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Gourmet Hacks: 5 BEST Substitutes for Lemon Peel

Ever stood in your kitchen, ready to whip up something fabulous, only to realize you’re out of lemon peel? Yeah, been there.

Finding ourselves in this pickle more times than we’d like to admit, we got creative. Real creative.

So, we’re about to spill the beans on the 5 BEST substitutes for lemon peel. No fancy talk, just straight-up good alternatives. Our kitchen misadventures taught us these tricks.

Ever tried using orange peel when you’re out of lemon? It’s like a plot twist in your favorite show. Unexpected, yet surprisingly fitting.

Or how about lime peel? It’s like the feisty sibling of lemon peel- similar, yet with its own kick.

We’re here to keep your cooking game strong, even when the pantry’s not.

The 5 Best Substitutes for Lemon Peel

Lemon peel adds a distinct citrus flavor and aroma to various dishes, but if you find yourself without it or simply want to explore other options, there are several substitutes available.

SubstituteKey CharacteristicsProper Ratio
Lime PeelSimilar citrus flavor, slightly more tartUse an equal amount of lime peel as a substitute
Orange PeelSweeter, less tart than lemon peelUse an equal amount of orange peel as a substitute
Citrus JuiceTangy and acidic, lacks the texture of peelUse 1-2 tablespoons of citrus juice per teaspoon of peel
Citrus ExtractConcentrated flavor, intense citrus tasteUse 1/2 to 1 teaspoon of citrus extract per teaspoon of peel
Lemon OilStrong citrus flavor, highly concentratedUse a few drops of lemon oil as a substitute

Now let’s dive into each substitute in more detail:

1 – Lime Peel

lime peel

Lime peel can be a suitable replacement when your favorite lemon zest isn’t available.

Since both belong to the citrus family, you can use it in almost any dish that demands lemon peel.

Lime peel can bring freshness in salads, meat and fish marinades, soups, stews and baked products.

If you love the aroma and taste, you can also add it to vinaigrettes, stir-fried veggies.

There is always room for an experiment, so you can try it in different dishes.

Like most other citrus fruits, lime peel also has several nutrients and so they are healthy to eat.

Experiments with rabbits showed that eating lime peels and juice aided in slowing the progression of atherosclerosis.

  • Key Characteristics: Lime peel has a similar citrus flavor to lemon peel, but it tends to be slightly more tart. It can be used as a direct substitute for lemon peel in recipes. Use an equal amount of lime peel as a substitute to maintain the desired citrusy taste.

2 – Orange Peel

orange peel

Though a sweet citrus fruit, orange peel can also work as an alternative for lemon peel.

It has a similar essence and works well in many dishes.

Orange has a lovely aroma, and its flavor can give freshness to any food when added.

Orange is a popular fruit worldwide, but people throw away the peel most of the time.

However, peels can be a healthy addition to your diet as they are rich in several nutrients, vitamin C and fiber.

There are two ways to use it, just like lemon peel.

You can grate the outer rind of fresh orange and sprinkle it over your food, or you can also buy the orange peel powder, which is readily available on the market.

You can add it to meat and fish dishes, desserts, salads, and soups.

You can put orange peel in many dishes that ask for a lemon peel.

  • Key Characteristics: Orange peel provides a sweeter and less tart flavor compared to lemon peel. It can be used as a substitute when a milder citrus flavor is desired. Use an equal amount of orange peel as a substitute for lemon peel to achieve a similar aromatic profile.

3 – Citrus Juice

citrus juice

All fruits in the citrus family have some similar qualities though each one is unique.

So, citrus juice can also replace lemon peel when you don’t have the latter.

You can use the juice of citrus fruits like lemon, lime, orange, tangerine and grapefruit.

It may not provide the same texture, but you will have a similar flavor and scent.

Add it to baked products, rice dishes like risotto, meat and fish dishes, marinades, salads, soups, stews and even fried dishes.

Since citrus fruits contain plenty of nutrients, pure juice can be very healthy; so, look for pure products when buying the stuff.

You can also make the juice at home from fresh citruses.

Taking moderate amounts regularly can offer significant nutritional and dietary benefits.

  • Key Characteristics: Citrus juices such as lemon juice, lime juice, or orange juice offer tanginess and acidity, but lack the texture and intensity of flavor found in peel.
  • To substitute lemon peel with citrus juice, use 1-2 tablespoons of juice for every teaspoon of peel called for in the recipe. Keep in mind that the taste and texture may vary slightly.

4 – Citrus Extract

citrus extract

Citrus extract is another option for lemon peel which works great in many dishes.

Several varieties come under this variety, such as lemon, lime, orange, grapefruit, etc.

Each one will taste a little different but can replicate lemon peel flavor up to a certain extent.

The extracts can be very versatile, and you can add in plenty of recipes.

Add it to baked goods like cookies, cakes, pies and cheesecakes.

You can also add some in drinks, dips, fudge and salsa.

Your fish and meat marinades will also be more flavorful if you add some citrus extract.

Besides providing freshness and enhancing the flavor, citrus extract also improves your health.

It boosts your immune system, lowers heart disease risks and fights infections.

As the extract is denser, add a little less than lemon peel.

  • Key Characteristics: Citrus extracts are highly concentrated and provide an intense citrus flavor. They can be used as a substitute for lemon peel when a strong citrus taste is desired.
  • Use 1/2 to 1 teaspoon of citrus extract for every teaspoon of lemon peel required in the recipe. Adjust the amount based on personal preference, as the extract is potent.

5 – Lemon Oil

lemon oil

Lemon oil is multipurpose oil, and it offers many health benefits.

However, you mustn’t ever consume it by itself.

It makes a suitable alternative for lemon peel because it has a similar fragrance and flavor, and even a small quantity is enough.

You can use lemon oil in many ways and come up with aromatic and delicious dishes.

Add it to meat and fish marinades, yogurt, spreads, sauces, desserts and salads.

You can also use it in roasted potatoes, baked dishes, and beverages like iced tea, warm tea and even have it with a glass of water.

It’s present in many other products such as soaps, perfumes, lotions, creams, cleaning products etc.

It helps detox the body and reduce acne.

Besides, it can also help you calm down and improve your focus.

Lemon oil is also dense and a small amount will be enough.

  • Key Characteristics: Lemon oil is a highly concentrated form of lemon flavor. It provides a strong citrus taste and aroma. Use a few drops of lemon oil as a substitute for lemon peel, as it is very potent. Start with a small amount and adjust according to taste.

The 5 Best Substitutes for Lemon Peel

Spice up your culinary creations with these 5 fantastic substitutes for lemon peel! If you're running low on this citrusy zest, fear not—our carefully curated list provides the perfect alternatives to enhance your dishes. From orange zest to citron, discover the ideal replacements that bring a burst of citrusy goodness to your recipes.
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Course Substitutes
Servings 4 Servings


  • Lime Peel
  • Orange Peel
  • Citrus Juice
  • Citrus Extract
  • Lemon Oil


  • Pick your favorite substitute from the list above.
  • Follow cooking directions for your selected substitute with the proper ratio of ingredients.
Keyword substitutes for lemon peel
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