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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  • 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)


  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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  • 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)


  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


  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.

Essential Oil Spotlight: Cardamom

Cardamom essential oil (Elettaria cardamomum) is steam-distilled from the seeds of the plant. It has a sweet, spicy, balsamic scent with floral undertones.

It has antibacterial, anti-infectious, anti-inflammatory, antiseptic, antispasmodic, aphrodisiac, decongestant, diuretic, expectorant, stomachic, and tonic properties.

Anciently, cardamom was used for epilepsy, spasms, paralysis, rheumatism, cardiac disorders, all intestinal illnesses, pulmonary disease, fever, and digestive and urinary complaints. It is said to be able to neutralize the lingering odor of garlic.

If you are acquainted with Indian food, you may associate the flavor and smell of this oil with sweet Indian dishes such as rice pudding, as the cardamom spice is a common ingredient in this dish and gives it a cool, minty aroma and taste. It may be that rice pudding is often served at the end of the meal because of cardamom’s ability to neutralize lingering odors that cause halitosis.

Today cardamom is commonly used for coughs, digestive support, headaches, inflammation, muscle aches, nausea, and respiratory ailments. Cardamom may also help with appetite loss, bronchitis, colic, debility, dyspepsia, flatulence, halitosis, mental fatigue, heartburn, sciatica, ulcers, and vomiting. It may also be beneficial for menstrual periods, menopause, and nervous indigestion.

Cardamom is most known for supporting the digestive and respiratory systems of the body.

Applications of Cardamom Essential Oil and Safety Data

Topical Application: Cardamom essential oil is safe to use without dilution, but it can also be diluted as needed. Apply to reflex points and/or directly on area of concern.
Aromatic Application: Diffuse, or inhale cardamom essential oil directly. The aroma of cardamom is uplifting, refreshing, and invigorating. It may be beneficial for clearing confusion.
Internal Application: Cardamom essential oil can be taken internally and is often used as a flavoring in cooking. Put 1–2 drops of cardamom oil under the tongue or in a beverage. It can also be taken in capsules.

5 Ways to Use Cardamom Essential Oil

1. Diffuse
Try these blends in your diffuser to increase your mental alertness, open your airways, and enjoy the scent of autumn leaves:

2. Use in Roll-on Blends

Cardamom essential oil is helpful to the respiratory and digestive systems. It can also help relieve a headache. Rub the respiratory blends (below) on the chest, throat, back, and/or sinuses to help open airways and clear coughs. Rub the digestive blends on the abdomen to help reduce flatulence, bloating, belching, hiccups, and heartburn. Cardamom is a safe essential oil to use with children, so it is a great choice over peppermint to open their little airways and support their digestive systems.

Respiratory Support (6+ years):
5 drops eucalyptus
5 drops peppermint
5 drops lemon
3 drops cardamom
2 drops rosemary
2 drops melaleuca
(20% dilution in a 5 ml roll-on or
10% dilution in a 10 ml roll-on)
Little Lungs Respiratory Support (Children):
1 drop cardamom
1 drop frankincense
(2% dilution in a 5 ml roll-on or
1% dilution in a 10 ml roll-on)
Digestive Support (6+ years):
5 drops cardamom
3 drops ginger
3 drops peppermint
(10% dilution in a 5 ml roll-on or
5% dilution in a 10 ml roll-on)
Tiny Tummies Digestive Support (Children):
1 drop cardamom
1 drop orange
1 drop fennel
(3% dilution in a 5 ml roll-on or
1.5% dilution in a 10 ml roll-on)
4 drops peppermint
3 drops cardamom
3 drops rosemary
(10% dilution in a 5 ml roll-on or
5% dilution in a 10 ml roll-on)

Add oils to a 5 ml roll-on bottle or 10 ml roll-on bottle depending on desired dilution percentage. Fill the bottle the rest of the way with a carrier oil. Common carrier oils for use in a roll-on bottle include Fractionated Coconut OilSweet Almond Oil, and Jojoba Oil.

3. Use in a Bath or Shower:

Cardamom essential oil is excellent as a bath oil. Combine one of the following oil blends with 1/4–1/2 cup (60–120 g) epsom salt, and evenly disperse throughout the tub. Alternatively, you can add these essential oil combinations to these bath bombs.

Muscle Aches:
2 drops cardamom
1 drop peppermint
1 drop clove
1 drop copaiba
Congestion Bomb:
2 drops eucalyptus
2 drops peppermint
2 drops cardamom
2 drops Douglas fir (or another fir oil)

If you prefer taking showers, try adding the Congestion Bomb blend or cardamom essential oil to these shower disks. The steam from the shower and the cardamom essential oil can be beneficial to clearing congestion.

