How to Make Elderberry Syrup

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Have you had the flu yet this season? How about a bad cold, or (my personal nemesis) a nasty sinus infection?

If you have, I hope you’re feeling better! If you haven’t, I’m sure you’ve been surrounded by sickies. This has been one rough winter in New England, that’s for sure.

So, with all the germs flying around out there, I figured I’d share my recipe for homemade elderberry syrup.

What is elderberry syrup?

Elderberry syrup is an old folk remedy for colds, flu, bronchitis, and fever. It’s been used for centuries in Europe.

For me, it works like a charm. Personally, I think it’s a great immune tonic.

Not to mention, it’s pretty darned delicious if you like berry-flavored stuff.

Aside from any health benefit, it makes an amazing base for a cocktail. Shake a little up with ice, a shot or two of St. Germaine and vodka. Delicious!

You can also toss it into smoothies, mix it in with seltzer, pour it on pancakes, use it as a base for sorbet or granita…You get the picture.

I make my elderberry syrup with dried elderberries, cinnamon, cloves, loads of fresh ginger, and local raw honey.

I use a LOT of ginger, because I love the stuff. If you’re not so keen on it, use a smaller piece. Ginger also packs a strong medicinal punch when it comes to colds and flu.

I also always toss in about a half dozen Chinese star anise (Illicium verum) for good measure. Chinese star anise is a key component in making Tamiflu. You do the math. 😉

Homemade syrup is better than store bought

At least, so says the Mouse.

I’ve been making this elderberry syrup for about two years now, and let me tell you: I’ve hardly been sick. True story.

And when I do get sick, it’s never as bad as it used to be. I’m talking a cold that lasts 2 or 3 days versus 7 or 8. That kind of thing.

I started making it because I can control 100% of what goes into it.

And? Quite frankly, you can easily go broke buying elderberry syrup in the store. Check out the prices online for the bottled stuff and you’ll see what I mean.

As of this posting, Mountain Rose Herbs sells organic dried elderberries for about $10/lb.

One pound of dried elderberries will keep you in syrup for months, depending on how often and much you take. (As you can tell, I buy in bulk, but then I make the syrup and give it away to all my friends during the winter.)

About elderberries

So what is an elderberry, anyways?

The elder is a small, deciduous, shrubby, tree type deal that grows in North America, parts of Europe, and Western Asia. The dried berries are little, dark, and wrinkly:

Its botanical name is Sambucus nigra.

Whenever you’re buying an unfamiliar herb, always be sure you check the botanical name to ensure you’re getting what you intended. A lot of herbs can be known be similar names, and you want to be sure you’re working with the right one.

Use dried elderberries unless you have experience processing the fresh berries. I haven’t done this yet, so I can’t offer any advice. (Have you? Please definitely leave a comment! Would love to hear from you.)

Raw, unripe elderberries, bark, seeds, and leaves are all potentially toxic, so don’t go there unless you know what you’re doing.

Elderflowers make a lovely tea, and are the base for St. Germaine liqueur. They’re also great for colds, and for sweating out a fever.

Read more about elderberries and elderflowers here.

Where can you buy elderberries?

Get your elderberries from a reputable shop or online retailer that specializes in herbs for cooking or medicine. Don’t buy them at a craft store, etc., where the herbs likely aren’t food grade and are meant for pot pourri and the like.

I buy all my herbs and spices from Mountain Rose Herbs in Oregon.

In my experience, they have the best quality and the best pricing. (Any other online herb shops you guys recommend? Leave a comment and let us know!)

Frontier Herbs is also great, though they seem to be more expensive than Mountain Rose.

How long will elderberry syrup keep? How do you store it?

Store your finished elderberry syrup in the fridge for up to 2 months. It keeps well for that long because of the high sugar content from the honey.

As with any other homemade good, if it starts to look funky, smell funky, or grow anything that resembles mold, throw it out and start again. I’ve never had any issue, but better safe than sorry.

How much should you take?

