The fresh smell of lemons, oranges, limes and grapefruits can be immediately recognized, but there is so much more to these citrus delights besides smelling and eating their juicy flesh.
A few years ago I shared with you the recipe and secret for making the BEST Old Fashioned Homemade Lemonade. The last picture of that post shows the juiced lemons in my dishwater just happily floating and bobbing amongst the bubbles.
Then this week in Peace In The Big Picture I mentioned that I put the orange peels by the sink until I did dishes.
Since I’ve become even more of a natural, organic, do-it-yourself homemaker and cook over the past six years, I thought I would share five of my favorite uses for lemon, orange, lime and grapefruit peels.
5 Favorite Uses For Lemon, Orange, Lime And Grapefruit Peels
After eating a delectable piece of fruit like a lemon, orange, lime and grapefruit, it always seemed like such a waste to just throw away their marvelously fragrant peels. So when I became more environmentally conscious and had to start eating grain free, I found many more uses for those citrus peelings.
- I remember when I was a teenager, my Mom would boil dried leaves and funny looking pieces of the forest in a small strawberry decorated pot which she placed on the back burner of the stove. The fragrance from the boiling potpourri would fill our home and it was just lovely. So one of my favorite ways to use discarded lemon, orange, lime and grapefruit peels is in Fragrant Homemade Potpourri Simmering On The Stove Top. It’s not only easy, delightful to smell, and saves money, but it also uses something that you would otherwise just toss in the trash.
- That stinky garbage disposal does not have to be stinky ever. Instead of tossing the lemon, orange, lime and grapefruit peels in the trash after eating a between meals snack, put them into the garbage disposal instead. Just leave them in the hole not ground. The next time you have to use the garbage disposal, you can grind the peelings up too.
The whole time the peels are sitting in your garbage disposal, their fragrance will continue to make the kitchen smell fresh. It’s so easy, effective, money saving and a great way to avoid chemical laden deodorizers.
- Since I love to eat, I must say that my very favorite way to use lemon, orange, lime and grapefruit peels is as an ingredient in recipes. The citrus peels consist of the fragrant, oil rich colored outer layer and the white, bitter pith on the other side of the peel. Zest is only the colored outer layer. You can peel it yourself into small pieces or strips if you do not have a little scraping tool that looks a bit like a cheese grater called a zester.
I have shared many recipes that has the zest of an orange or lemon as one of the ingredients:
- Moist Orange Chicken With Sauce
- Blueberry Sour Cream Muffin Lemon Surprise
- Moist, Soft Cranberry Orange Cookies
- Garlic-Lime Cornish Game Hens
- Easy Homemade Baked Bean Casserole Recipe – The Best Baked Bean Casserole Ever
- Lemon Sour Cream Bundt Cake with Lemon Drizzle
- Champagne Grape Cake – Sweet, Delicious & Appealing
- Cranberry Lemon Cake with Lemon Glaze – Moist, Delicious And Colorful
- How To Cook A Turkey – Moist, Fall Off The Bone Baked Turkey
- Because of the fragrant nature of the lemon, orange, lime and grapefruit peels, it is great to add them to your dishwater as you wash dishes. The fragrance while washing the dishes counteracts any of the stinky dirty dish odor. I love having the fresh scent of citrus wafting up from the dishwater.
- Another reason to add lemon, orange, lime and grapefruit peels to your dishwater is for their cleaning properties. The citrus peelings are such wonderful grease fighters! I actually use the peel to scrub plastic containers because it cuts the grease so quickly. Then I swoosh the container around in the sudsy bubbles and rinse.
Not only does using the citrus peels work great to cut the grease, but they do it quickly. You don’t have to stand at the sink scrubbing all night because a swish or two of the peels and the dish comes clean. They are awesome!
The next time you eat a lemon, orange, lime or grapefruit, save the peels and use them instead of tossing them into the trash. I bet if you throw them in your water, you’ll be just as hooked as I am with washing dishes with citrus peels.
Talking about all this fruit has made me get a hankering for an ice cold wedge of orange!