Boost Your Immunity with Homemade Elderberry Syrup

Winter is approaching, and sniffles and sneezes are already starting in our house. But this year we’re ahead of the game with an early batch of homemade elderberry syrup. Elderberry is an immunity-boosting plant that has been used for centuries as a remedy for flu, colds, sore throats, inflammation and a ton of other ailments. While it’s hard to find definitive proof that it will keep you well, the history of its use speaks for itself. A quick Google search will yield page after page of information about this highly regarded berry.

I see a lot of recommendations that say you should take a tablespoon daily to boost your immunity and ward off illness, and if you do get a bug, take it every 2–3 hours to knock it out fast. I’m a fan of the latter, only taking it when I see the first signs of sickness. Sometimes, I even combine it with a small dose of apple cider vinegar. It’s a totally different kind of “flu shot”!

You can find elderberry syrup for sale at your local health food store, but the price is usually pretty high. You’ll save a lot of money making it at home. (It’s really easy, I promise.) We buy our organic dried elderberries from Amazon, but if you’re thinking you might want some, get them quick! They often sell out this time of year.

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What you’ll need:

  • 1 cup dried elderberries, preferably organic
  • 3 cups water
  • 1/2 cup blueberries (optional, we just like the taste)
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1 teaspoon freshly grated ginger
  • 1/2 cup raw local honey


Put elderberries, water, blueberries, and spices (NOT honey) in a medium sized pot. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and cover; simmer 30-45 minutes until reduced by about half.

Remove from heat and strain into a bowl through a fine mesh strainer. Press berries firmly to squeeze out all the liquid. Put berries in compost and allow liquid to cool, then pour into a clean jar or bottle with a lid. Add honey ONLY after liquid has cooled; stir or shake to blend.

Makes about 16 ounces. Store syrup in refrigerator for up to 10 weeks.

A little tip...skip the sticky and pour your elderberry syrup right into your almost-empty honey jar. It’s one less step and far less messy.

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It might look a little funny at first…

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but once you shake it up the honey will incorporate nicely.

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Please keep in mind: elderberries are potent and even natural remedies need to be used with care and caution. If you are taking any medications, have any health concerns, or just have questions, be sure to ask your physician. This post contains an affiliate link.

Cheers to good health! Bottoms up!




  1. Jutta P says

    Wow, thank you sooooo much for posting this! A friend just mentioned elderberry syrup to me today and I had no clue what it was. Now I consider myself educated. I’m excited to try this. Have you used it as a cough syrup?

    • Wendy says

      Not specifically, but we do use it more often when we feel a cough coming on. It does help because there’s a good bit of raw honey in there!

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