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Great Uses for Lemon Peels

Lemons have a lot to offer: they’re delicious, refreshing and have an aroma that can upgrade many dishes. Adding a bit of fresh lemon juice to a cup of water in the morning can do wonders for our level of alertness throughout the rest of the day. But what about those lemon peels? 

Check out uses for orange peels as well.

Check out uses for banana peels as well.

If you like to add lemon to your diet on a regular basis, you probably throw the peels in the trash. Did you know, however, that the peels are incredibly rich in vitamins, minerals, and fibers that can increase your food’s nutritional value, aid in house cleaning, and even be used to maintain your skin’s health? The following recipes will show you how you can add lemon peel to your day-to-day life with ease.
uses for lemon peels
1. Homemade Lemon and Herbs Butter
Would you believe that you can enjoy this delicious butter without going to a fancy restaurant? Simply turn the plain butter you’ve got at home into a gorgeous and delicious lemon and herbs butter you can enjoy at every meal.
uses for lemon peels

• ¼ cup chopped mixed herbs (such as chives or parsley)
• ½ cup butter (softened)
• 1 teaspoon of lemon zest
• Pinch of salt


1. In a bowl, mix the butter, zest, and herbs. Stir and season to taste.
2. Transfer the content to a baking sheet, roll it into a cylinder and fold the edges.
3. Wrap the baking sheet with aluminum foil.
4. Refrigerate until the mixture solidifies. The butter can be kept in the fridge for up to 2 weeks or can be frozen for 3 months.

2. Candied Lemon Skins
This is an unusual treat, and if you want to keep the peel's sour flavor, just use less sugar than called for in the recipe.

uses for lemon peels
• 4 large lemons
• 2 cups of sugar
• 8 cups of water

1. Peel the lemons and cut the peel into thin strips.
2. Place the peel on a cutting board and remove as much of the fruit as you can using a sharp knife.
3. Boil 2 cups of water in a medium-sized pot. Add the peel strips to the boiling water and cook for 2 minutes. This will remove most of the bitterness in the peel. Remove the peel strips from the water.
4. Repeat the process 2 more times, using fresh water each time.
5. Empty the pot, add 2 new cups of water and 2 cups of sugar. Let it simmer to produce a sugary syrup.
6. Lower the heat and add the lemon peel. Cook the strips in the syrup for an hour – they should become soft and translucent. Use a fork or tongs to remove the strips from the syrup and leave them on a drying rack to dry out – this should take a few hours.

uses for lemon peels

7. After removing the strips from the water, you can sprinkle sugar on them. (optional)
8. Move the dry peel pieces to a sealed container. The dried peel pieces will stay fresh for several days at room temperature, or for several weeks in the fridge.

3. Add Some Zest to Your Olive Oil
Transform your plain olive oil into a delicious and nutritious lemon-oil. This upgrade will have your guests begging for the recipe.

• 1 cup of olive oil
• 2-3 tablespoons of lemon zest.

Combine the zest and oil in a sealable jar and leave it for 2 weeks. Give the jar a good shake every few days. Finally, use a sieve to remove the zest from the oil and store in the fridge.

4. Jazz Up Your Drinks with a Lemony Ice-Cube
Add some extra flavor to any drink you serve this summer by adding a couple of fancy lemon ice-cubes. Cut the lemon peels into spirals and remove as much of the fruit as you can from them (this will make it less bitter). Cut the spirals to fit in an ice tray, fill the tray to the half-way point and put one spiral in each segment, making sure a small bit stays out of the water. After freezing, you’ll be left with fancy-looking ice cubes.

uses for lemon peels
5. Make a Lemon-Pepper Seasoning Mix
This seasoning mix can work for almost any kind of dish whether it’s a salad, fish, or chicken. Preparation is very simple, and the ingredients are 100% natural.
uses for lemon peels
• Zest from 5 lemons
• ⅓ cup black pepper (whole)
• ¼ cup salt (optional)

1. In a bowl, mix the zest and black pepper.
2. Line an oven tray with a baking sheet and spread the mix on top of it.

uses for lemon peels
3. Bake the mixture for about an hour at 150°C (300°F), until the zest is completely dry. To make certain that the whole tray bakes evenly, remove it from the oven after 30 minutes and give it a shake, and then place it back in the oven.
4. Grind the pepper-zest mix in a food processor or a coffee grinder.

uses for lemon peels

5. Once the mixture is ready, you can add salt if you wish.

6. All-Natural Ant and Pest Repellent
Place small pieces of lemon peels along your windowsills, doors, and any other cracks and holes that ants use to sneak into your house. Ants hate the scent of lemon, so they’ll be reluctant to return to that area again. The peels are also particularly effective against fleas, making them an ideal solution for pet owners that want to protect their 4-legged companions from those nasty parasites.


uses for lemon peels

7. Freshen Up Your Home
The scent of fresh lemon can freshen up your home and get rid of unpleasant smells quickly and easily.
Freshen up the fridge: Place a few small pieces of lemon peel in the fridge. The skin will absorb any unpleasant odors while setting off its own citrus scent.
Freshen up the trash bin: Put a few pieces of lemon peels at the bottom of the bin to absorb the bad odors.
Freshen up closets: Sun-dry lemon peels and put them in small potpourri bags. Add spices such as cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, and put it in your closets to keep them smelling fresh.

