Elderflower Cordial

In the Kitchen

It's the time of year where the big fluffy flower heads of Elderflower are starting to spring up! And if you're lucky enough to have access to some, using it in a yummy Elderflower Cordial is a brilliant and delicious idea.

The elderflower is known for its delicate, almost floral vanilla taste and has a light perfume to it.

In the North Island, it's not as common to find Elderflower as it is in the South where it litters the rural roadside and is found in bounties in people's backyards.

Recipe for Elderflower Cordial


  • 20 large elderflower flower heads
  • 4 lemons
  • 1 tsp citric acid
  • 1.5 litres water
  • 1 kg sugar


  1. Zest the lemons and then roughly chop into chunks.
  2. Gently wash the Elderflower heads and steep them in a bowl with the water, zest and lemon chunks.
  3. Put the citric acid in a small amount of water and dissolve. Add this to the flower head mixture.
  4. Cover and leave for 24 hours, then strain through muslin. Gently bring the strained liquid to the boil, add the sugar and stir until dissolved. Pour into sterilised glass bottles and keep in fridge when cool.

The cordial will keep for a couple of months in the fridge and is a yummy afternoon treat after a day in the hot Kiwi sun!