe
- ½ cup dried elderberries
- 2 cups water
- 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
- 1 tablespoon dried thyme
- 1 tablespoon ground ginger
- ½ teaspoon ground cloves
- 1 ½ cups honey
- 2-3 tablespoon apple cider vinegar (optional)
- Place all of the ingredients except the honey and apple cider vinegar (if using), into a non-reactive saucepan. Bring to a boil, then lower heat to a simmer. Simmer for 15-20 minutes, stirring occasionally. Use the back of a wooden spoon to smash the elderberries a bit as they soften.
- Remove from heat and let cool for a few minutes. Pour through a fine mesh sieve, pressing to extract as much liquid as possible.
- Stir in honey and apple cider vinegar. Transfer to a quart jar with tight-fitting lid.
- Store in refrigerator for up to several months. Adults, take 1 tablespoon daily.
- Please do not give to babies under 1 year old.
More natural remedies
I care about 1 thing when it comes to home remedies: it has to work. I am all for finding a cleaner way to stay healthy, yet if it doesn't work then there's no point. Over the years I've built up quite the recipe base for some great remedies that actually work as good as the above elderberry syrup recipe; check them out for yourself:
- Homemade toothpaste
- Ginger switchel
- DIY lip scrub
- Smoothie for bloating
- Fire cider
- Natural chest rub
- Anti inflammatory smoothie
- Tea for cough
- Homemade deodorant
- Sleep time tea
- Digestion boost smoothie
This is my go-to arsenal for whatever ails me, and I hope it helps you too!