September 27, 2006

28 creative uses for lemons

When we first toured our current apartment, one of the delightful things we discovered is that it had a lemon tree in the backyard. Once we moved in, we tried to think of all the things we could make with lemons, and we found quite a few, including sugary lemon bars, freshly-squeezed lemon juice, lemon zest for baking, lemon cheesecake, and last but not least, lemonade. Four years on, the novelty of having our own lemon tree may have dimmed, but now and again we’ll be reminded of how lucky we are when we find yet another use for this amazing fruit.

So when life (or a friend with a lemon tree in the backyard) gives you lemons, try out some of these ideas.

Food & Beverages

  • Grill fish on top of lemon slices to prevent the fish from sticking to the grill[1]
  • Try gremolata, a mixture of lemon zest and finely chopped garlic and parsley, as an alternative to salt and pepper[2]
  • Include lemon zest in marinades for pork and poultry[2]
  • Create a flavorful lemon butter to garnish seafood and fish[2]
  • Freeze lemon juice in ice cube trays to use in summer drinks[2]
  • Make preserved lemons for use in Moroccan recipes, such as tagine
  • Add lemon juice to rice, cauliflower, or potatoes while cooking to enhance their white color [2][3]
  • Prevent eggs from cracking while boiling by coating the shells with lemon juice[3]
  • Ensure easy peeling of cooked eggs by adding one teaspoon of lemon juice to the cooking water[3]
  • Use lemon juice to help homemade jam set without using pectin[4]
  • Dry lemon peel for use in flavoring baked goods[4]

Cleaning & Home Improvement

  • Remove garlic, onion, or fish odor from your hands by rubbing them with a piece of lemon coated in salt[2][3]
  • Rid your hands or clothes of stains from berries, beets, or ink with lemon and salt[2][4]
  • Clean copper pots or remove rust stains with half a lemon dipped in salt[1][3]
  • Mix lemon juice and baking soda for an effective stain remover[3]
  • Dry slices of lemon to use in holiday decorations such as wreaths or garlands, or to include in potpourri mixtures[1]
  • Fill bowls or vases with whole lemons to create elegant table centerpieces[1]
  • Keep insects away from stored clothing using dried lemon rind[4]

Health & Beauty

  • Use juiced lemon halves to moisten dry elbows[1]
  • Bite into a lemon to redden your lips (a common practice in the court of Louis XIV)[2][3]
  • Make a face mask using lemon and honey[3]
  • After shampooing, rinse your hair with water and lemon juice to prevent dandruff and to remove soap film[3]
  • Soothe sore throats with lemon juice, either by gargling or drinking in a hot beverage
  • Take the sting out of insect bites with lemon juice[3]
  • Apply lemon juice to cuts to disinfect them and help them heal faster[3]
  • Treat a nose bleed with lemon juice[3]
  • Mix lemon juice with olive or almond oil to treat eczema[3]
  • Combine lemon juice with papaya juice to get rid of athlete’s foot[3]


[2]DIY Network
[3]VISTA Magazine
[4]Plants For A Future

5 Responses to “28 creative uses for lemons”

  1. Zachary said:

    Let sit a mix of lemon juice in fresh milk to separate the curds from the whey, add a little salt to the curds, and drain for fresh cheese. The lightly salted whey is high protein, high calcium and all the water soluble vitamins of the milk, plus has a long shelf life.

  2. Sandra B. said:

    A lemon slice (grabbed out of your iced tea at a restaurant, for example) and rubbed on the teeth and tongue is great for a quick remedy for bad breath.

  3. Lindasy Del said:

    Soak feet in a bowl of milk. Next use lemon wedges on rough patches and calluses. The lactic acid of the milk followed by the citric acid in the lemons will exfoliate your tootsies and whiten yellowed toenails.

  4. download free dvd movies said:

    Wow thanks a lot! We have a lot of lemons in my hometown, I’ll try most of these during summer 🙂

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