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The 5 Best Substitutes for Calamansi

Did you know that the calamansi is a popular citrus fruit in Southeast Asia? This fruit has a tart, an acidic flavor often used to add zest to dishes.

While calamansi can be difficult to find outside of Asia, several substitutes can be used in its place.

In this article, we will look at five of the best substitutes for calamansi.

What is Calamansi?

what is calamansi

Calamansi is a citrus fruit that is popular in Southeast Asia.

It is similar in appearance to lime, but it is slightly smaller and has a more acidic flavor.

Calamansi is commonly used in Filipino cuisine, and it is often used as a souring agent in dishes such as adobo and sinigang.

The juice of the calamansi is also a popular drink, and it is often combined with water or soda to create a refreshing beverage.

In addition to its culinary uses, calamansi is also known for its many health benefits.

The fruit is rich in vitamin C and antioxidants, and it has been traditionally used to treat colds and flu.

Today, calamansi remains an important part of Filipino culture, and its unique flavor continues to delight fans around the world.

The 5 Best Substitutes for Calamansi

When calamansi is out of season or unavailable, don’t despair.

You can still make your favorite dishes by using one of these substitutes:

1 – Lemon


Citrus fruits are prized for their fresh, tart flavor, and lemons are no exception.

Though they are commonly used as a culinary ingredient, lemons also have several other uses.

For instance, the acid in lemon juice can be used as a natural cleaning agent, and the zest can be used to add flavor to food.

In addition, lemons are a good source of vitamin C, boosting the immune system.

While they are available year-round, lemons are at their peak from late winter to early spring.

When choosing a lemon, look for one that is heavy for its size and has bright yellow skin.

Avoid fruits that are dull in color or have soft spots, as these may be signs of spoilage.

With proper care, lemons will stay fresh for up to two weeks.

Store them in a cool, dry place away from direct sunlight.

2 – Key Limes

key limes

Key limes are a type of citrus fruit that is often used in baking and cooking.

Although they are technically a hybrid of lemon and lime, key limes have their unique tart and sweet flavor.

The small size and intense flavor of key limes make them a popular choice for those who enjoy a tart treat.

In addition to being used in desserts and cocktails, key limes can also be used as a decoration or garnish.

If you are ever in the mood for something sour, consider reaching for a key lime.

3 – Tangerine


Few things are refreshing as a juicy tangerine on a hot summer day.

Tangerines are a type of mandarin orange, and they are believed to have originated in China.

The name “tangerine” comes from the city of Tangier in Morocco, where the fruit was first introduced to Europe in the 17th century.

Tangerines are smaller and less acidic than oranges, and they have a deep orange color and a fragrant, slightly tart flavor.

Tangerines are an excellent source of Vitamin C, and they also contain fiber, potassium, and other important nutrients.

4 – Yuzu


Yuzu is a citrus fruit that is popular in East Asia.

It is often used in cooking, adding a unique flavor to dishes.

The skin of the yuzu is also used to make a type of tea.

In addition to its culinary uses, yuzu is also known for its health benefits.

The fruit is rich in vitamins and minerals, and it has been shown to boost the immune system.

Yuzu is also a good source of antioxidants, which are believed to protect against various diseases.

5 – Kumquat


Kumquats are small, round citrus fruits with a tart, tangy flavor.

They are often used in Asian cuisine, and their fragrant oil is used in perfumes and cosmetics.

Kumquats are believed to have originated in China, and they are now grown all over the world.

The skin of a kumquat is edible, and the fruit can be eaten whole.

Kumquats are a good source of Vitamin C, and they also contain antioxidants and fiber.

In addition to being eaten fresh, kumquats can be candied, pickled, or made into jams and marmalades.

They can also be used to flavor liqueurs and desserts.


In conclusion, calamansi is a delicious citrus fruit that can be used in various dishes.

While it is not always easy to find, several substitutes can be used in its place.

The best substitutes for calamansi include lemon, key lime, yuzu, tangerine, and kumquat.

Each of these fruits has a similar flavor and can be used in many same ways as calamansi.

So if you find yourself in a pinch, any one of these fruits would make a great substitute for calamansi.

Yield: 1 Serving

The 5 Best Substitutes for Calamansi

The 5 Best Substitutes for Calamansi
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes


  • Lemon
  • Key Limes
  • Tangerine
  • Yuzu
  • Kumquat


  1. Pick your favorite substitute from the list above.
  2. Follow cooking directions for your selected substitute with the proper ratio of ingredients.
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