Fire Cider: Health Tonic and Homeopathic Remedy

To anyone visiting for the purpose of discussing my use or perceived misuse of the word “homeopathic”: I am using a casual definition of the word supported by google, WebMD, and Merriam Webster: “That is, if a substance causes a symptom in a healthy person, giving the person a very small amount of the same substance may cure the illness. In theory, a homeopathic dose enhances the body’s normal healing and self-regulatory processes.” I will not be discussing this issue any further. Any new comments seeking to chastise me for the use of the word will not be published.

Important Note: I am NOT under any circumstances claiming this will cure anything. I’m laying out a recipe that is both delicious and nutritious. I am also explaining some of the purported health benefits of the ingredients that go INTO the recipe. This post is no substitute for professional medical advice, but is a classic folk tonic/remedy. I trust you all to use your own best judgment in the manner.

Wait! Don’t run away screaming! I know I’m in serious danger of sounding like an irredeemable hippie, but I have something really, really FUN for you today. I have a savoury, spicy, infused vinegar. Yes. Two infused vinegars in a row! This one is only slightly more complicated than the Coconut Infused White Balsamic Vinegar in has it has a few more ingredients and requires a bit more chopping and grating, but beyond that, it’s every bit as easy, it just requires more patience. Before I get to why, I want to get to the reason YOU SHOULD MAKE THIS! For starters, it tastes awesome. I mean AWESOME. Oh, and did I mention it’s a health tonic?

Fire Cider: Delicious Health Tonic and Homeopathic Remedy (and cooking ingredient, to boot!)

I have a little true story to explain to you how a girl who makes Crispy Cheesy Barbecue Chicken and Bacon Egg Rolls also makes Fire Cider Health Tonic. It  all began with me hopping in my car and driving eight and a half hours to Maine to spend four days with my friends and fellow bloggers; Bakeaholic Mama, Nutmeg Nanny, Running to the Kitchen, and our friend Candace. We spent our days wandering Portland, Maine eating donuts, duck fat french fries, ice cream, bubble tea, cookies, more duck fat fries, fried cheese curds, fried chicken skin banh mi, bacon dusted french fries, and washing it down with beer. Have you noticed the theme? Rich food on rich food on richer food. It was great stuff, but oy. We were overstuffed.

We wandered into the Cabot Cheese Shop where the clerk enthusiastically offered a sample of something called Fire Cider to us. Give that I have been known to drink pickle juice and/or a shot of raw apple cider vinegar each morning (more on the health benefits of that in a moment), it didn’t take much to convince me to try it. It was a SHAZAAM moment. It was a savoury liquid infusion with an amazing balance of tangy raw apple cider vinegar, horseradish, garlic, onion, ginger, and citrus with just a hint of honey. It was exactly what we all needed to de-sluggify all of us after our rich food benders. Brandy, Carrie, and Gina grabbed a bottle. I grabbed two.

When I got home, my husband looked at me sideways when I told him what it was, but he drank the sip I gave him and his eyes grew huge as he declared, “THIS IS GREAT! We’re going to need to keep this around!” I went online to order a larger quantity and discovered that the manufacturer had a bit of controversy surrounding them because fire cider was an old folk remedy and health tonic made by many herbalists and the company had trademarked the name. Okay, well, knowing me, you’ll probably have realized at this point that when I read I could make my own, that was a foregone conclusion. Would I regularly buy a product from a company that had trademarked a word that was the herbal world’s equivalent of t-shirt and was enforcing that trademark or would I make my own? Well, um, duh?

I wanted to make one as close in flavour to the one I had purchased, so I used my only superpower (identifying flavours in a dish) to figure out what I wanted to put in my fire cider.

Fire Cider: Delicious Health Tonic and Homeopathic Remedy (and cooking ingredient, to boot!)

I added fresh horseradish and ginger roots, onion, garlic, lemon, orange, habanero pepper, powdered turmeric, and raw apple cider vinegar.

Fire Cider: Delicious Health Tonic and Homeopathic Remedy (and cooking ingredient, to boot!)

Not to put too fine a point on it, but I nailed it.

And  I had to wait 4 weeks to KNOW I nailed it because it takes that long for the flavours to infuse. Yeah. Um. Did I mention you need to be patient?

So how is this a health tonic and homeopathic remedy?

