The Fastest and Easiest Elderberry Syrup Recipe!

The internet is full of recipes for Elderberry Syrup and knowing what a powerhouse this little berry is, it’s no surprise!

First up some history but scroll to the end of the page to find the recipe!

The Elder has a long association with medicine and magic. Named by the Danes who called the tree Hyldemoer or Elder Mother, as the tree is so helpful in the home!

It has been used by humans almost since we first began walking around. Seeds have been found in neolithic settlements, it regularly pops up in Bronze Age settlements and is mentioned by the Romans, Egyptians, the ancient Greeks, the Vikings, and even across the water in the US, Native American Tribes have used the tree for all sorts.

The tree sap works as a sedative, the leaves as a decongestant. Elderflower cordial is a fantastic aid for Hayfever, while also having mild anti-anxiety properties.

The spongey pith inside younger branches makes for a great splint, and the now hollow branch can also be used to splint fingers, but also be used as a pipe to get a fire going very hot!

The leaves also release a musky, earthy scent that acts as an insect repellant. And so you can easily see why this tree became very important to Herbalists, Wise women, and just women in general!

But as time moved on, the Church and the new medicine men, decided that this had to stop! And so the tree began to find itself associated with bad luck. Judas hung himself from an Elder, the Crucifix was made of Elder, an animal struck with an elder branch would sicken and weaken, for an older widowed woman, having an elder by her door was proof she was a witch and should be seized!

T’was all nonsense! The fact is that this tree is immensely useful today as it always has been. And Today as we continue to have flair-ups of Covid in between the regular winter colds and flu. Having a bottle of Elderberry Syrup on hand can keep you safe and healthy all winter long!

Elderberry Syrup is absolutely full of antioxidants, flavonoids, vitamins C and E, and a whole “hape” of other chemicals and compounds that help our bodies in lots of different ways!

Like Elderberry syrup acts as a mild antidepressant, while also reducing the time you are ill with cold and flu symptoms by half.

It supports the immune system by helping your body produce more white blood cells

Elderberry has been found to inhibit the growth of bacteria like Helicobacter pylori and may improve symptoms of sinusitis and bronchitis

Studies are now showing that Elderberry can Inhibit the growth of some cancerous cells.

It reduces sugar cravings and helps stabilize your blood sugar, and for those of you with a dodgy ticker, well Elderberry syrup is thought to reduce blood pressure, uric acid and cholesterol levels in the heart!

And while not so important these days, in the past the bark leaves and roots were used to induce vomiting in cases of poisoning, or as a very very strong laxative!

There is something for everyone there! so let’s look at making the syrup …….

Elderberry Syrup Recipe

How much Elderberry syrup you make really depends on how much you collect. So for this recipe, I am going to give you a very easy formula that allows you to scale up or down depending on how many berries you manage to find! I never use sugar in this recipe, only honey as this in itself has wonderful health benefits!

For every One Cup of Berries, you need 2 cups of Water

For every One Cup of Strained Berry Juice, you will need Half a Cup of Honey

So for this recipe, I am going to pretend I have gathered a big mugful of Elderberries!

Using a fork, pull off all the berries into a bowl, and try to avoid the stems as much as you can as these contain cyanide (this is what was used to induce vomiting and diarrhea in the past!

Fill the bowl with water and let any green unripe berries and stems float to the surface, so much easier than picking them out individually!

Measure your berries by adding them to a saucepan by the cupful to find out how much water you need

One cupful = two cupfuls of water

Bring to the boil. You can also add in any optional extras at this point. A teaspoon of cinnamon, a pinch of nutmeg, a couple of cloves…… it’s entirely up to you! Though I do like a little vanilla myself! So I will through a few vanilla pods into my boiling mixture.

Allow the mixture to simmer on a low heat for around half an hour.

Stir regularly, squishing the berries on the side of the pan

You want to get as much of the goodness out into the water as you can!

After 30 min, the mixture will reduce by roughly half, you don’t need to worry if it’s a little more than that. But any less than a quarter, let it simmer for a while longer.

Now its time to take it off the heat and strain. There are a few ways you can do this. A Sieve, a funnel lined with muslin, but I use a colander lined with three sheets of Plenty Kitchen towel.

Carefully strain it into your colander/funnel/sieve

and let it drip down into a measuring jug.

Then (be careful as it will still be hot!) pick up the paper towels and squeeze until you have every dropout!

You might want to use some marigolds for this part if your hands are soft! Unlike my callused rough unladylike hands!

Then using the same cup you began with, measure out how much strained elderberry juice you have. Idealy you will have one roughly one cupful of Elderberry juice.

I always use locally sourced raw honey. I find that occasionally I get a little bout of hayfever and the symptoms can be similar to the start of a head cold, honey helps with that! The Honey also helps ease a sore throat and acts as a preservative, making sure that it doesn’t go off or moldy before it’s all used up!

So if you have one cup of elderberry juice, use half a cup of honey

Gently stir the honey into your Elderberry juice and let it dissolve and disperse.

Then simply pour it into a clean bottle or jar with an airproof lid.

You can also pour it into a freezable container to use later on in the month!

When you want to use it, a dessert spoon per day is a great dose, about 10mls

It is vitally important that you do not use this on children under one. The honey is not suitable for their systems and can cause something horrible called Infant botulism.

But for adults, you can add it to smoothies, yogurts, or your morning tea, dilute it in some water as a refreshing drink or pour it over pancakes!

When you are sick, heat up a little, and instead of an Irish Whiskey, serve an Elderberry Vodka. Gorgeous and warming, and perfect for helping you feel better!

For a simple rundown of the recipe, simply expand the image below!