Me? I take a shot glass full in the morning and another at night as a preventative. Every day.

When I feel like I’m getting sick, I take it more frequently (1 teaspoon every two hours or so).  Many traditional herbalists treat acute problems with more frequent, smaller doses of herbs.

That’s what works for me. You might be different. If you take too much elderberry, it will upset your stomach. Use your judgment and always talk to your doctor before starting any kind of vitamin/herb regime.

What is raw honey?

OK. So, raw honey is good medicine. People have been using it to cure their ailments since the days of Ancient Egypt. (Check out more on that here.)

Raw honey is honey that’s never been heated or filtered.

That means that it contains all little bits of beeswax, pollen, propolis, and beneficial enzymes. To maintain these properties, I add raw honey to my elderberry syrup once it’s cooled to at least 110 degrees F. If your syrup is too hot, it’ll destroy a lot of the good stuff.

My favorite honey is Crystal’s Raw Honey. Hands down, it’s the best honey I’ve ever had. Seriously. Get your hands on some if you can, just don’t blame me if you eat half of it right out of the jar with a spoon.

You guys with kids will all know this, but don’t give honey to little peeps under the age of one. There’s a botulism risk there.

You can also make a shelf-stable tincture

If you want to make a shelf stable version of this recipe, infuse the same ingredients (EXCEPT THE HONEY AND WATER) in 12 cups of 100 proof vodka for 6 weeks. Put the mixture in a sterilized, glass jar with a tight lid. Shake every few days.

After 6 weeks, strain and press the liquid out of the solids (discard them once you wring them dry).

That’s it. No cooking necessary.

This tincture will keep well, shelf stable, in a cool place for at least a few years.

When I take elderberry this way, I do 1-2 Tablespoons/day, smaller doses more frequently when I’m sick.

Obligatory disclaimer

My lawyer wants me to remind you that I’m not a doctor, nurse, or licensed healthcare practitioner. This post is for educational purposes only, and is based on my personal experience. Yours may be different. This post is not meant to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. Always consult your doctor before beginning any kind of new vitamin, herbal, diet, or exercise regime.

Warning: This recipe makes a massive amount of syrup

About yield: This recipe makes a LOT of syrup. As in 3 quarts of it.

I take it every day, so I tend to make bigger batches. Definitely feel free to cut it down by half or even three-quarters.

Also, it needs to live in the fridge, so if you make a full batch, make sure you have the room.


Homemade Elderberry Syrup

2 cups dried elderberries
1 large piece fresh ginger (use a bigger piece of you like spicy, and a smaller piece if you don’t)
6 whole Chinese star anise
4 whole cinnamon sticks
18 whole cloves
13 cups water
4 cups raw honey

Yields: About 12 cups / 3 quarts

Give your ginger a brisk scrub under cold water to knock any dirt off of it. Slice it thin. You don’t have to bother peeling it.

Toss it in a large pot.

Toss in the dried elderberries.

Add the cinnamon sticks, cloves, and Chinese star anise.

Finally, add the water.

Set the pot on the stove over high heat and bring it to a rolling boil.

When it comes to a boil, knock the heat down so that it just holds a simmer, cover the pot, and crack the lid.

Simmer for about an hour with the lid cracked. After an hour, uncover and let it cool on the stove in the pot until it stops steaming. This extra time will steep more goodness out of your ingredients.

Your elderberry syrup base should be super fragrant, fruity, and deep, dark purple.

Pull out all the large solids (ginger, cinnamon, star anise) and discard. Strain the liquid into a large bowl.

Smoosh the berries around in the strainer to get as much juice out of them as you can. If you want, you could squeeze them out through cheesecloth.

Discard the berry pulp.

Cool the liquid to at least 110 degrees F. (Check the temp with a candy thermometer…remember, you don’t want to cook the goodness out of your raw honey.)

Once the liquid is 110 degrees F or less, add the raw honey.

Whisk to incorporate, making sure to break up any little blobs of honey.

Bottle and refrigerate!

