It’s no secret that I believe in fairy tales, but they’re mostly of the modern day sort. Occasionally, though, I come across a recipe or ingredient that seems like it was pulled directly from one of Grimm’s stories. That’s totally how I feel about keeping unicorn root in the cupboard, and this fire cider recipe in the fridge.
Though not imparted with any actual mystical powers, fire cider truly is magical in its own right. Like elderberry syrup, this tonic is revered by herbalists for its ability to support the immune system during cold and flu season, allergy season, or any time the immune system needs support.
So, what is fire cider?
It’s a spicy, delicious tonic that’s made by infusing apple cider vinegar with powerful immune-supporting, lymph moving, circulation stimulating, antioxidant-rich and digestion enhancing fresh herbs. It was developed by renowned herbalist Rosemary Gladstar, author of Herbal Recipes For Vibrant Health and many other herbal books.
As she traveled and taught throughout the world, she shared her recipe and encouraged others to adapt it to their preferences. My fire cider recipe is adapted with deep gratitude, because it is truly delicious and so very potent.
Although you’ll often hear it referred to as an infused vinegar, it’s actually an oxymel if you add honey to it. As explained in 16 different ways to make herbal remedies, oxymels are simply herbal vinegars that have been mixed with honey.
With fire cider, this yields a spicy, sweet and tangy tonic that truly lives up to its name. I make a batch every fall to support immune function, stimulate digestion and warm up on cold winter days. Some people also use it in the spring, when seasonal allergies tend to pop up, to help sinuses stay clear.
Health Benefits of Fire Cider
Vinegar infusions like fire cider are especially good at getting herbs to release their minerals and beneficial compounds. Let’s take a look at what you’ll be using to make your batch:
Ginger root (Zingiber officinale)
Once rare and expensive but now widely available, ginger root has been used in Chinese medicine for thousands of years. As a cold and flu remedy, it’s traditionally used to ease nausea and/or soothe a sore throat. (1)
Horseradish root (Armoracia rusticana)
Rich in folate and a compound called sinigrin, studies have found that horseradish helps the body break up congestion and calms inflammation. (2) (3)
Turmeric root (Curcuma longa)
Curcumin, the main compound in turmeric, has been shown to exhibit “antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, antiviral, antibacterial, antifungal” and other properties according to this study.
Onion (Allium cepa)
Loaded with antioxidants like vitamin C and quercetin plus minerals like potassium and sulfur, onions are amazing for supporting digestive health and immune function.
Garlic (Allium sativum)
According to this study:
The benefits of garlic to health have been proclaimed for centuries; however, only recently have Allium sativum and its derivatives been proposed as promising candidates for maintaining the homeostasis of the immune system.”
In other words, modern research is beginning to validate garlic’s use as a folk remedy for immune support. Specifically, the study found that garlic supported balanced immune and inflammatory processes
Jalapeno (Capsicum annuum)
Hot peppers such as jalapeno (or habanero if you’re feeling brave) are rich in capsaicin, which assists the body in managing inflammation.
Lemon (Citrus limon)
Lemons are rich in vitamin C, which supports immune function. This recipe also incorporates the rind, which draws out a compound called limonene that has mood lifting, digestion supporting, and immune system benefits.
If you don’t have access to organic lemons, I suggest leaving the rind out because conventional lemon may have absorbed pesticide residue that can’t be washed off.
Optional Ingredient: Black Peppercorns (Piper nigrum)
Rich in antioxidants such as piperine, black pepper increases the absorption of other nutrients and help the body manage inflammation. They may also play a role in brain health. (4)
Optional Ingredient: Rosemary or Thyme (Rosmarinus officinalis or Thymus vulgaris)
Both of these herbs have long been used in folk remedies to support healthy respiratory and immune function.
How To Make Fire Cider
We’ll dive into the exact recipe in just a bit, but here’s the basic process:
- Put chopped ingredients in a clean quart jar and cover them with a fermentation weight.
- Pour vinegar over them until they’re well covered.
- Cover jar with a lid and store in a cool, dark place for 2-4 weeks.
- Strain out the herbs and mix the infused vinegar with raw honey. Drink up!
Because it takes about a month to mature, I recommend starting your batch now so you’ll be ready for fall. I actually have two going – one for the family and one for myself, because I love all things horse-radishy, and I’m not always great at sharing.
6 Ways To Use Fire Cider
Many people take 1-2 tablespoons throughout the fall/winter months to support immune function, or every three to four hours if cold and flu symptoms are present. Although my kids don’t generally gravitate toward spicy foods, they really love this stuff!
Here are some more ways to use it:
- As a “wellness shot” – I actually love the taste, so I put about 1 oz. in a shot glass to drink straight up. You can also add extra honey or cayenne pepper if you’d like!
- Added to herbal tea – If I’m feeling congested I put couple of tablespoons in lemon ginger tea and then breathe in the steam as I sip.
- Mixed with water – If you don’t feel like making herbal tea, just mix it to taste with hot water and honey.
- In juice – For little ones, mix a small amount into freshly-pressed orange juice or lemonade
- As a marinade – It’s delicious with beef or chicken.
- As salad dressing – Mix with olive oil and honey to make a yummy vinaigrette.
- Added to rice or cauliflower fried rice
Note: When your fire cider is ready and you’ve strained out the herbs, you can make good use of them by mixing them with some veggies for stir fry. Yum!
Fire Cider Recipe
- Quart-sized mason jar (or any glass jar) with a lid
For The Infused Vinegar
- ½ cup fresh ginger root (peeled and diced or shredded)
- ½ cup fresh horseradish root (peeled and diced or shredded)
- ½ cup fresh turmeric root (peeled and diced or shredded – if not available substitute ¼ cup additional ginger and ¼ cup additional horseradish)
- ½ cup white onion (chopped)
- ¼ cup garlic cloves (minced)
- 2 jalapeno peppers (chopped – or if you really like heat try habanero instead)
- 2 organic lemons (zest and juice)
- raw apple cider vinegar (ACV)
- several sprigs fresh rosemary or thyme (optional)
- ½ tsp whole black peppercorns (optional)
After Your Vinegar Has Infused, Add:
- raw honey (optional – add to taste)
- Add the ginger, horseradish, onion, garlic, jalapeno and lemon juice/zest to a clean jar. Pack them down lightly so that the jar is about 3/4 full.
- Use a fermenting weight to hold down the veggies/roots, or place heavy roots at the top so that they will weigh down the herbs and jalapenos (which float).
- Pour a generous amount apple cider vinegar over the roots/vegetables. You want everything to stay under the liquid to prevent spoilage. Keep in mind that some of the roots will expand a little so top it off well.
- Put the lid on. (If you're using a metal lid, line it with parchment paper / wax paper so that the vinegar doesn't corrode it.) Place in a dark, room temperature cabinet for 2-4 weeks. (A month is best.)
- When the cider is ready, shake well and then strain the roots/veggies using a cheesecloth or mesh strainer, then pour liquid into a clean jar.
- If desired, add raw honey to taste. I recommend starting with ¼ cup and adding one tablespoon at a time until it reaches the sweetness level you prefer.
Frequently Asked Questions
I usually use the glass lids from these small weck tulip jars, but you can also find weights made specifically for fermenting here.
According to Katja Swift and Ryn Midura, founders of the CommonWealth Center for Holistic Herbalism and co-authors of Herbal Medicine for Beginners, herbal vinegars will last at least six months (and up to several years).
Depending on the soil they grow in, both garlic and onions may contain compounds that react with vinegar and turn blue or turquoise. Don’t worry, blue garlic is safe to eat . . . some communities even prize it.
This recipe is very forgiving, so just use more of one of the other ingredients. For example, if you can’t find fresh turmeric root, use extra ginger or a mix of extra ginger and turmeric.
I recommend using fresh herbs each time, but you can use the herbs and veggies that you’ve strained for stir fry!
Some people keep theirs in the fridge, and others keep them in a cool place like a cabinet or the pantry. I usually make two batches at a time, one to keep in the cabinet and one to keep in the fridge for use when the first one is done. We tend to go through it pretty quickly in the fall/winter.
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This article was medically reviewed by Dr. Scott Soerries, MD, Family Physician and Medical Director of SteadyMD. As always, this is not personal medical advice and we recommend that you talk with your doctor.
1. Ann M. Bode and Zigang Dong (2011) Herbal Medicine: Biomolecular and Clinical Aspects. 2nd edition.
2. Hoffman, David. Medical Herbalism: The Science And Practice of Herbal Medicine.
3. Lee HW et. al. (2017) Sinigrin inhibits production of inflammatory mediators by suppressing NF-kB/MAPK pathways or NLRP3 inflammasome activation in macrophages.
