Spicy Fire Cider Recipe – Natural Cold Remedy

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Fire Cider natural remedy for colds, flu and sore throat
Wellness Mama » Blog » Natural Remedies » Spicy Fire Cider Recipe – Natural Cold Remedy

I first discovered a recipe for fire cider years ago. It didn’t sound like something I wanted to try immediately, but when I read about the immune-boosting benefits I decided to be brave and give it a try. Years later, it’s a staple at our house around cold and flu time.

Fire cider is a traditional recipe that contains garlic, onion, ginger, cayenne, vinegar, and raw honey. The original recipe calls for horseradish, but for the sake of the kids I typically substitute echinacea root.

Fire Cider

Fire cider harnesses the beneficial properties of onion, garlic, ginger, and herbs, plus vinegar and raw honey for a nourishing drink with a little kick.

How Does Fire Cider Taste?

Judging by the ingredients in the recipe, you might not expect it to taste very good. I didn’t either and I was quite pleasantly surprised by the taste. I’ve even tried it on salads as a dressing and it has a mild peppery and sweet vinaigrette flavor.

In the winter months, I sometimes take a teaspoon or so of this a day or use it on salads. If illness hits, I’ll take that dose every few hours or add a tablespoon to hot water or herbal tea a few times a day until I feel better.

For the kids, I reduce the cayenne or leave it out and they don’t mind the taste too much since the honey helps balance out the vinegar taste.

If you try fire cider and like it, I highly recommend Rosemary Gladstar’s Medicinal Herbs book as the reason I first discovered this remedy (and may I suggest my Wellness Mama 5-Step Lifestyle Detox book for many more natural remedy and beauty recipes as well!).

On to the recipe:

Fire Cider natural remedy for colds, flu and sore throat

Spicy Fire Cider Recipe

An old herbal remedy that uses the germ-fighting properties of onion, garlic, ginger, and herbs. plus vinegar and raw honey for an immune boosting and nourishing drink with a little kick.
Prep Time 5 minutes
Total Time 14 days 5 minutes
Author Katie Wells




  • Place onion, garlic, ginger, and echinacea root, organge, and jalapeño if using in a quart size mason jar. Make sure garlic is at the bottom and completely submerged.
  • Add enough apple cider vinegar to cover the ingredients. Use a fermentation weight to make sure all ingredients are below the liquid level.
  • Cap tightly and leave in the jar for 2-3 weeks, preferably in a sunny or slightly warm place.
  • After 2-3 weeks, strain and discard the herbs.
  • After straining, measure the apple cider vinegar left and mix it with an equal amount of raw honey and add the cayenne pepper.
  • Store in the refrigerator and take 1 teaspoon as needed daily or when illness strikes. I’ve taken as much as 1 teaspoon an hour during illness until I felt better.


Nutrition Facts
Spicy Fire Cider Recipe
Amount Per Serving (1 tsp)
Calories 0
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.


Don’t worry about the garlic turning green — it’s a normal reaction for garlic immersed in an acid. 

Like this recipe? Check out my new cookbook, or get all my recipes (over 500!) in a personalized weekly meal planner here!

This article was medically reviewed by Dr. Shani Muhammad, MD, board certified in family medicine and has been practicing for over ten years. As always, this is not personal medical advice and we recommend that you talk with your doctor or work with a doctor at SteadyMD.

Ever made a spicy cider like this? What is your favorite natural remedy for cold and flu?

Katie Wells Avatar

About Katie Wells

Katie Wells, CTNC, MCHC, Founder of Wellness Mama and Co-founder of Wellnesse, has a background in research, journalism, and nutrition. As a mom of six, she turned to research and took health into her own hands to find answers to her health problems. WellnessMama.com is the culmination of her thousands of hours of research and all posts are medically reviewed and verified by the Wellness Mama research team. Katie is also the author of the bestselling books The Wellness Mama Cookbook and The Wellness Mama 5-Step Lifestyle Detox.


