Preserved lemons are essentially briny, tart lemon pickles. They add their own special sunshine to many slow-cooked Mediterranean and Middle Eastern stews, but they can also be used to add punch up your favorite recipes.

Melissa Pasanen
Source: EatingWell Magazine, January/February 2011


Ingredient Checklist


Instructions Checklist
  • Put a kettle of water on to boil.

  • Select a large clean jar with a tight-fitting lid for preserving the lemons. Figure out how many lemons will fit into the jar. You'll need those lemons plus the juice from about 1 1/2 times that amount. Leaving one end intact, cut each lemon you're preserving into quarters lengthwise. Fill each lemon "blossom" with about a tablespoon of salt and place in the jar.

  • Squeeze the juice from the extra lemons and pour the lemon juice over the salted lemons. Fill the rest of the jar with boiling water. Screw the lid on tightly.

  • Let the jar sit on your counter for about 10 days, shaking it up once a day to redistribute juices and salt. Then refrigerate for up to 6 months.

  • To use: Rinse the preserved lemons before using. You can use the yellow rind and/or the flesh, but discard the bitter white pith.


Make Ahead Tip: Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 6 months.

Equipment: large, clean jar with a tight-fitting lid

Nutrition Facts

2 calories; protein 0.1g; carbohydrates 1.1g; dietary fiber 0.5g; vitamin a iu 3IU; vitamin c 7.8mg; folate 0.7mcg; calcium 6.2mg; iron 0.1mg; magnesium 1.2mg; potassium 14.7mg; sodium 52.8mg.

Reviews (2)

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2 Ratings
  • 5 star values: 1
  • 4 star values: 0
  • 3 star values: 0
  • 2 star values: 0
  • 1 star values: 1
Rating: 1 stars
Incorrect sttep makes the lemons moldy While this recipe is very similar to other recipes for preserving lemons the key mistake is that they ask you to leave them on the counter for 10 days rather than refrigerate them. I followed the directions to the letter; sitting the jar on the counter for 10 days makes the lemons moldy. You can't actually SEE mold but I can absolutely taste it. If I tried this recipe again I would not set them on the counter; I'd refrigerate them. Read More
Rating: 5 stars
The other reviewer is a bit confused. Preserved lemons are made at room temperature. Otherwise they won't ferment. It's doubtful that mold was growing on your lemons in the salty acidic brine unless you did something wrong. Read More