11 Genius Ways To Use Citrus In The Kitchen

by Grace Eire
Grace plays in a band and is the mother to a black cat named Fitzhugh.

What do you do with your citrus peels after you use the fruit inside? Also, are you sure you’re using the fruit inside to its fullest potential?

Many people will only use the juice of a lemon or lime, and even sometimes an orange, for some extra flavor in light, summery dishes, and toss the pulp and peel away.

However, there is so much more to be done with citrus plants, it’s almost crazy. Lemons, for example, have some pretty powerful antibacterial qualities that not everyone is taking advantage of. All citrus also have some very serious cleaning power, partially due to the acidity.

There are just so many different ways to use every part of all sorts of citrus fruits in your kitchen alone, and it may just be time to take advantage of them!

These 11 ways to use citrus around your kitchen, whether it be for cooking, decoration, or cleaning are pure genius.

Do you think you’ll try any of these great kitchen hacks yourself? Please SHARE with family and friends on Facebook!

Thumbnail source: Wikimedia Commons

1. Fill Your Kitchen With A Fresh Scent

1. Fill Your Kitchen With A Fresh Scent

Instead of tossing away your citrus peels after you’ve used the fruit inside for whatever purpose, save them up and toss them into a pot of water. Turn your stove on low and let it simmer to release some beautiful aromas. You can also use whole lemon slices or add in extras, like cinnamon sticks or nutmeg too!

2. Kick Up Your Meat

citrus meat

You might not think to add citrus to your meat, but adding some of that bright flavor to the sauce that’s left in the pan during the last few minutes can do wonders for the dish.

3. Make Your Microwave Like New

citrus microwave

Slice up some lemons and put them in a microwave safe bowl with some water and microwave until the water starts to boil. Let it sit for a few minutes so the steam builds up, then easily wipe away gunk and grime with a clean towel. You’ll be left with a lovely fresh-scented microwave.

4. Spruce Up Kitchen Vases

citrus centerpiece

Limes can easily go in some water for a pretty countertop addition. Also, citrus leaves are big, beautifully deep-green, and glossy, so they’re perfect to use as greenery in your kitchen bouquet. Either will make for a lovely, natural decoration to put above your kitchen sink, or on your countertop to cheer you up while you’re cooking your meals or cleaning up.

5. Create Peel Candy

5. Create Peel Candy

All you need to candy a citrus peel (yes, the whole peel) is sugar, water, and the peel itself. Making these tangy candies is so easy, I can’t believe that I’ve never done it before!

6. Remove Limescale From Your Faucet

6. Remove Limescale From Your Faucet

Get your kitchen sink sparkling clean by rubbing it with a lemon half (or a half of whichever citrus you’ve got lying around the kitchen). This will polish your typical steel sinks, but it works on porcelain as well.

7. Make Your Own Liqueurs

7. Make Your Own Liqueurs

Adding citrus peels to alcohol along with simple syrup results in some tasty, thrifty homemade liqueurs. It takes a bit of time, but overall it’s very simple. I may try this one now too!

8. Polish Copper Pots

citrus copper pots

Use half of a lemon or a lemon juice-soaked cloth to polish up your beautiful copper pots. Just give them a good buff with some lemon and then dry them off with a different clean cloth. They’ll be looking good as new, and you get the added bonus of the naturally fresh scent.

9. Clean Your Garbage Disposal

9. Clean Your Garbage Disposal

Using any combination of baking soda, vinegar, water, salt, and citrus, you can easily and naturally clean your garbage disposal hassle-free. No one likes their garbage disposal to smell like actual garbage!

10. Make Fried Food Feel Lighter

10. Make Fried Food Feel Lighter

Fried food often leaves you feeling weighed down and greasy, but if you add some citrus zest to whatever kind of breading you’re using, it will feel a bit lighter, and will give it some depth. Whether you’re frying up some crab cakes or chicken wings, a bit of citrus zest can go a really long way for making a meal feel lighter and more summery.

11. Boost Your Dishwasher's Productivity


If your dishwasher is disappointing you with your regular detergent, add in half of a citrus fruit to the load for a cleaner finish and that signature fresh scent.

Did you know there were so many different ways to use citrus fruits in the kitchen? Please SHARE if you’ll be taking advantage of the entire citrus from now on!

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