When the syrup is cool, pour into a large, sterile glass bottle or pitcher. Cork or cover, and pop it in the fridge.

Have any tried and true home remedies for cold and flu?

Let ’em rip! Leave a comment below and let us know what helps get you feeling better.

How to Make Elderberry Syrup

Yields About 3 quarts

Elderberry syrup is an old folk remedy for colds, flu, bronchitis, and fever. It’s been used for centuries in Europe. Not to mention, it’s pretty darned delicious if you like berry-flavored stuff.

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Ingredients

2 cups dried elderberries
1 large piece fresh ginger (use a bigger piece of you like spicy, and a smaller piece if you don’t)
6 whole Chinese star anise
4 whole cinnamon sticks
18 whole cloves
13 cups water
4 cups raw honey

Instructions

  1. Give your ginger a brisk scrub under cold water to knock any dirt off of it. Slice it thin. You don’t have to bother peeling it.
  2. In a large pot, put: the sliced ginger, elderberries, star anise, cinnamon sticks, cloves, and water.
  3. Set the pot on the stove over high heat and bring it to a rolling boil.
  4. When it comes to a boil, knock the heat down so that it just holds a simmer, cover the pot, and crack the lid.
  5. Simmer for about an hour with the lid cracked. After an hour, uncover and let it cool on the stove in the pot until it stops steaming.
  6. Pull out all the large solids (ginger, cinnamon, star anise) and discard. Strain the liquid into a large bowl.
  7. Smoosh the berries around in the strainer to get as much juice out of them as you can. If you want, you could squeeze them out through cheesecloth. Discard the berry pulp.
  8. Cool the liquid to at least 110 degrees F. (Check the temp with a candy thermometer…remember, you don’t want to cook the goodness out of your raw honey.)
  9. Once the liquid is 110 degrees F or less, add the raw honey.
  10. Whisk to incorporate, making sure to break up any little blobs of honey.
  11. When the syrup is cool, pour into a large, sterile glass bottle or pitcher. Cork or cover, and pop it in the fridge.
  12. Store your finished elderberry syrup in the fridge for up to 2 months.

Notes

Obligatory disclaimer

My lawyer wants me to remind you that I’m not a doctor, nurse, or licensed healthcare practitioner. This post is for educational purposes only, and is based on my personal experience. Yours may be different. This post is not meant to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. Always consult your doctor before beginning any kind of new vitamin, herbal, diet, or exercise regime.

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Jessie Cross is a cookbook author and creator of The Hungry Mouse, a monster online food blog w/500+ recipes. When she's not shopping for cheese or baking pies, Jessie works as an advertising copywriter in Boston. She lives in Salem, Massachusetts with her husband and two small, fluffy wolves.

