Homemade Candied Citrus Peels Recipe (Tutorial) (2024)

Last Updated: by Kacey · This post may contain affiliate links · 37 Comments

I am working with Ricardo Cuisine today to bring you homemade candied citrus peels! This step-by-step tutorial is completely inspired by their Candied Grapefruit Peel recipe!

The holiday season is upon us and many love the homemade route. I LOVE baking cookies and giving them away. There is no greater satisfaction than homemade desserts during the holiday season and when Ricardo Cuisine contacted me, I knew immediately I would be working with a dessert!

Homemade Candied Citrus Peels Recipe (Tutorial) (1)

Homemade candied citrus peels are very popular during the holidays, and as complicated as they seem, it is all an elaborate ruse. I wish I had tried these earlier because they are such a fun and creative recipe. Simple, relatively quick to make, and pure sweetness; I can see many people showing great enthusiasm over the holidays for these. The originalrecipe is for grapefruit peels, but I thought it would be fun to include some other fruits. The possibilities are endless, and the finishing touches are even more detailed (think sugar-crusted, chocolate dipped, or even liquored-enhanced.) And please, do not throw away the extra fruit or syrup! I have a recipe that uses both ingredients up so stay tuned for those in the next few weeks!

Homemade Candied Citrus Peels Recipe (Tutorial) (2)

Let's begin the tutorial! You will need:

1 grapefruit

1 lemon

1 lime

1 orange

1 cup water (plus more for boiling stages)

2 cups granulated sugar (plus more for decorating)

1 tbsp. coconut oil (optional)

½ cup chocolate of your choice (optional)

*Please note, I am providing step-by-step photos for this candied citrus peels tutorial to better help serve you with this dessert. These candied citrus peels are inspired by Ricardo's Candied Grapefruit Peel recipe and their detailed instructions can be found here.

Homemade Candied Citrus Peels Recipe (Tutorial) (3)
  1. Pick relatively attractive fruit (some bruising or marks are fine, but if you are handing these out as gifts you probably want them to look pretty!) Wash the fruit really well. Dry thoroughly and move to cutting board.
  2. Slice enough off each end of fruit so you can see the inner color (about ¼-1/2 inch.)
  3. Slice around the fruit, lengthwise, until you just reach the end of the pith (right next to the inside flesh.) You can do this as many times as you want, but 4-6 slices should be good.
  4. Remove the skin by prying from fruit. If you are having some trouble, use a paring knife to help separate the flesh and skin (I had to do that for the more difficult fruit such as the limes and lemons.) Use a spoon to scrape the excess fruit off the skin (leaving the white part is okay because we are cooking it enough to get rid of most of the bitterness.)
  5. Homemade Candied Citrus Peels Recipe (Tutorial) (4)Slice the pieces into desired thickness (I want to say my thickness was between ¼ and ½ inch.) Place into a small saucepan.
  6. Fill pot with cold water until peels are just submerged. Place over high heat and bring to a rapid boil. Drain and repeat two times.
  7. Fill with cold water one more time and this time bring to a boil and simmer, over medium heat, for 15 minutes, uncovered. Drain.
  8. Add the 1 cup of water and 2 cups sugar to the pot and bring to a boil again. Lower heat to a simmer over medium-low heat and allow to cook for 1 hour.
  9. Homemade Candied Citrus Peels Recipe (Tutorial) (5)Here on the right you can see how thick the syrup has gotten after cooking for 1 hour! That is exactly what you want! On the left, well, this was an error! I accidentally added two cups water and 1 cup sugar!! That's alright, no harm was done. I just drained the pot and added the correct amounts 🙂
  10. Homemade Candied Citrus Peels Recipe (Tutorial) (6)Line a baking sheet with parchment paper for easy clean up. Add a wire rack on top and carefully place the boiled peels onto it. Don't throw away that excess syrup!! Store in the fridge for later use. Allow the peels to sit overnight (you are looking for a good 24 hours of not touching these!)
  11. When it is time, add some granulated sugar to a shallow bowl. Add some peels a couple at a time and roll in the sugar. Repeat until no fruit remains. You can also use brown sugar here (which I did for some!)
  12. Homemade Candied Citrus Peels Recipe (Tutorial) (7)For a nice change, you can dip the slices in melted chocolate. Combine chocolate and coconut oil in a bowl and heat in 30 second intervals until melted. Dip the peels into the melted chocolate (do not coat them in sugar first!) and place onto parchment paper to firm up.
Homemade Candied Citrus Peels Recipe (Tutorial) (8)

And that is it! They are super easy to make and we were incredibly impressed. You still get a hint of bitterness, but nothing overpowering. Personally, we thought it added character as otherwise these would be a very sweet treat.