Let me count the ways:

  • Fresh horseradish is known to be effective against the flu and common cold, tonsilitis, respiratory disorders, urinary tract infections, and pathenogenic fungus.
  • Ginger is used to treat arthritis, muscle pain, upset stomach (motion and morning sickness and general nausea), gas, upper respiratory tract infections, and cough.
  • Onions are used to boost cardiovascular health, bone and connective tissue benefits, and as an anti-inflammatory agent.
  • Garlic is used to treat high blood pressure, high cholesterol, coronary heart disease, heart attack, atherosclerosis, asthma, building the immune system, help level blood sugar, and is used topically to treat fungal infections.
  • Habanero peppers boost your metabolism, and offer headache, sinus, and arthritis relief as well as releasing endorphins.
  • Oranges are great for heart health, as part of a best-case-scenario-anti-cancer-diet, fighting cholesterol, to help in weight loss, and to break up or prevent kidney stones.
  • Lemons are known to aid in digestion, alleviate Meniere’s Disease, kidney stones, and ringing of the ears, cure scurvy (chronic lack of Vitamin C), treat colds and flu, improve the function of blood vessels, and reduce inflammation and retention of water.
  • Turmeric is pretty much the be-all and end-all of health foods. It’s known to delay liver damage, reduce carcinogenic compounds in other foods, make cancer cells more vulnerable to chemo and radiation, inhibit the growth of malignant melanoma and breast cancer, alleviate arthritis symptoms and skin conditions. Heck, maybe I should let the experts describe what the main compound in turmeric -cucurmin- does. Advanced Experimental Medical Biology in 2007 states that, “Curcumin has been shown to exhibit antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, antiviral, antibacterial, antifungal, and anticancer activities and thus has a potential against various malignant diseases, diabetes, allergies, arthritis, Alzheimer’s disease and other chronic illnesses.”
  • Raw apple cider vinegar (not plain old cider vinegar!) is known to be a good source of acetic and ascorbic acid (Vitamin C), mineral salts, amino acids, and other key components of good nutrition, but it is also a well-loved folk remedy thought to ease digestion, fight obesity and diabetes, wash toxins from the body, kill lice, and reverse aging. Does it do all of that? I dunno. But it surely tastes good and it’s nutritional value is undisputed.
  • Raw honey (locally produced) is a fantastic, all-natural fighter of seasonal allergies. Because bees collect pollen from flowers in your area and then convert it to honey to feed their hives, eating raw, local honey is like a tasty allergy shot. It’s also full of vitamins and minerals, anti-fungal, anti-viral, and makes a great, non-narcotic cough suppressant and throat soother.

The beauty of this, beyond its all-star cast of healthy ingredients, is that it just plain tastes wonderful. We drink a tablespoon (or more!) every morning to maintain health. Well, okay, we MAINLY drink it because we like it, but the health benefits are nice. When you feel ill, take a slightly larger dose to help boost your immune system. Word has it on the street that it’s an extremely effective hangover cure. So, I want to know… are you curious enough to try it? What do you think?

Fire Cider: Delicious Health Tonic and Homeopathic Remedy (and cooking ingredient, to boot!)

Cook’s Notes

  • There’s not too much to this, just grate or chop everything up and put it in a jar. That’s where I’m going to caution you. If you cannot or will not use a plastic lid, do lay a piece of parchment paper on the rim of the jar before fixing your lid in place. Raw apple cider vinegar is quite likely to motivate a canning jar lid to rust or discolour. You’d hate to have all your waiting and work ruined by a rusted lid. Replace that parchment sheet every week or so.
  • I prefer to use Bragg’s Raw Apple Cider Vinegar (amazon affiliate link) for my Fire Cider. I always keep it on hand because I love the flavour and I also love the health benefits it offers. Because it still has the ‘mother’ in it, it packs a higher nutritional punch. I understand that Trade Joe’s and Whole Foods also have in-house brand versions that are great.
  • I’d advise you to use organic produce if at all possible. This way you won’t be infusing your lovely health tonic with anything you wouldn’t want to have in it.
  • When you grate your horseradish, make sure you do it in a well-ventilated area or you will regret it. That stuff packs some serious oomph and will empty your sinuses in 30 seconds flat.
  • When it’s time to strain your Fire Cider Health Tonic & Homeopathic Remedy, line a colander with butter muslin, a muslin tea towel, or a double layer of super fine cheesecloth, and set it over a large, stable pot. Pour the contents of your jar into the lined colander and let it drain for 30 minutes. After the 30 minutes, pull the corners of the cloth together and twist to squeeze the contents until you cannot squeeze any more liquid from it. You may reserve the solids for tossing in stir-fries or discard them.
  • You’ll notice there is not an actual quantity of honey listed in the recipe. You should add this to taste. We tend to like ours less sweet, you may prefer yours more so. Start with 1/4 cup and whisk it well, then add 1 tablespoon at a time, whisking after each addition, until you reach your desired sweetness.
  • It’s best to choose raw, locally produced honey for the benefits listed above. The second choice is raw honey. The third choice would be pasteurized commercial honey.
  • Store your finished Fire Cider Health Tonic & Homeopathic Remedy in a sterilized wine bottle or canning jar. Store in a cool, dark cabinet for up to a year.
  • Oh! I’d be remiss if I didn’t tell you that the finished Fire Cider  is fabulous as a flavouring agent for cooked greens or in salad dressings. Boost your health while enjoying your dinner!
5 from 1 reviews
Fire Cider: Health Tonic and Homeopathic Remedy
  • 1 large horseradish root, about 7 inches long (scrubbed very well)
  • 1 large ginger root, about 7 inches long
  • 1 large onion, root and stem end removed and peeled
  • 1 large orange
  • 1 lemon
  • 16 cloves of garlic, peeled
  • 2-4 habanero peppers, stems removed
  • 1 tablespoon ground turmeric
  • raw apple cider vinegar
  • raw honey
  1. Grate the horseradish and ginger roots. Roughly chop the onions, orange, lemon, garlic, and habanero peppers. Stuff them into a half-gallon glass jar with a tight fitting lid or divide evenly between two quart sized canning jars. Sprinkle the turmeric in on top (dividing evenly between the two jars if using quart jars). Pour the raw apple cider vinegar in over the contents, allowing it to settle in through the crevices and adding more so that the contents are submerged. Lay a piece of parchment paper over the rim of the jar, then screw the lid tightly in place. Let the mixture sit in a dark, cool place, allowing it to marry and infuse for 4 weeks, shaking once daily.
  2. After 4 weeks, pour the contents into a muslin or cheesecloth lined colander positioned over a stable pot. Let it drain for 30 minutes, then gather the corners of the cloth, twisting and squeezing until you cannot release any more liquid. When it's fully strained, add honey to the liquid to taste and pour into a sterilized wine bottle or canning jar. Store in a cool, dark place for up to a year, shaking well before using.


