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How to Make Fire Cider

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Maybe you’ve heard a bit of buzz about this health craze called fire cider. Spoiler alert: it’s not a new thing! Not sure what fire cider is or how to make it? I’ve got you covered, and some of the ingredients for fire cider may be growing in your very own garden!

What is fire cider?

Fire cider is a timeless recipe that has been passed down through generations as a popular herbal folk remedy. Basically, it is a strong vinegar tincture that extracts healthful compounds from various medicinal plant materials.

Fire cider is used to help boost the immune system and ward off cold, flu and other infirmities, as well as help with digestion. Here is a basic recipe that is simple to make and easily adapted based on what is available to you.

Why make fire cider?

One of the big reasons would be cost. You can buy fire cider, for about $15 for an 8 oz bottle, or you can make it at home for a fraction of the cost. The ingredients are all relatively easy to find in the grocery store or even grow in your home garden! Secondly, this tonic is packed full of powerful components that can help strengthen your body’s natural defenses against disease. Those two reasons alone are a great motivation to try making your own fire cider at home.

What’s in fire cider?

There are definitely variations in what people use for their fire cider, but many of these ingredients are consistent in most recipes.

  • Apple-cider vinegar, which has numerous health benefits including aiding digestion, is the base of this tonic. Make sure you use a raw, unfiltered brand that includes the “mother.”
  • Garlic has antimicrobial and antibacterial properties and is great for fighting infection. (Learn how to grow your own garlic!)
  • Onions contain antioxidants and compounds that fight inflammation.
  • Ginger also has anti-inflammatory properties, and is known to help with digestion and relieve nausea.
  • Horseradish is another root that is a good source of vitamin C and is one of the best herbs for fighting sinus congestion and headaches.
  • Jalapeno pepper has many beneficial vitamins and minerals, antioxidants, and of course capsaicin (the compound that makes chili peppers spicy).
  • Cayenne pepper, also high in capsaicin, is great for your cardiovascular system, helps soothe cold symptoms, and has pain relieving properties.
  • Lemon is packed full of vitamins, minerals, phytonutrients, and antioxidants, and is especially a good source of vitamin C and folate.
  • Raw Honey, preferably local, has many healing properties and can help with seasonal allergies.

Note: it is best to use organic ingredients in this recipe since you are pulling the properties out of the herbs and compounding their effects. You don’t want to include any of the chemicals waxes, or dyes that might be present in our conventional foods.

Fire cider ingredients

How to make fire cider

Ingredients:

1 bulb of garlic, peeled and chopped

1 medium onion, peeled and roughly chopped

½ cup thinly sliced (or grated) fresh ginger root

½ cup peeled and diced (or grated) fresh horseradish

2 jalapeno peppers, chopped

1 tsp cayenne pepper 

1 lemon (juice and zest)

Raw, unfiltered apple-cider vinegar, enough to fill the jar

Raw local honey about ½ cup, or as much as you want to add

Alternative ingredients:

Feel free to adjust this recipe based on your preferences and what you have available. You can add ingredients or make substitutions as needed to make it your own. 

Suggested options:

Instructions:

  1. Prepare all the ingredients and fill a 1-quart glass jar in the order listed above. 
  2. Throw in any additional herbs or spices that you may be using. 
  3. Pour in enough apple-cider vinegar to completely cover the ingredients and fill to the top of the jar. 
  4. Cap with a plastic lid or place parchment paper under the metal lid to prevent corrosion.
  5. Store in a dark, cool place for about a month and shake occasionally. 
  6. After a month, strain out the liquid into a clean jar or container. Make sure you squeeze out as much liquid as possible.
  7. Add in the honey and stir. Taste and add more honey if needed.
  8. Compost the solids or use them in a stir fry.
  9. Store the liquid in a sealed container in the refrigerator and ENJOY!

How to use fire cider

There are lots of ways to use this amazing tonic. Some herbalists recommend drinking about a tablespoon a day straight off a spoon, or add it to another beverage. When you feel an illness coming on, you can take the fire cider more frequently in smaller doses, or even use it as a gargle to soothe a scratchy throat. It can also be used as a dressing on salads, a marinade, or as a substitution for vinegar in a number of other recipes.

Disclaimer: As with any herbal remedy, please consult a health care professional before using. There is always a chance of negative interactions with prescription medications or with some health conditions.

Yield: 1 jar

Fire Cider

fire cider ingredients

Grab this recipe to make fire cider at home with fresh ingredients. This healthful tonic is quick to make at home and so much cheaper than buying at the store.

Prep Time 10 minutes
Additional Time 30 days
Total Time 30 days 10 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1 bulb of garlic, peeled and chopped
  • 1 medium onion, peeled and roughly chopped
  • ½ cup thinly sliced (or grated) fresh ginger root
  • ½ cup peeled and diced (or grated) fresh horseradish
  • 2 jalapeno peppers, chopped
  • 1 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1 lemon (juice and zest)
  • Raw, unfiltered apple-cider vinegar, Enough to fill the jar
  • Raw local honey about ½ cup, or as much as you want to add

Instructions

    1. Prepare all the ingredients and fill a 1-quart glass jar in the order listed above.
    2. Throw in any additional herbs or spices that you may be using.
    3. Pour in enough apple-cider vinegar to completely cover the ingredients and fill to the top of the jar.
    4. Cap with a plastic lid or place parchment paper under the metal lid to prevent corrosion.
    5. Store in a dark, cool place for about a month and shake occasionally.
    6. After a month, strain out the liquid into a clean jar or container. Make sure you squeeze out as much liquid as possible.
    7. Add in the honey and stir. Taste and add more honey if needed.
    8. Compost the solids or use them in a stir fry. Store the liquid in a sealed container in the refrigerator and ENJOY!

Notes

Disclaimer: As with any herbal remedy, please consult a health care professional before using. There is always a chance of negative interactions with prescription medications or with some health conditions.

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