134 responses to “Spicy Fire Cider Recipe – Natural Cold Remedy”

  1. Sonia Hvozdulycz Avatar
    Sonia Hvozdulycz

    Why would anyone want to “kill” bacteria? They are doing their job of gobbling up unsound or dead tissue and otherwise normalizing an out of balance, abnormal internal situation. That is what they do, what they were designed to do. We are better off for having them do their work.

    Now, if taking the fire cider or echinacea extract or anything else of a natural kind makes your symptoms go away – and I would certainly be happy to avail myself of these harmless (in the right amounts) medicines – it is not because they are “killing” the bacteria or viruses or germs or whatever name you wish to put to these unappreciated entities. Your body is not an army, regardless of everyone thinking it is with their endless yapping about the “immune system” wanting to kill everything left and right. “Germs” are working on normalizing your body. It is not a simple issue of “killing” them. They are not enemies. The “dirtier” you are inside, the more unpleasant your symptoms will be.

    Thank you for considering this viewpoint. I am not alone in seeing things this way, rest assured.

  2. Cymone Avatar

    5 stars
    My mum use to make fire cider except in our house we would call it “the Poison” you felt it going down and it would kill anything, our recipe would have tumeric and horseradish in it, we never refrigerated it as it was fermented and we live in the tropics. Honestly the best remedy to kill what ever you had but was never going to win a Michelin star.

    1. Jamie Larrison Avatar

      You could just omit both and then cut the dose in half when taking. I’d also put it in a little bit of water to dilute right before taking some.

  3. cl dupree Avatar

    I have a question: Is there any reason to not grind up the ingredients (horseradish ect) and consume with the fire cider? Seems a waste to toss out the ingredients after the fermenting process and I won’t use them in other food dishes. Would love to hear your thoughts.

    1. Jamie Larrison Avatar

      The idea is that the nutrients have already been extracted. It would be kind of like eating the herbs after you made tea with them. I imagine that if the plant material were ground up into the fire cider it might not last as long. Let us know if you try it though!

    2. Anne Wilcox Avatar
      Anne Wilcox

      I blend all in my vita mix! It’s a bit thick,but easy to swallow. Ready to make another batch;perhaps a bit late since “the season” seems to have arrived.

  4. Erin Avatar


    Thanks so much for the recipe! Do you know if this is safe to take while nursing?


  5. Yvette R Avatar

    I noticed 2 other people asked a question that I have, but didn’t see a reply. I added the honey at the beginning of the recipe instead of waiting until the 4-6 week soaking time. Is this ok or did I just ruin the batch? I’m really hoping I can still use this!

  6. carrie Avatar

    5 stars
    Thanks for the recipe. Can I use a metal strainer to strain this, or should I avoid metal and just use a cheese cloth?

  7. Sarah Haymore Avatar
    Sarah Haymore

    5 stars
    I love this recipe and your blog! It’s so nice to hear more people encourage whole food remedies!

  8. Karolina Park Avatar
    Karolina Park

    Please update the Fire Cider title as it is no longer trade marked. Rosemary Gladstar along with other herbalist won a suit against the company that trade marked Fire Cider. Also there is a new Rosemary Gladstar’s book about Fire Cider. I use it every day but my recipes is with horse radish.

  9. Kristy Avatar

    Hi, I made fire cider but didn’t read the instructions close enough and added the honey in the beginning. Is it still ok? After 3 weeks there is no mold and it doesn’t smell rotten it almost smells like worshishire. I’m wondering what you think?

  10. Jennifer Avatar

    5 stars
    I am about to start my first Fire Cider Brew, and I have two questions.
    1) Most recipes call for white onion, but you used yellow onion. Does it matter?
    2) when my brew is done and I have squeezed as much of the liquid out of the ingredients as I could, could I take the strained items and run them through my Greenstar Juice to extract every last bit of liquid?

  11. Chrissy Avatar

    How long does this last in the fridge after being strained and honey added?

4.13 from 74 votes (64 ratings without comment)

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