Candied Lemons are easily made at home on the stove and make beautiful toppings to cakes, pies, and more. You can also eat them plain!
Making Candied Lemons at home might sound like a daunting process, but it’s actually quite simple. It takes several hours to make them, but most of that time is the wait time.
Candied Lemons are perfect to add to desserts, they make a lovely garnish for cocktails, or you can eat them all by themselves (they are candy after all).
What Do Candied Lemons Taste Like?
Candying lemons removes a lot of the tartness and bitterness from lemons and adds a nice sweetness. You’ll find this candied fruit to be thick, chewy, and sweet.
The thing I love most about this recipe is that none of the ingredients go to waste! I like to take my sugar mixture and create a lemon simple syrup.
The simple syrup is also great for adding to drinks and desserts! So get your lemons ready and let’s get candying!
Tools Needed To Make Candied Lemons:
- Very sharp knife
- Large, deep skillet
How To Make Candied Lemons:
Slice lemons into 1/8-inch thin round slices and set the thinly sliced lemons aside.
In a large skillet, combine water, sugar, and lemon juice and bring to a boil.
Once sugar has dissolved, turn heat to medium-low.
Add the lemon slices in a single layer and simmer for 15 minutes to 30 minutes, turning the lemons over gently with tongs halfway through. Keep an eye on it to make sure it doesn’t burn, turn to a lower heat if necessary.
Once the lemons are slightly translucent, remove them gently from the pan with tongs, keep liquid in pan, and lay on parchment paper and allow them to set for at least 4 hours to cool to room temperature.
- Optional Sugared Lemons: If you want to make these candied lemons even sweeter and prettier, dip them in granulated sugar after they’ve set. This helps offset any remaining bitterness in the lemon peel.
Optional Simple Syrup: Now, you can make a lemon simple syrup, simply add 1/2 cup of water to the existing liquid, stir and let cool completely. Transfer to a air tight container and store in the fridge for future use.
How Long Do Candied Lemons Last?
These are pretty tasty little treats, so I’m guessing they won’t last long. But if stored in an air-tight container in a cool, dry place or in the refrigerator, they can last up to 6 months.
Can You Freeze Candied Lemons?
You can, but I think it’s unnecessary since they have a long shelf life to begin with. Plus, any remaining condesation after freezing and thawing could result in very sticky slices.
Candied Lemon Slices
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This post was originally published in April 2014 and was updated in August 2019 with new photos and slight recipe adjustments.
- 2 lemons
- 1 cup granulated sugar plus extra for coating, if desired
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- 1 cup water
- Slice lemons in 1/8-inch thin round slices and set aside.
- In a large skillet, combine water, sugar, and lemon juice and bring to a boil.
- Once sugar has dissolved, turn heat to medium-low.
- Add lemons in a single layer on top of the liquid, simmer for 15 to 30 minutes, turning the lemons over gently with tongs halfway through.
- Keep an eye on it to make sure it doesn't burn, turn to a lower heat if necessary.
- Remove lemons gently from the pan with tongs, keep liquid in pan, place lemon slices on wax or parchment paper and allow them to sit for at least 4 hours.
- Shelf Life: Candied Lemons should be stored in an air-tight container in the refrigerator or in a cool dry area for up to 6 months.
- Lemon Simple Syrup Option: After making the candied lemons, you can make a lemon simple syrup. Simply add 1/2 cup of water to the existing liquid, stir and let cool. Transfer to a air tight container and store in the fridge for future use.
- Sugared Lemons Option: Toss the candied lemons in granualted sugar for an even sweeter finish.