A natural remedy for immune support
Elderberry is all the rage right now. When our family started using elderberry for immune support several years ago, we got the funniest looks whenever we talked about it! The instant pot is a total game changer, and this powerhouse syrup is about to become one of your easiest health changes this year. But Instant Pot elderberry syrup with oils and wolf berry? Woah.
Why do we love elderberry?
Elderberries have been used for centuries to help fight off colds, flus, infections, and shoot, even the plague! If you’ve done any research, you’ve probably come across the term – flavonoids – which are the reason that elderberries have that dark purple, almost black, coloring. What’s the big deal about these flavonoids? In short, they boost the production of cytokines, little proteins that do a great job of being messengers to the immune system. These little guys are vital in helping signal the immune system to fight off colds, flus, and infections year round.
Elderberries are also known to contain anti-viral properties which is why you’re seeing so many people turn to this kind of support for their families!
This incredible study showed the dramatic impact of elderberry on a population in Panama batting the flu in 1995. Symptoms with those who used elderberry were improved in 2 days versus 6 days for those not taking elderberry! Numerous studies have surfaced showing the antiviral properties of this incredible plant. Here are a couple more of my favorites:
What difference does the Ningxia Wolfberry make?
I wish I could sit down over a cup of tea and tell you the difference it makes! I started using wolf berry in our syrup this year, and it has dramatically changed the flavor as well as helped with immune support. With polyphenols and polysaccharides, this exotic berry is touted around the world for its taste and nutrients. Documented use of wolfberries dates back to the Ming Dynasty, where they were part of ancient Chinese culture. Loaded with minerals, nutrients, and antioxidants is the absolute perfect finish to this already powerhouse syrup. It is one of the richest known sources for vitamin B1 (Thiamin) and contains the highest ORAC score of ALL the wolberries, coming in at 303 µTE/100g. It is also why our family drinks Ningxia Red on a consistent basis. Having antioxidant rich foods is a serious matter for my family due to the overwhelming amounts of free radicals that our bodies have to deal with daily! And don’t worry, when you grab them, you’ll be using the extras for trail mix, oatmeal and a generally healthy and delicious snack!
Why do we add essential oils?
Essential oils have become the number one health tool in our home for numerous reasons, but the effectiveness and ease tend to top that list! Now we have to tackle one thing RIGHT AWAY! I do NOT recommend putting ANY oils in this syrup that are not of the highest quality. After trying dozens of brands, our family landed with Young Living due to their Seed To Seal promise and lengthy history of safety and testing practices.
Adding oils creates an even more powerful combination with the elderberry syrup because of several factors. The first is that essential oils are SO tiny that they can get into a cell without harming a cell which is why the research on Frankincense (particularly boswellia sacra) is so exciting! Secondly, essential oils are not medicine and therefore, work differently with the body, supporting the systems in a completely different manner. They are meant to help the body function the way that it was intended instead of masking symptoms and cutting off needed, and often vital, expressions of sickness.
If you want to learn more about essential oils, hop on over HERE.
A match made in heaven
Using an essential oil infused elderberry and wolf berry syrup has been a powerful blend for our family. The amazing immune supporting properties of the essential oils combined with the antiviral and immune boosting benefits of the elderberry are a match made in heaven!
Recipe (revised with Instant Pot)
Oil Infused Elderberry & Wolfberry Syrup
Prep 5 mins
TOTAL Cook Time – 2 hours
Cool 15 min
Yields approximately 4 cups
- 1 cup dried elderberries: organic/wildcrafted (I prefer to buy from Mountain Rose Herbs but if out of stock, any organic, well-sourced bag will do!)
- 1 cup Dried Ningxia Wolfberries from Young Living
- 8 cups water
- 2 cups Manuka honey or raw unfiltered honey
- 5 drops each Young Living Vitality Essential Oils – Lemon, Orange, Copaiba
Kids under 1: Products or recipes containing raw honey are not suggested for kids under the age of 1
- Add elderberries and wolfberries to your Instant Pot with the water
- Turn the Instant Pot on manual high pressure for 10 minutes
- Manually release pressure when done and use a strainer to remove all the berries
- Turn the Instant Pot onto the sauté mode
- Let mixture boil until half of the liquid is gone (be sure to use the easy measuring markers on the side!)
- If making immediately, let cool for 10-15 minutes then add the honey and oils
- Divide batch according to your family’s needs
- Store in the fridge for up to 3 months or the freezer for up to 6 months!
- Take 1 tsp – 1 TB daily for preventative, increase when not feeling well
Recommended amount for immune support is 1⁄2 tsp – 1 tsp for kids and 1 tablespoon daily for adults.
**Our family takes this several times a day when a bug comes knocking!
**BONUS** Elderberry & Ningxia Wolfberry Gummies
Because so many friends have asked for my gummy recipe, I’ve included it as a bonus for you. Make sure to grab those free labels which include labels for your gummies, elderberry syrup AND a recipe card to include when making it for friends!
- 1 Cup Elderberry & Ningxia Wolfberry Syrup from above
- 1/4 Cup Great Lakes Gelatin
- Silicone Molds
- Silicone Droppers
**After trying numerous silicone molds, these are my favorite for this as you can put in as little as you like for little ones or up to a tablespoon for adults.
- Place your silicone molds on a flat surface like a cookie sheet or tray that will fit in your fridge
- Warm the syrup over low/medium heat
- Sprinkle in gelatin slowly while whisking (kids love the whisking part!)
- Be sure all the gelatin has melted in and the mixture is smooth
- Remove the pot from the heat and use the silicone droppers to fill in the molds
- Put in the fridge and let them set for 20-30 minutes
- Remove the gummies and place them in a clean mason jar
- Keep in the fridge and use within 4-6 weeks