4. Hritcu, L et. al. (2014) Methanolic extract of Piper nigrum fruits improves memory impairment by decreasing brain oxidative stress in amyloid beta(1-42) rat model of Alzheimer’s disease.
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This looks disgusting and Awesome all at the same time! haha… We will definitely be making this for flu season, thanks for the recipe! 🙂
I feel bad about saying it looked disgusting… :-/ haha… the pics you took are actually really beautiful and make it look really enticing! 🙂
Don’t feel bad! I felt that way the first time I heard about pairing chocolate and bacon. Sometimes it takes awhile to get used to certain combinations 😉
My question is…can I use a lettuce leaf or cabbage leaf to cover the top of the veggies to keep them down? Just wondering.
i would estimate a food grade silicone pad would work better between the veggies and the lid to hold them under the liquid. reason would be anything above the liquid thats food matter could spoil and cause food bourne illness.
I use a horseradish leaf or grape leaf with a fermenting weight to keep them down. I try to avoid plastic at all cost even food grade. Be mindful of where you plant horseradish…it is PROLIFIC. I am struggling to remove it from one of the beds I planted it in as it was taking over aggressively. works well and I have never had any issues with mold or other bad things. I also use a fido jar or a mason jar not screwed shut.
Great idea . I use this when making sauerkraut and it works great. The leaf sticks to the edge of the glass.
I would love to make this, but I can’t seem to find the horseradish root anywhere! Is there a another substitute I could use? I have radishes? Thank you!
I found some in the health foods store.
You need to plant some Horseradish is so easy to grow. I could send you a piece if you need me to [email protected] gmail.com I live in VA
Try an Asian Market.
Does this recipe work with powdered spices??
Juse made some of this in a standard 46 oz used pickle jar. If you microplane the roots and the zest, they displace enough volume to where you don’t need to worry about weighing down the others.
Do you make and sell?
chocolate and bacon???? That’s so weird I have to try it.
It is amazing!! I mean, hands down, delicious. But it is very very hard to find clean bacon. Unless you have your own pigs…..
Yea, its like oreo’s and smoked Swiss cheese. Totally odd but good.
What if I forgot to strain it and it has been in the pantry for 3 months? Is it still good?
I would use it!
Yum!! Even better really
Hi I was wondering do you need to sterilise the jars first?
I think the Fire Cider sounds great!
And Dark chocolate covered bacon with sea salt! Yum!
Heather, nice article. I heard somewhere that cider vinegar still has live bacteria. If that’s true then does your fire cider ferment over the couple of weeks it sits?
Although raw apple cider vinegar does contain some live cultures, fire cider is considered an infusion rather than a ferment. I think it’s because the recipe doesn’t contain enough sugar to feed the bacteria and therefore support fermentation.
Bacteria cannot survive in extreme ph levels, either high or low. My homemade vinegar has a ph of approximately 4.0, similar to commercially available vinegars. This property is what makes it beneficial for food preservation. Vinegar, either distilled or raw, is highly effective against the dreaded toenail fungus that causes discoloration and destruction of the nail. Use it daily along with a good foot hygiene ritual that includes clean, dry socks and foot wear.
Definitely an acquired taste, on the order of Vegemite. But once there… a glorious concoction!
I was able to find glass weights for my sauerkraut on line. They work great for both my firecider and kraut. They can be of course sterilized if you are worried… i am an old hippie great gram and have made firecider for years.
Does anyone know how long fire cider will keep in the refrigerator? Is over a year too old?
According to The Herbal Academy, infused vinegars are best used within six months: https://theherbalacademy.com/herbal-preparation-shelf-life/
I had some that was about that old but it was in a dark cabinet & I drank it anyway. I did not get sick or remember any bad reaction.
Sarah this is my second batch and the garlic cloves are turning purple. Is that okay?
We have certainly enjoyed the first batch
Heather, I can’t find the horseradish or turmeric root. Is it okay to use turmeric from turmeric capsules if I break them open? What can I substitute for the horseradish root? Thanks!
Could I use Kombucha vinegar instead of apple coder vinegar?
I couldn’t find horseradish so used dikon instead I hope it works
Charmaine, how did the daikon radish work out? I was looking for a comment with someone that might have used that. I have one and need something to put it in, thought this might be a good recipe to use it in.
Last winter was really bad for my family….we got sick a lot. We will be making this. I am pregnant. ..I’m sure it’s safe but I just wantednto double check if it is safe during pregnancy? Also, is that 1-2 tablespoons per day?
Thanks so much!!
What about ginger essential oil? I know several women who used it to help with morning sickness? Does it contain the same properties that cause the contractions?
I haven’t researched ginger EO yet, but I will!
I would not use ginger in first trimester. Lemon and wild orange oils are wonderful to smell for nausea in early pregnancy. Or as long as not ingested, or used near due date (can decrease milk supply), peppermint also brings relief to many suffering from nausea during pregnancy.
Agreed. Dr Aviva A Romm notes ginger can encourage miscarriage in the first trimester if take in large amounts. Like more than one-two grams per day.
that’s good to know about ginger! I gave ginger tea to a friend who was having morning sickness. Whew, glad it didn’t have that effect on her (though it didn’t help with her morning sickness either). It’s probably a small percentage of ladies it affects, but still good to know.
If pregnant and using echinacea in place of ginger, how much echinacea should I use? Would it be the pharmacy echinacea?
K’momma, I believe that echinacea is also contraindicated during pregnancy. And I have read contradicting takes on ginger–at least one doc/expert I came across recommended using fresh ginger but avoiding other forms of ginger. I would talk with a healthcare provider you trust before taking either ginger or echinacea.
Do you have the MTHFR gene Heather w that many miscarriages? 🙁 x
Hi Gypsy, in the comment above I am quoting a friend rather than relating my personal journey. I do have MTHFR, but do not have the experience with miscarriages that are often common for those with the mutation. One of my closest friends also has MTHFR and is a mama og six with the same experience as me, so although MTHFR can sometimes contribute to recurrent loss, sometimes it doesn’t seem to have an effect.
I habe the same question. How often do you take this as a preventative agent?
How do you get everything under the brine when you’ve shaken it up?
Oops! I put the “shake well” part in the wrong step – I do it at the end right before I strain to get all the goodness out. Just corrected the recipe – thanks for pointing out my error!
I shake mine every other day or so, the contents will settle back down in a few minutes so not to worry about everything staying covered with the ACV.
Mine floats, should I worry? All ingredients are so light. I can’t figure out how to keep stuff below the ACV line. Would shaking it daily keep the mold from growing? Thanks, my first attempt and I’m so excited, it’ll be ready by Christmas!!
How did this work for you? Did shaking it every day work out?
How long will it keep in the fridge?
Most people say it stays fresh indefinitely. Personally, I make a fresh batch every year because infusions, though they don’t “go bad,” do lose potency over time.
i make it in gallon size twice a year (have to supply the growing family 🙂 ) I just bottle mine, no need to refrigerate and it does hold forever, though we use it fast!
I’ve never seen turmeric in its non-powdered form. I’m new to turmeric but would like to incorporate as it is touted by many. Anyway can I buy it at a regular grocery store? Maybe a health food store if not?
I find mine at a local health food store. It’s not always in stock, though, which is why I suggest an alternative if it’s not available.
I get mine at the green grocery store ( fruit and vegetable store)
If you have a Whole Foods near you they usually carry it fresh.
Fresh turmeric is usually available year round in Asian stores if you happen to have one near you. It’s great for inflammation and has been used forever in countries like India for it’s healing properties. Local stores won’t have it in stock just yet as the harvest is generally late October, early November.
I saw fresh turmeric at the SuperG market yesterday. It is an international market in Charlotte NC
My fire cider is completely dark greenish blue…. smells good but is this okay? Wish I could show a picture.
If you can’t find fresh turmeric, you can add 1 Tablespoon organic dry turmeric to this recipe!
I found Organic Turmeric Root from Amazon.com, after searching health food, grocery and asian stores in the area. It is really good quality and not terribly expensive.
P.S. so it’s cultured right. Probiotics
No, it isn’t a ferment, it is an infusion.
After a week, mine is fermenting, anyway. Would this be the same kind of fermentation as my cultured veggies?
Regarding the use of ginger in pregnancy: http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/druginfo/natural/961.html. The relevant passage: “Pregnancy: Using ginger during pregnancy is controversial. There is some concern that ginger might affect fetal sex hormones. There is also a report of miscarriage during week 12 of pregnancy in a woman who used ginger for morning sickness. However, studies in pregnant women suggest that ginger can be used safely for morning sickness without harm to the baby. The risk for major malformations in infants of women taking ginger does not appear to be higher than the usual rate of 1% to 3%. Also there doesn’t appear to be an increased risk of early labor or low birth weight. There is some concern that ginger might increase the risk of bleeding, so some experts advise against using it close to your delivery date. As with any medication given during pregnancy, it’s important to weigh the benefit against the risk. Before using ginger during pregnancy, talk it over with your healthcare provider.”
