Preserved lemons recipe: How to preserve lemons

Try home-made preserved lemons; much better than the shop variety!
Try home-made preserved lemons; much better than the shop variety! Photo: Edwina Pickles

We're big fans of citrus so we use the skin as well as the juice with the preserved lemon, which has loads of uses. It adds a salty citrus note to risottos, cous cous, grain salads, grilled meat or fish, a very handy jar to have in the fridge. If you need preserved lemons for a recipe now, you can buy them, but the home-made version is better.


8 small lemons
300g sea salt
2 cinnamon sticks
1 tbsp coriander seeds, roasted
2 bay leaves


1. Scrub a one-litre jar with hot soapy water and dry it.

2. Wash the lemons in hot water, tap dry and cut in half.

3. Squeeze half the juice from the lemons into a bowl and cut the lemons in half again. Add them to the bowl with the salt, cinnamon, coriander seeds and bay leaves and mix well.

4. Stuff the lemon quarters into the jar, pour over enough juice to cover them, put the lid on and store in the pantry for five weeks.

5. Once the jar is opened they will keep in the fridge for six months.

TIP: Freeze any excess lemon juice in an ice cube tray to use in drinks, sorbets, risottos or dressings.

Suggestion: Use in the Blue Ducks' macadamia dukkah chicken with preserved lemon