As we enter cold and flu season, it’s good to have our medicine cabinet stocked with the essentials in case one of those bugs flies unexpectedly into our home. We keep lots of natural items on hand to help boost our immune systems such as Vitamin C, zinc, and vitamin D. There are also over the counter items on hand for fever, sinus congestion, and coughs, but frankly, I prefer turning to nature to aid in healing and comfort and this is where I discovered the almighty elderberry!
Did you know the elderberry is packed with vitamin C? It also has natural immune boosters including vitamins A & B. The juice of the elderberry has been used as a natural cough syrup remedy for generations. I’ve purchased it at the health food store, but when I was gifted a box of fresh berries, I opted to make some myself!
Ingesting the berries raw is not recommended as they are very bitter. My mother taught me to use a steamer to extract the juice. You can also boil them with water and strain the skins and seeds. If you don’t have fresh berries on hand, you can purchase dried berries and hydrate them in boiling water for 45 minutes and then strain. My homemade cough syrup recipe is below! Hopefully, you won’t need it, but if you do, you’ll be happy to have it on hand!
Elderberry Cough Syrup
2 c. elderberry juice
1 c. raw honey
2-inch knob of peeled ginger cut in half
1 cinnamon stick
Heat up elderberry juice in a pot on the stove and add ginger and cinnamon stick.
Bring to a boil and simmer for 10 minutes. Remove from heat and take out cinnamon and ginger. Add honey and whisk until honey is dissolved. Let it cool and pour into a bottle or jar with a tight lid, label with the date. Keeps in the fridge for about six months.
Agent & Natural Pantry Artist