  1. kate C. says

    This sounds interesting and pretty good. However, I strongly urge you to not call this a homeopathic remedy! If you read about homeopathic medicine you will see that it is defined as diluting something many, many times. The theory is that a tiny bit of what ails you can actually make you better. Homeopathic remedies are so dilute that they are essentially water. This is clearly NOT what your recipe is! You could call it ‘natural’ or maybe a folk remedy, but it is thankfully not real homeopathy… though this scientist almost couldn’t click the link with that word in the title!

    • says

      Thanks for your input, Kate. I won’t quibble over the title (which will stand), but by that definition, raw, local honey does count as homeopathic since it contains the pollen of the plants that trouble you. You’re right that much of what is in there has a straight up, definable health benefit in pretty large quantities, though!

      • kate C. says

        No, but see that’s my point! There actually is pollen in the honey, whereas true homeopathic remedies are so dilute that in order to contain an actual molecule of the substance they were diluting you would have to drink an entire ocean… or for some remedies: a container larger than the Earth. There is actual pollen in honey, just like there’s actual allergen in allergy shots, those things aren’t homeopathic. Homeopathic practitioners believe that the water retains a ‘memory’ of what it was shaken with during the dilution process so it doesn’t matter there aren’t any molecules of it. OK, I’ll stop now, it’s just a huge pet peeve of mine when things that aren’t homeopathic remedies are called that because it confuses people and gives these dishonest folks selling actual homeopathic remedies some legitimacy by association!

          • says

            HA! No doubt. I mean, it’s kind of hard to come up with an attractive name for it… The other option, as I saw it, was horseradish, onion, habanero, orange, lemon infused raw vinegar with honey. That just plain doesn’t sound good. 😀

          • April D. says

            Great recipe! And good for you, sticking by your title. That’s actually one of the reasons I clicked over, because though I’ve read many recipes for fire cider, I’ve never heard it described as homeopathic remedy before. So, my curiosity was spurred. Hearing the way you describe honey, now I understand the association, since homeopathy follows the principle of “like cures like”.. Very interesting. And I think I like your recipe a little better than the one I’m using now, so I’m going to give it a try. So glad I clicked over and found your site!

      • rj says

        Hi! How much turmeric root would you use as opposed to powdet and did you use the skin of the roots? I’m thinking of just throwing mine in the blender.

        • says

          I haven’t tested it with fresh turmeric root because I really don’t have access to it regularly. If I gave you a quantity, I’m afraid it would be guessing at this point. 😀 I did use the skin on the horseradish, though, after scrubbing within an inch of its life.

      • says

        Actually, I AM here listening to both of you. I respect your opinion enough to let it stand here in the comments where I’m pretty much the law (since it’s my site and I hold the ability to delete anything and everything) but -simply put- I disagree that my use of ‘homeopathy’ is far enough off of an accepted definition to change it.