4. Use in Breath Mints

Cardamom is beneficial in helping halitosis (bad breath) and is said to be able to neutralize the odor of garlic. Try adding cardamom essential oil to homemade breath mints, or use in a breath spray.

5. Add to Cooking Recipes

Cardamom essential oil is often used in Indian cooking, but it is great to add to any of your favorite recipes. It pairs well with chocolate, rice, honey, coconut oil, spices like cinnamon and clove, and works in both savory and sweet dishes. This oil can taste strong, so start with a toothpick and add more to taste. Here are some of our recipes that use cardamom essential oil:

Sources: Modern Essentials™: The Complete Guide to the Therapeutic Use of Essential Oils, 9th Edition, p. 45.

Soft & Squishy Soap Jellies

Kids love how soft and squishy these soap jellies are! They are perfect for making bathtime and learning about hygiene fun. You may even want to try them out on yourself! They make a great sensory experience for all!

Soap Jellies

  • Servings: 12+
  • Difficulty: Easy
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Ingredients & Supplies:

  • 2 Tbsp. unflavored gelatin (about 2–3 small packets)
  • 3/4 cup (180 ml) distilled water
  • 1/2 cup (120 ml) Castile Soap
  • 30 drops essential oil (lavender, melaleuca, lemon, orange, and peppermint are good options)
  • Body-safe soap coloring (optional) (a drop or two of blue tansy essential oil is a natural way to get a nice blue color)
  • 1 tsp. (6 g) salt
  • Silicone mold or small soap mold
  • Small Spray Bottle of alcohol (optional)
  • 16 oz. PET Jar


  1. Place mold on a cutting board or cookie sheet or another flat, movable surface.
  2. Place water in a pan, and sprinkle the gelatin on the water. Allow gelatin to bloom for 5 minutes; then bring the water to a boil to dissolve the gelatin.
  3. Once boiling, remove from heat and add the castile soap, coloring, and essential oils. Stir gently until combined.
  4. Stir in the salt last. (Don’t skip this step! It makes a big difference!)
  5. Pour the mixture into your molds.
  6. You can get rid of air bubbles by spritzing the soap with a little alcohol from a small spray bottle.
  7. Place in the refrigerator until completely hardened.
  8. Store in a PET Jar in a cool, dry location (such as the refrigerator) for up to 1 week.

EO Life Hack: Teething Baby?

It’s no fun when teeth are coming in…for the baby or the parents. How can you help numb the pain and calm the baby down? Use essential oils!


Raspberry Lemon Popsicles

Cool off this summer with these delicious and refreshing popsicles! These treats are vegan and loaded with good fruit, healthy fats, and non-dairy milk, with the added benefit of lemon essential oil.

Raspberry Lemon Popsicles

  • Servings: 4–6
  • Difficulty: Easy
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  • 1 cup (130 g) raspberries
  • 1 banana
  • 2 Tbsp. (24 g) coconut oil (optional)
  • 2/3 cup (160 ml) coconut milk or almond milk
  • 1 drop lemon essential oil


  1. Add all ingredients to a blender, and blend like you would a smoothie.
  2. Pour into popsicle molds, and freeze for at least 3 hours or until solid.

Homemade Sunscreen

Protect your skin naturally while out in the summer sun with this all-natural homemade sunscreen. It is easy to make and looks and feels just like store-bought sunscreen! Your family won’t know the difference, but you will feel better knowing what you are putting on your children’s skin! A few things to know about this sunscreen:

  1. This sunscreen has an SPF of 20+ because the zinc oxide has an SPF of 20, the coconut oil has an SPF of 4, and the essential oils used in this recipe are also beneficial for protecting against the sun’s rays.
  2. It may need to be reapplied every hour or so, especially during water play. The beeswax in this recipe does help it be a little waterproof, but stay on the safe side and reapply fairly often.
  3. Even though it looks like it goes on pretty white in the above picture, it doesn’t stay that way. Just rub it on the skin, spreading it all over, and after a minute or so it will melt and disappear.
  4. This sunscreen will last through the summer—possibly even 2 summers depending on how fresh your ingredients are.

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Just Add Oils to Your Mommy Routine

Mothers are always worrying about keeping their families healthy. Adding essential oils to your mommy routine is a great way to do that! Here are some of our suggestions:

For Mom:

1. Essential Oil–Safe Water Bottle. It’s too easy for a mom to forget to drink water with all the demands for her attention, but it is extremely important to stay hydrated in order to maintain good health. Try keeping a water bottle nearby with a few essential oils to help boost the flavor.

