Homemade Elderberry Syrup Recipe With Raw Honey

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Homemade Elderberry Syrup is a natural anti-viral and remedy to the common cold and flu and is a cinch to make at home using only a handful of ingredients and saves you a lot of money.

Homemade Elderberry Syrup Recipe With Raw Honey

Prep Time: 5 Minutes
Cook Time:
30 Minutes
Total Time:
35 Minutes
Servings:
22 Ounces

One of the most potent natural remedies I have in my home is my jar of Homemade Elderberry Syrup. My kids will often say; “I don’t feel good or my throat is sore”. Out it comes to the rescue. I start hearing the words “Flu Season” and we started taking a daily dose for prevention. 

I first started purchasing elderberry in a little 8- 8-ounce jar from my local health food market for $11.99. OUCH! Right? Being the savings queen I have put a stop to that extravagant spending. I started researching research articles for recommended dosages, not just based on what my little bottle stated. I pulled information on the ingredients too.  

Elderberry syrup has been known to fight off both type A and B flu viruses as well as all types of swine and avian flu.

It is just fantastic stuff. I know you will agree. And if you are looking for a tea that will help perk you up, you can also try this Homemade Ginger Root Tea.

elderberries bunch on an elderberry bush

Ingredients Needed for Recipe

  • 3/4 cup Dried Elderberries – not fresh berries
  • 1 cup Raw Organic Local Honey
  • 1/3 cup Raw Unfiltered Vinegar
  • 2 Cinnamon sticks
  • 6 Whole Cloves
  • 1 tbsp Fresh or 1 tsp Ground Ginger
  • 3 cups of water

What are Wild Elderberries?

Elderberries are the fruit of the Sambucus tree. The most common type is Sambucus nigra.

This tree contains clusters of small white or cream elderflowers. Once flowers are pollinated they will be replaced with small blue or black elderberries in early fall.

The Health Benefits – Elderberry Syrup

New research on taking Elderberry syrup for the treatment of the common cold to even the flu has been proven effective. The newest report states that the substances present in elderberries can stop an influenza virus from entering and replicating in human cells. 

Isn’t this news amazing?

Elderberries – Packed with antioxidants and vitamins (including Vitamin C) that may boost your immune system. The USDA has compiled a database on the antioxidants in food and lists elderberries as a standout. Foods are measured by their “ORAC values,” or their Oxygen Radical Absorbance Capacity. For a quick comparison, blueberries, a popular antioxidant fruit, have a total ORAC value of  4,700. The total ORAC value of elderberries is 14,700 — the second-highest antioxidant fruit in the database. Incredible!

Local Raw Honey – contains an array of plant chemicals that act as antioxidants. Plus research has shown that local raw honey can kill unwanted bacteria and fungi. Honey is used in folk medicine.

Apple Cider Vinegar – This can boost your immune system and lower blood sugar levels. It does not contain many vitamins, but contains some amino acids and antioxidants.

Should I Use Dried or Fresh Elderberries?

Fresh elderberries are very hard to come by when not in season. You can typically find fresh elderberries out in nature or at your local health food store. Unless you are well-versed in berry identification, I do not recommend taking a walk in your backyard to search out and pick berries.

There are many berries that look similar in shape and size but are not edible. Elderberries can be toxic if picked and eaten unripened. The best way to acquire them is by purchasing them in-store.

Dried elderberries can be readily available. They store well and you can conveniently grab them as needed to make small batches of syrup that will remain fresh and potent before you need to make another batch. I do purchase mine through my local health food store as I often get coupons.

I do prefer the brand Frontier Organic Elderberries. Which can be purchased online as well. Price Point – Dried Elderberries purchased in bulk by the pound can cost between $15 – $27.99.

Prices will fluctuate based on supply and demand. I have found that the higher price point exists during the cold and flu season. One pound of elderberries contains 4 cups of dried measured. 

Currently (Nov 2024) my local health food store is selling dried elderberry for $27.99 per lb. The highest I have seen it. It is cheaper to purchase online right now. 

How to Use Elderberry Syrup Recipe

I recommend taking your homemade elderberry syrup at the first sign of illness. Feeling a little tickle in your throat? Pull out your syrup. If you are around people who are feeling under the weather, start taking your elderberry syrup to prevent you from getting sick. 

Best Way to Store Your Syrup

Once the syrup is completely cooled, store it in a glass air-tight container. Since this recipe contains no preservatives, it is important to store it in the refrigerator. Based on personal experience only, I have been able to store mine for just about 3 months. 

Freezing your syrup will lengthen its life. You can store it in the freezer for up to a year. 

Homemade Elderberry Syrup Recipe

This homemade elderberry syrup recipe is easy and worth the effort for the money savings. 

Important Tips

  • The raw honey and vinegar are added as the last step after the cooking process. The high temperature of the cooking process will damage the antiviral and antibacterial properties of each ingredient.  
  • If making for a child less than 12 months of age, you can substitute honey for maple syrup or agave syrup. 

How to Make Homemade Elderberry Syrup

In a large pot, combine 3 cups water, elderberry, and spices only. (Do not add honey or apple cider vinegar).

Over medium heat, bring the elderberry mixture to a boil. Then reduce the heat to simmer. Simmer the mixture for 20 – 30 minutes or until the mixture has been reduced to half. Remove from heat and let stand until cool to room temperature.

Strain the elderberry mixture through a mesh strainer, making sure to squish out all the juice out of the berries. No waste is best.

Add in the honey and apple cider vinegar. Mix well. Then store in a glass bottle or jar in the refrigerator! 

And there you have it! Delicious homemade elderberry syrup!

(Adults) – A daily dose of 1 tsp a day for the prevention of colds and viruses. For cold or flu-like symptoms, take 15 ml or 1 tbsp four times a day. Dosage based on proven research study

(Children over 2 years or older) – A daily dose of 1 tsp a day for prevention. For cold or flu-like symptoms, take 1/2 tbsp four times a day. 

Please note: due to this recipe containing raw honey, it should be noted that the American Academy of Pediatrics does not recommend that children under the age of 12 months consume raw honey

Homemade Elderberry Syrup Recipe

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Yield: 22 ounces

Homemade Elderberry Syrup Recipe - Made with Raw Honey & Vinegar

Homemade elderberry syrup

Elderberry Syrup is a natural anti-viral and remedy to the common cold and flu and is a cinch to make at home using only a handful of ingredients and saves you a lot of money.

Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes 20 seconds
Total Time 35 minutes 20 seconds

Ingredients

  • 3 cups of water
  • 3/4 cup whole dried elderberries
  • 2 cinnamon stick
  • 6 whole cloves
  • 1 tsp ground ginger or 1 tbsp freshly grated ginger
  • 1 cup raw local honey
  • 1/3 cup raw unfiltered apple cider vinegar

Instructions

  1. In a large pot combine water, elderberry, and spices only. (Do not add honey or apple cider vinegar)
  2. Over medium heat, bring the elderberry mixture to a boil. Then reduce the heat to simmer.
  3. Simmer the mixture for 20 - 30 minutes or until the mixture has reduced to half.
  4. Remove from heat and let stand until cool to room temperature.
  5. Strain the elderberry mixture through a mesh strainer, making sure to squish out all the juice out of the berries. No waste is best.
  6. Add in the honey and apple cider vinegar. Mix well.
  7. Store in a glass bottle or jar in the refrigerator! 

Notes

If making for child under 12 months of age, substitute raw honey for maple syrup.

Nutrition Information:

Yield:

44

Serving Size:

1 tbsp

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 25Total Fat: 0gSaturated Fat: 0gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 0gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 1mgCarbohydrates: 6gFiber: 0gSugar: 6gProtein: 0g

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27 Comments

  1. This is my first time making the syrup. For what purpose is the vinegar? I need to have it appeal to picky eaters who are 5 and 7 year olds. TIA!!

    1. Hi Amanda,
      Great question. I have it explained in the post, but you may have missed it. Apple Cider Vinegar – Can boost your immune system and lower blood sugar levels. It does not contain many vitamins but contains some amino acids and antioxidants.

      You can feel free to remove it from your mix. 🙂

  2. Thank you for sharing, Jen! This is the first elderberry syrup that both of my kids and husband have all liked, and it was a cinch to make! I didn’t have whole cloves (thought I did and had already started boiling), so I subbed 1/4 tsp ground cloves and it seemed to work just fine.

  3. I’ve tried elderberries in many formulations and love it. It wouldn’t have occurred to me to make it. Happy Holidays Season!

  4. Wow, elderberries are really expensive! With all of the health benefits from them, I can see why people buy them to make recipes.

  5. i did not know elderberry syrup helps w/ the common cold and flu. wow. thanks for sharing the tips and the recipe. joy

  6. i have never tried to make this myself. i really should i use the syrup from the store when i get sick. what a great idea.

  7. I have been giving my kids elderberry syrup for a few years now and it works so well during cold and flu season. It can get expensive, so I would love to try making some myself.

  8. This makes a lot of sense to make and have on hand, as most over-the-counter elderberry products can tend to be pricey. I love that it can be stored for up to 3 months, so that is handy to have for when someone in the family starts to become ill.

  9. I’ve heard how great this is when you are feeling ill! Going to make a batch for my husband asap!

  10. We start drinking Celestial Seasonings Raspberry Zinger tea to ward off sicknesses. It works for our family! My dad loves elderberry pie and my husband’s boss makes elderberry wine and they’re both healthy guys. LOL

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