I have a close friend who was poisoned by Cross Bow about 25 years ago. They expected her to die within 5 months. A Naturopath sent her to a detox clinic in Washington. She has always treated herself naturally. She has about 1/3 lung capacity and the doctors have always been amazed that she isn’t on oxygen. Many years ago she started making a concoction she calls “gunk”. She combines garlic, onion, horseradish, ginger, and cayenne, no measurements. She eats it by the spoonful anytime she starts to feel respiratory issues. Works great! I will share your recipe with her. Thank you.
Do you have the recipe to make “gunk”…I have respiratory problems…thanks
Sorry Patricia. My friend doesn’t use measurements. She just combines what she has on hand. I would say you could use a little less of the very strong things like the cayenne and horseradish just so it’s a little more palatable. It is strong stuff. The important point is to get fresh organic ingredients.
That ‘gunk’ is the basic Fire Cider recipe from Rosemary Gladstar and can be found here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JU8U0bDmXks&feature=youtu.be
I’m so trying this one ! I’ll be using a metal lid, so I believe I’ll just have to lay it on the jar, without tightening it, to allow CO2 to escape, right ? Just making sure ! Thanks for the awesome recipe 😉
Put a piece of plastic wrap or wax paper between the lid and the contents – works great.
This isn’t a ferment, it is an infusion. You can tighten the lid, or else you’ll get fruit flies!
Justin from Extreme Health Radio
I am so going to try this. I love the idea of doing it as a preventative and I bet it lasts a long time if you do a shot or so a day. Perfect Fall and Winter hack! 🙂
I don’t add the honey to the finished product because I use it as the acid in salad dressings and I also add to to other recipes for a punch of heat and spice.
I also use this as a tonic in the morning with hot water and raw honey. Helps with arthritis and as a preventative for colds and flus.
Any possible way of subbing some for the onion…like extra garlic maybe?
Yes, you could substitute the onion for more of the other roots/veggies.
Can I sub regular bell peppers for the jalapeno peppers? My family is not into anything jalapeno.
Yes, you can. Though a hot pepper of some kind is usually included, you can certainly adapt the recipe to suit your tastes.
I would love to buy fresh turmeric root, but the nearest natural food store is an 8 hour round trip for me. (What can I say… Texas is big…
check out Amazon. I have purchased from this seller before and have had good product delivered….
How much do you take at a time and how often? I’ve seen different things in the comments. I’ve never made or used anything like this but I’m trying to go more natural and healthy. This does look great! I have a garden full of jalapenos right now, its about the only thing that has lived! I’ve never had a garden until this year.
in our house we use a shot glass – if i use really hot peppers (hotter than jalapenos) may be half a shot glass; for the kids i would dilute it with some organic apple juice;
and keep on with the gardening! 🙂
Hello there and thank you for this recipe! I was wondering if I can use tumeric powder? Or is the root more effective?
you can use the powder though the root is more potent – i think
been making this kind for years now in a gallon jar and throwing every thing in the blender with enough vinegar to make the blender go; it is all finely chopped that way and once i strain the first time i put the pulp back in the jar and add some more vinegar – for a slightly milder version we use as salad dressing once it sat for another month or so; best stuff ever for what cold may try to sneak up!
My family is always decimated by cold/flu season & I’d really like to start trying some natural healing alternatives this year. I have a 3, 4 & 6 year old… should I mix 1 tablespoon in juice for them to start with or should I start with even less in the very beginning? How many times a day is it ok to give to the littles as a preventative measure & how many times a day if they are actually sick?
Could you please tell me if raw apple cider vinegar is Bragg’s with the “mother”? Thank you. Lori
Yes, it is 🙂
Thank you Heather
How much would you suggest for little ones – a teaspoon? Then, the same “dosing” instructions if symptoms are present?
Would there be any harm to juicing everything after the month of letting it sit?
It will last much longer if the roots/veggies are strained, I believe 🙂
I strain it all out, and freeze it. I add it to stews and soups and casseroles in small amounts in order not to waste anything, and it actually tastes quite good!
I wouldn’t try juicing or blending it all up, it might make it harder to digest and using the ‘mash’ in cooking is a great way to not waste.
I am going to try it. My son will be 3 next month and it is so hard to find cold meds for kids his age that actually work and are age and weight appropriate. Not to mention the side effects that they can cause. This will be a great remedy for us, but i dought i will get my husband to drink it. Thankyou for sharing something so useful and easy!
Thank you, Heather, for this recipe, website, and taking the time to answer our questions!
Just a clarification, please…I am new to fermenting, and so have never made anything like this before…you put the wax paper on top of the jar, then the lid, but do you put the screw ring on at all? Maybe just on lightly?
Hi Christy, yes you can screw the lid on. Unlike a true ferment which will create a lot of gas as the good bacteria grows, this is is more of an infusion which simply draws the antimicrobial properties of the roots/veggies into the vinegar. Hope that helps!
We use elderberry syrup in the fall/winter in the same kind of way, as a preventative, but also as treatment if we get sick. Is this something we could use alongside elderberry, or would it be one or the other? Thanks!
We use both this and elderberry syrup.
Do you use both at the same time or alternate?
You are so wonderful to take time to answer all the questions. I love your website and have gotten many great recipes. I really appreciate you time and dedication to help us all
How much would you suggest for little ones – a teaspoon? Then, the same “dosing” instructions if symptoms are present?
As Long as the “little ones” are more than a year old: honey should NOT be given to infants less than a year old.
Okay . . . so this does NOT act like a true ferment? I was wondering whether I could safely use a fido jar with a thick rubber gasket?
Argh. I just made a batch with my last bit of ACV (had to top off with a little bit of white vinegar, then accidentally added the honey…did I just ruin the batch? What happens if that sugar is in there during fermentation? Thanks.
Hi Bryan, I’m honestly not sure, sorry! It might be fine depending on how much you added.
Hi I did the same thing! How did yours turn out??
Hi, i also just added the honey prematurely. Will it still turn out ok, did yours? Thanks in advance.
I can’t find Horseradish root. Can I use prepared Horseradish out of a jar?
I was so excited to make this and have been diligently watching it that last few weeks! Today I noticed a white film on top, it doesn’t really look like mold but I’m concerned none the less. Perhaps its a “mother” or sorts due to the raw apple cider? any ideas please???
It could be a “mother.” I can’t say for sure because I haven’t seen it, but if everything is under the liquid that would be my first guess.
Yes, everything is still completely submerged and all the contents still looks healthy and clean. After scanning many photos online I feel like this is what it has to be. Do you think I should just leave it be for the duration of the process or maybe skim it off? Do you know if this is common?
I would skim it off. Yes, I have heard of raw ACV doing this – some say theirs actually resembled a kombucha scoby!
It does look and act just like a scooby! Guess I can start my own ACV practice now, ha ha! Thank you for all your help!!
I’m certain it is a “mother” or SCOBY. I say this because I brew a hair conditioner from horsetail, nettle and rosemary; just a very strong tea from those three ingredients, and add the same amount of ACV. I keep it in a jar in the shower, and add the same amount of water to a glass full, to dilute it when ready. I was gone a week for vacation, and when I got back, there was a SCOBY growing on it, from the Braggs vinegar I use!!! I wanted to do something with it, but alas, threw it away.
As long as it doesn’t smell bad, it should be good.
I have been brewing my fire cider for almost a month now. Though it isn’t quite “mature”, I have had to use it anyway because my dear grandchildren were kind enough to share their cold with me. Let me tell you, this stuff cuts right through that early morning mucus! One teaspoon swished around then swallowed did the trick, and another teaspoon at noon was a blessing! Cleared my sore throat within the first couple of doses! Then, in the evening I took one teaspoon of elderberry tonic, gargling with that, and it soothed my throat for bedtime! I am new to these herbal remedies, but they are sure working for me and I am glad I have them!
Two days in, and my fire cider is blue/green on the bottom. I’m guessing this is mold…but how/why/what!!! Mold shouldn’t be able to grow immersed in vinegar. Anyone else experience this? Help?
I don’t believe it to be mold. I’m thinking the blue/green color is from the garlic or onions; these plants absorb copper in the soil, & when they sit in vinegar (or lemon juice) a chemical reaction takes place. I’m sure you’re fine. I made dill pickles last year and all the garlic turned blue that I used! We all enjoyed those pickles — I’m still here! 🙂
Thank you Margaret! I think you’re right.
We had the same thing when making pickles, all our garlic turned turquoise/blue. It was just a chemical reaction…
@Davina the same thing has happened to me 24 hours into making it. Did you find an answer as to what this is (i.e. A reaction or mold)? Wondering what I did wrong.
