When did not covering your mouth when coughing become okay? A warm yoga class turns into a Petri dish with the heat, deep breathing, and flu germs in a closet sized room. There’s probably less chance of catching something on Tinder than in yoga. I finally admitted that I know longer have an impenetrable immune system. Backpacking India for months and Celiac’s will do that. I found out that elderberry is the best thing for the immune system that can also be taken daily. Echinacea can cause harm to the liver after 2 weeks. Uh oh.
Since I am too frugal to buy $10 tinctures or syrup every month, I looked up various ways to make both from the dried berry… costing nearly nothing.
Finding vegan elderberry syrup recipes was pretty much impossible. They all use honey. Substituting with agave is easy but more expensive than using sugar.
Elderberry Syrup Recipe:
First off here is a warning: do not eat any of those raw berries because they are mildly toxic. They must be cooked. You will not die but you may want to.
2 cups water
1/2 cup dried elderberry
1 cup sugar, non-Florida grown (preferably organic- no pesticides)
2-3 lemon wedges
Put water, berries, sugar in a pot (Not aluminum. I used stainless steel.) Bring to near a boil. Then simmer another 20-30 minutes. It should be cooked down about halfway. Strain through a mesh strainer or large cheesecloth into your preferred storage jar. Add lemon juice. DONE. Refrigerate after it cools.
Good for 90 days. You can heat this again if not thick enough. Sometimes I like to reheat mine for pancakes toppings.
Uses: Just spoon 1 tsp+ daily for immune system, use as syrup on food, add to sparkling water, add to kombucha. If you are sick then take 1 tsp every 2-3 hours.
Do not like sugar syrups? Make a tincture. That recipe is up next post. Buy your elderberries at a local health food store or Amazon. They also grow in every US state… if you feel confident in knowing what you are picking- trimming.