        Again, I see enough value in this health tonic that I hope you can put your differences aside and try it. Have a great day!

        • Bayard Bastedo says

          Rebecca, I have to weigh in with those who says your elixir is not homeopathic. Homeopathy asserts that disease can be cured by a substance that in a well person causes the complaints of the sick person. “Like cures like” is homeopathy’s motto.

          Your tonic sounds marvelous. May it cure many!

        • ANTHONY J. HAMBOYAN says

          To Rebecca
          No matter what you do and say, you cannot and will not appease 10 people out of 10.

          People assimilate things differently.

          Don’t waste your time answering people whether or or not your product is so called Homeopthy or not.

          I am living proof of using Apple Cider Vinegar.

          It literally (with minimal exercise & controlling my diet) saved my life. A 890 blood count to almost 2/1oth of a percent being Diabetic free.
          However, the use of such a product dates back to 500 BC for medicinal purposes.
          Yours, I was told by one of my clients actually surpasses plane old Organic Apple Cider Vinegar.
          Let them say what they want, maybe they ought to try it first, then shoot their mouths off to no avail.
          PS: I represent no one, but a living proof.

  2. wendy says

    This sounds interesting! I might have to give it a try. I’m just wondering, does it takes very strongly of horseradish? My husband really doesn’t like horseradish, but I can get away with putting a very small amount in sauces – just enough to add a little flavor, but not enough that it is obviously an ingredient. Do you think I should cut back on the horseradish in this recipe for him? Or would that ruin the taste? What do you think? Thank you for your fun blog!

    • says

      Oooh. That’s a little tricky. I wouldn’t say horseradish defines the TASTE of this, because it’s in with a bunch of other strong things, but it does have the volatile oils in it that make horseradish so pungent when you sniff it… From what I understand of herbal remedies, you’re welcome to tinker around with proportions in order to get the effects and flavours you’d like. I’d say it’ll definitely change its flavour-profile, but I say go for it if that makes the difference between your hubby drinking it or not! Maybe make two batches (split in 2 quart jars)? One like this (as a control) and a second with a lower proportion of horseradish then you can test both!

    • pamela says

      I had some of Rebecca’s brew today, and I couldn’t pick out the horseradish. I could pick out the citrus, the hot pepper, the ginger, and the honey. But not the horseradish. (And I’m pretty sensitive to it, too.)

    • says

      Not being a full-on herbalist, I couldn’t tell you! I know I feel better taking it every morning, but maybe someone with deeper knowledge could weigh in on it?

  3. says

    So so so so pumped you figured out how to make it so now I can make my own. I have been taking it daily and my constant heartburn is gone… which is weird because I would have thought it’d cause heartburn because of the bit of heat and of course the acidity.

    Also…. tastes flipping great in coleslaw 😉

  4. Sarah says

    Sounds very tasty but be careful about the health claims. Acetic acid is not vitamin C (that’s ascorbic acid). For any active ingredient you also need to consider the effective dose range. Paracetamol cures headaches. But you need to know how much to take. One tenth of a tablet won’t do anything. One hundred tablets will kill you. Turmeric has been show to have anti-carcinogenic effects in vitro but is very poorly absorbed form the human intestine. As stated above, homeopathy is something else entirely.

    • says

      Good catch on the acetic acid. There was SUPPOSED to be an ascorbic acid in there, too. I must’ve backspaced through it. AGAIN, I say (which I did say in the post) that these are claims of health benefits and linked to each of the sources I used to describe the purported (another word I used) health benefits.

      • PJ says

        ascorbic acid is not even real C either. Its derived in a lab from gmo corn :(
        Acerola cherry powder or rosehip powder are good choices. Though the rosehip can be rather stimulating!

  5. Pimmie says

    This sounds very good! And what a good timing with the end of the summer rushing up on us. I am so going to make this!

  6. Jana says

    thanks for the recipe! I have been needing a good recipe for this! I am always looking for natural ways to keep the family healthy. Do the kids drink it? Not sure if I could get mine to.

    • says

      Funny you should mention that :) I have TWO kids who willingly drink it and three for whom I believe it will be an effective gauge of whether they’re really ill. “Oh you don’t feel well? Try this. It will make your immune system stronger!” If they don’t drink it, I will know they’re faking :)

  7. says

    So like you I have no issues drinking pickle (or olive) juice. Been doing that since I was a kid and I know a shot of vinegar in the morning is really good for you but there is something stopping me. I’m intrigued though, very very intrigued.

  8. TiffH says

    This sound great. Totally want to make it and give it a go! But the bottles you stored yours in…… I want those more. I’m sure it’s tastier being poured from petty bottles. Please let me, Where did you buy those?