105 COMMENTS

  1. Since I'm prone to sickness and sinus infections I will make this. Usually if I feel the onset of a cold approaching I make two honey mixtures. First I mix honey with cinnamon into a thick paste, dilute it with some hot water and drink the concoction (Oh, I sound so fancy now). The other honey mixture includes powdered ginger/ginger tea, cayenne pepper to taste and it's diluted with apple cider vinegar. I know it's suggested you take ACV daily but it hurts my stomach. This sounds more doable.
  2. I just bought some elderberries after reading this post! Unfortunately, the site you recommended it out of stock. I have a sinus infection right now, and my usual remedy is to boil a few sprigs of thyme (it is antimicrobial) and inhale the steam. It works every time! Many other herbs have these properties, too, just google it. I prefer natural cures to antibiotics.
    • I have not taken any antibiotics for my last 7 sinus infections now. Use whole, real garlic, not garlic capsules. You really need to like garlic for this. Eat 3-4 cloves of garlic for 3-4 days. Slice it in a salad - tuck it in leftover lasagna or bread. Any way you can eat this much.
      • Another very good treatment for sinus infection is 4 drops of Oil of Oregano in 1/8tsp of Olive Oil, under your tongue for 2-4 minutes, then swallow. Do this every 2 hours you are awake. It got rid of a serious sinus infection 2 two days. O of O is very bacterial so works very well.
  3. If elderberry syrup goes well with St. Germain and vodka, I can only imagine how it would taste with Absolut Boston (black tea and elderflower), if you still have any laying around. Go Sox!
  4. Hi, i have been buying Nature way Eldberberry for my kid.... really happy to find your homemade recipe. One quick question, if i can't find raw honey, can i replace by normal honey? Thanks
    • Hey lady! Awesome! Yeah, you'll save tons of money making it yourself. You can def replace the raw honey with regular honey, though if you do that, you'll lose the medicinal value of the honey. Basically, when honey is heated, it cooks a lot of the goodness out of it, so it's almost just sugar. Does that make sense? That's why raw honey is so awesome. You get all those little bits of raw bee power (beeswax, propolis, etc.). You can usually find raw honey at Trader Joe's and Whole Foods. You can also find it online...I haven't ordered from these guys, but this site looks pretty good: http://www.ebeehoney.com/rawhoney.html Let me know how it goes! +Jessie
      • Most Meijer stores and some Walmart stores (will likely be with the Hispanic foods not the honey at Walmart. Viktor is the brand I believe) also carry raw honey for those who don't have Whole Foods or Trader Joes near them.
    • store honey is usually pasturized, destroying most of the anti allergen properties. Ask at different farmer markets or facebook to find someone local who sells honey straight from the hives.
  5. Hey thanks for the quick reply! The Elderberries are out of stock at Mountain Rose Herbs! :( I will check out the raw honey at Trader Joe's or Whole food this weekend.... can't wait to make this for my family! Thanks, have a nice day! M
  6. [...] Here’s a list of ingredients you will need to make elderberry syrup: 1 cup dried elderberries, a large piece of fresh ginger, 6 whole Chinese star anise, 4 whole cinnamon sticks, 18 whole cloves, 13 cups water and 4 cups raw honey. For step-by-step instructions, click here. http://www.thehungrymouse.com/2013/03/07/how-to-make-elderberry-syrup/ [...]
  7. [...] Here’s a list of ingredients you will need to make elderberry syrup: 1 cup dried elderberries, a large piece of fresh ginger, 6 whole Chinese star anise, 4 whole cinnamon sticks, 18 whole cloves, 13 cups water and 4 cups raw honey. For step-by-step instructions, click here. http://www.thehungrymouse.com/2013/03/07/how-to-make-elderberry-syrup/ [...]
  8. Just to let you all know, the herbal website that I LOVE is www.bulkherbstore.com Try this site for elderberries and any other herbs and spices and accessories (strainers, books, pre-made kits, bulk herbs, almost anything!). Check them out because they are knowledgable and the website is warm and inviting! Luree
    • Nope, no cooking necessary if you make the tincture. Just follow the instructions above and wait til it's ready. Let me know if you have any other questions! Jessie
  9. Jessie: When you say 2 cups of dried elder berries, is that 16 ounces (1 lb) of dried berries? You publish a great blog. Thanks!! Wendy
  10. Jessie: Do you use water in the tincture? I guess I'm just confused, when you say use the same except for the honey. I've made this without the water, just trying to make sure I did this correctly. Thanks!