Rachel – I’m not 100% sure. But I sniffed it and no offensive odors. I’m going to let it sit for the month, and see how it looks then. If it’s mold, it will grow. If it’s the chemical reaction that Margaret mentioned, then I assume the blue will not spread. We’ll see!
I just went to buy everything I needed and couldn’t find horseradish root anywhere! I’m so disappointed. I assume that it is very necessary. Any suggestions about where I could order it online?
Heather ~ Mommypotamus
Hi Maranda, horseradish is one of the “pillars” of this traditional recipe and I love using it, but I think that a cider infusion made with just the other ingredients would be very beneficial. Not quite as delicious in my opinion, but still beneficial.
Thank you so much!! I love your blog and look forward to learning more 🙂
Does fire cider help with weight loss? Thank you
Do you have any suggestions as to what type of jar to use or where to get the fermenting weights?
I used simple gallon jars, or you could use canning jars. I didn’t use weights…just shook it every time I thought about it, but it isn’t necessary. In fact, one ‘recipe’ (on Mountain Rose Herb’s blog)suggests you bury it for one month …so having it weighed down, or even shaking, isn’t needed.
I am so going to try this. I hardly get sick buy my husband and son alway do during the fall/winter season.
for those that are looking for the fresh Tumeric. If whole foods is not close to you, look for small Indian markets in the area. Tumeric is one of their basic staples.
This is a great recipe, thank you. When my nose is running with allergies I mix a teaspoon of grated horseradish with a tablespoon of organic cider vinegar and it really helps. Your fire cider recipe is about to be brewed at home 😀
Question: I want to make this so it’s ready for ski season but I have a dilemma that possibly you or your subscribers can help me with. I leave for a 32 day trip on the 19th so if I made a batch today, would it be better to station early by a week, have my husband stain at day 30 (which he’ll despise), or allow it to sit until I return which would be nearly two months; or, make right before I leave and have my husband turn the jar every couple of days making the total sit period just over a month?
Thank you for answering 🙏🏻
FYI,the onion is important because it contains high amounts of Quercetin- which is a natural antihistamine. I prefer red onion, i believe it has a higher content.
Does it have to be raw apple cider vinegar and raw honey? Would pasteurized not work?
Heather ~ Mommypotamus
Hi Tori, pasteurized will work 🙂
Pasteurization removes most of the beneficial traits of both ACV and honey. Unpasteurized, raw is recommended to get the full benefit of this recipe.
Can anything be substituted for the turmeric? I can’t find it any where.
Heather ~ Mommypotamus
Yes, you can use extra ginger and/or horseradish.
Mountain Rose Herbs has everything (since this comes from them). I’m not affiliated with them, they are just local to me, and I pick up orders pretty regularly, and they are wonderful people.
They have a blog, and you can look up the original recipe there.
I have made this two years now, and this year, made two gallons…to give some away. I use it in a shot glass every morning, and also put it on pretty much everything I cook (pasta, rice, salad). I saved the remains from the straining, froze it, and add it to stews and soups for an extra “punch”, too.
Is there something I can use aside horseradish or radishes? I have a life threatening allergy to both as it naturally contains compounds similar to sulfa medications and I am not sure my cider would be as fiery without it.
Interesting: I also have an allergic reaction to sulfa drugs (although I don’t believe it is life threatening) and I have no issues with either horseradish or radishes (not related: while both horseradish and radishes are part of the Brassicaceae family of vegetables and they are both roots, they are different species).
Horseradish is important to this recipe, but my guess is that if you increased the onion/garlic/hot peppers/turmeric and ginger, it would probably be nearly as good. I would also add Rosemary, as it is beneficial as an antibacterial plus, it helps get the blood flowing and stimulates and cleanses the nervous system, which is comprised of the brain and spinal cord and is the most important system in the body.
I just strained mine off after only two weeks as was the direction on another recipe. Now I am reading that it should set longer. I am wondering if I should just pour it all back together again and let it set. I put my “juice” in the empty apple cider bottles.
thanks for all the great info!
It really should sit for at least 4 weeks to get the full benefit of all the ingredients as they ‘simmer’ in the ACV.
Katie My Sweet Homeschool
I’m new to your blog and this is the first time I have left a comment. This looks so intriguing! As someone studying herbs right now, I definitely am going to have to try this one. Thanks for sharing! and P.S. pinned to a few of my boards!
Any ideas on canning this ? I wonder if the process of heat treating it would diminish the effects ? Freezing in ice cube trays ?
Heather ~ Mommypotamus
Hi Heather, given those two options I would probably freeze it, but fire cider stays good indefinitely so I personally keep it in the pantry. It loses potency slowly over time, but I’ve never had a batch go bad or anything.
I freeze horseradish in small quantities after I make it and it stays very potent. It gets mild as it sits in the fridge.
I made my fire cider and with in 24 hours of having it in the jar my garlic turned blue it was all submerged and there was no way it could be mold only sitting such a short period of time. I was releaved to read margarets comments about the possible chemical reaction. It was only the garlic that turned a beautiful azure blue. Whew for I was drinking it anyway : )
Heather ~ Mommypotamus
Lol! Yes, it is a reaction between sulphur and enzymes. It doesn’t always happen because sulphur levels vary, but I’d say you got a good head of garlic. More here: http://whatscookingamerica.net/Q-A/bluegarlic.htm
So I have had great difficulty finding horseradish anywhere. I was wondering if I could use extra “regular” radish along with extra ginger and garlic? I know horseradish if preferable, but will regular radish contain similar goodness?
Horseradish and radishes are totally different veggies. From “queenof siennaskitchenjournal”:
‘I thought for sure the hot spicy horseradish root and the familiar red radish were from the same species but they are not. They are part of the Brassicaceae family of vegetables and they are both roots, however they are different species.’
So, no they can’t be used interchangeably
Horseradish is an Expectorant. that’s why it’s important. I get mine at the Asian Market.
Can you use the ground up horseradish you find the refrigerated section of grocery store instead of the horseradish?
I keep hoping to see an answer to this very question, but as long as you’re getting just horseradish root and vinegar, and no other weird ingredients, it should be fine.
This is a wonderful recipe. Have really gotten into infusing water with whole food ingredients to nutritionally boost my hydrating efforts and have had great results. Am definitely going to try this one. This recipe is genius! Thanks.
I listened to you on two different health summits and really enjoyed learning more from you. I have made this recipe and our family is hooked! I have an important question however. My son has thyroid problems, leaky gut (we think), food sensitivities etc. I just want to make sure it is OK for him to have the cider. I did not think it would make any of that worse but thought I should make sure. I made it especially for him because I want to prevent any colds, viruses etc. Thank you so, so much!
Has your son tried the GAPS diet that heals and seals leaky gut? We’ve had wonderful success for our son with it! How did your son do with the fire cider? I’m going to make some for our family, I’ve heard great things about it!
Can we not peel the ginger n turmeric, process it rough in a food processor? Please reply soon. Thanks.
Did you try it? I was also wondering the same. I feel like it’s fine!
That’s what I did, but I didn’t peel it…
Lori! Look into the Paleo Approach, by Sarah Ballantyne! It’s all about the Autoimmune protocol diet, and how to reverse AI, and leaky gut via diet. AIP is an extremely restrictive form of paleo designed to weed out all allergenic foods, and to reintroduce them on a rotating schedule, after several months. So things that would normally be allowed on paleo, like nuts, seeds, and nightshades, are all huge no-no’s on AIP. Bone broth is also a huge mainstay of AIP, and incredibly good for leaky gut syndrome. In the fire cider, the only thing that would contraindicate AIP, would be the jalapeno’s. They’re a nightshade.. but if you left that out, it would be fine I would think! Also look into Tumeric paste, and golden milk!
Hello! How necessary is the weight? It is left in the jar the entire time? Where can I find one of these? Will shaking it occasionally suffice? Thank you this looks fantastic!
I did not weigh mine down, and shook it only when I remembered, as I had it in a dark closet. It will infuse anyway, you just shake it to speed things up a bit, I guess. Mountain Rose Herbs employee told me you don’t need to shake, when they put it in the ground, you can’t shake it, so there is no need to worry. Just shake when you think about it, and, again, you don’t need to weigh it down.
I LOVE this stuff!!!
I have never made this but I have made sauerkraut and if you don’t keep the cabbage under the liquid it will spoil, so this may be why you need to, sounds like to me this will ferment like kraut seeing that is not refrigerated, but the vinegar may keep that from happening but you can make a weight by filling a plastic baggie with water to keep everything under the liquid
I couldn’t find horseradish root in the store. Do you think that “prepared” horseradish in a jar would be ok to use? The only other ingredients are vinegar, salt, and mustard oil.