8. Effectively Clean Surfaces and Utensils
The lemon’s natural acidity is antibacterial and can help you clean many things in the kitchen.
Clean plaque residue in kettles: Fill the kettle up with water, add a few thin slices of lemon peel, and boil the water. Allow the boiled water to sit for an hour, and then empty and wash the kettle.
Remove the smell of coffee: If your coffee maker’s pitcher is starting to smell like old coffee, empty it, put some lemon peels, a few pinches of salt and some ice-cubes. Shake well and wash the pitcher.
Freshen up the dishwasher: If your dishes come out of the dishwasher smelling somewhat funky, add some lemon peel to the next load. This cleans both the machine and removes any foul-smelling residue.
Clean and deodorize cutting boards: After washing your cutting board with water and dish soap, rub the surface with the outside of a lemon peel. Let it sit for 30 minutes and then rinse.

uses for lemon peels
Clean your microwave: Fill a bowl halfway with water and add a few pieces of lemon peels. Pop it in the microwave and run it on high for 5 minutes. The heat will boil the water, and the lemon-infused steam will clean the sides and top of the microwave. Once it’s done, remove the bowl (Careful! It’s hot!) and wipe down the surfaces.
Save your utensils: If you have old knives, pots, or any other metallic utensils that have lost their shine or have grime that simply won’t go away, there’s an effective solution you can use - sprinkle some sea salt on the utensils, then rub them with a lemon peel. Rinse and watch how all the dirt, grime, and stains wash away.
uses for lemon peels

9. Foot Spa
If you want to soften any hard skin on your soles, boil water with lemon peels and let it cool down. Add ¼ cup of milk (bovine or almond), 2 tablespoons of olive oil, and a few drops of essential oil of your choice. Pour the mixture into a tub and soak your feet in it for 20 minutes, then dab your feet dry.

10. Polish and Brighten Your Skin with a Homemade Scrub
This homemade scrub will help to soften your skin, in addition to brightening any sun damage it may have experienced. Similar to other exfoliating agents, avoid using this scrub on wounds or sensitive and irritated skin, as well as skin riddled with acne. To make this scrub, you’ll need to extract the lemon’s natural oils.

uses for lemon peels
Ingredients for lemon oil:
• Lemon peels
• Coconut oil

1. Wash and dry the lemon peels.
2. Cut the peels into long, thin strips.
3. Put them in a large pot and pour the coconut oil on top.
4. Let the oil lightly boil for 5 minutes, and then put the mixture on the side to let it absorb all the aroma and flavor.
5. Sift out the peels and pour the liquid into a jar. (Store in a cool, dry place).

Ingredients for the scrub:
• Unrefined sea salt
• ⅓ cup lemon oil
• A few drops of essential oil of your choice (optional)

1. If you use crude sea salt, grind it down to prevent damage to the skin.
2. Mix the ingredients and transfer the mixture to a jar. Store in a cool, dry place.

Before turning on the water in the shower, put some of the scrub on a washcloth, exfoliating glove, or your bare hands. Rub your skin with the scrub in circular motions, and then proceed to shower regularly.
uses for lemon peels

11. Morning Face-Wash
Many kinds of face washes contain alcohol and are thus not recommended for daily use, as the alcohol dries out and irritates your skin. You can rub the outside of a lemon peel onto your face before rinsing it. Avoid contact with the eyes.

12. Pamper Your Hands
Lemon peels can help you with most hand and arm-related issues, and can even help your fingernails shine.
Fingernail bleach – Clean stains from your fingernails by gently rubbing them with a lemon peel.
Soften elbow skin – Sprinkle some baking soda on the outside of a lemon peel and place it against your elbow. Twist the peel as if you’re juicing it for a few minutes, then rinse your elbow.
Lighten age spots – If you have age spots on your hands and arm, you can use lemon peels to lighten them by rubbing a small piece against the stain and leaving the juice on for an hour. Avoid sunlight until you wash yourself to prevent damage to your skin.


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Alternative uses for 21 common food products.

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