Make your own Fire Cider!

by Lindsey Feldpausch

Fire Cider is a vinegar-based infusion of plants that is used abundantly in herbal medicine. Customarily, Fire Cider is made with warming, pungent herbs such as garlic, ginger, horseradish, onion, and hot peppers. These plants aid the immune and respiratory systems in fighting off viruses while breaking up congestion.


This collaboration of flavors also makes for a tasty treat for the cold season days. The resulting infusion can be consumed straight as a kind of tonic herbal shot, used in salads as a dressing, or applied in cooking where you would have typically used plain vinegar.


Brought into popularity by the revered herbalist Rosemary Gladstar, there was a public court case over the term Fire Cider when a company tried to copyright the name and began taking legal action against herbalists selling the preparation. You can read more about that here, but spoiler alert, the heroic group of herbalists won, and the term was declared a generic term.


Making your own Fire Cider is a way to connect to the plants and to your body’s health as an act of self-care. Not only is Fire Cider easy to make, but as the recipe is not fixed, so you can use your creative side to put your own spin on this traditional concoction. Use the basic Fire Cider recipe below and add or subtract ingredients as you see fit!


Basic Fire Cider Recipe

  • 2 oz     Onion, chopped
  • 2 oz     Garlic, chopped
  • 2 oz     Ginger, chopped
  • 2 oz     Horseradish root, chopped
  • ¼ oz     Hot pepper of your choice, chopped

Place all ingredients in a quart jar, fill it with raw, organic apple cider vinegar and let it macerate for a month or so, shaking every now and then. Once you deem it ready to use, strain and add honey to taste, if you choose.


Some fun additions I have enjoyed in the past are Elderberries, Rose Hips, Hawthorn berries, Pine needles, Mustard seed, Orange zest, Lemon Zest, Sage, Rosemary, and Thyme.


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