Be sure to come back and check out what I have planned for all that extra fruit and syrup!

For more fun and inspirational holiday recipes, check out the holiday dessert category on Ricardo Cuisine!

This is a sponsored post. I was fortunate enough to receive monetary compensation from Ricardo Cuisine. All opinions are my own and I would not recommend a product or recipe that I did not enjoy.

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Reader Interactions


  1. Florian @ContentednessCooking

    lovely recipe! Well done. Those look amazing!


    • Kacey

      Thanks, Florian!


  2. Kristine | Kristine's Kitchen

    I love making things the homemade way, and this is such a great tutorial! You make these candied citrus peels look SO easy! I can see using these in so many holiday recipes.


    • Kacey

      On top of a cake would be a great idea! And I agree, homemade is the way to go 😉


    • Kacey

      Thanks, Krista!! I always wanted to know how they were done, too, so glad I could help!


  3. Stephanie

    Such a great tutorial, these look so good!


  4. Patricia @ Grab a Plate

    You're so right! Every year I see these and want to make them, yet get intimidated! I am thrilled to have your recipe, and so glad for the step-by-step images! This are most definitely on my list for this year (our orange tree will be full soon, too). Thank you!


    • Kacey

      I must say, I am jealous about that orange tree! But happy you can utilize this recipe to its fullest 🙂


  5. Kimberly @ The Daring Gourmet

    Gorgeous! There is NO comparison between homemade and store-bought, homemade has such a better, more vibrant flavor!


    • Kacey

      I find your statement so true, Kimberly! When I made homemade baby food I could SEE the colour difference from the store-bought stuff.


  6. Sara

    I LOVE candied citrus peels, I have a microwave method I typically use. You've inspired me to make some soon, it's been way too long!!!


    • Kacey

      Ohh, intrigued by this microwave method! Happy to help push you along 🙂


  7. Sabrina @ Dinner, then Dessert

    Candied citrus peels are such a unique treat! Thanks for sharing the recipe!


    • Kacey

      Thanks, Sabrina!


  8. Katie @ Recipe for Perfection

    I made candied kumquat peels last year- very similar process! Lots of work, but the glittery peels were totally worth it.

    • Kacey

      What a great idea, Katie! Something I would never have thought of!


  9. Anna @ Crunchy Creamy Sweet

    I love how amazing the house smells when you make candied citrus peel! So good!


    • Kacey

      Definitely gives off a festive vibe 🙂


  10. Justine | Cooking and Beer

    I'm obsessed with recipes like this. Candied citrus is one of my favorite snacks! SOOOO nicely done!


    • Kacey

      I cannot believe I waited so long to give it a try!!


  11. Kimberly @ Bake Love Give

    These are gorgeous - can't wait to use them to spice up our holiday baking!


    • Kacey

      They will be picture perfect on a cake 🙂


  12. Des @ Life's Ambrosia

    These look like such a great treat!


  13. Caroline Leacman

    Where do I find our recipe for the leftover syrup? Thank you Caroline


    • Kacey

      Hey, Caroline! I made a simple fruit salad with it: https://thecookiewriter.com/fresh-fruit-salad-using-leftover-fruit-simple-syrup/


  14. samantha maber

    these look so delicious. I want to make them for my sons TWO-ti fruiti party. How long in advance can i make them xxx


    • Kacey

      Samantha, I found they held up really well so you can easily do them in advance (a good three-four days.) I think your theme is adorable!! My daughter did not like the bitterness from the fruit but all the adults did, lol.


  15. sharon Laverentz

    Nice presentation! Thanks. I have a question however. In the list of ingredients you wrote 1 1/2 cups of sugar but in the text you said 2 cups. I assume the 2 cups is correct but wanted to check. Also, about how many cups of peeling do I need if I am only doing oranges?


    • Kacey

      Ah, you are correct! Sorry about that. I think I got mixed up when I was talking about the error I made in the recipe earlier 🙂 2 large oranges should be suffice (when I made the recipe there was a lot of leftover syrup so I could have added some more peels.) If you click on the link to the original recipe on Ricardo, you will see they made the recipe with two large grapefruit so the oranges can be used interchangeably 🙂


  16. Joella renninger

    Your recipe was perfect !Was wondering if I can freeze candied orange peel? Please let me know


    • Kacey

      Woohoo! You know what? I have never froze them. But I found this article and it seems like you are good to freeze them 🙂


  17. Thuy

    How long will these last outside? Especially the chocolate one?
    What's the best way you would recommend to store them for gift?