  9. Debbie says

    Homeopathic remedies are made in pharmacies under FDA supervision because they are classified as a medicine and are listed in the US pharmacoepia of medicine along with pharmaceutical drugs. Herbs and oils are not regulated but homeopathic remedies are.

    • says

      Thanks for your input, Debbie, but the title will stand. If you google “homeopathy definition” you will get “the treatment of disease by minute doses of natural substances that in a healthy person would produce symptoms of disease.” by that standard, I’m comfortable with my usage.

      • Debbie says

        Good because your post will catch the eye of homeopathic organizations who will review your claim according to their professional standards and not a dictionary’s definition.

          • says

            I do not mean to sound terse, but this is not a commercial product and has not gone through testing for market, it’s a free recipe and I trust people to differentiate between the two.

          • George says

            Can’t understand why people go out of their way to pick apart things. I was brought up with a simple philosophy, “if you have nothing nice to say, keep it to yourself”. These negative people aren’t “helping”. They are miserable in their own skin. Don’t let the negativty get you down.
            My father in law introduced me to this, he made me a batch and I’m going to make my own. He said its done wonders for him. I’m looking forward to it. Thanks for sharing.

        • lida says

          Debbie, of course you are concern, you probably will be loosing
          money if more and more of us will do our own home made recipes
          otherwise why you are against it?
          Sorry, but our grandmothers did it all their lives. All ingredients
          are healthy for you if you are not allergic to it.
          I am very grateful for this recipe.
          Thanks to this kind of recipes, I am not taking any medication
          and last time I was in the doctors office 15 years ago for poison ivy.
          I am 56 years old.

  10. Elizabeth says

    I am making this today! Am I correct in assuming that you add the honey at the end after it is strained? Thanks so much….keep up the awesome work!!

      • Marjorie says

        So, I mis-read the instructions and added the honey right away. Any idea if I’ll have to re-add later (because vinegar mother would consume it) or if I ruined it?

        Also, I forgot the lemon and the orange when I shopped, so I used lemon and orange essential oils. Any predictions about that outcome?

        Thanks, md

        • says

          Hi Marjorie! I’m glad you were willing to give this a shot. I think a few people have accidentally added the honey at the beginning and had okay results. You might want to flip up through the comments and see what they had to say…

          As for the lemon and orange essential oils, I’m a little hesitant. I don’t think it’s going to hurt the overall product, but I don’t think it’ll do what you would get from the actual lemons and oranges. I would probably (if possible) add the lemons and oranges in now. I love essential oils, but I just feel like in order to get the same orange and lemon presence, you’d have to add enough essential oil to make it taste a little funny. That’s just my assumption, though, having used essential oils in other applications and having made a lot of fire cider in my time. :)

  11. Debbie says

    Concerning the title of this post: Homeopathic remedies are legally protected as OTD drugs and claiming it to be homeopathic without the proper registration and oversight from the FDA is a federal felony.
    Promoting a homeopathic product that does not meet the professional standard can be investigated by the FDA to determine if it is fraud.
    If this drink was posted as a home remedy or health drink, I see no problem.

    • says

      Let me me clear. I am not claiming it cures anything. I am saying it holds true to a certain meaning as I understand it and that meaning differs from your preferred (legalistic) definition. Under the circumstances, it is NOT a claim that it will cure you, I am NOT selling it, I am saying it fits a definition.

  12. Susan says

    Do you peel the oranges, lemons, ginger, etc first? I don’t see it listed but assume you do…definitely want to try this.

  13. Lisa says

    Finally ran down the horseradish root after collecting all the rest of it only to realize I drank the Bragg’s vinegar and my only local source is also out! Might have to have it shipped from Amazon. I’m so excited about making this! Thank you sooo much for sharing all these recipes! It’s exciting to see new recipes to try! The green bean pickles are next!

    • says

      You could use jalapenos if you’re concerned about the habanero heat, Jana, but there’s really not a spicy KICK to this… It’s background more than present, and there’s no lingering heat. All that being said, you know your tastebuds better than I do… if any heat would bother you, I’d try the jalapenos instead!

  14. lisa says

    I must say, I’m intrigued. My great gran was a holistic healer and made something my mom always called Firewater. It sounds remarkably similar to this. I’ll definitely be trying your recipe, since no wrote down my great gran’s. (Lots of women of her generation, especially in the Appalachian mountains used combinations like this for exactly the reasons you outlined. And they worked as well or better than most of the over the counter and prescription medications.)

