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4.93 from 26 votes

Candied Orange Peel and Candied Lemon Peel

Candied citrus peel is easy to make yourself, contains no chemicals or additives, and tastes MUCH better than store-bought!
Prep Time20 mins
Cook Time20 mins
Air Drying Time1 d
Total Time40 mins
Course: Candy, condiment, Ingredient
Cuisine: All
Calories: 1641kcal
Author: Kimberly Killebrew,


  • 3 Valencia or Naval oranges and 4 lemons (can also use the equivalent of grapefruits, Meyer lemons and limes, or any citrus of your choice, thoroughly washed and scrubbed (as citrus is highly sprayed, I recommend using organic)
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1 cup water
  • Fine granulated sugar for coating


  • Slice both ends of the citrus fruits. Cut the peel on each each into 4 or more vertical segments, depending on the size of the fruit. Peel off each segment of rind. (You can remove a little of the white pith, though not necessary. The pith is bitter but the blanching process below will help reduce the bitterness. Note that if you remove the white pith, the thinner the peels are the harder and more leathery they will be when they’re candied.) Slice the peels into 1/4 inch wide strips. (Keep the peeled citrus for eating, cooking, juicing, etc)
  • Boil the peels in a pot of water for 15 minutes. Drain the peels in a colander, rinse and then drain again. Discard the water from the pot.
    Repeat this process one or two more times to reduce the bitter flavor.
  • Add the 1 cup of fresh water and the sugar to the pot and bring it to a boil. Boil it for a couple of minutes until the sugar is dissolved. Add the citrus peels, reduce the heat to low and simmer for 15-20 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the peels become translucent and the syrup becomes lightly syrupy.
  • Use a slotted spoon to remove a few of the peels at a time and let the excess syrup drip off for a few seconds. Place the hot, wet peels in a bowl of sugar and toss to coat.
  • Spread the candied citrus peels out on a wire rack to cool and dry completely, 1-2 days.
  • Stored in an airtight container in a cool, dry place, the candied citrus peel will keep for at least a month. They'll keep even longer in the fridge and for a few months frozen.
    Note:  If you find your candied citrus peel gets hard after a while don't worry - they will soften up beautifully as they bake in whatever recipe you add them to!
    Note:  To keep the candied peels even softer you can limit the drying time, skip the final sugar coating step and put the peels in a ziplock bag and either refrigerate or freeze them.


*DON'T DISCARD THE CITRUS SYRUP! This is a wonderful citrus-flavored simple syrup to add to your drinks for a wonderful kick of citrus flavor!
*If you'd like to make more candied citrus peel, simply increase the amount of water and sugar by the same 1:2 ratio.
Calories: 1641kcal | Carbohydrates: 430g | Protein: 3g | Sodium: 22mg | Potassium: 447mg | Fiber: 9g | Sugar: 407g | Vitamin A: 70IU | Vitamin C: 171.8mg | Calcium: 84mg | Iron: 2.1mg