We just made our first batch of Elderberry Syrup for the season.. with kids headed back to school, fall germs and dare I say flu season around the corner, I’m staying ahead of the curve as much as I can. There is a time & place for modern medicine, but there’s not much that they can do for the common cold or even a mild form of the flu – and if you’ve ever had the flu, you know just how terrible it can be, especially if it’s your little ones.
As a child, I remember we’d always go out a pick bucket loads of berries – but my parents always sought out elderberries. We made jams and syrups and used them all winter long.
Elderberries have been used as a traditional remedy for hundreds of years – from colds, flu, fever, burns & cuts, bladder & urinary tract issues and even stomachaches. Rich in flavonoids, particularly anthocyanins which are a powerful antioxidant that keeps the immune systems strong. This high antioxidant activity stimulates the immune response while bioflavonoids and other proteins in the juice of the berry deactivate the cold or flu virus enzymes that can infect our cells. On top of that, they are rich in vitamins A, B & C. In short, the immune-boosting compounds in Elderberries have been specifically shown to help beat the cold and flu more quickly by inhibiting duplication of the virus.
During the cold winter months, most stores are wiped out of their over-priced syrups – they are usually for around $15-$23 or more for 4-8 ounces. This recipe makes 16oz for under $10.
We take 1 tsp every few hours when we are feeling under the weather and every day or two to keep our immune systems humming along – especially in the winter months when I hear of all the things going around.
We also add immune-boosting essential oils to ours – this recipe is versatile, so feel free to adjust the spices or essential oils as you’d like!
Thieves Vitality – we use this blend of Clove, Lemon, Eucalyptus, Rosemary & Cinnamon Bark all year for overall wellness & immune support. Named for the legend of the 4 thieves who during the 15th century would rob the graves of the dead and dying during the plague, but never got sick. When they got caught, they traded their recipe for a lesser sentence. There’s many amazing medical studies around this blend.
Clove Vitality – and extra boost of antioxidants! Antioxidants are known for their ability to fight free radicals.
Frankincense Vitality – this powerful oil supports cell health & function – you should google the benefits of this one – you will be blown away!
Nutmeg Vitality – Circulation boost that also supports the nervous & endocrine systems!
Ginger Vitality– Over 70% of our immune system resides in our gut, so keeping digestion optimal is important.
Cinnamon Bark Vitality – and extra boost of strong immune support with this oil. Plus the warm, spicy flavor is perfect.
Orange Vitality – We love the boost of fruity flavor, but Orange has many benefits including the fact that it’s cleansing, uplifting, aids digestion & is high in d-limonene!
If you want to learn more about essential oils? Come follow along over here!
This the base recipe we used & love.. we also double it and keep a jar in the freezer.
1. Add water & elderberries to a large pot and bring to a full boil.
2. Cover and reduce heat to a low simmer for (a minimum) 45 minutes to an hour, until the liquid reduces by almost half.
3. Remove from heat and let cool until it is cool enough to be handled.
4. Pour 75% of the juice through a strainer into a glass jar or bowl. Return any berries to the pan and mash the berries carefully using a spoon or other flat utensil. Pour this remaining portion through the strainer as well. Discard the elderberries and let the liquid cool to lukewarm.
5. When it is no longer hot, add the honey and Vitality oils:
1 drop Thieves
1 drop Clove
1 drop Nutmeg
1 drop Ginger
1 drop Cinnamon Bark
3 drops Frankincense
5 drops Orange
6. Pour into a mason jar (or any glass jar with a well fitting lid) and store in the fridge. Add to your daily (or every other day) routine for an immune boost!
When the honey is well mixed into the elderberry mixture, pour the syrup into a mason jar or 16 ounce glass bottle of some kind.
DOSING: Standard doses are 1/2-1 teaspoon for kids and 1/2 – 1 tablespoon for adults. If a cold or flu does strike, take the standard dose every 2-4 hours until symptoms subside.
Have you tried Elderberry syrup before? Have you made your own? I’ll probably make a batch into homemade gummies soon too!
*My original post with this recipe can be found at barbellinthekitchen.blogspot.com