I’ve been using elderberry syrup as a preventive measure to keep my family healthy for many years now. During cold and flu season I give a teaspoon of the syrup to my kids every day all throughout winter. When they get sick, I give the same dose, twice a day to help speed up recovery time. Elderberry (sambucas nigra) contains high levels of vitamins A and C and helps boost the immune system. Elderberry also reduces the length and severity of the flu and colds. You can find elderberry syrup at health food stores or online for $14-30 a bottle. This recipe makes around 16 ounces for under $10 and is very simple.
Homemade Elderberry Syrup Ingredients:
- 2/3 cup black elderberries
- 3.5 cups of water
- 2 T fresh or dried ginger root
- 1 tsp cinnamon powder
- 1/2 tsp cloves or clove powder (optional)
- 1 cup raw honey (must be raw for the best benefits. I get mine from our farmer’s market and make sure it’s made from local bees to also help with seasonal allergies)
How to Make Elderberry Syrup:
Pour water into medium saucepan and add elderberries, ginger, cinnamon and cloves (do not add honey!)
Bring to a boil and then cover and reduce to a simmer for about 45 minutes to an hour until the liquid has reduced by almost half. Remove from heat and let it cool enough to be handled. Pour through a strainer or cheese cloth into a glass bowl.
Discard the elderberries and let the liquid cool to lukewarm. When it is no longer hot, add 1 cup of honey and stir well.
When honey is well mixed into the elderberry mixture, pour the syrup into a mason jar or 16 ounce glass bottle of some kind.
That’s it! You just made homemade elderberry syrup, at a fraction of the cost of store bought! Store in the fridge and take daily.
Standard dose is 1/2 tsp to 1 tsp for kids and 1/2 Tbsp to 1 Tbsp for adults. If the flu or a cold does strike, take the normal dose 2x a day instead of once a day until symptoms disappear.