Florida Citrus Peel Candy

Once you squeeze the last bit of juice from fresh citrus, don’t throw the peel away.  Make candy. These pretty little gems are bursting with flavor. Put them in glass jars and give them as holiday gifts.  Chop them up and add them to muffins or sprinkle them on yogurt.  They’re really good on vanilla ice cream.

I typically use Meyer lemons, but I made some with tangerines and key limes my mom brought the other day.  I love the mix of colors and flavors.

Any citrus peel works here.  It’s amazing how something inedible can be transformed into a tasty treat.  Sugar is magic.


Candied Citrus Peels


  • 6 citrus fruits
  • 4 cups sugar, plus another cup for dusting
  • 1 teaspoon cream of tartar


Wash and dry the fruit.  Slice them in half and squeeze the juice.  Reserve the juice for another use or freeze it.

Slice the peels into thin strips or bite-sized triangles.  Use a paring knife to remove as much of the pith (the white membrane on the underside) as possible.

In a medium saucepan, boil 4 cups of water and add 4 cups of sugar and cream of tartar.  Return to a boil and add the peels. Cook them at a low boil for 45 minutes, or until they start to become translucent.  Turn off the heat and allow the mixture to cool for at least 30 minutes. Save the leftover simple syrup.*

Cover a baking sheet with parchment paper.  Put a rack over the pan.  Put the peels on the rack, spaced so they don’t touch.  Allow the peels to dry at room temperature for 2 days.  I keep them in the oven (as long as it’s not on).

After a couple days the peels should be less sticky.  Put a cup of sugar in a shallow dish.  Toss the peels in the sugar and gently shake off the excess.  Return them to the baking sheet and allow them to cure for another 24 hours before packing them into jars.

*The leftover citrus-infused simple syrup can be used in limoncello , iced tea, or cocktails.

5 Comments Florida Citrus Peel Candy

  1. Lynne Randall December 19, 2014 at 4:49 pm

    Appreciate ideas on ways to use Meyer lemons and sour oranges.

    Got a new book that seems right up your alley – “Good Catch: recipes and stories celebrating the best of Florida’s waters” by Pam Brandon, Katie farmano and heather McPherson. Great mix of fishing and eating.

    1. suwanneerose December 19, 2014 at 5:34 pm

      Thanks, Lynne! I think I’ll get that for myself for Christmas.

  2. Cheryl December 29, 2014 at 1:38 pm

    My mother made these candies for Christmas. i have very fond memories of her making these for us girls.

    I’ve been thinking about doing them and just dipping one half in dark chocolate.

    1. suwanneerose December 29, 2014 at 2:16 pm

      I had more than one request for chocolate-dipped ones, so I guess I have to give that a shot next time.

  3. Pingback: Honey & Meyer Lemon Curd | Suwannee Rose

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