Easy Instant Pot Elderberry Syrup For Cold & Flu Season

Easy {Instant Pot} Elderberry Syrup For Cold & Flu Season

I make a big ole batch of Elderberry Syrup every fall to help my family boost their immune system. Truth be told, I have two auto-immune diseases and elderberry doesn’t work for me. So I only make it for my husband and two kids. However, I’m glad it does work for them. Elderberry syrup has helped to shorten colds and ward off coughs every year that I’ve been doing this. In the years past, I used Dr. Marchman’s recipe. It’s a stovetop one, so if you are looking for a stovetop recipe head over to her article – Stay Well This Winter, Naturally.

This year, I thought I would experiment with a new way of making my good ole Elderberry Syrup. And of course, I wanted to use my trusty Instant Pot. Did you know that the Instant Pot is my most used kitchen appliance? Totally worth the $100 price tag. I use it for making rice, mashed potatoes, steaming vegetables, soups, and so much more! If you don’t own one, I recommend you get one asap! The one I have is on sale for $99 right now. Let me give you a few selling points – I can make perfect rice with a 4-minute cook and 10-minute natural steam release, I can hard boil eggs in 5 minutes, I can sear my roast and then cook it slow cooker style all in the same appliance. I could go on and on and on!

Anyway – back to the Elderberry Syrup. The desire for me to write this article was from a simple social media post on Instagram and Facebook. My post received hundreds of comments asking for my recipe. Not at all what I expected. I’m glad you guys wanted to make my recipe. I sure hope this keeps your family well this cold & flu season!

I purchase my dried elderberries on Amazon. This 1lb package will give me 3 batches. Which basically lasts me for two years. If you want to purchase the same berries as me, simply use this link – Dried Organic Elderberries, 1 Lb. {Please note – this is an affiliate link. If you purchase with my link, I will make a small percentage of income. That income helps to keep Cumming Local running}

Instant Pot Elderberry Syrup


  • 6 cups of water
  • 2 cups of elderberries
  • 4 cinnamon sticks
  • 1 orange
  • 1/2 lemon
  • 2 tsp of vanilla extract
  • 1-inch piece of ginger, peeled
  • 1 cup of honey


  1. Put the elderberries, water, cinnamon, and ginger into the Instant Pot.
  2. Zest the orange and lemon. Squeeze both the orange and lemon to get the juices in the pot. Throw the orange and lemon in.
  3. Seal the Instant Pot and set it to manual and high pressure for 8 minutes.
  4. Once the timer goes off, set the valve to “vent” and strain the mixture. Discard the remaining berries and citrus.
  5. Once the syrup has cooled to room temperature, add the honey and vanilla extract. You can add more vanilla and/or honey to your desired taste.
  6. I pour mine into a large mason jar and store in the fridge.

Dosing Information: Adults take 1 Tbs and children take 1 tsp daily to boost immunity. The dose can be tripled daily when fighting a cold, cough or flu.

And that’s it – so simple. It was done in about 15 minutes. The longest part of the process was waiting on it to cool so I could add in the honey and vanilla extract.

PS- My kids take this without any complaints. I don’t make it overly sweet but if you have a finicky husband or kids – you may want to up the sweetness.

Rachael Walkup has lived in North Georgia all her life. Since 2006 – The Walkup family has made Forsyth County their home. Along with being a wife and mom, Rachael is an avid blogger, social media expert, and owner of CummingLocal.com. Her time is spent promoting local events and small businesses in North Georgia.  With a background in Marketing and Sales, coupled with her experience in Project Development and Search Engine Optimization (SEO), Rachael offers consultations and classes to help clients reach their fullest potential.

Overcoming Four Things People Dread About Weeknight Dinner

Weeknight Dinner

Overcoming Four Things People Dread About Weeknight Dinner

When you look back over the year, how do you feel your meal times went? I think every year we can improve. Meal times are super important for your family’s growth. It’s a perfect time to connect as a family. During our dinners, we use the time to share highs and lows with one another.  The questions in this book always make for good conversation as well.

I am thrilled to introduce my friend and fellow blogger, Tiffany from Eat at Home. On her website she shares meal plans, tips, and lots of great recipes to incorporate at your home. Her goal is to get more families around the dinner table. For the next few weeks, she will be sharing some tips and giving away some free downloads. Today, I am sharing week one…

Week One

In this video update, Tiffany has shared some simple solutions and strategies for cooking, clean-up & compiling family members. To watch week one’s video, click here.

Weeknight Dinner

Also, I have an announcement about Eat at Home for 2018…

NEW FROM EAT AT HOME: A No Flour/No Sugar plan will be available in 2018. No Flour/No Sugar plan will have five meals each week, plus one “salad of the week” that can be used as lunches, side dishes or an extra dinner.

Get a head start by downloading these snack ideas: 85 Simple No Flour/No Sugar snack ideas.

I’ve already downloaded my copy of the snacks and I am LOVING it! It’s helpful to have a handy list as my guide. Next week, I will have another free download from Eat at Home! But for now, make sure you keep an eye out for the next blog. It will include a video titled “Four Types of Recipes to Master for Easy Weeknight Dinners” plus a free download – “Let’s Eat: 8 Simple Dinner Recipes.”

Paleo Chocolate Chip & Blueberry Muffins

Starting in January 2017 I changed to eating a Paleo style diet. And it has made a world of difference. If you don’t know what that is, let me share with you. Basically it means no gluten, no grains, no dairy, no sugar.  I have made it my goal to make some recipes that meet all the Paleo requirements but are still delicious.

I’m very thankful to a good friend, Morgan, who has helped me by sharing recipes and ideas for meals. She has also shared with me some great websites and cookbooks to gain recipes from. Some of my favorites are Against All Grain, Nom Nom Paleo, and a local blogger – He Won’t Know it’s Paleo.