Heather ~ Mommypotamus
I haven’t tried it, but I know some other people have had success with prepared horseradish 🙂
Read labels – prepared horseradish often has other ingredients (read crap) added to it that you may not want.
Yes, it does Bernie …. most notably, artificial flavoring. Although some brands use mustard oil for the heat.
Horseradish starts to lose its heat once it has been sliced/minced. The only way to keep the heat is to freeze it.
So true. I made homemade horseradish this year with org. acv. So I may use that instead of digging up another plant… since I was really only planning to dig up one this year.
Hmmm… maybe I will dig up another. I love all things horseradishy too. Looking very forward to trying this. Thanks so much for taking the time to post it!
there is a place called millers natural foods in bird in hand Pa. they have all but thyme and rosemary the brand of raw vinegar they have is Braggs raw apple cider vinegar with mother its the best will take your order over the phone and sent to you next day all you do is put check in mail when receive your package I get mine most time in two days they ship ups their number is 717-768-7583 amish owned business never had any bad items all vegs organic even carry raw honey
Do you have to drain off the vegetables? I made mine by blending it in the blender so my veggies are ground up enough that you can just take a spoonful and swallow it veggies and all.
Heather ~ Mommypotamus
Most herbalists strain off the veggies, but I don’t see why you couldn’t do it your way 🙂
Do you refrigerate yours?
I’ve made this for two years, and I’ve never refrigerated it. I take a shot every morning, and made two gallons last year….so it should not get moldy, the ACV should prevent that.
I have some from 2013…same recipe….do you think it is still good?
just your opinion, but… I made this and a month was up a week or so ago. I strained it, added honey to half, kept the other half plain, and then put it back on my shelf. I just thought about whether or not I should refrigerate. The one without honey is a bit tingly. Would you still use it? I mean, it sat with the veggies for a month not in the fridge. One week without should be fine… Perhaps? 🙂 Thanks.
The ACV should prevent any mold or other bacteria (bad kind) I have never refrigerated mine, and I’ve made it for several years now. I congratulate you on your hardiness trying without the honey. Honey is actually great for you when organic, raw and unfiltered (especially local to you). It is also anti-bacterial and will also help with keeping it uncontaminated. I put just enough in mine to give it a bit of smoothness, and I think it adds to it, taste-wise. I KNOW it adds healthiness.
I just strained my vinegar and it is so delicious! I tried a spoonful and it cleared my throat and sinuses right up! This will definitely be a yearly thing for me.
I was wondering if knew if leaving out the lemon would be okay. I am allergic to citric acid (worst allergy every IMO) and can’t touch lemons/oranges/limes/etc after they have been cut open.
Heather ~ Mommypotamus
Yes, it would 🙂
I am new to your site and I am excited to try this Fire Cider Recipe- I was able to order the turmeric root; but received horseradish root powder instead of horseradish root- what are your thoughts on substiuting with maybe 2-3 TBLS of the powder?
Thanks so much,
I’m allergic to jalapenos. Can I use cayenne pepper instead or will that affect the fermentation?
Heather ~ Mommypotamus
Yes, you can!
Previously I made this via Sarah Pope’s “master tonic” recipe; this time I’m trying yours with the turmeric and lemon. I made it yesterday because I found horseradish in my organic market, which is the hardest one to find. They didn’t have any hot peppers of any kind yesterday or today, and I tried Whole Foods and a couple other stores in town, grr. I guess I’ll keep looking and add the hot peppers when I finally find them (or maybe steep them in their own container of ACV and then mix it with the rest; depends how long it takes to find them). Or, my market does have dried organic hot peppers now…do you think fresh/raw is the critical factor here, or is the capsaicin the active ingredient the peppers are adding, and just as good from dried? (I do have access now to non-organic peppers, but I thought, why use those when everything else is organic).
Heather ~ Mommypotamus
I prefer fresh, but I think dried would work just fine 🙂
I wondered if whatever vitamin C transfers from the fresh peppers is a critical component (it wouldn’t be a “megadose” by any means)…but assume most of that would be gone with dried peppers since it’s heat sensitive. I figure the peppers are there more for their capsaicin (the heat) and that’s still there with the dried.
Yes, you definitely want organic peppers, as peppers are one of the “Dirty Dozen” ; produce that have the most pesticide and chemical use, so they are very toxic to consume.
Check out Dirty Dozen to see the rest of the list, and to find the “Clean 15”.
Mine floated, too, and I didn’t worry about it. I shook it every time I remembered, as I had it in a dark closet, and eventually it all sunk. The ACV should prevent any mold. BTW: After I strained it (yes, you could just blend it all up and consume it that way), but I took the ‘used’ remains, put them through a blender, and froze them. I take a tablespoonful or so and put in soups or casseroles, or stews, and pot roasts. You’d be surprised how just a little of it gives a great flavor!
I love the idea of this and will probably try making some for the rest of my family at some time but since I have an allergy to pepper (the capsaicin) it looks as if I will not be able to partake of the remedy. 🙁 But atleast I can share it with everyone else since they have no issues with pepper. Do you think it would work as well without the peppers?
Heather ~ Mommypotamus
It will have slightly different properties, but if it were me I’d absolutely make myself a batch without the peppers 🙂
Just wanted to say this stuff is great! It’s so warming on a cold day and you feel the effects in your sinuses immediately. Think the hardest part for me will be NOT guzzling it down in a few days 🙂 Thanks for posting.
I don’t see mention of fermenting or using an airlock. I just want to be sure I am understanding the process before I ruin it. Airtight lid? Thank you!
Yes, airtight! It’s infusing rather than fermenting so there aren’t the same concerns with pressure buildup.
Surviving and thriving on Pennies
First time I made this it was a small batch and I did use Bragg ACV. This time I made 2 HUGE batches but used regular vinegar. In theory it should do the same thing right? Can you tell me why you strain the veggies from the liquid after its done? Its possible just to leave it liquid and veggies as is? I know ACV is very healthy and helps kick colds to the curb but vinegar in general should still help right? Ive been sharing this with my readers and they love it. Thanks for the great recipe 🙂
ACV with the mother has not been distilled like ACV without the mother or like white vinegar. The distillation process has left the vinegar ‘sterile’ removing the natural goodness from the vinegar.
That said, I just strained my fire cider and put the veggies into a jar of white vinegar because my ACV batch is still brewing. Once it is complete, I will transfer the veggies into some of the ACV.
I love this stuff (even without honey)!
ACV does have some unique properties, but regular vinegar will work. I strain because it extends the life of the tonic and because I don’t like mushy veggies. They are delicious in a stir fry, though.
I have my batch started and it already smells wonderful. I shared your recipe on my site.
I could not get fresh turmeric out where I live or fresh horseradish. So I did put 1 tsp of ground turmeric and 1 TBS of organic horseradish sauce. A friend of mine used to make something very similar and I loved it! I haven’t seen him in ages and he used to make me a jar. I would put 1 TBS of it in small glass of tomato juice each morning. Man it’s just the tastiest stuff!
hi. I just bought Medicinal Herbs by Rosemary Gladstar and made the fire cider recipe. The recipe in the book says to put it in a warm sunny spot in the house which is what I did. Many online recipe’s say to put in dark cupboard. I am wndering why the difference. Did people have problems with it when put in the sun? and should I move it to a dark cupboard?
I was confused the first time I made this, too. MRH blog had the same conflicting instructions, but I emailed them, as one had the sunny spot, another had burying it in the ground for 6 weeks..no sun there!…MRH said that it was a choice of either option…either will work. Sun or dark, the herbs and roots will infuse the ACV, and be wonderful!
Actually, I bought some a couple years ago. Came in an interesting bottle and was not cheap but from the ingredients listed here, probably justified. I liked it but haven’t had any since. Actually, ACV by itself is not a bad idea either. Bul I will definitely try this, even experiment with it. Thanks.
I think it will be fine. It’s actually an infusion rather than a ferment, so the honey shouldn’t inhibit anything.
Ok great! thanks!
I made Fire Cider from your recipe earlier this fall. It is keeping us healthy through cold and flu season – thank you so much! It’s pretty incredible. I have already gone through two large batches I made. Do you recommend re-using the roots/veggies/herbs and add new ACV to make more of the infusion or is it better to start with fresh roots/veggies/herbs?
I’m so glad you like it, Jessica! I usually start with fresh roots/veggies/herbs in each batch 🙂
Hello I’ve been cooking all my 70 yrs raising at least half my food. Recently I became violently allergic to peppers and have read a lot about nightshades, which include tomatoes potatoes eggplants and peppers. What caused this was NEEM Toothpaste, which I had just gotten to help with tooth work. NEEM is a nightshade!!
No one in thousands of groups and health conscious people that I know was aware of this.