    • Sorry, I missed your comment somehow! You made it correctly, I clarified the recipe above. For the tincture, exclude the honey AND the water. What do you think of it? Take care, +Jessie
    • Nope, dry volume and weight don't always equate. Definitely measure them out. One pound of dried elderberries is several cups, not sure how many. +Jessie
  11. Hi Jessie-Just looked at your recipe, and I will be using fresh berries that I just picked from our roadside (we're extremely rural so there is no worry about pesticides). I know that raw berries can contain a substance that has cyanide type properties, so people are advised new to consume raw berries. I hope my syrup turns out like yours, as I am tired or spending a large amount on Sambucol syrup, which is a great syrup, we all get a dose of it when we are sick. I am going to also try to freeze some of the liquid in cubes to see if that is another way to make it last a little longer. Thanks for posting the recipe, here is a link to Youtube they have a video on elderberries from Green Deane, he is a guru on wild edibles http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WXFVfQMfZ8w
  12. I just picked my elderberries from bushes growing on our property this week. My neighbor actually tipped me off to what they were. He had been harvesting them for 20 years! From my research it isn't a good idea to eat raw elderberries cause of the cyanide issues. But I just plopped them in a pan (after I removed all traces of the branches and twigs and leaves (more poison issues with those) and turned on the heat and they were juicy in no time at all. Put them through the food mill and voila! elderberry juice. I'm going to freeze some in ice cube trays so I can access through the winter when I need them and as I find recipes I want to try. So it is possible to use fresh berries, but most likely it will be more practical for those who don't know of a local source to buy dried.
  13. I have been picking and processing my own elderberries for several years now. When we moved into my husbands grams house i noticed several of these bushes in the pasture. The cows love them so we have to be ontop of picking when ripe. I am very careful when sorting the berries to remove stems as well as any redish or green berries....these are not ripe and can be toxic. I have made my own elderberry cough drops, syrups, and pie filling. My favorite "sick time" tea is: 2-3 Tbsp of elderberry syrup 1/4 tsp blk pepper 1/4 tsp dried ginger (you can add fresh if you like i would just us small piece) 1/2 tsp cinnamon 1 Tbsp honey add all to coffee cup and then pour hot water over, let it steep and drink...tasts great and does work wonders...
    • Hi Melissa, Can you share your elderberry cough drop recipe? I have been making elderberry syrup and it has become very popular among friends. My husband suggested I try making the syrup into cough drops. Do you mind sharing?
  14. I just harvested a 5 gallon pail of fresh elderberries from my bushes and left plenty for the birds to eat too. There is still one more bush to harvest but already having 3 gallons of fresh berries that one may go to the birds also! I have always made Elderberry Jelly, Jam and Elderberry pies from the harvest along with several forays into Elderberry wine and cordials. I have never used the dried berries only the fresh since we have always had bushes on the property. My favorite bush has much larger berries and makes the task of removing them from the stems easier. I have in the past canned both syrup and pie fillings along with the jelly and jams. I remember my mother making Elderberry jelly from a huge bush in our horse pasture, I would pick the clumps as high as I could reach and that would be plenty. As kids we always called the jelly Elderbelly jelly lol. The berries freeze well to make fresh batches of syrup if you have a supply nearby that you can pick, I just spread them out on trays then when frozen put them in gallon bags so I can scoop out the amount I need, an Elderberry pie in the winter is like a taste of summer.
  15. Hi, do you know how long this will keep in un refrigerated? My sister made me a batch 4 days ago and I'm just seeing now that its supposed to be in the fridge. I threw it in the fridge but not sure if its ruined.
  16. My first attemt to create an edible elderberry syrup was disappointing. Adding sugar and honey made little difference to the bitter taste of the fresh berries. However, when I added apples to the second attempt, the result was delicious. Most of the berries on my four trees are for the birds, but I will be trying your recipe this weekend.
  17. Do you think canning the syrup would be a good way to keep a lot of jars for an extended period? Or would the heat from the canner ruin the good stuff in the honey?