Over the last month and a half, I’ve gotten a little sick of eggs for breakfast. So today I decided to create another breakfast option. Pair these Paleo Chocolate Chip & Blueberry Muffins with some bacon or sausage and it’s perfect! I hope you enjoy. To find other recipes I’m creating, click here.

Paleo Chocolate Chip & Blueberry Muffins


  • 2 cups of almond flour
  • 1/2 tsp of baking soda
  • Pinch of salt
  • 4 Tbs. of honey
  • 1 cup of coconut milk or almond milk
  • 4 Tbs of coconut oil, melted
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup of Wyman’s frozen blueberries, rinsed and dried
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 1/2 cup of Enjoy Life chocolate chips


  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and spray muffins tins or line with baking cups.
  2. Mix together the dry ingredients – almond flour, baking soda, and salt.
  3. In another bowl, mix together the wet ingredients – honey, milk, coconut oil, eggs, and vanilla.
  4. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and mix gently. Be sure not to over mix.
  5. The last step is to gently fold in the blueberries and chocolate chips.
  6. Spoon the batter into the muffin tin. And bake until a toothpick comes out clean from being inserted into the center. My batch took around 20 minutes.

{This recipe makes 12 muffins. They can be stored in the refrigerator in an airtight container.} 

Al Fresco’s Dairy & Gluten Free Zuppa Toscana

If you have been a reader of Cumming Local for the last year, then you know I eat a gluten free diet. Starting on January 1st of 2017 – I decided to go dairy free as well. I suffer from two autoimmune diseases – Grave’s disease and Addison’s disease. My hope is being gluten & dairy free will solve some lingering symptoms I have.

Anyway, a month or so ago Al Fresco reached out to see if i’d be interested in coming up with a recipe using their chicken sausage. I love to cook so I was up for the challenge. For this recipe, I used the Sweet Apple Maple chicken sausage. Al Fresco has several other flavors of their sausage – check them out by clicking here.

Today I’m sharing with you my take on a Zuppa Toscana…

Zuppa Toscana {Potato Soup with Kale}
Serving size: 6-8 servings


  • 4 strips of bacon, cut up in pieces
  • 1 lb. Adelle’s chicken sausage, casings removed
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 1/2 tbsp. Italian seasoning
  • 1 tsp. crushed red pepper, or more to taste if you like it spicy!
  • 6 c. chicken bone broth (I used homemade that I keep in my freezer)
  • 7 medium red potatoes, cut in bite size pieces
  • 8 oz. frozen organic chopped kale *(Please note: I was out of Circle A Lettuce’s Kale. I would recommend using that instead as fresh is always better than frozen!)
  • 10 oz. can full fat coconut milk culinary ready
  • Salt and pepper, to taste


  1. In a large pot, cook the bacon pieces until done. Then take them out and rest on a paper towel. Keep the bacon fat in pan.
  2. Add the chicken sausage and cook on medium-high heat for around 10 minutes until browned.
  3. Add the onion, Italian seasoning, and crushed red pepper. Saute 3-5 minutes.
  4. Add the garlic. And stir for 1-2 minutes.
  5. Add the chicken broth and potatoes.
  6. Then bring your soup to a boil.
  7. Reduce heat, cover, and simmer 10-15 minutes.
  8. Add the kale and coconut milk and simmer an additional 10-15 minutes until potatoes and kale are tender.
  9. Add the salt and pepper to taste. And ENJOY!

Disclosure: Al Fresco provided Cumming Local with a voucher to purchase the chicken sausage. 

Al Fresco Breakfast Casserole {Gluten & Dairy Free}

Al Fresco

If you have been a reader of Cumming Local for the last year, then you know I eat a gluten free diet. Starting on January 1st of 2017 – I decided to go dairy free as well. I suffer from two autoimmune diseases – Grave’s disease and Addison’s disease. Being gluten free has stabilized by thyroid and allowed me to come off medication. However, my Addison’s disease still has flare ups. So I’m hoping being off dairy will help the flare ups to lessen and maybe even get off medication. Fingers crossed!

Anyway, a month or so ago Al Fresco reached out to see if i’d be interested in coming up with a recipe using their chicken sausage. I love to cook so I was up for the challenge. For this recipe, I used the Sweet Apple Maple chicken sausage. Al Fresco has several other flavors of their sausage – check them out by clicking here.

Today i’m sharing with you the recipe I came up with…

Al Fresco Breakfast Casserole
Serving size: 10-12 


  • Al Fresco Sweet Apple Chicken Sausage
  • Simply Potatoes Diced Potatoes, 1 bag
  • 1/2 red pepper, diced
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 1 zucchini, diced
  • 1/2 cup white mushrooms, sliced
  • 1 cup of Circle A Lettuce Kale, choppedCircle
  • 10 eggs
  • 2-3 Tbs. of Coconut oil
  • Salt/Pepper to taste


  1. Chop chicken sausage and then sauté in coconut oil until browned.
  2. Pour bag of simply potatoes in the same pan and brown up the diced potatoes as well.
  3. Sauté the red pepper, onion, zucchini, and mushrooms for a few minutes.
  4. Then place the sausage, potatoes, and veggies together in a 9 x 13 casserole dish. Pour the eggs over the top.
  5. Bake at 375 degrees for 45-50 minutes until the egg has set and the top has browned.
  6. Serve with avocado slices and enjoy!

Sign up for Al Fresco’s newsletter and get a $1 off coupon, by clicking here.

Disclosure: Al Fresco provided Cumming Local with a voucher to purchase the chicken sausages and potatoes for this recipe.