When it’s cold and flu season, everyone runs out to buy some pricey elderberry syrup. It’s less expensive to make your own and you’ll know exactly what went in it. You can make a double batch and freeze some, so you always have it on hand.

Reprinted with permission from Gluten-Free Vegan Cooking in Your Instant Pot by Kathy Hester, Page Street Publishing Co. 2020. Photo credit: Kathy Hester

Homemade Elderberry Syrup [Vegan]

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  • 2 cups (475 ml) water
  • 1/2 cup (73 g) dried elderberries
  • 2 tablespoons (6 g) chopped and peeled fresh ginger
  • 2 tablespoons (30 ml) lemon juice
  • 1 whole cinnamon stick
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest
  • 1/2 cup (118 ml) liquid sweetener, such as maple syrup, agave nectar or date syrup


  1. Add the water, elderberries, ginger, lemon juice, cinnamon stick and lemon zest to your Instant Pot.
  2. Cook on high pressure for 15 minutes and let the pressure release naturally. Use a potato masher to smash the berries.
  3. Use a fine-mesh strainer to strain out the berries and spices. Add the sweetener and mix well. Store in the fridge for up to 3 months.
  4. Take 1 to 2 teaspoons (5 to 10 ml) daily during cold and flu season, or when you are feeling under the weather.


Make in a 3-quart, 6-quart or 8-quart (3-L, 6-L or 8-L) Instant Pot.

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