Friday, January 18, 2013

How to Make Elderberry Syrup

Disclaimer: I am not a doctor. This article is not intended to be medical advice. Please consult your doctor or naturopath before trying any home remedy.

Update October 2013: I have a new and improved Elderberry Syrup Recipe here!

Have you heard all the crazy news about the 2013 flu epidemic? I'm about as excited as you are about the prospect of getting the flu. Which is to say: not at all!

This then poses the question to families: What are you going to do to stay healthy?

Whether or not you choose to get a flu shot (we personally choose not to get flu shots), you'll still want to make sure your immune is in tip top shape and equipped with everything it needs to go to battle for you. Elderberry syrup is full of good-for-you stuff like bioflavanoids, antioxidants, vitamin C, beta carotine, calcium (the list goes on!). The bioflavanoids help prevent cold and flu viruses from infecting cells to keep you from getting sick. If you do get sick, people who take elderberry juice during illness report less severe symptoms and a shorter duration of sick time than those who don't.

So how do you get it? If you're short on time or looking for convenience, you can buy ready-made elderberry syrup (like this Organic Elderberry Syrup from Nature's Way). But making your own is really easy and costs a lot less per ounce than buying pre-bottled stuff. Buy the dried elderberries in the bulk bins of your favorite natural foods store or you can even order them from Frontier via Amazon.

This recipe will make about 3 cups  of syrup. I doubled it when I made mine.

The standard dosage is 1/2 to 1 teaspoon for kids daily and 1/2 to 1 tablespoon for adults daily for prevention. If the flu strikes, take the normal dosage every 2 to 3 hours until symptoms disappear.


  • 2/3 cup dry elderberries (you can get organic or regular elderberries online if your local store doesn't have them)
  • 3 1/2 cups water
  • 2 inch piece fresh ginger (The recipe says 2 Tbsp. I calculate 1 inch = 1 Tbsp)
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp cinnamon powder
  • 1 tsp clove powder
  • 1 cup raw honey (local honey is best if available)

Get the recipe from fellower blogger, Alica Voorhie's site: The Soft Landing [Homemade Elderberry Syrup for Colds and Flu]

Like my bottle? It's the SLOM Bottle from IKEAThe labels were made using contact paper and my printable label template from my pantry organization post.


  1. I finally made this and I need to be careful because I've gone a little beyond medicinal use. I mean, I've been known to enjoy cough syrup in my day, but I could very well put this on any meal!

  2. I made banana pancakes the other day and definitely used this to dress it up. So tasty!

  3. How long will this last before going bad?

    1. This will keep for at least a month in the fridge (although I usually make about a 90 day supply and haven't had any go bad on my yet). Honey is naturally anti-microbial so it does a great job keeping it from spoiling.


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