Recipe of the Week: Candied Citrus Peels

The following recipe for candied citrus peels is from The New Butterick Cook Book, by Flora Rose, co-head of the School of Home Economics at Cornell University. It was published in 1924. A professional scan of that 724-page out-of-copyright book will be one of the bonus items in the next edition of the waterproof SurvivalBlog Archive USB stick. This 15th Anniversary Edition USB stick should be available for sale in the third week of January, 2021.

  • Citrus Peels (Oranges, Lemons or Grapefruit)
  • Salt
  • Water
  • White Sugar
  1. Cut the peel of oranges, lemons or grapefruit into halves, quarters, or narrow strips, depending on your preference and intended use.
  2. Let them stand overnight in salted water (one tablespoon salt to one quart of water).
  3. Drain and wash thoroughly.
  4. Cook the peels in a pot of boiling water, changing the water repeatedly until it loses its bitter flavor. (You can skip changing the water if you like your candied peels extra tangy. But beware that this might leave some bitterness.)
  5. When peels are tender, drain.
  6. Make a syrup of equal measures of water and sugar.
  7. Boil for five minutes
  8. Cut the peel pieces into strips or leave it whole.
  9. Add the peels to the syrup and cook in a large saucepan until the peel becomes transparent.
  10. If necessary, a small amount of boiling water may be added.
  11. Drain on a platter or plates.  Let the peel dry for 30 minutes.
  12. Roll in granulated sugar.

Serve as a dessert topping, or as a candy dish, in its own right.


These will store well for weeks in a dry canning jar, if they’ve been dried sufficiently.

Do you have a favorite recipe that would be of interest to SurvivalBlog readers? In this weekly recipe column, we place emphasis on recipes that use long term storage foods, recipes for wild game, dutch oven and slow cooker recipes, and any that use home garden produce. If you have any favorite recipes, then please send them via e-mail. Thanks!


  1. We’ve not yet made candied citrus peels, but this sure does sound like a treat! Candied nuts are fun and easy too. For anyone interested, check Sally’s Baking Addiction (dot-com) and search for Homemade Cinnamon Sugar Candied Nuts. Enjoy!

  2. I grew up in a Southern location where we had an abundance of citrus. I recall having candied citrus peel as a child and had forgotten about it! Will make this! How cool!

    And thank you, Telesilla, for the link on candied nuts!

  3. A couple years ago, dear husband and i were using oranges and grapefruit in season with the resulting piles of peels. My usual mode of operation was to set the peels on the wood stove ash tray to dry out to crispy and either throw into the fire or bag for future fire starting since the oils are fairly combustible without the moisture usually present.

    I also made a cleaning vinegar by filling a half gallon jar with peels and covering with vinegar as they accumulated. This was left to brew at least a month or two though mine sat almost a year. (It makes a very pleasant smelling non toxic cleaner in a spray bottle. Not much vinegar smell if the peels are really packed in!)

    I also made these citrus treats from orange, grapefruit and lemon peels after finding a YouTube to walk me through it. (The Orange is our favorite.) The process is the same as this, with one difference…the pithy light inside of the peel is sliced away, leaving mostly the dark outside part. This removed the bitterness from what the YouTuber described. (Will try this method above the next time I have peels!) After two years stored in a glass jar, the candied peels are still just as tasty, though a little crisper…a little goes a long way. We just nibble on them like a candy…haven’t thought how to bake/cook using them.

    Love to see the recipes in old cookbook, thanks!

  4. I made these and they are fantastic! I’d never heard of them before. Here’s a few tips I did while making these.

    I took a spoon and scraped as much of the white stuff off the back of the peels as I could. (I used an old spoon and sharpened it slightly on a grinder, which made the job easier.) I left it in a few as a comparison when they were finished and the ones with more white stuff were more bitter, but they were still good.

    I was able to boil them without changing the water saving on time and energy.

    I started out rolling them individually in sugar and that got old fast. I put them in a small paper bag full of sugar and shook them, that took only a few seconds and I did the whole batch in only four groups.

    When draining the peels after boiling, don’t throw the sugar water away. Add more sugar and make pancake syrup. I put it on waffles and man was it good! The sugar water for boiling is 1:1 sugar:water. Sugar recipes online are 2:1 sugar:water so try to estimate how much liquid you have left and add more sugar to bring it from 1:1 up to 2:1.

    A whole bag of oranges yielded 2 pints of sugared peels. I ate one pint the first day. I suggest you put these in a time-lock safe so you can spread them out over a few days at least.

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