Preserved Lemons

Preserved Lemons 


This simple condiment is North African, although salt pickled citrus are popular all over of south Asia as well. I love to add a spoon of chopped preserved lemon to soups, braises, pasta salads or rub on chicken or duck before roasting. The texture of preserved lemons is soft and the flavor is uniquely delicious. I recommend Meyer lemons if available, since the skins are softer and the flavor is sweeter than other varieties. Be very generous with the salt since it pulls juice from the lemons and protects them from bacteria and mold. It does take a whole month for the lemon peel to become soft and ready to eat, but it should be good for at least a year.


  • 8-10 organic or pesticide-free lemons, washed
  • At least 1 cup of sea salt
  • Freshly squeezed lemon juice, as needed
  • 2 cinnamon sticks, broken in half
  • 10 peppercorns (optional) 
  • Tools
  • Cutting board
  • Shallow bowl
  • Sharp knife
  • Measuring cup
  • Measuring spoons

4 1-cup canning jars, sterilized (this can be done in the dishwasher)


  • Trim stems off of the lemons.
  • Cut the lemon in quarters.
  • Remove the seeds with the tip of a pairing knife, holding the lemon quarters over a small bowl to catch any juice. You can also leave the seeds in and pick them out just before using the lemons.
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