    • The heat from the canner will cook the goodness out of the honey. I'd make it in smaller batches...or make the vodka-based tincture I outlined. Best of luck! Jessie
  18. I use this same recipe...only difference is that I add Marshmallow Root to my syrup. It's great for coughs and sore throats! Plus you get the benefits of Marshmallow Root using it as a preventative.
    • HI Michelle! I was wondering if you could share how much Marshmallow Root you added to the recipe. Getting ready to make my next batch and since I have some M. Root on hand I thought I'd try it. Thanks!!
    • The correct answer is that it probably should be sterile. That said, I usually just wash mine really well with hot, soapy water and keep the syrup in the fridge. +Jessie
  19. I made this recipe the other day but I am wondering why your recipe calls for 4 cups of honey. That seems like a lot. Is it just to make it sweet enough, I understand the medicinal properties of the honey, I feel mine would have been sweet enough with only two cups. Is it just for sweetness you add 4 cups of honey or do you need that much for the medicinal benefit?
  20. I just finished my second batch from fresh elderberries last night. Rule of thumb for sugar-based elderberry syrups is roughly equal parts of sweetener to elderberry juice, but as this is not a jelly, you can adjust to taste (I find 1:1 a little too sweet). We had a HUGE crop of elderberries this year, with the extra long season we had here in the Colorado mountains, so I cleaned and destemmed (which is the most time-consuming part) enough to have juice for a batch of elderberry cordial too. Last night's batch I made with Splenda (at half the normal proportion of sweetener), for those sugar/honey-intolerant among us, and it is delicious!
  21. Just discovered a new-found love for St. Germaine. Now, I find out that the berries are as useful as the flowers are tasty. Thanks for this tutorial. Have you heard of Elderberry bushes growing in Central Texas? I want to have this handy bush around. Please enable Facebook sharing so I can spread your good word with my friends. These youngsters need old-fashioned cures rather than pharmaceuticals. From Texas, with love.
    • I'm not sure how well they grow here but I'm pretty sure they sell seeds or plants at baker creek heirloom seeds. Call the natural gardener in Austin and ask them about growing them. They know everything about gardening.
  22. Made a batch of this in November and I'm getting ready to make another. Everybody in the house loves it and so far we've been keeping sickness at bay. I also made a tincture of the same recipe to have on hand. It's been great for sharing too. Thank you soooo much for posting this!!
  23. Someone gave me 2 qts. of frozen elderberries; can I use them for the syrup as your did with the fresh? I really enjoyed reading all the questions and comments. Thank you, Marsha
  24. I picked elderberry from bushes in my yard, and took much of the stems out before putting them in the freezer. I just took them out of the freezer, stuck them in a pot, added 3 cups of water, and cooked for about an hour. I then strained everything twice. Some of the stems were still attacked to the plant when I cooked it. Will this be harmful?
  25. I have 80 proof vodka on hand can I use that to make the vodka tincture or do I have to have 100 proof. Maybe if I let it steep an extra week or two?
  26. Thanks for sharing your recipe! A few questions: 1) How much would you recommend for kids? 1/2 your dosage? 2) I prefer to not have any more sugar than necessary. That being said, is there a minimum ratio of raw honey that you recommend in order to still derive health benefits from it? What if I only used 2 cups for instead of 4 and kept all other measurements as is in your recipe? 3) My wife and I run a cleaning business in Philly (www.evergreenmaids.com). Would you mind if I repost this page on our blog at some point in the near future? Thank you
  27. Jessie, thank you so very much for the detailed instructions and pictures -- very, very helpful for novices! I just made a one-quarter batch of the recipe (below) and it turned out great! It finished simmering at 1 am last night, so I let it cool (covered) on the stovetop until I woke up the next morning. I’m storing the elderberry syrup in small, handy glass maple syrup bottles (recycled), after sterilizing the glass bottles in the oven (270 deg F for 20 min) and boiling the matching lids in water. I did a taste comparison between your recipe and the name-brand Sambucol that I just happened to have on hand. Your homemade recipe tastes less astringent in my opinion, so the kids are more likely to take their “medicine.” Also, the homemade syrup is also a little thinner at room temperature -- which I personally like, because the syrup doesn’t stick to the sides of the medicine cup (like does Sambucol), so you get the full dose. For those who don’t want to do the math, here is Jessie’s reduced to a quarter batch: REDUCED: 1/2 cups dried elderberries 1/4 large piece fresh ginger 2-3 whole Chinese star anise 1 whole cinnamon sticks 4 whole cloves 3.25 cups water 1 cup raw honey (16 oz) Yields: About 3 cups / .75 quarts
