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Preserved Lemons Recipe

What do you do when life gives you lemons ? You make Lemonade, or Preserved Lemons. With our easy, two ingredients homemade preserved lemons recipe, turn an excess of lemons into a deliciously tangy salty condiment that once ready, will keep for over a year in the fridge. Salt is thought to be the oldest and simplest preservation ingredient and salt-preserved lemons originated in the Middle East hundreds of years ago. They are now enjoyed around the world, especially in Moroccan cuisine for their very distinctive flavour : salty lemon, but without the bitterness. The salt slowly draws out the juices out of the lemon rind, softening it over time and also reducing its bitterness, making all of it edible, lemon rind and pith. Use your homemade preserved lemons in tajines and other Moroccan inspired dishes, salads and couscous or in marinades, stews, chillis, hummus, salsas, sauces and salad dressings. Just bear in mind that preserved lemons and the liquid in the jar will be quite salty, so taste test before adding any extra salt to the dish.

Posted by: michael


Middle Eastern


< 15 mins

Skill Level




Courses etc.

Fermented Foods and Drinks
Side dishes

You will need

5 medium to large lemons More products
6 Tbsp fine sea salt OR More products
6 Tbsp coarse sea salt More products

Need help converting measurements? View our recipe measurement conversion tables here.


  • Thoroughly wash and scrub the lemons, then quarter them.
  • Put 1/2 Tbsp sea salt in the bottom of the jar. Add a layer of lemon quarters (2 or 3 depending on the size of your jar), squeezing them with your hands to collect the juice into the jar before adding each quarter. Use a pestle or the back of a wooden spoon to pack the lemon wedges tightly, squeezing extra juice. You want to extract enough juice so that in the end, all the lemon wedges are submerged.
  • Add another 1/2 Tbsp salt and repeat with another layer of lemon wedges, then salt, alternating until the jar is full, ending with one last 1/2 Tbsp of sea salt, and topping off with extra freshly squeezed lemon juice or filtered water if the lemon quarters are not submerged.
  • Close the jar and store in a cool place for 2 to 3 months. Give the jar a gentle tilt every once in a while to help distribute the salt.
  • You will know the preserved lemons are ready when the peels become soft and translucent.
  • Now transfer the jar to the fridge and use the lemon wedges whole, cut into thin strips or chopped to add a lemon kick to various preparations.

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