Lightly sweet and deliciously fizzy, this homemade honey-sweetened elderflower champagne is a fun way to increase your summer nutrition!
My family has been living in the south for almost six years now. Though I’m a southerner by birth, I love living in the north. Not only do I enjoy the cold and snow, I like the fact that there’s a time of year when pretty much everything is dead.
Not to be morbid, but I am always looking forward to getting a break from my allergies. And down here in the south, I rarely do. Reason being: there is *always* something blooming.
While this isn’t the best for my allergies, it is rather beautiful to always see flowers and growing things. And bonus! I don’t have to actually try to get things to grow down here (in fact, everything I try to grow dies, so I just let nature take its course). One of my favorite growing things down here is elderberry.
I never saw elderberry wild living up in the wild northern regions of the United States (a.k.a. Montana). But down here in the south it is everywhere. I love driving down the road and seeing it grow wild. And I love that I have it growing in my backyard.
Though I like to let the flowers go and turn into dark, amazingly nutritious berries, I recently learned that the flowers themselves are full of nutritional value. In fact, elderflower has been used traditionally the world over for to its antiseptic and anti-inflammatory properties. It’s commonly used for a remedy for colds and flu, sinus infections, and other respiratory issues (like seasonal allergies) due to its antibacterial and antiviral properties. Elderflowers are also rich in the bioflavonoids quercetin, isoquercitrin and anthocyanins.
While elderberries are used to boost the immune system during cold and flu season in order to *keep* you from getting sick (though elderberry syrup has been known to shorten the duration of viruses), elderflowers are said to be most effective when you’re already sick.
Honey-sweetened elderflower champagne.
Though it sounds a little complicated and rather alcoholic, elderflower champagne is really neither. I like to harvest my elderflowers fresh from my backyard, but you can get them dried off Amazon. Either dried or fresh work for this recipe. The elderflowers, lemons, and honey in this recipe lend themselves to a bubbly, slightly sweet, floral lemonade-ish drink.
If you follow this recipe, the alcohol content of the end result elderflower champagne should be between 3-5% (less than a beer and significantly less than regular champagne). My kids enjoy it without any issues, and because of the nutrition they’re getting from the elderflowers, I let them have at it!
More deliciously fizzy paleo drinks.
If flowery drinks aren’t your thing, or you love this recipe and want more like it, here are a few more fun drinks you can make at home. They’re all paleo and 100% family-friendly!
- Anti-Inflammatory Mixed Berry Switchel
- Cranberry Apple Switchel
- Homemade Mango Soda
- Spiced Apple Kombucha
- Fizzy Ginger Lemonade
- Probiotic Elderberry Kefir
- Basic Water Kefir
- Honey Sima
In the recipe card I’ve linked to some of the products from my affiliate partners that I like to use. Purchasing through these links won’t cost you anything extra. Thanks!
Honey-Sweetened Elderflower Champagne
Free from grain, gluten, eggs, dairy, and refined sugar.
- 2 qt. filtered water
- lemons, thinly sliced (2 small or 3 large)
- 2 large heads of elderflowers, washed *
- 1/2 c. honey
In medium saucepan, bring water to boil. Add in lemons an elderflowers and remove from heat.
Once the water is warm, but not hot, stir in honey and cool completely.
Pour mixture into jars (I use regular wide-mouth mason canning jars) and cover with a cheesecloth or t-shirt. Let sit on the counter for 24 hours.
After 24 hours, strain into bottles and cap tightly. I use these flip-top ones, but you can just use mason jars with canning lids, if you want.
Ferment on counter for a week +, then transfer to the fridge and enjoy when chilled!
* While I love using fresh elderflowers, you can used dried organic elderflowers (buy them here).