  28. This stuff is great. I am lucky enough to have elderberry bushes in my back yard and a huge bush in my neighbor's yard and they let me take all I want, so I freeze the fresh elderberries. If anyone has access to fresh elderberries, 1/2 cup dried is equal to one cup fresh. Just so you know. I have stayed healthy this winter by making this syrup and keeping it on hand. The other remedy I use is oregano oil. both are excellent to fight viruses and bacterial infections.
      • Hey! Thanks for stopping by! I've only made this with dried elderberries, so I'm not going to be much help. (Anyone??) Take a look at this article. Mountain Rose is a great source and they have a recipe here for syrup using fresh or dried berries. Looks like they use double the amount with fresh berries. (Please note their safety precautions when using fresh berries.) http://mountainroseblog.com/elder-berries/ Let us know what you wind up doing and how it turns out! +Jessie
  29. A great recipe, thanks for sharing it. At first I thought it was nuts to use that much ginger, so I halved what the recipe called for. Big mistake - I'm really missing more of that gingery kick and will be upping the amount next time. I find this best a little watered down on ice, or mixed with some apple juice. Great with a drop or two of vodka!
  30. Every weekend i used to visit this website, because i wish for enjoyment, for the reason that this this web site conations genuinely pleasant funny information too.
  31. I have a small elderberry tree that is loaded with fruit that is in the process of ripening right now. I'll be trying this with those and not dried berries that I would have to order online.
  32. If you want to just enjoy the berry taste without all the other ingredients here is a recipe: freeze raw ripe berries separate berries from stems by smashing them a little in a bag while frozen. mash the berries in a pot boil mashed berries strain and mash more to get all juice out fine strain to just get juice with no seeds etc. add equal amounts of sugar to berry juice boil some more put in sterile jars Awesome on pancakes, waffles, french toast, ice cream! I picked 19-gal bags in mountains of northern Utah this month. They are the blue variety. Don't eat these raw as a little will make you feel real sick (1st hand experience).
  33. I want to be able to give this to my son, so I can't use the honey....will we still benefit and would the lack of honey change the proportions of other ingriedients?
    • Oh yeah, you should definitely still benefit, though the honey does have good medicine in it, too. The honey also acts as a preservative, though. So, if you're going to make it w/o the honey (which I haven't done), I'd cut the recipe in half (or even a quarter) and be sure to keep it in the fridge. It won't last as long without the honey. Hope that helps! Let me know how it goes! +Jessie
  34. I just made this recipe tonight and did not get a syrup-like texture to it. After four cups of honey, it is still as thin as water. Does it thicken in the fridge? It's cooled down to room temp and still thin.
  35. Question: I cooked up some elderberries a few weeks ago to make syrup and then realized I didn't have any honey. I put it in the fridge. Today I FINALLY got to the store to get honey and now my elderberry concoction has a little mold on it. Is it okay to use or should I start all over again?
    • The syrup, yep, sure! The tincture is shelf stable because it's basically all alcohol, so no need to freeze. (Plus, vodka won't freeze solid.) Cheers, Jessie
  36. Hello. I've gotten all my ingredients from real foods.co.uk.. It's the only place I can find everything, and organic, at reasonable prices in uk? Plus it's free delivery over £24 which mine is.. I'm going to store mine in the refrigerator in empty pickled onion jars etc, washed with hot water etc.. How long will they keep in the fridge? How much does this quantity make? It's a lot larger recipe than others I've seen, but I've gone with yours as it has extra ingredients with medicinal properties :). Thanks. Becky
    • Sorry I've just seen how much it makes, so all I'd like to know is how long does it keep? Also, shall I give me an kiddies just a spoonful a day? Then if colds/flus strike a teaspoon every few hours until cold has gone?
