Essential Oil Gummy Candies for Immune Support

What kid doesn’t love gummy candies? Unfortunately, many store-bought brands contain lots of sugar and food dyes that our kids really don’t need in their little bodies. So we’ve come up with a recipe that has the opposite effect of store-bought gummies—with immune-boosting properties from elderberry syrup, honey, and lemon essential oil.

Elderberry Gummy Candies

  • Servings: Yield=1 1/4 cups (300 ml)
  • Difficulty: Easy
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Ingredients:

  • 2/3 cup (160 ml) homemade elderberry syrup, divided (see recipe below)
  • 1/3 cup (80 ml) mixed-berry, grape, or orange juice
  • 2.5–3 Tbsp. (27 g) powdered grass-fed beef gelatin
  • 1–2 Tbsp. (15–30 ml) honey (depending on sweetness preference)
  • 2–3 drops lemon essential oil (you can also try 1–3 toothpicks each of cassia, clove, and ginger if using orange juice)

Instructions:

  1. Pour 1/3 cup (80 ml) elderberry syrup and 1/3 cup (80 ml) fruit juice into a saucepan. Sprinkle the powdered gelatin over the liquid, and let sit for 5 minutes.
  2. Turn the heat to medium, and stir until the mixture gets bubbly and the gelatin dissolves. Whisk in the honey, and stir until completely dissolved.
  3. Stir in the rest of the elderberry syrup (1/3 cup or 80 ml) and the essential oil.
  4. Pour into a silicone mold or mini ice cube tray, and refrigerate until set (about an hour).

Homemade Elderberry Syrup

  • Servings: Yield=4–5 cups (about 1 liter)
  • Difficulty: Easy
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Ingredients:

  • 1 cup (90 g) dried elderberries
  • 4 cups (1 liter) water
  • 1 vanilla bean, split (optional)
  • 3/4–1 cup (180–240 ml) honey
  • 1–4 toothpicks clove essential oil, to taste (optional)
  • 1–4 toothpicks cassia essential oil, to taste (optional)
  • 1–4 toothpicks ginger essential oil, to taste (optional)

Instructions:

  1. Place the elderberries, water, and vanilla bean in an electric pressure cooker (we used an Instant Pot®), and cook on high pressure for 10 minutes. Allow the pressure to release naturally (about 18 minutes).
  2. Once your pressure cooker has cooled down enough to open, strain out the elderberries and allow to cool until warm before you stir in the honey and essential oils.
  3. Use in gummy candies (recipe above), as a pancake syrup, or drink 1 tsp. (5 ml) or so (1/4–1/2 for children) several times a day when you feel a cold or the flu coming on.

Honey Suckers for Soothing Little Throats

One of the most helpful things for a sore throat is a spoonful of honey! A couple years ago we posted a recipe for Soothing Throat Lozenges, and we thought we could adapt the recipe a little to make it suitable for children. The result? Honey Suckers.

Honey Suckers

  • Servings: 30–40
  • Difficulty: Easy
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Ingredients & Supplies:

  • 1/2 cup (120 ml) honey
  • 1 Tbsp. (12 g) coconut oil
  • 2–3 drops essential oil (good oils to use include lemon, lime, or orange)
  • Candy thermometer
  • Silicone sucker mold with sticks or parchment paper and popsicle sticks

Instructions:

  1. If you don’t have a silicone sucker mold, place a sheet of parchment paper on the counter, then place popsicle sticks a couple inches apart on the sheet. You’ll need about 30–40 popsicle sticks.
  2. Place honey and coconut oil in a pot. Bring to a boil.
  3. Once the mixture is boiling, reduce heat and simmer.
  4. Using a candy thermometer, allow the mixture to reach a temperature of 300°F (150°C), and then remove the mixture from the stove.
  5. Stir in essential oils.
  6. Pour the mixture into sucker molds, or drop spoonfuls on parchment paper over the popsicle sticks. You will need to work fast, since the mixture hardens quickly and will become hard to pour.
  7. Allow the suckers to harden (you can stick the sucker mold in the refrigerator for an hour). Cut strips of parchment paper, and fold them over the suckers to keep them from sticking together. Store in the refrigerator.