Tap to Read ➤

Elderberry Wine Recipes

Sonia Nair Mar 7, 2020
Elderberry wine is highly popular for its unique flavor. Here are some tips to prepare this wine at home.
Even though, most of the edible elderberries are mildly toxic when unripe, ripe ones are usually used for consumption. You can also make wine from ripe elderberries, and it is really delicious, with a unique flavor.
How to Make Elderberry Wine
Elderberry plants belong to the genus Sambucus in the family Adoxaceae. These plants can be found as shrubs as well as small trees. There are around 30 species of elderberry, and the fruits of the edible species are used for consumption. Only the ripe fruits of the edible elderberries are used for human consumption, as unripe ones as well as other parts of these plants are found to be toxic.
Usually, cooked elderberries are used for consumption, but, ripe fruits are ideal for wine making. When it comes to wine making, some species are preferred to others. They include blackberry elder (Sambucus melanocarpa) and the red-berried elder (Sambucus racemosa).
Elderberry wine is like grape wine, and has a rich flavor. It is not necessary to cook elderberries that are meant for making wine, but some people like it that way. Here are some elderberry wine recipes that can be tried at home.
Recipe I
  • Fresh ripe elderberries - 4 pounds
  • Lemon - 1
  • Ginger root - 1 piece
  • Campden tablet - 2
  • Citric acid - 0.25 ounce
  • Raisins - 8 ounces
  • Sugar - 3 pounds
  • Yeast nutrient - 1 tsp.
  • Pectin destroying enzyme - ½ tsp.
  • All-purpose yeast - 1 package
How to Prepare

Clean the elderberries, after removing the stalks. Once done, boil them in a gallon of water, for around ten minutes. As the water boils, you can get the other ingredients ready. Remove seeds from raisins, extract juice of one ripe lemon, and slightly beat the ginger (make sure to retain the ginger as a single piece).
Strain the juice from the boiled berries and keep aside. Add lemon juice, sugar, raisins, ginger, and citric acid to the pan with elderberry juice; and cook the mixture on low heat, for around 20 minutes. After that, remove the pan from heat, and let the mixture cool.
Once it is cool, pour it into a pail, and add the pectin destroying enzyme. Keep the pail covered for the next 24 hours. After that, add the yeast and yeast nutrient to the pail, and keep it in a warm place for around three weeks. During this time, you have to stir the mixture on a daily basis.
After three weeks, strain the mixture into a fermentation vessel, and fix the air lock. Once the fermentation is complete, transfer the wine to a clean container, and add crushed Campden tablets, before sealing it with an airlock.
Rack the wine, every two to three months, till it becomes clear before bottling. You can enjoy your elderberry wine, once it is ready for use.
Recipe II
  • Fresh ripe elderberries - 3 pounds
  • Sugar - 3 pounds
  • Citric acid - 1 tsp.
  • Water - 1 gallon
  • Yeast - 1 package
How to Prepare

Clean the berries and remove the stalks. Crush the cleaned berries, and place them in a bucket. Boil one gallon of water, and add half of it to the bucket with crushed berries. Add the sugar to the remaining water and let it dissolve. After some time, strain the crushed berries into the vessel with sugar solution.
Add yeast and citric acid and mix well, before transferring the mixture to a demijohn. Seal the demijohn, and place it in a warm place for fermentation. Once the fermentation is complete, transfer the wine to a clean container, and keep it in a cool location.
Rack the wine every three months, till it gets clear. Pour the elderberry wine into bottles, and use when it is ready.
So, making elderberry wine is not a difficult task. Try these recipes and enjoy your homemade wine with a different flavor.