2. Modern Essentials. Mothers need an accurate resource that helps them know how to use their essential oils safely on their families. Modern Essentials is research-based, so you know you are getting accurate information. Keep the big book at home to educate yourself and reference later. Use the Modern Essentials Usage Guide, the “Introduction to Modern Essentials” booklet, or the Modern Essentials app for your on-the-go reference.

3. Your Favorite Essential Oil Products or DIYs. It is important for moms to take care of themselves so they have the health and strength to take care of their dear ones. Here are a few DIY products that you may find helpful:

• Between dishes, laundry, and diaper changes, moms’ hands can easily get tired and dry. Try rejuvenating your overworked hands with this Simply Luxurious Moisturizing Lotion! • After touching grocery carts, park benches, and dirty diapers, you may want to get rid of the germs with this Citrus Mint Hand Sanitizer.
• Keep your lips smooth with this Natural Lip Balm so you can keep on kissing your baby’s adorable cheeks! • Try out these roll-on blends to help you stay sane, well-rested, refreshed, and happy. Kids thrive when mom has energy!
• Keep your breath fresh with this Breath Spray or these Homemade Breath Mints. They are especially handy on mornings when you were in such a rush to get the kids off to school that you forgot to brush your own teeth! A diffuser or room spray can be a must to keep the house smelling fresh and clean! Try this spill-proof humidifying diffuser. It’s great to use around children who are prone to knocking things over. You may also want to try out one of these fantastic diffuser blends!

4. Other Articles about Using Essential Oils for Moms.

For the Kids:

1. Diluted Essential Oils. Because children have smaller bodies and more sensitive skin, it is important to make sure any essential oils used on them are diluted with a carrier oil. This is easy to do with a Dilution Stick or with roll-on bottles. Using a dilution stick on children gives their skin a good coating of the carrier oil before applying a drop of essential oil and rubbing it all in. For roll-on bottles, just add a few drops of essential oil to the bottle, then fill the rest of the bottle with a carrier oil such as fractionated coconut oil, sweet almond oil, or jojoba oil. See this chart for more accurate guidelines based on the child’s age.

2. Kid-Friendly Essential Oil Products or DIYs. Kids can benefit from essential oil DIYs as well! Here are our top recommendations for children:

Toys are notorious for picking up germs and should be cleaned regularly. This spray makes it really easy to clean your kids’ toys—just spray them all down, let them sit for a few minutes as you spray the rest of the toys, and then wipe them all clean.

Toy Cleaner

  • Servings: 4 oz. (120 ml)
  • Difficulty: Easy
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  • 1/2 cup (120 ml) hydrogen peroxide or vinegar
  • 4 drops lemon or melaleuca essential oil
  • 4 oz. Spray Bottle


  1. Fill the 4 oz. spray bottle with hydrogen peroxide or vinegar. Add the essential oil. Screw the lid on, and shake to combine.
  2. To use, spray the toys thoroughly. Let sit for a few minutes, then wipe dry with a clean cloth.

Note: Hydrogen peroxide can lose its effectiveness if exposed to sunlight. It is best to store your Toy Cleaning Spray in a container that will protect it from sun exposure.

3. More Information about Using Essential Oils on Children.

‘Tis the Season for Sickness

Seasonal changes can stress our immune systems, making us more susceptible to illness. Diffusing Protective Blend and using it on household surfaces can help avoid trouble. But it’s also best to be prepared with some “simple solutions,” should sickness strike.

Easy tips and recipes for colds, cold sores, congestion, cough, earache, and fever can be found in our new booklet, “Modern Essentials: Simple Solutions”—along with 150 entries for other common ailments.



  • Blend 5 drops each lemon and thyme in 1 Tbs. (15 ml) jojoba oil. Apply a small amount to throat, forehead, chest, and back of neck 2–3 times daily.
  • For adults and children, you can also diffuse thyme oil in an aromatherapy diffuser.

Cold Sores:

  • Combine 4 tsp. (6 g) beeswax pellets, 1 Tbs. (10 g) cocoa butter, and 3 Tbs. (45 ml) jojoba oil, and melt in a microwave (30 seconds at a time, stirring in between) or in a double boiler. Cool slightly, and add 5 drops each helichrysum, melissa, and peppermint. Pour into small jars or lip balm containers, and allow to cool completely. Apply a small amount to cold sores as needed.