Well here’s the scary part: I read up on nightshades and the easy way to explain is they use calcium to harden your tendons and ligaments into bone “calcification”. I wonder why all of Mexico does not have this problem, why we are getting more and more people having complex allergies to plants that were unheard of when I was a young person in the 50’s? I got super-allergic to lavendar after placing a big batch of dried plants in the bathroom. Is it because 100 yrs ago no one could have had lavendar soap deoderant shampoo eo laundry soap thus total immersion? It is not “normal to human life” OR OR is it that some “corrupted food substitutes” have changed or broken individuals bodies so they get these odd allergies?
Would love to know what you could find out Heather….and anyone else too! I’ve long been a nutritional intuitive (aka grandmother lol) and this is a great recipe, just what I need for winter dampness…. AND I have LOTS of horseradish here, So. Oregon tiny farm, if any farmers want to contact me, we might get the barn man to dig some. Very resilient, dont put them where you dont want them to stay. Deep roots in semi shady flat bed. 2 ft apart they get HUGE!!!
I too have been coming up with wierd allergies later in life rather at a young age. I have done a lot of reading and asking and after having a reaction to my allergy shots and being told I could no longer take them have come to some conclusions. I have come to a decision that all the GMO products, feed for animals and man made chemicals in everything along with the antibiotics and steroids/hormones they give to food source animals has a lot to do with these issues. I think there are more people being diagnosed with gluten sensitivities due to GMO grains. I am trying to switch everything I can in our household to natural, homemade, home grown or purchasing from a local Amish bulk food store where I can get the products they harvest and use themselves. Don’t know if any of this helps but thought I would offer my 2 cents worth since I have same experiences.
I can tell you that my husband had severe food allergies, that were getting worse every year. We started treating his leaky gut, and worked on improving his microbiome (and of course, eliminated all processed food and grain) and the only allergy he has left is his egg allergy, which was a result of his anaphylactic reaction to a flu shot, and not really reversible.
I recommend looking up Robynne Chutkan. Her work on the microbiome is amazing.
This was a hit at the office so I am thinking about making a big batch. It was fun to make but time consuming. What if I put whole ginger root in the food processor without peeling? Any reason peeling is necessary? Do you think the other roots will chop easily in a processor? Thanks!
I always turn a salvaged plastic lid upside down and use it to hold ingredients down in a concoction like this. Just find a plastic lid from something else that fits just inside the neck of the jar you are using, turn it upside down and screw your jar lid on top. So you are using the salvaged plastic lid like you would use cabbage in sauerkraut making. Your jar lid will hold the salvaged plastic lid down into the neck of the jar and keep your ingredients from being air exposed so long as there is enough liquid in there. For instance I have plastic lids from peanut butter jars that fit perfectly just inside my wide mouth canning jars, and some larger lids that fit perfectly inside my gallon size jars. They make things easier. Also if you use canning jars you can buy plastic lids for them pretty cheap and not have to deal with rusty lids. Salvaged plastic lids make nice baby chick feeders too.
Also one other question….if it’s not a ferment then why can’t I let it sit in the fridge? If just an infusion it seems like it wouldn’t matter? Would it?
Hi Della, you might be able to, but it would slow down the infusion process. Traditionally it is made at room temperature.
I live in the tropics (Thailand) will the wait time be the same?
Today I strained the month long comcoction , added a couple tea.spoons of honey ..tried it ..added a couple more ..tried it again ..added a little more ..tried it again ..It’s as good as it’s going ta be 😉 must have 3 or 4 oz.s honey it in ..wouldn’t want to take more than a tablespoon a day ..it’s stronger than I thought it would be .. guess that’s good
Just wondering if opening the jar every once in a while (during the 4 keew period) to “steal” a spoon or so, would do any harm to the final product. I’m asking because I felt I could be starting a cold and could not wait for the full steeping period.
Because it is an infusion rather than a ferment I think that opening the jar would be fine.
Rosemary gladstar is the “queen ” of the herbalists . She is a legend in her on time. All her books are wonderful & she is an amazing empowering teacher . Check out her youtube videos . So grateful she was one of my teahers down the herbal path. Thanks so much for posting this recipe . ” Free Fire cider!”
Trying to find recommendations what to do with the mash after I have strained the cider?
Patty in CO
Jason…I just saw your comment and wanted to let you know that I put all my leftover veggies in a blender and make a spreadable paste from them by adding a bit of water to thin them out. Then I spread them on lined dehydrator sheets and dry them at a low temp, put them back into the blender and make the best “fire cider dust” out of them. It is great for seasoning foods or just putting a spoonful into some homemade bone broth for drinking.
Hi there! I just made my first batch of fire cider and it is completely bluish-green! I’ve read in other comments about the garlic turning blue, but my entire batch is blue. All of the solid ingredients look as though they have been dyed and after straining them out, the liquid portion is also a cloudy bluish-green. I let it sit for just under 4 weeks. My batch didn’t include turmeric or jalapenos so those colorful elements are missing. I tasted it and it seems to taste fine but I do not know how to determine if it is bad or spoiled. Please help! I would be crushed to have to toss it.
Hi Lucy, depending on the amount of sulphur in garlic the reaction that causes the color change can be quite strong. I can’t say what you should do, but if it didn’t smell “off” to me I’d use it.
I made this using turmeric powder because our store didn’t have the fresh root. My fire cider tasted like I was drinking French’s yellow mustard! Strange taste, but I’m used to it now. 🙂
How long is the product good for once it is made? An approx time frame would be great
I have the same question, as I made a batch last winter and still have a little left in the refrigerator that I’d like to use today since I’m fighting a cold.
Once made, how long does it keep and do you need to refrigerate it?
Sounds amazing! I home brew kombucha which I normally infuse with lemons or fruits and ginger. I am wondering if anyone has tried adding kombucha in place of the ACV.
I am about to make this. I have washed and dried the ginger, turmeric and horseradish. I am about to peel them and was wondering how can I use the peels of these roots. They are organic and I have washed them well. Do you have any ideas? Or could I just leave the skin on and chop or shred them directly? TIA.
Save them with other scraps to use in a bone broth. That’s what I did!
How much and how often do you take this.
We make our own cider. Any tips on turning it into AVC? I am going to Google it but wanted to see if anyone here knew. Thanks!
A friend is guest posting on that very subject here tomorrow! 🙂
I made a batch a couple weeks ago, and my garlic/onions turned a little black. Is that normal? I didn’t seal my mason jar with boiling water, I just pushed the top down and closed it tightly. Is my batch bad?
I can’t share mine with my MIL because the vinegar is too acidic and she has a condition. Any effective alternatives for the ACV?
Can you strain veggies and reuse them for a second batch? I think I had more than 3/4 of the jar full so there wasn’t much room for the ACV.
I was wondering if there was a way to put more ACV on top of the veggies and use them a second time. For some reason my comment didn’t go up there the first time.
I was wondering, can I use applecider vinegar that has been soaked with herbs and raw honey ?
Question: Have you ever blended the ingredients for immediate consumption? What’s the benefit of letting sit for a month?
Over time the vinegar draws out the different components of each plant. I don’t think blending would have the same effect, unfortunately.
After I let it sit a month in my pantry and strain the roots/veggies I was curious how long this would be fresh for in my fridge. Also did you try to do a stir fry with the veggies?
I accidentally added my honey to the jar with everything else! Is this okay? Will it still work? Thank you
How did this end up turning out for you? I just did the same thing!
I love this recipe and all the health benefits of everything in it! I use it often and am absolutely convinced that it helps. Also in an effort not to waste some of the goodness I took the strained out roots and veggies afterwards, blended them up with some coconut milk and made a yummy spicy sauce to go over noodles.
I made the fire cider but unfortunately also put the honey in the jar at the beginning. Do you think that is OK or will it make it go bad? It was stupid not reading the directions more carefully. Also, do you not recommend keeping it refrigerated?
Oh my god, I JUST did the same thing.. anyone know?
You might get alcohol. If it was me, I’d leave it be and do another batch without the honey. Let us know how it turns out.
Would it be possible to juice everything and throw the juice and the pulp in to a jar and cover with apple cider vinegar? I’m not sure if it would be too potent but it sure would be a lot quicker.
I’m also curious to know what you do with Dragons Blood that you mentioned in the post?
My Crazy Teacher Made This & Said it was ” Like Fire in My Mouth “
I love your recipe, thank you for sharing. This year I had to make it without Tumeric root. I made a huge batch and this time after infusing for a month I put it all into a processor then strained out basicaly all the remaining big stuff. My question is about Tumeric powder. I finally found some and ordered it. Can I just put say a Tbs in each already infused quart jar?
Why don’t you list organic produce for this? It is an infusion, and all the volatiles in the produce will be pulled out into the vinegar, including (especially) any chemical traces. I’ve seen some really “pretty” conventional produce – garlic bulbs with huge cloves, etc. – that just doesn’t look right once cut up or used in recipes. Never had my organic garlic turn colors. Have had to toss conventional ginger because it was gray under the skin, not creamy white.