  15. Allison James Gismondi says

    This sounds lovely cant wait to try this. I am well aware of the benefits of ACV. As a diabetic I know its good for me. I was wondering how much elixir does this make? How much honey did you use? I would worry if the honey would spike my sugar so I wanted to know if I could use my honey substitute instead. I would consider trying it using the honey if its not a lot that is used for a whole bottle.

    • says

      Hi Allison- The amount of honey used is entirely up to you and your tastes. If you decide to use a honey substitute, I’d advise stirring it in right before drinking rather than mixing the whole thing up ahead of time! As for us, I tend to mix the infused vinegar about 4 parts to 1 part honey.

  16. Katie in Syracuse says

    Rebecca, I just opened my fire cider after the full 4 weeks—it is fantastic! My husband was initially skeptical but after tasting it he was sold! I have no doubt this is really good for you (how could it not be?), but our family will use it for the flavor alone. Fiery Bloody Marys are on the menu for our at-home-date tonight. Thanks for your boldness in posting this recipe. That is why I LOVE this site.

  17. Katie McKane says

    I just put up my first batch and am waiting on pins and needles to try it. I couldn’t find a horseradish root within a decent drive, so I substituted a good sized jar of Boar’s Head horseradish in vinegar. I think it
    will work fine, though not as pungent as fresh. Thanks for the recipe!

  18. Lorie says

    I am laughing out loud reading the comments from all those against using the word “homeopathic”in the title of your post. I can understand maybe one person making their point, trying to convey their opinion on the issue. You replied politely that the title will stand, and why. End of it!!! But then all the “smart” people that keep trying to convince you to do it their way…geesh. The rest of us are interested in your recipe, interested in home remedies and for me personally, interested in creating, in my kitchen, from God-grown ingredients, a recipe that nourishes and treats my body and ailments. Those who aren’t interested in the recipe should move on, I am not a scientist nor have i researched to the extent that they apparently have. But i do read for crying out loud, I think most of us relate the word to a healthy concoction for “what ails you”. I just wish people would not “bully-post”. Thank you for posting a wonderful recipe for those of us interested in the actual recipe, (not the wording of the title, the government regulated bull, etc.) . Wonderful job!!

  19. Jamie says

    I wanted to say thank you for sharing this! I came across the link for this post on Pinterest, and after reading it I wondered how I’ve lived 30 years of life and never heard of fire cider?! I love anything spicy, especially things that are make your nose run spicy… I’ve just finished combining all the ingredients and can’t wait to try this, and have something natural to use during cold season and anytime really.

  20. Terry Porter says

    Oh no! I added the honey with everything else! Have I ruined everything?
    My computer froze and I misremembered the recipe and about adding the honey AFTER four weeks!

  21. Jennifer says

    Wow! This is easy and way tastier then I expected! I can’t wait to make another batch! Now all I need is a fantastic hot and sour soup recipe for all the extra bits!

  22. Lovie says

    Can I use horseradish from a jar or do I have to grate fresh? I buy Fire Cider by the bottle from a local co-op and it is a little pricey, but well worth it. If I can make my own I will be even happier….if that’s possible! Thanks for your wonderfulness!

  23. Wendy says

    Thanks for the article. I like that you tell what each ingredient is intended to do. This is my second year of making fire cider and it is wonderfully powerful stuff. I do need to tell you however, as beekeeper, bees do not make honey from pollen. Honey is made from the nectar of flowers and flowering trees. Pollen is gathered as the bee’s protein and nectar is their carbohydrates. Pollen is present in raw honey due to the extraction method when it is pulled from the combs. Store bought pasturized and filtered honey takes away the pollen which is why raw honey will help your allergies but store bought will not…Not meaning to split hairs here…just try to contribute accurate bee information when I see the need. Thanks again for your writing.

  24. T says

    I add organic Ginseng root to mine, figured it couldn’t hurt. Thanks for the recipe, thinking it would be good as a base for fresh garden vegetables/salads as a replacement or addition to dressings.

  25. J. J. says

    Rebecca-I want to thank you for the fire cider recipe. I’m a physican and I believe that many country remedies can be benefical to the patient. Keep up the good work.-Doctor’s Orders!

  26. Lauren Simon says

    Sounds fascinating and like something I will try – thank you so much for posting the recipe. Do you include the seeds of the habanero peppers?
    BTW apple cider vinegar also, purportedly and in my experience, helps to ward off and alleviate urinary tract infections.

  27. SMRAD says

    Apologies if I am repeating a question here but I didn’t see it: I can imagine that waiting for 4 weeks to let everything brew/blend is ideal, but could you start using it before then? If so, how soon after making it?

