My modified elderberry syrup recipe that is one of my best sellers in my apothecary. Plus a guide on how to make the syrup and its health benefits.
I began making elderberry syrup as a part of my home apothecary to help relieve my then 8 year old's severe seasonal allergies and now she no longer takes the four medications she was prescribed.
Health Benefits of Elderberries
Immune System Booster
Antibacterial - fights infections
Antiviral - fights cold & flu
Reduce the symptoms and duration of a cold or the flu
helps clear sinus infections
has natural diuretic effects and promotes bowel movements
eases symptoms of allergies
high in antioxidants
high in vitamin A, which makes it great for healthy skin
I first ran across this powerhouse concoction taking my daughter to the local clinic for an annual school check up. This was not your ordinary clinic, it was connected to a health food store, a little shop and it had all sorts of products from local makers, including elderberry syrup. I was intrigued, I had never heard of it and the packaging was so cute. I read the entire bottle from top to bottom and then saw the price, "good Lord elderberry syrup is expensive!" If you're not familiar with elderberry syrup, click here for a little history on elderberry and it's many benefits and uses.
I checked the ingredients and snapped a picture for my own personal records then began my quest on google and pinterest. Well of course you know there were a million DIY recipes there so I sifted through and found one that really spoke to me. Mainly because I had most of the ingredients already but what sold me was the added raw apple cider vinegar ingredient. I already knew the benefits ACV had, I had been drinking that stuff for years mixed with honey, cinnamon and cayenne pepper for a sore throat. The only thing I was missing were the elderberries. So I began my quest looking for those and it was easy to find them at first until the pandemic hit, then they were almost impossible to find.
I placed my order and impatiently waited for my berries to arrive. Finally they did and I was excited, let me tell you. If you ever want to impress me just buy me some herbs that I am not familiar with, like a kid in a candy store! Once the arrived I ripped open the kraft packaging tape and sifted through the bubble wrap, setting it aside for popping later. The bag was 16 oz filled with these little dried berries, purple, almost black in color. I ripped the corner of the bag and breathed in the raisin-esque aroma. You could tell these tiny seed-sized berries were powerful.
I pulled out my handy dandy recipe book, (it's just a little notepad my daughter gifted me one year but it's my favorite). I quickly turned to the page I had scribbled down a couple weeks before and headed to my kitchen. I already had most of the ingredients on hand and had picked up a jar of local honey at the nutrition store around the corner. I am a DIY girl and feel pretty comfortable making complex recipes but this one was fairly easy. I had tasted some elderberry a friend had so I had something to compare it to. Here is the recipe I started with and continue to use to the day. It is the same recipe for the syrup I have in my store, we highly recommend trying our Elderberry Syrup if you've not tried it before.
How to make a homemade elderberry syrup recipe
You'll want to gather all your ingredients, a large pot to simmer everything in, stirring spoon, strainer and some mason jars or any other glass container with a tight fitting lid. The entire process is very easy and in fact you can tackle other tasks during the process. You'll need to simmer all the ingredients for approximately 45 minutes and then allow it cool before transferring it to your glass containers. You don't want to pour piping hot or boiling liquids into glass or BOOM, a huge mess, broken glass everywhere and a waste of perfectly good herbs and spices.
Here is a video on how to make elderberry syrup.
To get the best benefit of the berries and spices, you'll want to simmer until the liquid is reduced my half. It will be very dark purple and strong. I wait to add my local honey and ACV until the liquid has cooled down to a warm temperature that way it is just hot enough to thoroughly dissolve the honey yet retains most of their natural immune boosting benefits. The raw honey helps to sweeten the mixture and slightly thickens it, however, it will still be a fairly thin liquid similar to your over the counter cough syrup. Remember, children under the age of 1 must not consume honey even in elderberry syrup due to the high risk of botulism. This syrup is safe for children over age 1 up to adults and most like the sweet and spicy taste.
Once that's done you'll get your strainer and if you're like me you'll want some cheesecloth. I place the cheesecloth in the strainer and use binder clips to keep it from slipping and spilling over. Place the strainer over your container opening and slowly pour giving each pour time to filter through. If you don't have cheesecloth, a fine mesh strainer works perfectly fine but there may be little pieces of berry and other spices that make it through. Not to worry, it doesn't hurt or take away from it's benefits and you may even like the little tid bits of soft berry. Whether you use cheesecloth or a strainer be sure to mash and squeeze the left over strained pulp to extract all the juices, that's where the magic lives if you ask me.
Once your syrup is in it's respective container you will want to store it in the refrigerator for 60-90 days. I usually keep mine for 3 months and judge off the smell but I have been doing this a while and trust my nose. It's best to play it safe and use it before 2 months time.
Homemade Elderberry Syrup Recipe
did you make this recipe?
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