Candied Citrus Appeal

Lemons, oranges, tangerines: The rinds of almost any citrus fruit can be transformed into sparkling, delectable treats.

By Denise Gee


How to make candied citrus peelsDip them in chocolate

  • Use about 8 ounces of chopped high-quality bittersweet, semisweet, milk, or white chocolate per 1 cup of peels.
  • Cover several paper plates with waxed paper and set aside.
  • Slowly melt the chocolate over simmering water in a double boiler, adding 2 to 3 teaspoons of orange-flavored liqueur while stirring if desired.
  • Dip each slice a third of the way to halfway into the chocolate. Place on plates lined with waxed paper and refrigerate for about 15 minutes until chocolate is set.


  • Most but not all organic citrus is unwaxed. If you can find only waxed organic citrus, use a vegetable scrubber or clean toothbrush to remove the coating.
  • Cutting peels with craft scissors that have a decorative edge adds a professional look to homemade candied citrus.
  • Pour cooled fruit-infused simple syrup through a strainer into an airtight container. It’s delightful in drinks and over ice cream, and it refrigerates well for up to 3 weeks.
  • A bit of cinnamon, nutmeg, or ground ginger added to your sugar coating makes it more sprightly. Use colored sugar for even more pizzazz.
  • For a completely decadent treat, after the chocolate coating has dried, sprinkle with edible gold dust, available at craft stores, such as Michaels, or online at
  • Avoid cooking a variety of peels all at once. Sweeter, thin-skinned fruits can be cooked together, but sweeter fruits mixed with tart fruits won’t tenderize and sweeten evenly.
  • Homemade, organic candied peel makes a beautiful gift, so don’t hide it in a gift box. Instead, package small amounts in transparent glassine bags and tie with a pretty ribbon.


For Step-byStep Instructions, see also How to Make Candied Citrus Peels.


Denise Gee and Robert Peacock’s new book, Sweet on Texas: Lovable Confections from the Lone Star State ($24.95), will be published this October by Chronicle Books.

Photo: Robert M. Peacock