Learn how to make a homemade elderberry syrup recipe for kids! This natural remedy can help to boost the immune system during cold and flu season. The easy recipe is made with dried elderberries, honey and spices. The step-by-step tutorial includes sweetener substitutions for a baby-safe version, tips for dosing, uses, storage, shelf life, and free printable labels for packaging and gifting.
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Immunity boosting homemade elderberry syrup recipe for babies and kids
It’s the time of year when cold and flu season hits. And it’s the perfect time for a homemade elderberry syrup recipe for babies and kids. Healthy nutrition is critical for the immune system, and this easy homemade syrup recipe is perfect to support your family’s immunity.
I’m sure you’ve heard about the benefits of elderberries. The berries have natural antibacterial and antiviral properties that can boost the immune system and alleviate the symptoms of colds and the flu. Pretty great, huh?
This healthy elderberry syrup recipe is a tasty way to enjoy those benefits. It’s so simple to whip up too. You literally just toss the ingredients into a saucepan and let it simmer for a good 30 minutes, strain out the solids, and store in a glass container.
Read on for useful tips and answers to common questions about this homemade elderberry syrup recipe! And don’t forget to check out my elderberry gummies, immunity booster shots and homemade cough drops too!
Elderberry syrup benefits – Elderberry syrup for colds
What are the benefits of elderberry syrup? Does elderberry syrup really work? Elderberries have long been cultivated to make natural remedies. And for good reason! Research suggests that elderberries can be effective in fighting the cold, flu, sinus infections, and constipation.
The fruit is a rich source of vitamins and antioxidants known as anthocyanins. Anthocyanins have anti-inflammatory and antiviral properties, which are attributed to improving the body’s immune response.
Homemade elderberry syrup recipe ingredients
What is elderberry syrup made of? You need 3 ingredients to make elderberry syrup at home. Let’s learn more about these ingredients:
- elderberries – Should I use fresh or dried elderberries? My recipe for elderberry tincture can be prepared with both fresh or dried berries. Dried elderberries are available year-round and easier to find. If using fresh fruits, double the amount.
- water – Use distilled, purified or filtered water. 2 1/2 cups / 600 ml water will give you a thick elderberry syrup, 4 cups / 1 l creates a lighter version.
- honey – Natural honey boasts a host of health benefits. Honey has antibacterial and anti-inflammatory effects and can help to suppress coughs in children – perfect for elderberry syrup for toddler cough. The ingredient also acts as a natural preservative and prolongs the shelf life of our DIY elderberry tincture.
Vegan and low carb sweetener alternatives – Baby-safe elderberry syrup
I used honey as the sweetener. But if you make the recipe for babies or need it to be vegan, try one of the following options:
- vegan sweeteners – If you prefer vegan elderberry syrup or make the syrup for children under 1, sweeten the syrup with coconut sugar, maple syrup, agave syrup, or date syrup.
- low carb sweeteners – For a low carb keto elderberry syrup, prepare the recipe with powdered erythritol.
Customise your homemade elderberry syrup recipe
What can I add to my elderberry syrup? One thing I love about making homemade remedies is that you can customise and tweak the recipe. I love spiced elderberry syrup and seasoned my batch with cinnamon, cloves and ginger.
Be creative and add some of the following ingredients to your elderberry tincture recipe:
- vanilla extract
- cinnamon sticks or 1 tsp ground cinnamon
- fresh ginger or 1 tsp ground ginger
- whole cloves or 1/4 tsp ground cloves
- fresh turmeric root or 1 tbsp ground turmeric
- aronia berries
- echinacea extract (should be added after cooking and cooling the syrup)
- dried hibiscus
- rose hips
How to make homemade elderberry syrup from scratch
Let me show you the steps for how to properly make elderberry syrup, step-by-step:
- Combine the dried elderberries and water in a heavy saucepan. Tip: If using coconut sugar or additional ingredients (spices, dried herbs, lemon) add them now.
- Bring to a boil. Then the reduce heat and simmer uncovered for 30 minutes, stirring regularly.
- Remove from the heat and let steep for 1 hour.
- Strain the mixture through a fine mesh-sieve into a large measuring cup or mixing bowl, reserving the liquid and discarding the berries.
- Allow the syrup to cool to room temperature. Then stir in the honey. Tip: The syrup should feel cool before you add the honey. If the liquid is too hot, some of the honey’s healing qualities will be lost.
- Fill the syrup into a clean, sterilised container. I like these clip-top bottles, mason jars are also good storage container for elderberry syrup.
Homemade elderberry syrup for babies
Is elderberry syrup safe for babies? Yes, elderberry syrup is safe for babies if consumed in moderation. The recipe helps with immune support for babies and makes a good addition to baby food during a cold.
As I mentioned, you should make the homemade elderberry syrup recipe without honey if you want to share syrup with kids who are less than 1 year old. Instead, sweeten the elderberry syrup for babies under 1 with maple syrup or coconut sugar.
Elderberry syrup for kids & toddlers
Is elderberry safe for kids? Yes, this natural elderberry syrup recipe is safe for kids. Elderberry tincture is an excellent supplement to give your kids around the cold and flu season and can provide immune support in children.
When should I take elderberry syrup? Can you take elderberry daily?
Yes! While you can only give the syrup when your child is sick, it’s even better to strengthen your kid’s immune system before they come down with something. My family usually takes homemade elderberry syrup from October through March.
Dosing – How much elderberry syrup should a child take?
What age can you take elderberry syrup? Elderberry syrup can be taken at any age. You can start giving your baby homemade elderberry syrup when you begin introducing fruits to their diet (stage 2, 6 to 8 months.)
Here is the daily elderberry syrup dosage when everyone is healthy:
- babies (6 months – 2 years): 1 teaspoon per day
- toddlers and children (2 years +): 1 tablespoon per day
- teens and adults: 1-2 tablespoons per day
The maximal dose when someone is sick:
- babies (6 months – 2 years): 1 teaspoon twice day
- toddlers and children (2 years +): 1 tablespoon 3 times a day
- teens and adults: 2 tablespoons 3 times a day
Please note that the syrup is an elderberry supplement but should never be used as a substitute for other prescription medications.
Elderberry side effects?
Can you take too much elderberry syrup? What are the side effects of elderberry? While we never experienced any issues in my family, consuming too much elderberry syrup can have a laxative effect or lead to digestive upset in some people.
Elderberry products may potentially interact with medications designed to suppress the immune system. Consult a doctor or medical caregiver if you have an auto-immune disorder, take diabetes medications, or are undergoing chemotherapy.
How long is homemade elderberry syrup good for?
Does homemade elderberry syrup need to be refrigerated? Yes, it’s best to store the elderberry tincture in the fridge.
How long does homemade elderberry syrup last? Elderberry syrup with honey can be stored for 3 months. Without honey, the shelf life is 1 month.
If you prepare a large batch elderberry syrup recipe, portion and freeze the syrup. The syrup can be frozen for up to 6 months.
Canning elderberry syrup
Can you can elderberry syrup? Yes, canning elderberry syrup is possible. Fill the homemade syrup into sterilised canning jars and process in a boiling water bath for 20 minutes.
Printable Elderberry Syrup Label
Tab or click the button below to download free printable elderberry syrup labels!
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