Easy Elderberry Tea Recipe (3 ingredients!) (2024)

Elderberry Tea is a warm drink you can make at home in just minutes! It’s a faster than making elderberry syrup, when your immune system needs a little boost.

Easy Elderberry Tea Recipe (3 ingredients!) (1)

Why You’ll Love It

Elderberries have been long used in folk medicine to potentially help with inflammation, headaches, and cold symptoms, but these immune-boosting berriesmust be cookedbefore they are consumed.

Boiling the elderberries to make an herbal tea is a great way to do that!

PotentialHealth Benefits of Elderberries

  • Black elderberries have been shown to reduce the symptoms and length of influenza when taken at the first sign of illness.
  • In one study of patients with influenza, taking elderberry syrup 4 times a day was shown to reduce influenza-like symptoms 4 days earlier than those who didn’t take it.
  • Elderberries are rich in antioxidants, including anthocyanins, which may have anti-inflammatory and anti-carinogenic properties.
  • The flavonoids found in elderberries may help to lower the risk of heart disease.
  • Black elderberries (also known as Sambucus nigra) may help with blood sugar control.

As an added bonus, this elderberry tea is a comforting cold-weather drink, and tastes amazing with a touch of honey and spices.

Safety Tip:When storing dried elderberries, be sure to keep them away from kids and pets.Dried elderberries may be toxic when eaten straight from the bag, and my kids think the dried berries look like mini chocolate chips– so keep them stored up high, safely out of reach.

Easy Elderberry Tea Recipe (3 ingredients!) (2)

How To Make Elderberry Tea

1. Combine the ingredients.

In a small pot, combine the elderberries, water, and spices. I like to use a whole cinnamon stick and a few whole cloves, but you can also add in any other herbs or spices that you enjoy.

Easy Elderberry Tea Recipe (3 ingredients!) (3)

2. Simmer.

Bring the liquid to a boil over high heat, then lower the heat slightly. Simmer the elderberries for at least 15 minutes. The water will turn dark purple, and your kitchen will start to smell like elderberry juice!

Easy Elderberry Tea Recipe (3 ingredients!) (4)

3. Strain.

Pour the hot liquid through a fine mesh strainer and into your mug. You can discard the elderberry pulp, or save it to boil a second batch later.

Add in any extras you love, such as raw honey or lemon juice, and then enjoy!

Simmer the elderberries in water for 15 minutes. The liquid should be dark purple, and your kitchen will start to smell like elderberry juice!

Pour the liquid through a strainer into your mug to serve, since you won’t want to consume the elderberry pulp.


The best thing about making elderberry tea at home is that you get to control the flavor. Here are some other add-ins you might want to consider.

Easy Elderberry Tea Recipe (3 ingredients!) (5)

Frequently Asked Questions

Where Can You Find Elderberries?

Some health food stores sell dried elderberries, otherwise you can buy them online. Brand availability will vary, but I feel comfortable buying most brands that are certified organic.

What does elderberry tea taste like?

Elderberry tea tastes slightly tart and spicy (depending on which spices you add), with a fragrant smell of berries. Add your favorite sweetener to make it taste more palatable.

Can You Boil Elderberries Twice?

Yes! You can get more “bang for your buck” by reserving the boiled elderberries from your first cup of tea. Just add more water and boil again, for a second,slightly less-strong cup of elderberry tea. If you’re going to boil a second batch, I recommend you do it on the same day, so you don’t have to save the soggy elderberries in the fridge for later.

Can I use raw elderberries?

Dried elderberries will be more concentrated in flavor, so when using fresh elderberries you’ll need to use more. Also, keep in mind that elderberries must always be cooked before you consume them. The berries, leaves, stems, and seeds all contain a toxic substance that is removed by cooking, so don’t be tempted to skip that important step.

What are the side effects of elderberries?

Consuming uncooked elderberries, stems, seeds, or leaves may result in vomiting, nausea, or diarrhea.

Looking for more warm drink ideas? Try Ginger Tea, Cinnamon Tea, homemade chai latte, or healthy hot chocolate.

Easy Elderberry Tea Recipe (3 ingredients!) (6)

Easy Elderberry Tea Recipe (3 ingredients!) (7)

Elderberry Tea (3 ingredients!)

5 from 3 votes

Here's how to make Elderberry Tea at home, using just 3 simple ingredients! Elderberries may help to boost immunity and shorten cold & flu symptoms, so this tea is an easy alternative to elderberry syrup.

Print RecipePin RecipeRate Recipe

Prep Time: 5 minutes mins

Cook Time: 15 minutes mins

Total Time: 20 minutes mins

Servings: 1


  • 2 cups water
  • 2 tablespoons dried elderberries
  • 1 cinnamon stick (or 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon)


  • Combine the water, elderberries and cinnamon stick in a small saucepan. Bring the mixture to a boil, then lower the heat and let it gently simmer for 15 minutes.

    Easy Elderberry Tea Recipe (3 ingredients!) (8)

  • Pour the tea through a fine mesh strainer to remove the elderberries and cinnamon stick.

    Easy Elderberry Tea Recipe (3 ingredients!) (9)

  • Serve warm with any add-ins you like. I sometimes like to add a squeeze of lemon or orange juice, along with a drizzle of honey. Leftover tea can be stored in the fridge and enjoyed warm or cold, if you want to make a larger batch.

    Easy Elderberry Tea Recipe (3 ingredients!) (10)



Nutrition information is automatically calculated, and does not take into account that the elderberries and cinnamon stick are strained out of the final tea. This is just an estimate, and not a guarantee.