It is tough to find the various ingredients from organic sources, but so very worth the hunt and extra cost. I’m actually making a 3 hour drive this next week to get ahold of organic horseradish (it is just becoming available on the east coast). Anyone in the DC/Baltimore area should be able to find beautiful organic produce at a Mom’s Organic Market… google for the nearest location.
I LOVE your blog!
This is an interesting point and definitely makes a lot of sense. I’d be interested in seeing a response or more information. I have been looking to make my first batch but have been having a hard time finding organic ingredients other than powdered. None of the farmers markets I visited had organic. Locally farmed yes, but that doesn’t mean “organic.” I thought about going to the Asian market because there’s a good chance they will have these items, or some of them, but who knows where they get it from. My concern, even before reading your post was just as you mentioned. The infusion of pesticides and chemicals into the mixture. Perhaps I’ll just keep purchasing pre-made. Thanks for posting this.
I made two half gallon jars of this (I ended up having my daughter mail me the horseradish root, rather than driving up myself, and she sent a LOT) … they’ll be ready to strain next week. I’ve got a jar of local raw honey to stir into the infusion. Can. Not. Wait!
Okay. I strained my first batch at 4 weeks, and just got around to straining my second batch on Wednesday. I like the citrus notes that the lemons impart! YUM. It is an amazing golden yellow color because of the turmeric. Still gives me the shivers when I take my daily dose, but I look forward to it. Adding raw honey to the infusion is so wonderful.
Hi. Would the shredded Horseradish you can buy from the grocery store work instead of fresh root?
Typically, pre-shredded veggies have had vinegar or other preservative added. Check the package label, at the very least, it will have lower potency than fresh that you shredd yourself. I’ve just seen fresh horseradish root at my local food co-op. Didn’t look to see if it was organic, because I didn’t need any. It is coming in season here on the east coast…
Hi! I know it’s been a long time since you posted this, but I just discovered it recently! Anytime my fiance gets sick it goes straight to his sinuses and lungs so I would like to make some of this and keep it on hand for him (and I will definitely take it too!).
I live in Los Angeles in an apartment that has mediocre climate control, and “room temperature” can mean 80 degrees or more during the summer or “freak” heat waves. Do you know if that is okay for infusions like this? I’m always a little concerned about “room temperature” instructions because of the heat here. I know a hotter room temp reduces fermentation time, but I don’t know much about infusions.
I want to thank you for this recipe. Now my whole family loves it and we are happy to be free from chemical antibiotics especially for respiratory problems.
I made a batch of this and let it infuse for over a month. But then it in the fridge before adding the honey. I took it out today and wanted to heat it up just a tiny bit so I could add honey, but I forgot about it on the stove. It didn’t boil, but the temperature got up to 160-165 f. Did I just completely ruin the benefits by killing off all the good enzymes? I added some raw honey and put it back in the fridge but I feel totally sick about it!
can I use agave nectar instead of honey??? Or stevia???
When making fire cider do you peel the horseradish and ginger?
Can I use cabbage wedge to weigh it down? I don’t have a fermenting weight.
I am just a few days away from my 1 month mark and am getting ready to strain my batch. My question is about the amount of honey to add. I know it says “to taste”, but what amount do you generally add?
Please tell me I didn’t ruin everything. I did not see the part about putting honey in after sitting for a month and straining. I put it in just now as I made it. Is it ok and safe to use in a month?
How long should this keep, and should we store it in the fridge or cupboard once strained??
Quick question- the recipe uses garlic, which I have a sensitivity to, and I was wondering if you knew of any comparable substitutes.
This recipe is really flexible. You just can leave it out or substitute extra onion.
Hey sweet ladies, has anyone made this in gallon jars? Any tips or changes? I really enjoy the taste of this, and we are getting ready to sail through the cold a flu season over here!
I just made a couple of jars of this yesterday and can’t wait to try it! The very next morning when I went to shake the jars I noticed that some of the veggies like the horseradish had turned this bright, light shade of green. I did put a jalapeno and a sprig of rosemary in it. I’m wondering if you have ever had the veggies change color. I will say that it is in a light blue mason jar but it has definitely taken on a green color. It sounds completely awesome and plan on making some to give as gifts for the holidays.
Some veggies with a high sulphur content will change color like that 🙂
This doesn’t seem like it will make very much at a time. Can you just add more vinegar after straining or do you need to completely start over?
You can do that. The fire cider will be more diluted that way but still beneficial 🙂
I HATE peppers… can I leave out the jalapenos but do everything else? Are there substitutes you can suggest?
I have some kombucha I let go too long so it tastes like acv. Any reason I can’t use that?
I made this last year and I swear by its benefits, thank you. I have now bought a home but it has a mild mold issue we are addressing. I have had to stop fermenting food but this is an infusion and I am hoping it will be ok. My question is can I use powdered tumeric? I have heard about needing something else to help with the bioavailability properties for the tumeric….
Thank you in advance,
I added organic peppercorns to help with the viability of the turmeric.
Two questions. 🙂
My friend gave us a jar of fire cider last year for the holidays and it has been in my cool (yet temperature fluctuating) pantry since that time. Is it still good?
Second, is there any recommendations for canning fire cider for long term use? Or is this not recommended for this fermented product?
I just made my first batch and then holidays got away from me and I forgot the cider was brewing in the basement. Is 2 months too long? It doesn’t smell how I expected it too.
Really hoping it didn’t go bad. Thanks for any wisdom you have.
Thanks so much for is recipe. I am excited to have the month go by to use it. My next batch will hotter…i removed the seeds from the jalapeños 😐 agh! I’m sure the concoction will have a kick to it anyway. I lived on this stuff last year (store brought and tried my own recipe w/the horseradish)…thankfully my immune system was kicked up as bood bit as a result and i did not get sick. :-).
All the best
Can I use any raw vinegar in this, instead of apple cider vinegar?
Hi! any suggestion on the amount of apple cider vinegar to use in this recipe?
This sounds incredible! I’ve pinned it, and now I am trying to figure out how to get the kids to take it lol
Will I have issues if the lemons are sliced and not zested/juiced? I didn’t have the recipe with me when I put it together and now it’s hanging out in my pantry. I don’t want it to go wrong, I’ll fish those lemons out if I need to!
This looks really intriguing so I made it last weekend. But I noticed around day 5/6 that there was some white fuzz/blue/green tinge color thing growing so I shook it up and now on day 8 it appears to be gone, is that normal? I hope it’s not spoiled and will still be good in 3 more weeks.
Is it ok to brew longer than four weeks? I just had a new baby and forgot to strain at four weeks so it has been more like seven, oh no!
My family would benefit from starting now versus waiting another four weeks so hopefully all is ok but probably should just make sure nothing is off when opening!?
Yep, it should be totally fine as long as the roots/veggies stayed below the liquid 🙂
I am allergic to citrus. Can I make it without or can I substitute anything for it? Would pineapple juice work?
I couldnt find horseradish root anywhere so I used jar of creamy horseradish. Do I need to toss it and start over?
I made a delicious lactofermented fire cider kimchi using the veges remaining after straining out fire cider. I cut Napa cabbage as for kimchi, added the veges from the fire cider, packed in a jar, added some brine and whey and lactofermented. It’s been a hit!
My fire cider has sat in the cupboard for 6 months.
Can I still make it (I would have to strain all the roots/vegetables/etc.)?
It’s in a dark cupboard, inside a large glass jar.
Hi, is it ok to drink fire cider while pregnant?
Does this have to be refrigerated?
Ive been using this for few years now and never thanked for this amazing recipe. I usually mix it and use it as addition to meats. All the ppl from my family and friends who tried it said its amazingly delicious as for such disquisting looking mix. When i feel flue symptoms i take big spoon mixed with water morning and evening and 2 days later im all good. Sometimes running nose lasts longer but the pain in muscles and bones and tiredness goes after 2 days. I make big batches and keep it in fridge as it does not spoil even after 2 years. Usually use big hrse radish and gigner root, and 10 pieces of each other vegetable, just add more garlic, 3-4 which gives sometimes even 30 gloves. whole bottle of apple viniger which is arroun 250 or 330ml. i blend it all so i dont lose anything and for it to be instantly ready. If u not used to it dont use to much at first as with so much garlic u can expect diarrhea.
How long will this keep once it’s ready and put in the refrigerator?
I apologize if this was already answered but here it is: I’ve been told that hearing, chilling or freezing fire cider will kill the beneficial advantages. Is this true? Thank you in advance!
Very nice. Thank you
So my jars sat in the cupboard for a month. Yesterday I strained them, added the honey and bottled it. Today I am noticing some intense separation. The bottom half had a curdled look to it. Is this normal? I have made this before but don’t remember the separation looking like this.