    • Kacey

      As long as they stay in an air tight container in a cool, dry place, they should last for a while! You can always store them inside a small Tupperware container inside a nice gift box 🙂


  18. Brittney Aweh

    From start to finish about how long does this take?


    • Kacey

      Sorry, I am just seeing this now. I would say at least 2 hours, but drying time can vary!


  19. Bri Malaspino

    After I strained all the citrus peels out of the sugar, I turned it up a little and made hard candies out of the orange sugar. Very delicious use of the leftovers.

    Thanks for the great recipe!


Leave a Reply

Homemade Candied Citrus Peels Recipe (Tutorial) (2024)


How long do candied citrus peels last? ›

Pack the peel into an airtight storage jar or rigid container lined with baking parchment. Will keep for 6-8 weeks in a cool, dry place. To make into a delicious gift, melt the chocolate in a small bowl. Dip the candied orange peel into the chocolate to half-coat them, shaking off the excess.

What is candied citrus peel called? ›

Succade is the candied peel of any of the citrus species, especially from the citron or Citrus medica which is distinct with its extra-thick peel; in addition, the taste of the inner rind of the citron is less bitter than those of the other citrus.

Is candied citrus peel good for you? ›

Candied Orange Peels are beautiful, festive, and are full of nutrients. The orange peel has more vitamin C than the actual fruit of the orange. Likewise, the fruit peel also has about three times as much the amount of Vitamin A, B-Complex, and minerals such as manganese, calcium, and zinc.

How do you preserve orange peels for old fashioned? ›

You can store citrus peels in the freezer for later use in co*cktails. When thawed, the peels are not crisp and may not spray zest atop co*cktails as they do when they're fresh, but their oils are still present (and release easily).

Do candied orange peels need to be refrigerated? ›

Once the peels are cooled and candied, you can store them in an airtight container in a cool, dry place for up to a month. You can also refrigerate or freeze them for even longer storage.

Why is my candied peel bitter? ›

A couple of those compounds, naringin and limonin, are the main contributors to bitterness in oranges. The reason blanching works so well is that both of those bitter compounds are soluble in hot water. This means the bitterness will leech out of the orange peel and dissolve into the pot of hot water.

Is cut mixed peel the same as candied peel? ›

Also known as “mixed peel”, candied citrus peel is a key ingredient in many traditional British Christmas baked goods. Fruit cake, plum pudding and mincemeat for pies are all examples of this.

What is candied orange peel called in France? ›

I don't like to toss things away, especially precious organic grapefruit peels. So I candied them. The French refer to candied orange peels as orangettes, although I haven't heard of a term for candied grapefruit peels.

Can I freeze candied citrus peel? ›

An important thing to note: The candied peels need a day or two to dry, so making candied orange peel is not a last-minute endeavor. However, most of the time this recipe takes is hands-off. Once they're dried, the candied citrus peels will keep up to two months in the freezer, so they're the perfect DIY gift.

How do you store candied citrus peels? ›

Toss dry candied peels in additional sugar and store them in an airtight container at room temperature.

Can you eat raw citrus peel? ›

Citrus peels are completely edible and delicious but woefully underused despite keeping blood pressure in check courtesy their potassium content while the limonene in them can help with heart burn and might have anti-cancer effects as it is a phytochemical.

What two garnishes can be used in an old fashioned orange peel is one of them? ›

Ice: Traditional old fashioned co*cktails are served over ice. Bourbon: Of course, you'll need bourbon! You can use rye whiskey instead, if you like. Garnishes: Garnish your old fashioned with an orange slice and a maraschino cherry.

Can you freeze orange peels for old fashioned? ›

The peel from just one citrus fruit is enough for at least a couple of co*cktails, but if you want to make a larger batch, save spent peel in the freezer until you have enough stored up. Peel the fruit carefully, to avoid any of the white pith (unless you're looking for a bitter flavour profile).

Does candied lemon peel go bad? ›

Uncandied peels will last for about a week in an airtight re-sealable bag in the fridge. Candied peels will last for months, especially if you dust them in sugar. They'd make a super fun homemade food gift for the holidays… put them in a pretty Mason jar with a ribbon and a tag.

How long can you store candied orange peel? ›

You can store your homemade candied orange peels in an airtight container in the fridge for up to a month. Alternately, you can store them in the freezer for up to 3 months.

Does candied orange peel go bad? ›

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.

How long does candied peel last in the fridge? ›

Store in an airtight container in the fridge and chop as needed. It'll last for up to six weeks in the fridge.


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