Preserved Lemons & Clementines

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Preserved Lemons & Clementines

Preserved lemons are used a lot in Moroccan food (check out my Moroccan Chicken recipe), and are basically lemons pickled in a brine of salt and lemon juice (and spices if you like) and allowed to ferment at room temperature.  The brine can be saved and used again for pickling or used in sauces, dressings, or drinks (think Bloody Mary’s!).  The pith and peel becomes soft and delicious and the salty pulp can be used as well.  A small jar of these generally costs $10 so making your own is very economical, especially in citrus season.

  • Author: beckie
  • Prep Time: 15 Minutes
  • Total Time: 15 Minutes
  • Yield: 1 Pint Jar
  • Category: Condiment
  • Method: No Cooking Involved
  • Cuisine: International


  • 5 large lemons (these were Meyers) or clementines
  • 1/4 cup salt


  • Clean/ sterilize a pint size jar and add 1 Tbsp of salt to the bottom.
  • Juice two of the lemons or clementines.
  • Slice 3 lemons/clementines into quarters but don’t slice all the way through – leave 1/2″ at the bottom (see quartered picture above).  Gently open the fruit and sprinkle the inside fruit liberally with salt and push it back together.  Shove one lemon in and push it down.  Add 1 Tbsp of salt.  Add another lemon and another Tbsp of salt.  Push it down with a wooden spoon (this will smash them and that’s great).  Add the third lemon and another Tbsp of salt.  Add lemon juice to cover the fruit.
  • Store in a warm dry place (unrefrigerated) and shake daily for 3-4 weeks to distribute the salt.  No need to refrigerate but you should, especially once open to avoid bacteria getting into the jar.  Preserved lemons and their juices are good for ~ 1 year.  Happy puckering, sour mouth.  Beckie


  • You want the citrus to be covered by citrus juice, but in a pinch I have added a little more salt and a touch of water.
  • Don’t be afraid to salt. Better too much than not enough.  You can also rinse some of the salt off before using.

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Keywords: Preserved Lemons, Citrus, Gluten Free, Dairy Free, Paleo, Whole 30, Garnish, Low Carb, Vegan, Vegetarian

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Preserved Lemons & Clementines

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