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3.75 from 4 votes

Probiotic-Rich Elderberry Soda Recipe

This fizzy elderberry soda is a delicious way to support immune function naturally.
Prep Time 1 hour
Servings 18
Calories 33kcal
Author Heather Dessinger


  • See notes sections for suggested bottles



  • Place the water, dried elderberries and sugar in a pot and bring to a boil.
  • Reduce heat to low/med and simmer for 20 minutes, then remove from heat. Stir in the hibiscus (if using).  
  • Set the elderberry tea aside and allow it to cool to room temperature. Keep in mind that if it's too hot when you add the ginger bug, it will kill the beneficial yeast and bacteria needed for fermentation.
  • Place a mesh strainer over a bowl and pour mixture into it to separate the herbs from the liquid.
  • Measure the liquid and add filtered water as needed to bring it back to 8 cups.
  • Add the ginger bug and lime/lemon juice (if using) to the liquid and mix with a wooden spoon.
  • Pour the elderberry soda into flip-top bottles (leaving one inch of head space) and ferment for 3-6 days. During the fermentation process, you'll want to "burp" the bottles by opening them every 1-2 days so the carbonation doesn't build up too much. Some people have reported that their bottles exploded because they let them ferment for way too long without burping them. I've been making water kefir and other fermented sodas for years and have never had that happen, but I have forgotten about them for a few days and ended up with an extra fizzy bottle that poured out like champagne. I open my bottles on the deck by our kitchen now just in case. 🙂
  • The elderberry soda is ready when it's fizzy and not overly sweet. If you check it after a week and it's still too sweet, you can let it ferment for a bit longer so that the good guys can consume more of the sugar and turn them into probiotics.


This recipe will fill approximately 17-18 of these 4 ounce swing top bottles, 8-9 of the these 8.5 ounce swing top bottles or 4-5 of these larger swing-top bottles.
If you don’t have swing top bottles and prefer to use what you have on hand, opt for a jar that gets a good seal when the lid is on. Fido jars are a good option, but mason jars will work, too. Elderberry soda that is fermented in jars won’t be very fizzy (if at all), but it will still be probiotic-rich and delicious.


Calories: 33kcal | Carbohydrates: 9g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 1g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 6mg | Potassium: 14mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 8g | Vitamin A: 25IU | Vitamin C: 3mg | Calcium: 5mg | Iron: 1mg