Immune Boosting Recipes to Try While Social Distancing


March 25, 2020

The House Magazine

I think we all know what inspired this post. But I still sometimes sit here in disbelief that a microscopic virus has caused so much global chaos. There is nothing quite like a pandemic to motivate me to keep my health in check. I’ve read tons of research on preventative measures when it comes to COVID-19, however this is a food blog, and there are some amazing foods out there that can aide in the fight against any flu or virus. Let’s talk about those ingredients as we run through this list immune boosting recipes.

Before we move on, I would like to note that I am not encouraging any unnecessary grocery runs by sharing this post. However, I would love to share information with you to make good use of what you do have in your refrigerator or pantry. That is the purpose of this post and my personal opinion is definitely in favor of staying home to help flatten the curve.

Foods to Boost Your Immune System

Everyone knows the obvious one – citrus. It was such an odd experience roaming around the grocery store among carts with a month’s worth of food, but with absolutely no produce. Toilet paper went first (???!??). Followed by diapers and wipes (we still have one in diapers, but I am guessing some of that was a back up plan for the lack of TP?). Then finally went the perishables – leaving the produce as the last food standing. The fact that I could get my hands on a bag of oranges (FULL of vitamin C) pretty much through this whole “doomsday” still blows my mind. Anyway, I’ll continue to ponder that on my own time. Moving on to other immune boosting foods…

According to, some of the unknown and forgotten foods that are great for giving yourself that added health boost are mushrooms, garlic, spinach, sweet potatoes, and broccoli – sounds like a soup no? Some other more popular ingredients would include elderberry, tumeric, ginger and acai berries. You can read more about all of that here, but I would like to show you how you can put some of these amazing ingredients to use. Scroll on for the recipes.

Immune Boosting Soup Recipes

A close up overhead view of a bowl of soup with a clear broth and meat 
garnished with chive blossoms in a light blue bowl.
Photo courtesy of Health Starts in the Kitchen.

Chicken Gizzards and Broth

Did I lose you at chicken gizzard? But wait! It may be the only chicken product left at your local grocery store (seriously). And it has some serious immune boosting benefits. Gizzards will supply you with a good amount of zinc, which is necessary to keep that immune system up. And look at how pretty this soup is? Get over the fear and give this one a try. Full recipe and more info on the benefits of chicken gizzards and broth over at Health Starts in the Kitchen.

A small bowl of broth with mushrooms and greens with a small spoon inside the soup.
Photo courtesy of Happy Kitchen.

Easy Miso Soup

One of the items that made it into my cart during my last grocery run was Miso broth. I don’t know much about it, but thought it was no time like the present to give it a try. Elena, from Happy Kitchen, explains more about the benefits of miso paste in her full blog post, but this was the important take away for me – it improves your digestion and gut health, works an an immune booster and gives you energy – everything we need to stay healthy during the end of these colder months and while social distancing.

A close up overhead view of bight colored vegetables in a large cast iron pot with peppercorns on top.
Photo Courtesy of Waves in the Kitchen.

Magic Mineral Broth

I think it’s safe to say that most of us are probably eating, making, or storing soup as a result of whatever type of lock down your experiencing. Shoppers were initially avoiding fresh produce, but as everything else left the shelves the fruits and veggies started to disappear as well. That prompted me to stock up and get creative when it came to cooking and storing fresh ingredients. This Magic Mineral Broth from Waves in the Kitchen is the perfect recipe to have on hand when your produce starts to crinkle and wilt. The goal at our house is to minimize food waste (even before the outbreak) and this broth is a healthy way to help with that. Also – go crazy it can be stored in the freezer for up to 4 months.

This recipe can be easily modified to whatever you may have in your fridge, which was one of the main reasons why I included in this list. Again, I do not want this post to encourage you to go to the store, but rather make good use of what you stocked up on prior to embracing the self quarantine for an unknown number of days.

Immune Boosting Drink Recipes

Two clear glasses filled with green smoothie garnished with with a red berry and black sesame seeds.
Photo Courtesy of Nourish Plate.

Kale Pineapple Smoothie

So you may not have pineapple in the fridge/freezer but the important take away from this recipe is kale. If you’re in to smoothies, there is good chance you have kale stored somewhere. The immune boosting properties of this veggie is amazing. It’s rich with Vitamin C, and the perfect way to wake your body up in the morning, especially after binge watching whatever you had up on Netflix the day before (don’t worry, we’re all doing it).

An overhead view of a woman in a knitted white sweater holding a white ceramic mug with both hands. The mug is filled with a yellow drink that has a slice of lemon in it.
Photo Courtesy of Aline Made.

Lemon Ginger Turmeric Tea

Another great way to use up ingredients in your refrigerator – make your own tea. Lemon Ginger Turmeric Tea from Aline Made has all the immune boosting properties you could ever want in a drink. Super easy to make as well – add everything to a pot and watch it boil (because we all have time for that while we practice social distancing).

An overhead view of a small glass jar filled with a black syrup with a spoon held over the top filled with the syrup. A branch filled with little black berries is sitting the background.

Homemade Elderberry Syrup

Elderberry is not something that’s readily available in our part of the US. But for those of you out there who have access to this ingredient, there has never been a better time to give this recipe a try. Read why this ingredient is so amazing (especially for kids) in Ashley’s full blog post. She also includes other ways to enjoy the syrup outside of the normal spoonful, like adding it to your pancakes.

A side view of two clear glasses sitting on top of a wood cutting board filled with a light yellow liquid with a slice of lemon floating on top garnished with a sprig of fresh thyme.
Photo Courtesy of Yummy Mummy Kitchen.

Apple Cider Vinegar Drink

I have a 92 year old grandmother in excellent health who is still only taking one medication. She has also continually told our entire family to take three spoonfuls of equal parts honey and vinegar each day, especially when you can feel a illness coming on. I can’t say her remedy is overly enjoyable to get down the throat, but I will say she’s probably on to something. For something a little less potent, give Marina’s Apple Cider Vinegar Drink recipe a try instead – it has all the same benefits in a refreshing glass.

Two ceramic mugs filled with a bright yellow foamy drink with dried pink or red flowers across the top of the drink.
Photo Courtesy of Real and Vibrant.

Turmeric Lattes / Golden Milk

Before the outbreak, you may have started to notice a bit of a trend emerging around a bight yellow drink. Starbucks released one and I started to see it on the grocery shelves. Thanks to Sapana of Real and Vibrant, you can make your own Golden Milk while you stay at home. Turmeric Lattes are a comforting way to enjoy the healthy benefits to the spice and a great recipe to relax and unwind.

A close up side view of a small ceramic mug with no handle holding a yellow drink with one cinnamon stick inside.
Photo Courtesy of Posh Journal.

Orange Turmeric Booster Shot

Another gingery turmeric drink to enjoy from home. Again, the health benefits of these ingredients will help your immune system through the end of the flu season and as we work to flatten the curve of COVID-19 infections. Thankfully recipes like this one are easy to make with non-complicated ingredients and do wonders for your body.

A close up side view of a glass measuring cup filled with green smoothie garnished with black and white seeds and a strawberry on the side of the glass. A wooden spoon in sitting inside the smoothie glass.
Photo Courtesy of I HEART UMAMI.

Paleo Green Smoothie

Getting our daily dose of greens may not come easy anymore. Because we are limiting our grocery store visits or avoiding them altogether, fresh produce has become a bit of a luxury. If you notice the greens you do have in your fridge are starting to wilt, chop them up and throw them into a smoothie like this Paleo Green Smoothie from I HEART UMAMI. You can also throw the greens into the freezer rather than let them go to waste.