    • says

      Hi Sandra- I do recommend waiting the four weeks before using. This is so all the good stuff can be infused into the vinegar from the veggies/aromatics. I don’t have an earlier point to recommend, because I feel like 4 weeks is both ideal and the minimum 😀

  28. Kelli J says

    This sounds incredible! Questions: at a Tbsp or so a day, how long does a quart last you? With a four week turnaround, how often are making new batches? Also, I do a hot toddy style drink with Braggs ACV, honey, and hot water, would the fire cider be ok for that do you think? Or will it be too watered down? Can’t wait to try making my first batch of this! Thanks for sharing!

    • says

      Oh, Kelli. I would LOVE to tell you how long it lasts, but with my kids sneaking shots of it at regular intervals I’m not so sure. 😀 I make a gallon at a time, too, because I give it to my extended family, too. I just haven’t tracked it. When I’m down to a gallon I start another one 😀

      I think that hot toddy style drink sounds fascinating with Fire Cider. I’d love to try it myself if you’d care to share your ratios!

  29. Allendra says

    Because the vinegar sort of “eats through” the parchment paper to get to the metal canning lid, would there be any problems that you could think of lining the lid first with plastic wrap and then with parchment paper?

    Also, we add a spring of rosemary and that seems to really add a depth to it that is delicious!

    • says

      My only concern with the plastic wrap idea -which seems like a good one- is that the vinegar would then possibly be in contact with plastic for a while. I think I’d rather I just be careful about changing the parchment than have it soaking on plastic… That being said, it’s going to line the lid, not the jar itself, so maybe? #NoHelpAtAll 😀

    • says

      Hi Mamie- I actually let it steep in a cupboard where the temperature doesn’t really fluctuate. I’m going to say it’s about 60 degrees in that cabinet. I do not keep it in the refrigerator when it’s done either. After mixing with the honey, I bottle it up tight and then store in the same cupboard where I steeped it. Good questions!

  30. Karen Wallace says

    I recently started making this (with a slight ingredient change) and it has done wonders for my husband and myself! We are both pleased with how we feel, especially my husband who has very little issues now with lymphaderma oh his neck from radiation and surgeries for stage IV neck cancer.

    • says

      Airtight seals are a helpful thing when you invert and shake the bottle around to blend the contents. While I’m not sure airtightness is necessary to the infusing process, I’d say it’s definitely needed for shaking, which has to happen every day or so.

  31. Susan says

    Can I print the benefit list to show others at our Farmer’s market? I love the breakdown you give!

  32. Jill says

    Love the info and recipe! I would love to make some and was wondering if you use the orange and lemon peel along with the inside fruit or just the inside fruit? Can’t wait to try!

  33. Lisa Perkins says

    Thank you for sharing this recipe! I’m making it for the first time, and unsure about the horseradish root. They vary in girth from thin to thick. I chose the thickest one I could find, about 2 inches across. If I use a 7 inch piece of that, will that be a lot of horseradish or about the right amount? Thanks!

    • says

      There really is a wide window of variation here that will be fine. The horseradish root I used was also 2-inches across and the final product was delicious. As with many homemade items, each batch of this is just a little bit different, but that’s part of its charm!

  34. Mark Rafferty says

    Just poured off my second batch of this recipe. On the first one I believed that 2 weeks of steeping was just as good as 4. I was wrong. This second batch is much richer and deeper in character. On the health benefit front, I’m pretty sure it knocked out a cold for me in one day. Returned from vacation with all the symptoms of a cold (forgot to pack the Fire Cider) and took a shot when I got in the house. Next day, no cold. My third batch is steeping now. Oh, go with 4 habaneros. It’s more of what you sign up for with an experience of belting down a strong mixture of mysterious goodies.

    • says

      That extra time soaking really does make a difference, doesn’t it? I’m so glad you were able to give it a try both ways to see the difference. Would you believe sometimes I go with 8 habaneros? I usually do that for the midwinter/flu season batches!

  35. Matt says

    Thus turned out great!!!!!!!!!!! Wonderful article, keep up the good work and do let all the snobbish homeopathic people bother you. You are doing a good service even if others can’t see that because of their self centeredness :)

  36. says

    This is by far the best article and recipe on fire cider I’ve seen I first saw a this recipe on FB! I’ve been using it for at least a year now and have recommended it to friends and family. I swear by it and so does my mom, who I recently got her hooked on. It’s a little hard to swallow at first, but the benefits outweigh the initial discomfort. I as well as my mom can tell an improvement in our circulation in our legs (she suffers from varicose veins, me inflammation in joints) the next morning after drinking some of this stuff. I like drinking it at night, after a heavy meal and swear it helps unclog arteries! I feel a heat in my chest after drinking it. I will never stop recommending people to try it out!