  37. Hi:) I followed a different recipe from one of Rosemary Gladstar's books and it was a fail. I let too much of the liquid evaporate, so I put the whole pot in the fridge and I'll start over tomorrow. Her recipe called for a quart of elderberries and 2 quarts of water. :-/ So, your recipe makes a lot more!! I think I'll have to make two batches, as I have 5 cups of berries sitting in my stock pot in the fridge. Guess I'll be freezing the excess. Hope the berries are still potent for round two of the boiling process.
  38. I was thinking of making syrup as gifts. How long should it be ok before it's refrigerated? (For example, if given as a teacher gift & it's kept at school until she can get home.) Thanks!
  39. I just finished making this, and came up with only 60-62 oz, less than 96 oz/12 cups/3 quarts. Any idea what happened? I had it at 50% of heat, followed directions and even used a coffee french press to get the most out of the berries. I want to make another batch in 1-2 days, because I don't have enough to give away, as I'm seeing some people over the weekend. If you have any ideas or suggestions, would be very helpful. (I haven't even tried it yet, but I'm sure it's delish!!! smells amazing!) Thank you.
  40. Can I give this to my 2 year old and what amount would be safe? Is there anything that isn't safe for a kid that young? At this point I know honey is ok to give... Any advise would be appreciated. I thought I read somewhere on surviving tip where you should give it to kids but can't find it now. Thanks for awesome recipe!!!
    • Gah, honestly, I have no idea about kids. I would do some research or maybe ask your pediatrician. Let us know what you find out? Many thanks and take care! +Jessie
    • I give my children the store bought sambuccol brand and it says 2+ 5ML daily for preventive and 2-3 times daily during a sickness...however i am not sure about this homemade version what the difference would be. I plan on giving it to my children ages 2,3,and 7 and will probably stick with the 5ML dosage to be safe. please let me know if you find anymore info on this. thanks
  41. Hello, thanks for sharing this recipe, i'm gathering ingredients to make this! quick question though, and may be a dumb one lol...I want to make the tincture so that i have some on hand that's shelf stable. this would not be ok for children correct? I'm assuming not due to the alcohol? and one more, for the tincture..after the 6 weeks when you strain the herbs do you then mix in the honey and put back into sterilized jars? I'm confused on that part. thanks!
  42. Hi there, I have made the elderberry syrup from fresh berries and we strained the seeds out BEFORE cooking...with the dried I understand I can strain seeds and pulp AFTER cooking, but I am wondering if the stuff that upsets the stomach from the seeds would be getting into the syrup, since you are cooking berry and seed together before straining it at the end?? thanks for any thoughts on this?? JUDE
  43. Yes elderberries are a great antioxidant too they grow abundantly down here in south Louisiana. I make home maid wine and jelly with them. Let me tell you that it's the best jelly I've ever eaten and the best wine I've ever
  44. MY favorite raw Honey comes from All About Bees in Ralston, NE, a suburb of Omaha. They gather their own and sell it in every size jar including the gigantic one! They offer all kinds including a mixture. of several. Every year I get one of their jars of Elderberry Syrup and use that when I have a cold. I am diabetic so tend not to use it often due to blood sugar effects.
  45. I've had a couple bottles of homemade elderberry syrup get mold in them within 6-8 weeks. I've since been keeping jars of it in the freezer and it's perfect: the honey keeps it from freezing solid so it's easy to scrape just the right amount out with a spoon and it doesn't mold.
    • Somebody please correct me if I'm wrong, but I believe you calculate it like this.... 1. Weigh the elderberries before you make your batch of syrup. 2. When the syrup is done, divide the total volume by the amount you plan to drink per "serving", in order to get the number of servings you have. 3. Divide the total weight of the elderberries you used (step 1) by the number of servings to get the amount (milligrams) of elderberries per serving. 4. For example, if you end up with 3,000 milligrams of elderberries per serving (whatever serving size you used in step 2-- 1 teaspoon, 1 tablespoon, 3 fluid ounces, whatever amount you plan to take as a "serving") and you want to take an equal amount to a store-bought brand that contains 12,000 milligrams per serving, you would take 4 servings of yours to equal one serving of store-bought (3,000 milligrams x 4 servings = 12,000 milligrams store-bought). Make sense?

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