Aug 23, 2018

The Benefits of Fire Cider

by Mitzy VanZalinge

As our society thankfully trends back towards natural living, once-obscure remedies are fast becoming major trends. For wintertime immune support, this is great news, because Fire Cider seems to be the latest thing on the trend watch. An invigorating tonic, Fire Cider was popularized among the herbal

community in the 1980’s by Rosemary Gladstar, a well-known herbalist. Now its benefits are reaching a larger audience.

Fire Cider is a sweet, spicy, vinegary tonic that has been used traditionally for hundreds of years in Europe to help support the body’s natural immune response and invigorate digestion. It can easily be adapted to individual preferences, but the standard base ingredients are apple cider vinegar, garlic, onions, horseradish root, cayenne, ginger, turmeric, and honey. You can also add lemon, oranges, astragalus, hot peppers, adaptogenic herbs, mushrooms, and more. There are many health claims made surrounding this invigorating blend, and much evidence exists that, individually, the warming components can provide

multiple benefits.

Judging by the many spicy ingredients in the recipe, you might not expect it to taste very good, however many people enjoy the spicy-yet-sweet concoction. Because it is technically a tincture, you want to make your year’s batch of fire cider at least a month before the cold season starts. Combine all the ingredients in a mason jar, seal, and store, shaking occasionally, for at least a month. Strain, then store the liquid in your fridge. One shot a day is the recommended serving.

Fire Cider is made from raw, simple, and powerful ingredients that we use to cook with every day - yet it can help keep your immune system strong during the winter months and support digestion and overall health. Just more proof that we can improve our quality of life through the foods we eat, and that the first step towards good health is powerful nutrition!

Here is a simple recipe to get you started:

- 1 cup fresh chopped garlic cloves

- 1 cup fresh chopped white onion,  

- 1 cup fresh grated ginger root

- 1 cup fresh grated horseradish root

- 1 cup fresh chopped Cayenne Peppers, or the hottest

 peppers available, i.e. Habanero, African Bird,

 Scotch Bonnets, etc.

- 1 32oz. bottle of raw, unfiltered, non-distilled apple

 cider vinegar


- Peel and mince all of your solid ingredients, and place them in a 1/2 gallon glass canning jar.  

- Fill up the remaining space in the jar with apple cider vinegar, and close lid tightly.  

- Your mixture will look milky.  Store in a cool, dark place for 2 weeks, shaking mixture daily.  

- After 2 weeks, filter mixture through a mesh strainer or cheesecloth to remove solids, and return liquid to jar.  

Continue storing in a cool, dark place when not in use.

Dosage: ½ to 1 ounce, two or three times daily (1-2 Tbsps. at a time), gargle and swallow.  It can be used during pregnancies, is safe for children over age 4 (use smaller doses) and is non-toxic as a food.

NOTE: Fire Cider isn’t for everyone, and a tonic this strong could have adverse effects for people with ulcers or acid reflux. Fire cider should always be taken with food and followed with water to protect tooth enamel.  Supplemental medications should always be cross-checked with your healthcare professional for safety.