  37. Lindy says

    Can the tonic get mold growing at the bottom? I used organic ingredients to start with and put it in a glass container to steep for 4 weeks, but I’m noticing a blue spot near the bottom that looks like mold. If my container isn’t air tight can mold start growing?
    What do you suggest?

    • says

      Hmmmmm. I have no idea, Lindy! I might pour it through a fine mesh sieve into a measuring cup and examine what’s at the bottom of the bottle more carefully. It would be very unlikely that mold would grow in that environment, but I can’t think of what blue thing would look like it was growing there. I would also highly advise an airtight container in the future!

  38. Cissy Vaughn says

    What about the lemon and orange and ginger and tumeric– cut it up with the skin on it and put it all into the jar, or peel them all first?

  39. Michael says

    while it’s true this isn’t “homeopathic” per se, I wonder if you’d try substituting the Braggs ( which is great and folks should ask for locally before resorting to Amazon) with unpasteurized apple cider, and brine so that this infusion ferments. THAT would potentially develop a genuinely biodynamic brew that is lactic acid based, rather than ascetic acid which will never be live. Alternately, one might take filtered brine from a batch of fermented pickles and use that.

    • says

      Good questions, Michael. I don’t think that I would personally sub the raw vinegar with cider because I am not trying to make this probiotic, but rather harness the goodness that is raw cider vinegar! It might be an interesting experiment, though, so I would love to hear what happens if you give it a shot!

  40. Rebecca says

    Thanks for posting your recipe! I made two half-gallon mason jar batches today. Weirdly, I couldn’t find horseradish at any supermarkets in town so I made it with wasabi powder! 1 TBSP per half gallon. Hehe. Well I’ll have to see how this turns out.

      • Rebecca says

        It turned out great! I now use wasabi powder almost regularly when the natural food store horseradish supply is out. However, the wasabi kick helps when habaneros are also out of supply and I have to use jalapeños.

        I’ve experimented with other aspects too… for some batches I’ve added extra citrus items, like 3-4 mandarins instead of one orange, for a more citrus-accented flavor. And every batch has about two whole garlic bulbs… hehe…I love garlic.

        I love this recipe! I share the cider with people and anyone who likes spicy loves it. If they love it enough and want to make it I encourage them to get started with your recipe. Thank you for teaching and sharing it, Rebecca!!

  41. Sarah says

    I love fire cider — thanks for the recipe and walk-through on your process. I am writing up an article on remedies and comfort measures to get through the cold n flu season. Is that your fire cider ingredients photo? If so, I’d like to request permission to reprint it. You can email me directly if you want more info – it’s a small local press, our local food co-op’s magazine here in Washington state. I’d much appreciate being able to run that gorgeous photo, with photo credit listed of course.

  42. says

    Read through the entire comment section to see if anyone else mentioned burying the Fire Cider during the 4 week infusion period. My fire cider recipe comes from an older source and they say to create and bury it on the full moon. Then the earth’s gravitational pull and the tides gently stir it for 4 weeks until the next full moon when you dig it up and strain. This year I used fresh grated turmeric and it was very good and very much more orange than every before. Glad you brought up the idea of adding the honey to taste. We keep one jar sweet and one jar savory for whatever flavor profile is desired. I tend to like the savory. Somehow I’m never in the mood for sweet and sour garlic and onion flavor. lol:)

    • says

      Wow! So did you bury yours? I’d love to do a control experiment and see whether it made an appreciable difference in the outcome of the Fire Cider. I’ve wanted to try making it with turmeric as much for the brilliant orange as the health benefits of the turmeric (which are numerous!)

  43. Alexandria says

    I accident put the honey in with everything else. Is this safe? I would hate to have to throw all of this away.

  44. Yvonne R. says

    I printed this recipe last year and decided this is a good week to get the process started. Good on you Rebecca for not caving in to Blog Bullies.

  45. Patrick says

    thanks for the recipe, just at the end of a long cold, I wish I had known about this earlier. I’m certainly going to try that.
    However, living in Germany, I wonder what exactly ‘raw apple cidre vinegar’ is. I get it, that it’s vinegar from apples, but why cidre? Is that just an additional name thing or something special? Raw, I reckon, is representing/similar to ‘organic’ / ‘bio…’ and non-filtered? Then I won’t have problems getting a hold of the major ingredient, all the rest are easily available.

    • says

      Hi Patrick! When I say “raw” apple cider vinegar, that’s how raw, unfiltered, unpasteurized apple vinegar that still contains the mother of vinegar and is made from raw, unfiltered juice is marketed here in the US. One of the most common brands here is Bragg’s Raw Apple Cider Vinegar. I’m not certain what the equivalent is in Germany. I expect you probably do from my description, though. Would you please share how it’s sold in Germany in case anyone else has the question? 😀


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