Safety Tip: Do not consume uncooked elderberries, or their stems, leaves or seeds. They contain a toxic substance that is removed with cooking.


Calories: 30kcal, Carbohydrates: 8g, Protein: 1g, Fat: 1g, Saturated Fat: 1g, Sodium: 26mg, Potassium: 83mg, Fiber: 4g, Sugar: 1g, Vitamin A: 177IU, Vitamin C: 11mg, Calcium: 61mg, Iron: 1mg

Author: Megan Gilmore

Course: Drinks

Cuisine: vegan

Keyword: elderberry tea

If you try this easy elderberry tea recipe, please leave a comment and star rating below letting me know how you like it.

Easy Elderberry Tea Recipe (3 ingredients!) (2024)


What not to mix with elderberry? ›

Possible Interactions
  • Diuretics (water pills). Diuretics help the body get rid of excess fluid and increase the amount of urine your body makes. ...
  • Diabetes medications. Elderberry may lower blood sugar levels. ...
  • Chemotherapy. ...
  • Laxatives. ...
  • Theophylline (TheoDur). ...
  • Drugs that suppress the immune system.

Is it okay to drink elderberry tea every day? ›

Elderberries offer excellent nutrition that contains antioxidants and vitamin C, which can boost the immune system among other benefits. Yes, you can take elderberry supplements daily, even three to four times a day.

Does boiling elderberries remove toxins? ›

Cooking elderberries is not just a culinary step; it's a safety measure. To neutralize toxins, specifically cyanide-inducing glycosides, heat treatment is a must. Boiling elderberries for at least 30 minutes is the go-to method. This ensures the destruction of harmful compounds.

Is it safe to make tea from dried elderberries? ›

As a result, in spite of the toxicity of raw, unripe elderberries, properly prepared elderberry tea is not thought to have any significant health risks.

Which autoimmune diseases should avoid elderberry? ›

Stay on the safe side and stick to food amounts. "Autoimmune diseases" such as multiple sclerosis (MS), lupus (systemic lupus erythematosus, SLE), rheumatoid arthritis (RA), or other conditions: Elderberry might cause the immune system to become more active. This could increase the symptoms of autoimmune diseases.

Are there negative side effects of elderberry? ›

The uncooked berries, leaves, bark, and roots of the elderberry plant contain the chemicals lectin and cyanide, which can cause nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea.

Does elderberry raise blood pressure? ›

Elderberries may be beneficial for the heart, as they have been associated with positive effects on blood pressure; the anthocyanin content increases the release of nitric oxide—which helps widen the blood vessels and improves blood flow, leading to a decrease in blood pressure.

Is elderberry safe for your liver? ›

Exposure to elderberry could be responsible for either the initiation or progression of autoimmune liver disease in the setting of genetic predisposition and molecular mimicry. Therefore, obtaining a meticulous history pertaining to medications is warranted, with an emphasis on over-the-counter supplements.

What illness do elderberries prevent? ›

The berries and flowers of elderberry are packed with antioxidants and vitamins that may boost your immune system. They could help tame inflammation, lessen stress, and help protect your heart, too. Some experts recommend elderberry to help prevent and ease cold and flu symptoms.

Who should not take elderberry tea? ›

Elderberry should not be consumed or used by children, pregnant women or breastfeeding women.

What to do with elderberries after boiling? ›

  1. Add the cooked berries to baked goods or pancakes. (taste and sweeten extra if needed)⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
  2. Feed to chickens (or pigs!)⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
  3. Make ART! ...
  4. Pour a solid amount of vinegar over the berries, and. ...
  5. I'm guessing you could also steep used berries in. ...
  6. Toss them into the compost (along with the fully-
May 24, 2020

How to prepare elderberries for consumption? ›

  1. Carefully separate your elderberries from their stalks with a fork or your hands.
  2. Chop up a little ginger into small pieces.
  3. Put the elderberries and chopped ginger into a pan and cover them with water.
  4. Bring to the boil and let simmer for 10 minutes.
Sep 28, 2022

Does elderberry interact with anything? ›

Elderberry has no known severe, serious, or moderate interactions with other drugs. Elderberry has mild interactions with at least 28 different drugs.

What not to plant with elderberry? ›

Plants Not To Grow With Elderberry

Elderberry bushes can live in damp conditions but expect better growth in well-drained soil, so avoid growing elderberry in wet soil with swamp milkweed, river birch, and hibiscus.

Is it OK to take elderberry and Vitamin C together? ›

Vitamin C is one of the most well-known immune boosters. But taking it in combination with elderberry can give you the upper hand in tackling any infections and viruses that come your way.

Can you mix elderberry with other herbs? ›

You can always add other herbs to the syrup when you are dosing. I sometimes mix my elderberry syrup with echinacea tincture or olive leaf extract when I am taking a dose.

Top Articles
Latest Posts
Article information

Author: Edwin Metz

Last Updated:

Views: 6312

Rating: 4.8 / 5 (78 voted)

Reviews: 85% of readers found this page helpful

Author information

Name: Edwin Metz

Birthday: 1997-04-16

Address: 51593 Leanne Light, Kuphalmouth, DE 50012-5183

Phone: +639107620957

Job: Corporate Banking Technician

Hobby: Reading, scrapbook, role-playing games, Fishing, Fishing, Scuba diving, Beekeeping

Introduction: My name is Edwin Metz, I am a fair, energetic, helpful, brave, outstanding, nice, helpful person who loves writing and wants to share my knowledge and understanding with you.