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Elderberry Syrup, the Magic Elixir (With Recipe!)

Elderberry syrup is a tasty, immune-boosting treatment for colds and the flu. Here’s how to make this magic elixir.

Elderberry_Syrup_Recipe-The_Grow_Network

Image by RitaE from Pixabay

How to Make Elderberry Syrup

I grew up thinking that elderberries just made a delicious pie. (And when I say “delicious,” I mean my all-time favorite pie. If you have never tried it, you really must!)

But in recent years, I have discovered that the true strength of these tiny berries is in their medicinal powers.

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They are chock-full of flavonoids, antioxidants, and vitamins. And, in my opinion, they are the most powerful tool we have to fight colds and the flu.

My mother, in her last few years, had a lot of heart problems and a significantly weakened immune system. But by giving her a tablespoon of elderberry syrup each morning, I helped her avoid colds and flu. Even the couple of times that she did develop cold symptoms, they were decidedly lessened by this magical (and tasty) elixir.

Elderberries can be purchased online from any number of sources, or the plants can be easily grown if you have space for a couple of larger bushes.

They mature quickly to about 6 feet tall and 4 to 6 feet wide.

If you’d like to make my elderberry syrup, here’s the recipe:

Elderberry Syrup Recipe

1 c. elderberries
1 tsp. cinnamon
5 whole cloves
1 Tbsp. powdered ginger
2 c. water
1/2 Tbsp. citric acid

Cover and bring to a boil, then simmer, covered, until reduced by half (about 20-30 minutes). Strain. Add 1 cup of honey. To can this recipe, preserve it by hot water bath for 7 minutes. Makes 3 jelly jars.

You can also simplify things by using The Grow Network’s DIY Elderberry Syrup Kit, which provides you with everything you need to get started.

Elderberry_Syrup_Recipe-The_Grow_Network

Make Your Own Elderberry Syrup With TGN’s DIY Elderberry Syrup Kit! Buy Yours Here!

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This article was an entry in our October–December 2014 writing contest and was originally published on December 9, 2014. The author may not currently be available to respond to comments, however we encourage our Community members to chime in to share their experiences and answer questions!

Psst! Our Lawyer Wants You to Read This Big, Bad Medical Disclaimer –> The contents of this article, made available via The Grow Network (TGN), are for informational purposes only and do not constitute medical advice; the content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of a qualified health care provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. If you think you may be suffering from any medical condition, you should seek immediate medical attention. You should never delay seeking medical advice, disregard medical advice, or discontinue medical treatment because of information provided by TGN. Reliance on any information provided by this article is solely at your own risk. And, of course, never eat a wild plant without first checking with a local expert.

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COMMENTS(12)

  • Gary G says:

    We have been buying Elderberry syrup for a few years and it truly is a miracle tonic. If we feel any type of bug coming on we take a tablespoon a few times per day and head it off. We have been talking about planting a couple of the plants and now with this recipe we will. Thank you very much for sending this along.

  • Lourdes Brossy says:

    thanks for story and recipe! making syrup as soon as elderberries ripen. so excited!!! my go-to for oncoming colds is a teaspoon of minced garlic with tiny bit of honey + strong cup of homemade ginger tea [no honey though am sure it’s helpful; just like to minimize sugar of any kind] – makes a man outta ya! ha ha!

    1. bmaverick says:

      Like any process, taking freshly make syrup that is hot, need to cool to room temp. Then take the room temp to the regular fridge. Finally take it to the freezer. This should help eliminate the rapid temp changes that can be harsh for the syrup. Slow and steady cooling over time wins. Will freezing make it last longer? Or, canning practices with storing in a cold cellar/basement suffice?

  • elmareed108 says:

    Can the elderberry syrup be frozen without destroying it’s nutritional value?

    1. bmaverick says:

      Seems that the reply is located too close from the other poster. Here it is again …

      Like any process, taking freshly make syrup that is hot, need to cool to room temp. Then take the room temp to the regular fridge. Finally take it to the freezer. This should help eliminate the rapid temp changes that can be harsh for the syrup. Slow and steady cooling over time wins. Will freezing make it last longer? Or, canning practices with storing in a cold cellar/basement suffice?

    2. tla.cls.mt says:

      I often freeze my elderberry concentrate in ice cube tests prior to adding the honey.

  • bmaverick says:

    Got 4 young trees started. Got them from an organic place in mid-state WI. These should do well being hardy for zones 4/5. Keep the tree trimmed like bush. These will grow VERY tall that even using a latter is not helpful.

    PLUS …. DO NOT mistake Pokeweed berries for elder berry plants. Pokeweed berries grow in a similar fashion, but are deadly. Eating 10 pokeweed berries can land you in the hospital, more will put you closer to deaths door.

    So, know that elderberry trees/bushes have a wooden stem/trunk, pokeweed is a plant stem similar to rhubarb, but round. It’s stem is reddish at the base and goes green further upwards.

    Yes, elderberries are GREAT. Pokeweed is not.

  • clairemarie183 says:

    Thanks for the canning directions – that’s what I’ve been missing.

  • paulanie says:

    I so appreciate this site and this type of offering. I’m so thrilled about having abundant, free elderberries from a nearby bush on a public trail, with an awesome sounding medicine recipe to follow!! I finally made the elderberry syrup today, and I’m having images of bringing the boy scouts or my yoga studio into the effort to make and sell elderberry syrup for a fundraiser (of course… the Environmental Health department may have some rules against this… food for sale without credential…). Whereas my husband and our friend can’t figure out why I’m making this effort at all… their interest just isn’t sparked. So – I’m saying I really appreciate being connected to you all who get energy rushes with similar topics as me!! It helps me feel there’s a world I can connect with, that I’m not crazy !

  • Valorie says:

    Keeping this in the fridge and taking a tablespoon every other day is a sure way to help keep the bodys respiratory system strong and the immune system fully engaged. A MUST have staple in your personal pharmacy.

  • pksalisbury says:

    Any idea if I can make a second batch from the same elderberries before I toss them? Seems a shame to waste such lovely berries.

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