Elderberry Tea

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Elderberry Tea is a warm drink you can make at home in just minutes! It’s a faster alternative to making elderberry syrup, to help get more antioxidants into your day.

elderberry tea in two glasses

What is Elderberry Tea Good For?

Elderberries have been long used in folk medicine to help with inflammation, headaches, and cold symptoms, but they must be cooked to be consumed. Boiling the elderberries to make tea is a great way to do that!

Health Benefits of Elderberries

Here’s why you’ll love elderberries:

  • Black elderberries have antiviral properties, and have been shown to reduce the symptoms and length of influenza.
  • 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.

elderberry tea ingredients gathered

Where Can You Find Elderberries?

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

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 they look like mini chocolate chips– so keep them stored up high, safely out of reach.

How To Make Elderberry Tea

To make elderberry tea, you’ll simply simmer together elderberries with water, and any other add-ins you like. I like to add in a cinnamon stick and a few whole cloves, when I have them on hand.

elderberries and water in saucepan

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.

strained elderberries in small strainer

Optional Add-Ins

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.

optional add ins on marble surface

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.

orange slices floating in elderberry tea

elderberry tea with spoon
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5 from 3 votes

Elderberry Tea (3 ingredients!)

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 a great alternative to elderberry syrup.
Course Drinks
Cuisine vegan
Keyword elderberry tea
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes
Servings 1
Calories 30kcal


  • 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.
    elderberry tea in saucepan
  • Pour the tea through a fine mesh strainer to remove the elderberries and cinnamon stick.
    straining out elderberries
  • 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.
    honey and orange slices added to tea



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.


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

More Warm Drinks You’ll Love

If you make this Elderberry Tea recipe, please leave a comment below letting me know how you like it! And if you make any modifications, or add in extra ingredients, I’d love to hear about those, too. We can all benefit from your experience.

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Tina E

Can you use liquid elderberry to make this? If so what are the measurements?


    I would like to know also about using liq.elderberry.

sharon crawford

I have actually made the elderberry syrup . Your receipt is very easy.


I will be making this, and likely adding some fresh ginger and crushed rose hips, as I have them, and make great additions to boost immunity. Sweeten with a touch of raw honey.


Made it exactly as written then stirred in a teaspoon of buckwheat honey. Absolutely delicious!

Arlena F

I made mine adding some Orange Peel and others spices. Love it .


I made this for my family, who was feeling under the weather and we all thought it was delicious and comforting. I made it exactly as the directions. I did not have cinnamon stick on hand and just used ground, and it worked great. Thank you for this! I think this is my go to when me or my loved one feels under the weather.

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