Fire Cider, a Homemade Cold and Flu Tonic

Fire cider is a wonderful homemade tonic to use during cold and flu season!

This is one of my favorite times of year! The seasons are changing as we leave behind summer and head into yet another colorful fall, frosty winter and many warm holidays.  For all of the wonderful things to look forward to at this time, there is one looming drawback: cold and flu season.

It is coming up folks! Pretty soon daycares, schools, workplaces and even your own home will become cesspits of infectious splendor for all the trendy viruses your fellow human beings unwittingly pass around.  What can anyone do but share the love?  But most importantly, what can you do to prevent or reduce the symptoms of these popular illnesses that plague during cold and flu season?

Fire Cider Cold and Flu Tonic

Fire cider, otherwise known as “master tonic” or “cold and flu tonic”, is an excellent herbal remedy that aims to do just that.  It works great as an immune boosting preventative as well a powerful anti-microbial, decongesting, cold busting remedy when you or your family are ill.  This homemade tonic has many forms, and a basic recipe usually consists of apple cider vinegar, garlic, onion, horseradish, ginger, and hot peppers.  There are many other herbs one can add for an additional boost as well.  Below is the recipe I made:

Homemade Fire Cider Cold and Flu Tonic

Homemade Fire Cider Cold and Flu Tonic

A great natural cold and flu remedy to help boost the immune system.

Prep Time 10 minutes
Total Time 10 minutes


  • 1/2 cup grated fresh ginger root
  • 1/2 cup grated fresh horseradish root
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 10 cloves garlic, crushed or chopped
  • 2 hot peppers such as jalapeño, anaheim, cayenne, etc. chopped
  • Zest and juice from 1 lemon
  • Several sprigs fresh rosemary or 2 Tbsp dried rosemary
  • Several sprigs fresh thyme or 2 Tbsp dried thyme
  • 1 Tbsp turmeric powder
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne powder
  • Raw apple cider vinegar (like this
  • Raw (preferably local) honey to taste
  • **Some great additions would be other citrus fruits such as grapefruit and lime, and other herbs such as echinacea, elderberries, astragalus, ginseng, parsley, burdock root, and peppercorns.


  1. Place all the ingredients but the last two into a quart sized jar. Prepare for a sinus opening experience grating the horseradish and don't forget to wear gloves while chopping and handling the hot peppers! After all ingredients are packed in, fill jar with apple cider vinegar. Hold the honey for now. Place in a cool, dark place and shake the mixture daily for one month.
  2. When about four weeks has passed, use a cheesecloth to strain the vinegar from the other ingredients. Try to squeeze every last drop of liquid from the pulp, then to the vinegar add honey to taste, usually 1/4 to 1-2 cups. Shake to dissolve and store in the fridge for about six months or more.

Take a shot of it daily as an immune boosting preventative and up to several times a day when feeling run down or ill.  After a glance at the ingredients taking a shot may seem like a harrowing ordeal, but it is actually surprisingly tasty!  Spicy, warm, sweet and tangy.  However if you do not like the taste you can dilute in a drink, broth, or use as a dressing.

What to do with all of that extra pulp? It is great in a vegetable stir fry or blended into a paste to be used to flavor soups and sauces.  You can also dehydrate the pulp and grind up to use as spice in everyday cooking as well.

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Fire Cider, a Homemade Cold and Flu Tonic


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