It’s that time of year when the germs are spreading. I want to keep my family healthy so I make sure they take their vitamins, eat a balanced diet, get enough sleep, and help boost their immune system the best I can. One of the most effective ways for our family is with elderberry syrup. We have been using elderberry syrup to keep us healthy and curb cold symptoms for a year. We used to purchase bottles but it got way too expensive to keep up with so I tried my hand at making my own and found out it was actually incredibly easy. Here are some reasons why I love making elderberry syrup and my recipe you can use to make your own.
Benefits of Elderberry Syrup
Elderberry is powerful and its uses are so diverse. In our home, we start taking elderberry when its flu and cold season, with hopes of boosting our immune system and preventing illness. Research shows that Elderberry can actually shorten the duration and lessen the symptoms of the flu and colds. Some other benefits include managing diabetes, acting as a natural antidepressant, supporting skin health and reducing inflammation.
Why Make Your Own?
A big reason we started making our own was the cost. Small bottles of elderberry syrup at the store can cost anywhere from $12-$20 and it barely lasted a week in our home. When making my own, the cost for a jar 3 times the size of what I buy at the store is less than $3.
Also when I make my own I am sure I am using the best ingredients without any additives or preservatives.
Elderberry Syrup Recipe
What I love most is that most of the things needed for this recipe I always have on hand. I buy my dried elderberries in bulk HERE and keep it in an airtight container once I open the bag. If you choose to use fresh elderberries that is fine too, just be sure to double the amount I call for in this recipe.
You will also need fresh ginger, even though I have used frozen or even dried in a pinch. Also cinnamon, ground cloves, and raw honey.
You will want to start off by combining the water, elderberries, fresh ginger, cinnamon, and cloves in a large pot.
Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, then reduce the heat to a slow simmer. Let that simmer for about 30 minutes, or until the liquid has reduced by half.
Remove from heat and allow to cool until just slightly warm. Add the honey and stir until dissolved. When stirring in honey, you want to wait until the mixture is cool enough where the heat won’t destroy the medicinal properties, but warm enough where it will easily dissolve. THis is such an important step in making Elderberry Syrup to make sure you keep all the healthy goodness in the honey.
I prefer to use raw honey. It has its natural source of Vitamin C, antioxidants, protein, iron and fiber.
Using a potato masher or wooden spoon, mash the berries to the bottom of the pan. Then Use a fine mesh strainer to strain the berries and ginger from the liquid. If I am feeling like I want to go above and beyond I take a piece of cheesecloth and put the leftover elderberries in, wrap the ends creating a tight ball, and squeeze. I can usually get out quite a bit more juice this way.
Pour into 16 oz. glass jar or mason jar and store in the fridge. Keep in refrigerated to have it last up to 2 weeks. For my family, this is usually gone long before that (all 5 of us take it). I normally just give it to them during the week, and take a break on the weekends, to boost its effectiveness.
And there you have it! Our go-to recipe for Elderberry Syrup!
We are actually making some right now for the week.
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Products I use to make Elderberry Syrup
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