Forget Flu Shots: Make Your Own Homemade Elderberry Syrup Instead

The fall is always a time when flu shots are marketed intensely. But, what if I told you that you could create your own flu prevention medicine for about $15 or less? 

Elderberry Syrup is such a fun little recipe that requires only about 30 minutes and is a great alternative to a traditional flu shot, or buying elderberry syrup in the store. It's also a great way to get started with making your own herbal medicine!

I'm always so excited and impressed by myself when I create my own medicine - there's a feeling of empowerment, excitement and passion when you know you've learned something about nature's healing powers. I know you'll feel the same once you try it. Be sure to leave me a comment below to tell me about your elderberry syrup making!

What Are Elderberries?

To keep it super simple, elderberries are berries (duh) that come from the elder trees all throughout Europe and North America. I'd love to go on a harvesting spree to collect the ripe berries (which is totally a thing!).

According to Home Herbal, one of my go-to books by Penelope Ody, "Elderflowers are excellent for all sorts of phlegm-associated conditions, including colds, flu and hay fever. They [elderflowers] reduce fevers and inflammation and can be used both internally and externally."

My kind of flower!

On top of that, elderberries are super high in antioxidants and help improve everything from bacterial and viral infections to heart health, colds and flu. If you find yourself working with the general public, have little ones, or find that you're prone to getting sick, you'll want to give elderberry syrup a go.

You may want to also think about other ways to boost your immunity, like making your own fire cider, making apple cider vinegar tea, and opting for plant-based food.

How To Make Homemade Elderberry Syrup


  1. 1/2 cup dried elderberries
  2. 2 cups filtered Water
  3. 1 cinnamon stick
  4. 5 cloves
  5. 1 tbsp of freshly grated ginger
  6. 1 cup local & wild honey


  1. Add your dried elderberries, cloves, cinnamon and freshly grated ginger into a saucepan 
  2. Add your 2 cups of water
  3. Cover and bring mixture to boil
  4. Turn from boil to a simmer until the mixture is reduced by 1/2, which usually takes about 20-30 minutes.
  5. Once the mixture has reduced by 1/2, turn off the stove and strain the elderberries and liquid into a clean bowl
  6. Add your honey into the liquid and mix

Elderberry syrup lasts a couple weeks, so make only as much as you need right now. You can always make a quick batch when needed. Remember to always opt for organic products. As for the honey, using local and wild honey helps with seasonal allergies. Plus, you support a local farm. Win win!

How to Take Elderberry Syrup

I like taking elderberry syrup as a preventative. It's fun to take a shot of it directly from a shot glass, or make an Elderberry Lemonade like I did. Additionally, take elderberry syrup when you feel any symptom of a cold or flu coming on. If you've already got a full blown cold or flu, read these 5 tips to support your immune system without resorting to Big Pharma and be nice to yourself.

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