Oops – I added the honey along with the other ingredients. Will it still work?
Whoops! Got a head of myself in the directions, and making process where I added the honey to the mixture before the fermentation process occurred. Will it affect the process to where I should make another batch , or does anyone with experince know if it will be fine ? Thanks!
Sorry, I didn’t have the patience to read through all of the comments so if this was already addressed, I apologize. Horseradish. If I can’t find it fresh can I use it from a bottle?
My onions are turning blue. I assume this is ok. ???? Thanks
I ran across this after a friend told me of her weight loss from drinking ACV with honey for a few months. I figure since your recipe contains those ingredients along with a bunch of other great stuff that I like, I should try whipping up a batch. My question is, I have a 5qt beverage dispenser I’m planning to use, but the lid does not seal tightly. It just rests on top of the jar. Is this ok? Do you need an airtight seal? Last question is my friend says she lost 30lbs simply by drinking a cup of water with a tablespoon or two of ACV and honey. Have you or anyone else here experienced this? I could definitely lose a few lbs, so this has inspired me to try fire cider, especially since everything in it is good for you anyway. I can’t stop eating jalapenos too, so this spicy treat looks to be right up my alley! Thank you!
I personally would go with a stronger seal. Regarding weight loss, I have no experience with the results your friend described.
Have you tried making this by adding a probiotic culture like we would with sour kraut?
In the instructions you mention after 2-4 weeks or a month, when the cider is ready. What is meant by when the cider isready?
It means that you should allow it to infuse for 2-4 weeks depending on how strong you want it to be 🙂
How long does the fire cider last after a month of maturing?
At least six months and up to several years 🙂
Hello,this is my first time making fire cider and I just opened my jar and the lid was all rust. From reading all the recipes now I know about the wax paper. Did I ruin my batch?
My veggies, specifically the garlic and onion, are turning blue after a week.. Thoughts? help?
Hi Lindsay, it’s a reaction between sulfur and enzymes. It doesn’t always happen because sulfur levels vary: http://www.foodsafetysite.com/consumers/faq/?m_knowledgebase_article=14
Does this make it unusable?
Hi Lindsay, according to Angela M. Fraser, Ph.D., Associate Professor/Food Safety Specialist, “Garlic contains sulfur compounds that might react with copper to form copper sulfate, a blue or blue-green compound. The amount of copper needed for this reaction is very small and is frequently found in normal water supplies. The other sources of copper might be the butter or lemon juice. The garlic is safe to eat. To prevent this in the future, do not refrigerate garlic and store the bulbs in dry air for 32 days at above 70 F to 80 F before use to prevent formation of the green or blue-green pigments.”
Thank you so much!!
I am pretty sure I made a dumb move and used creamy horseradish because I couldn’t find the root. Do I need to toss and start over? Also put in the honey. Lol, help!
Try Amazon: https://smile.amazon.com/Horseradish-Roots-Organic-Ready-Plant/dp/B06X9VD1G2/ref=sr_1_2?crid=1BJGZNTDYZDJM&dchild=1&keywords=horseradish+root&qid=1585851680&sprefix=Horseradish%2Caps%2C177&sr=8-2
Do you think I could substitute homemade kombucha vinegar for the ACV?
Do you know if I could infuse this in a French press to hold everything down? It is stainless steel and glass.
Thank you for the recipe, Heather. However, I’d really caution against taking this recipe “straight up” in shot form or suggesting your readers do the same. It should be diluted, as straight ACV, no matter if it is infused or not, is very harsh on the esophagus and stomach. Please consider editing this post, thank you!
I am about to start my first Fire Cider Brew, and I have two questions.
1) Most recipes call for white onion, but you used yellow onion. Does it matter?
2) when my brew is done and I have squeezed as much of the liquid out of the ingredients as I could, could I take the strained items and run them through my Greenstar Juice to extract every last bit of liquid?
1) White or yellow onion will work
2) I’ve never done that so I’m not sure how it would affect the final product. If you try it I suggest keeping that liquid separate and consuming it first.
Instead of my Greenstar Juicer, I an going to use my Juice Press to get every last drop of this wonderful elixir!!!
I add about 1-2 TBSP of Fire Cider to 1-2 bottles (of the 4 bottles that I drink daily) of the Carrot/Beet/Celery/Apple/Turmeric/Ginger/Garlic Juice that I drink every day. It tastes WONDERFUL and gives my juice just a little bit of a kick!
I wonder if you have come across problems with tooth enamel and fire cider. I gave my child fire cider regularly last year, a few drops undiluted and she now has some discoloration / sort of beginning of cavities – her teeth has always been great as well as her traditional diet. Can it be this the culprit? Can the damage be reversed?
I always dilute this for my child. I give about 1 or 2 teaspoons sweetened cider with about 3 or teaspoons water. I then give him a sip of fresh water afterwards, to rinse his mouth and teeth. I do not brush his teeth for at least an hour after giving him this, as I worry it can be hard on the enamel.
I would maybe have a look at fermented cod liver oil and high vitamin butter oil – green pastures – for teeth/enamel.
I am wondering if you have to strain the tonic or if you can just consume it as is. My husband and I made a batch and haven’t strained it yet- and we really like it that way. But is there a reason why you HAVE to strain It? Oh, and we basically puréed everything in a food processor then added the vinegar.
I recommend straining it for a significantly longer shelf life. As you begin to remove the liquid the herbs will be exposed to air and could potentially mold.
I made a 1Gal and 1/2 Gal jar this year.
When I remove 16 oz of the liquid, I add back 16 oz of Braggs Vinegar and shake well to keep everything below the surface.
After several withdrawals from each jar, I drain it all using a fine strainer and run the solids through my juice press to get every last drop. This should get me through the winter and into spring.
Thank you for posting this recipe, I is better than most of the Fire Cider recipes that I have found.
I made two. I strained one after a month and forgot about the other for 4 months. It is now in my fridge with veggies and all. Is it still good?
Hi Ashley, depending on the soil they grow in, both garlic and onions may contain compounds that react with vinegar and turn blue or turquoise. Blue garlic is safe to eat . . . some communities even prize it. Of course if it looks like it may be mold or something else definitely toss it.
hi there !The good news is that an easy fix for fresh horseradish is bottled horseradish, which is usually sold at most grocery stores. Just make sure to look for a brand that contains just horseradish with nothing added other than vinegar and salt. Avoid any horseradish sold with cream. Can I Modify the Recipe?
Hi, here in Kwazulu Natal where I live horse radish is completely unknown and not even our nurseries carry any roots or plants. I can get powdered horse radish from the health shop but have no idea of how much to use in place of fresh horse radish? One tablespoon or two tablespoons?
Any suggestions would be really appreciated.
I made a large batch a few years ago and have kept it in a cool dark cabinet. It still looks and smells fine and so do you think that it’s still safe to drink? I’m hoping that, like fine wine, it ages well and gets better and more potent over time.😊
Can I substitute Galangal root if I can’t find my usual turmeric this season?
Wish I had found this great information years ago…
I ordered horseradish root, turmeric root and ginger online and had to get quite a large quantity. I used these ingredient to make 2 batches and still have much left over. Do you know if I can freeze these items yo use them once my current cider is gone? Do all these roots freeze well?
Yes, I think they would freeze fine. I recommend peeling and chopping before freezing.
Anna Kristina Eriksson
I love this recipe. I will also subscribe.
I love this Fire-Cider-Recipe I would say it’s God Herbal Recipe. I have problem with colds and coughing and my daughter told me to drink this Fire-Cider-Vinegar with honey. I am not young anymore 78 yrs. Old and I don’t want to add more med to what I already have so I took it and it works. Thank you all for this wonderful herbs.
I have not made this yet; I must ask you a question first. I do not have access to organic fruits, nor vegetables readily available, right this moment in time, so can I use ginger and turmeric in powder form?
I so appreciate all of your hard work, take care…
I don’t think so, sorry!
I’ve started two batches of fire cider. Two weeks in and one is completely green. Not just the garlic, but everything else in the jar including the vinegar is green. Is this safe to drink? It looks pretty unappetizing. Thank you.
I make this all year long .
This isn’t Rosemary’s recipe but still a good one..
Had a hard time finding horseradish but finally did.
This does the job..
When it’s finished does it taste like vinegar? I don’t like the taste of vinegar. And I can’t find horseradish root or turmeric root in the town I live in, what are your suggestions for substitutes?
I can’t have citrus or “spicy. ” If I omit the garlic, onion, lemon and jalapeño, is this still a viable concoction? Ty, Heather! Blessings!
I’ve read an article about using a small apple (ends sliced & core removed) as a fermentation weight. Any insights on how/if this would change the efficacy of anything?