Back to nature | Homemade Elderflower Cordial

Jera's Jamboree receives compensation for affiliate advertising. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. Please see my disclosure policy for more information.

Elderflower cordial is considered by some to be the perfect summer drink (and homemade even better!). Popular with all ages, it’s refreshing and cleansing to the palate and usually heralds the start of summer.

Whilst there are popular brands on supermarket shelves, have you thought about foraging and making your own? Sue Fortin is my guest today and I’m excited that she’s sharing her homemade elderflower cordial recipe with us.

From late May in the UK, you’ll see masses of tiny white flowers hanging in sprays from the Elder tree as you walk through woods and alongside roadside hedgerows. The flowers (and later on in the season, the berries) are the only edible part of the plant. Pick your flowers when the buds are freshly open on a warm, dry, sunny day.

Photo of the elderflower linked to elderflower cordial recipe.

I love the myth and folklore associated with the elder. My favourite? If you want to see fairies, all you need to do is stand under an elder tree on Midsummer’s Eve (but be careful not to fall asleep as you’ll be carried away!).

Elders are thought to have medicinal benefits as well, combating hayfever being one of them. Nature is amazing isn’t it – providing when hayfever is often at its optimum level.

Elderflower Cordial recipe - elder flowers, preparation, finished homemade cordial.

With Sue’s homemade elderflower cordial recipe, you have the option of keeping it natural or adding a preservative.

You will need …

  • Approx 20-30 heads of Elderflower
  • 1.7 litres Water
  • 900g white sugar or caster sugar or a mixture of both.
  • 50g Citric acid powder. This is an optional ingredient but acts as a preservative so your cordial will last longer. Make sure it’s the food friendly one which can be bought from chemists, it costs around £2.
  • 4 whole lemons – unwaxed or you can substitute a couple of the lemons for oranges.


  • Trim the stems close to the flowers, leaving the flower heads.
  • Very gently rinse the flower heads to get rid of any tiny bugs.
  • Pour sugar into a large bowl – washing up bowl size.
  • Boil water and add to bowl, stirring to dissolve all the sugar.
  • Grate 2 lemons and add grated peel to water. You can add orange peel if you want.
  • Squeeze the lemons and orange and add juice to the water.
  • Add Citric acid powder.
  • Slice remaining lemons and oranges and place in the water. You can also add the grated and squeeze lemons in as this will add to the flavour.
  • Add Elderflower heads
Preparation for elderflower cordial with flowers and sliced lemons in a pan.
Image courtesy of Sue Fortin
  • Leave to soak for 24 hours stirring occasionally
  • Then strain through some muslin and transfer into bottle.
  • You can drop a vanilla pod into the cordial for an added flavour if you want.
  • Store in a cool dry place.
  • Dilute with water to drink. Fizzy water is a nice change.
  • Add mint leaves and slices of lemon or oranges when serving.
Homemade elderflower cordial
Image courtesy of Sue Fortin

Use the homemade elderflower cordial as a salad dressing too … or freeze into lollipops! If you try Sue’s recipe, we would love to know how you get on.

Do you forage for your own recipes? I’ve added foraging courses to my list of things I want to do!


Police have ruled out suspicious circumstances in the investigation into the death of Elizabeth Sinclair, wife of charismatic entrepreneur Harry Sinclair, found drowned in the lake of the family’s holiday park.

It’s been two years since the Sinclair case closed but when reporter Steph Durham receives a tipoff that could give her the scoop of the year, she’s drawn deeper and deeper into the secretive Sinclair family.

Elizabeth’s death wasn’t a tragic accident. And the truth will come at a deadly price…

The Dead Wife by Sue Fortin is published by Harper Collins and releases in digital format on 12th July 2019 with the paperback releasing 5th September 2019.

Author photo Sue Fortin

Published by Harper Collins’ imprints Harper Impulse and Harper Fiction, Sue Fortin writes mystery, suspense and romance. Sue is a member of both the International Thriller Writers and The Romantic Novelists’ Association.

Sue is  a USA Today and Amazon UK & USA best selling author, with The Girl Who Lied and Sister Sister both reaching #1 in the Amazon UK Kindle chart in 2016 and 2017 respectively. Her books have sold over a million copies and translation rights for her novels have been sold worldwide.

Sue was born in Hertfordshire but had a nomadic childhood, moving often with her family, before eventually settling in West Sussex.

Sue is married with four children and two grandchildren – when not behind the keyboard, she likes to spend her time with them, enjoying both the coast and the South Downs, between which they are nestled.

Connect with Sue Fortin:

| Website | Twitter @suefortin1 | Facebook |

Sharing is caring!

I've been blogging about my interests at Jera's Jamboree for 9+ years. My love of reading, crocheting, being out in nature and positive psychology are all things that help me unwind from my role as an Inclusion Lead in a primary school.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *