Go Back
+ servings
Print Recipe
4.67 from 6 votes

How to Make Elderberry Syrup (Natural Cold and Flu Remedy)

We're in the thick of cold and flu season and knowing How to Make Elderberry Syrup is a trick we're happy to have in our back pocket! Elderberry Syrup is a natural anti-viral and remedy to the common cold and flu and is a cinch to make at home using only a handful of ingredients and can save you a lot of money.
Prep Time5 minutes
Cook Time55 minutes
Total Time1 hour
Servings: 3 cups
Author: Lexi


  • 1 cup dried elderberries
  • 4-6 cups cold filtered water
  • 2 cinnamon sticks
  • 2 inch piece of ginger peeled
  • Few pieces of cardamom
  • 1 to 1-1/2 cup raw honey see note


  • Pick through the dried elderberries and remove any twigs or unripe berries.
  • Add elderberries, 4 cups water, cinnamon sticks, ginger and cardamom to a large pot and heat over medium heat.
  • Once it has reached a boil continue to cook, uncovered, for 45 minutes. Occasionally check to make sure the water has not reduced past the point of the berries. If this happens add a cup of water at a time until the entire cooking time has finished.
  • Strain the elderberries and then measure the remaining liquid. You should have about 2 cups. If you have less than two cups add some more cold filtered water until it is 2 cups. If you have more than two cups continue to boil until it has reduced to 2 cups.
  • While hot add the honey and whisk to combine. We used 1 cup of honey, but if you tend to like things more sweet use the full 1-1/2 cup amount.
  • Store in a jar in the refrigerator.


It's important to follow the instructions in regards to how high to heat the stove and how long this syrup cooks for to ensure the natural toxin found in elderberries is deactivated.
Do not cover the pot while cooking.
There is no standard medical dosing for this syrup, but it's generally considered safe for adults to take 1 tablespoon by mouth daily for prevention, and 1 tablespoon every 2-3 hours when fighting the cold or the flu. For children it is 1 teaspoon by mouth daily for prevention, or 1 teaspoon every 3 hours when fighting a cold or flu.
Because there is raw honey in this, this is not safe to give to babies under 1 year of age.
For any other concerns about whether or not this culinary herb is safe for you, check with your doctor.