Do you have some extra lemons or did you find a great deal on lemons so you stocked up and now you aren’t sure how to use them all before they go bad? Here’s how to preserve lemon juice and lemon peels to enjoy the lemons as long as possible!
How to Preserve Lemon Juice & Peels
I recently acquired a large bag of lemons and I knew that I was going to need to preserve them or they would end up just like the last large bag….going bad before I could use them all in the bottom of my fridge drawer.
We love using lemon juice in all kinds of recipes and I also love using lemon peel/zest but sometimes just buying a few lemons at the grocery store can get expensive. I love to find a deal on them in bulk!
This time, I decided to document just how to preserve lemon juice (or at least how I do it!) and how to also store the peels so that you can enjoy lemon flavor any time of year!
Here are the tools I use to do this job:
- Lemon Squeezer (I really like this one because it’s made of enamel-coated metal.)
- Rada Vegetable Peeler
- Rada Paring Knife
- Preserve Cutting Board
- Food Dehydrator
- Glass Jars
- Ice Cube Trays
Prep your area and have your tools ready. I did this outside because it’s a fairly messy and sticky job.
Start by washing all your lemons well with a good produce wash. If you are concerned about using the peels, you can always use organic lemons.
You will want to peel your lemons before you juice them because it will make your life easier! Be sure and peel gently so as to not get the pith (white stuff) in the peels. Pith will make your lemon peels bitter and you don’t want that!
Take all those beautiful lemon peels and place them on a food dehydrator tray. They no longer make my dehydrator but you can use any food dehydrator you like! The lemon peels smell SO good, just like lemon drop candy…remember that stuff??
Ok, once that is done we can move on to the lemon juice! For this you need to use the knife and cut the lemon in half, then use your juicer and juice the lemons right into a jar or another container that will be easy to pour from. If you have a good juicer, it will strain the seeds.
Look at all that beautiful lemon juice! Once the jar is full, you can pour it into your ice cube trays.
So I really hate these cheap plastic trays, but I could not find my Silicone Ice Cube Trays when I needed to juice up these lemons so I had to go with the cheapy ones. They will work, they just aren’t my favorite!
Back to the DIY! Pour the lemon juice into the trays and place them in the freezer. Once the cubes are frozen, pop them out of the trays and store them in a freezer bag until you need some.
1 Lemon Cube = 2 Tablespoons Lemon Juice
As for the lemon peels, dehydrate them (I do mine at 160 degrees F for 6 hours) until they are totally and completely dry. Any moisture will lead to spoilage when you store them.
Once they are dry, store the peels in a glass jar with an air tight lid. I crumble these up in recipes and use in the place of lemon zest.
I hope this simple tutorial shows you how to preserve lemon juice and how easy it can be to save the juice and the peels for later. Plus you have it all ready to go…no having to juice the lemons when you need them for a recipe!
You might already know, but I really like to preserve things in ice cube trays! Here are some other things I make:
Do you preserve lemons? What do you do with them?