  • Diffuse Respiratory Blend in an aromatherapy diffuser.
  • Drop 2 drops eucalyptus and 1 drop peppermint on the floor of the shower to inhale the vapors while showering.
  • Combine 6 Tbs. (90 ml) coconut oil and 1½ Tbs. (7.5 g) beeswax pellets, and melt in a microwave (30 seconds at a time, stirring in between) or in a double boiler. Let cool slightly, and add 20 drops eucalyptus, 15 drops lemon, and 20 drops peppermint. Pour into small jars or salve containers, and allow to cool completely. Apply a small amount on the chest and throat as needed.


  • Diffuse Respiratory Blend in an aromatherapy diffuser.
  • Mix 1 drop each eucalyptus and lemon with 1 Tbs. (15 ml) honey (local and raw preferred). Blend about 1/3 of this mixture in 1 cup (240 ml) warm water, and drink slowly.
  • Combine 1 drop each eucalyptus, lemon, and melaleuca with 1 tsp. (5 ml) jojoba oil, and apply over chest and back.


  • Put 1 drop each basil and melaleuca on a piece of cotton ball. Place over (not in) the ear canal for 30 minutes.
  • For children, dilute above combination with carrier oil or garlic oil extract (can pierce and use garlic capsules)—which also has antibacterial and antiviral properties.


  • Blend 2 drops each eucalyptus and peppermint in bowl of cool water. Moisten a washcloth with this water, and sponge the forehead, back of neck, and feet.

Source: “Modern Essentials: Simple Solutions” Booklet

For more helpful tips, see our article on Staying Healthy This Winter Season.

’Tis also the season for sharing, so be sure to pass along these tips for making winter days more merry and bright.

Essential Oils for Children

While essential oils can benefit people of all ages, it is important to be cautious when using them on children. Because essential oils are very concentrated and children have such small bodies, it is important to know how to use oils safely with kids.


Essential Oils Safe for Children

There is a lot of controversy about which essential oils should or shouldn’t be used on children. Several oils that are generally considered safe for children include the following:

  • Cypress
  • Frankincense
  • Geranium
  • Ginger
  • Lavender
  • Lemon*
  • Marjoram
  • Melaleuca
  • Orange*
  • Rosemary**
  • Sandalwood
  • Thyme
  • Ylang Ylang

*These oils are photosensitive; always dilute, and do not use when skin will be exposed soon to direct sunlight.
**This oil should never be used undiluted on infants or children.

Always Dilute Essential Oils for Children

When using essential oils on children and infants, it is always best to dilute the pure essential oil with a carrier oil. Roll-on bottles work really well for diluting the oils and allowing older children to apply the oils by themselves.


Ways to Use Essential Oils with Children

Essential oils can be used topically and aromatically with children, but they should not be given internally for therapeutic use. Here are a few ways you can use essential oils with children:

  • Rub essential oils (diluted with carrier oil or cream) onto feet.
  • Diffuse essential oils around the house occasionally. Young children learn about their environment through smell, so be careful not to overload their senses with constant essential oil diffusion.
  • Add essential oils to bathtime. A drop of lavender or Roman chamomile added to a bath gel base before mixing with the bathwater can help create a relaxing bath before bed.
  • Use essential oils in cooking. When used appropriately in cooking, essential oils are diluted quite a bit and are safe for children to consume.

Safety Tips

It is important to keep essential oils out of reach of children. Kids are inherently curious, so if oil bottles are left out, it is very likely your children will try to mimic what they see you do and try to apply the oils to themselves.at_eoschildren_keepoutofreach

Here are a few things you can do if you encounter the following situations:

  • Child has poured a bunch of oil on their skin: Rub as off as much oil as possible with a paper towel, then rub on carrier oil to help dilute the essential oil.
  • Child got essential oils in their eyes: Saturate a tissue with a carrier oil, and dab the child’s eyes to help dilute the essential oil.
  • Child has taken essential oil internally: Give the child milk, yogurt, or honey (if older than 12 months) to help dilute the ingested oil. You also may want to call poison control to see if they have any further instructions.
  • Child got oil on clothes, fabric, wood, or furniture: Soak up as much oil as possible with a paper towel; then treat as you would a grease stain.

Essential oils are expensive, so aside from the safety concerns of children using the oils on themselves, you will also want to keep your oils out of reach so they’re not wasted.

Source: Modern Essentials™: A Contemporary Guide to the Therapeutic Use of Essential Oils, 8th Edition, pp. 247–49.

For more information about essential oils and how to use them on children, please see Modern Essentials™: A Contemporary Guide to the Therapeutic Use of Essential Oils for more information.

These are a few of our favorite ways you can use essential oils with children: