Elderberry syrup. There are so many studies out there about this little miracle dark purple berry, but it can be pretty expensive when you go to purchase it. That and the fact you go through that tiny 4oz bottle fast when you have little sickly children in the house. A few years ago I started researching more about making my own and gave it a go. It’s so dang easy, you make so much more, and it really does work. Here are the steps to make your very own homemade elderberry syrup right at home.
*Please note this blog post contains affiliate links. If a purchase is made through one of my links, I earn a small commission at no extra cost to you.*
Please note that this blog post is for informational purposes. Consult with your physician to prior to usage. Recipe is for age 2+ years. Honey is not recommended for children under 1.
Manuka honey is also antibacterial which is why it sets it apart from standard honey. Why is it so expensive? It’s expensive because it’s a natural honey made by bees who collect nectar from the Manuka bush. Those bushes grow in New Zealand, but flowers only a few weeks a year. That being said, if you can’t swing the Manuka honey, my recommendation is to find a local raw honey made right in your area. Hello farmer’s market!
I love the smell of cloves. I really do. My family not so much lol. “One teaspoon of ground cloves contains 30 percent of the RDI of the mineral manganese, 4 percent of the RDI of vitamin K, 3 percent of the RDI of vitamin C, and trace amounts of calcium, magnesium, and vitamin E.” Source: Very Well Health
Ginger. Research has show that fresh ginger may help protect the respiratory system, while dried ginger did not have the same impact. I pick this up at my local grocery store, peel it, cut it into 1/2 inch blocks, and then freeze it. That way I always have some on hand and it doesn’t go to waste.
How to make it
- 2/3 cup dried elderberries (see why I say you don’t have to buy a whole pound if you don’t want to)
- 3 1/2 cups of water (I use filtered water)
- 2 Tbsp fresh or dried ginger root
- 1 tsp cinnamon powder(Ceylon here if you can)
- 1/2 tsp whole cloves or clove powder
- 1 cup raw honey (Manuka or local)
Place your water, elderberries, ginger, cinnamon, and cloves in a pot and get it boiling(DO NOT ADD HONEY YET). Once boiling, stir slightly, put a top on that bad boy, and let it simmer for about 45 minutes. Take it off the burner, let it cool almost completely(usually about 30 minutes), and then it’s time to strain. I use a big bowl, place my strainer over it, and then push down on the berry goodness with a spoon. Now it’s time for the honey. You want the mixture to be warm enough to dilute the honey into the syrup, but not hot enough to destroy many of its medicinal benefits.
This recipe will usually fill up 2 mason jars to the max and I keep it in our refrigerator. You can also freeze it, but make sure you leave plenty of room for expansion. If not you’ll have a mess on your hands. My rule of thumb is to mark a date that I made the current batch and trash whatever is leftover after 4 weeks. I haven’t had to trash any yet, so it’s worked in my favor 😉
- Standard dose is 1/2 tsp to 1 tsp for kids and 1/2 Tbsp to 1 Tbsp for adults
- If a cold or the flu strikes, then I up the dosage to every 3-4 hours.
Is it really cheaper?
It’s not only cheaper in the long run, but better for you. You know exactly what you put into it. You know where the ingredients came from, and you can alter it anyway you please. Sometimes I’ll add a star of anise to it, sometimes I’ll try it with ground ginger instead of fresh. It’s your health, your kids, your instincts.
Check out Happy Money Saver’s breakdown of the cost of making your own. So yes, there is a cost up front but my goodness it comes out so much cheaper.