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Freeze lemon juice in jars – yes, you can freeze fresh lemon juice!
If you live in the south, it’s citrus time. Late winter and early spring is the perfect time for picking lemons, grapefruits, limes and oranges. And if you’ve got lots of lemons, you need a way to lengthen their shelf life. You want to keep those natural vitamins and nutrients fresh through the colder months!
If you’re wondering can you freeze fresh lemon juice, yes you can! And it’s easy to do.
Preserving extra citrus juice is easy – here’s how to freeze lemon juice in jars. This preservation method works for any kind of citrus juice, including lime juice, orange juice, and grapefruit juice.
Plus, I’ve got ways for you to freeze lemon slices and also how to freeze lemon zest.
We love freshly squeezed juice. We also love southern California, so we try to get down there every year. When we drive home, we always bring bags and bags of citrus with us.
We just store the bags of fruit in our cold room. Over time I grab a bag of lemons and we use fresh squeezed lemon juice to drink fresh as our home made lemonade.
How to Freeze Lemon Juice in Jars
But there comes a point when the citrus is in danger of drying out, so here’s what I do to preserve the juice. I grab all the bags and bring them up to the kitchen, where my electric juicer is waiting.
Today, I juiced up the last of the lemons – 2 bags, each weighing 5 pounds. This juicer? I LOVE it and it has lasted for years. It’s a Black & Decker Electric Citrus Juicer and I highly recommend it.
Just slice the fruit in half, set it on the cone and push down. Perfect and easy! And this juicer does a great job of separating the pulp and pits, so you don’t have to worry about straining the solids from the liquid.
You can choose the amount of pulp you want in your juice too. As the carafe below the juicer fills up, I pour it directly into clean mason jars.
I add a seal and a ring. Each one then goes in the upright freezer. I always keep the jars in the door of the freezer, just in case.
Be sure to NOT fill the jar all the way! If a jar is too full, it may crack in the freezer. So leave lots of head room.
In a pinch, you may also be able to store lemon juice in plastic containers made for freezing liquids like these ones. But I find glass jars the safest and most reliable option!
Thawing Frozen Lemon Juice
When I want some lemon juice for either a drink or to include in a recipe, I can just pull a jar out of the freezer and move it into the refrigerator. It thaws in the fridge and we can use it how we like. Freezing the lemon juice preserves the taste well.
We can make Popsicles for a hot afternoon. We love chicken baked with lemon – try our recipe and make this dish for yourself. These are also great for making a simple lemon water; just that and combine with some cold water and regular ice cubes.
Be sure to give the jar a good shake right before you use the juice like you would with store bought plastic bottles of lemon juice. Just make sure the lids are on tight!
Here’s the finished result – remember to be sure and leave more head space than usual in the jars so the glass doesn’t break when the juice freezes.
That small pint jar on the right will be going straight into the fridge. I’ll use that one up first, so I could fill it all the way to the top.
Other Ways to Freeze Lemons
Wondering how else you can freeze fresh lemons? If you’d rather not just be preserving lemon juice, here are a few other ways for freezing lemons for later use.
How do I freeze lemon slices?
Another great way to enjoy lemons all year round is by freezing lemon slices. I don’t recommend trying to freeze lemons whole. You’ll need to slice each lemon into quarters and create lemon wedges. Place each lemon wedge onto a baking sheet.
Place the baking sheet in the freezer until the sliced lemons are frozen. Once the lemon slices are frozen you can place them in a freezer safe ziploc bag.
Freezing the lemon slices on a baking sheet before placing them into a freezer bag helps reduce the risk of having your lemon slices turn mushy from the juice seeping out before the bag of lemon slices are frozen.
You can keep frozen lemon slices in an airtight freezer bag for three to four months if you’re looking for the best flavor.
However, frozen lemon slices will stay safe for much longer. You’ll simply lose the robust flavor of the lemon slices the longer you store them in the freezer.
What can I use Frozen Lemons For?
Now that you know how to freeze lemons, there are lots of great ideas to use these frozen lemons in the future. There are a variety of uses for frozen lemons such as cold & flu remedies, cooking from scratch, homemade lemonade, and dessert recipes.
How to freeze lemon zest?
Depending on the size of your lemons, you should be able to take 1-2 tablespoons of zest from each fruit. Place your lemon rind in a single layer on parchment paper or a cookie sheet. Place the baking sheet in your freezer and allow the lemon zest to freeze completely.
Once the lemon zest is frozen you may remove the cookie sheet from the freezer. Place the frozen lemon zest inside a freezer bag and write the date on the freezer bag.
Freeze the zest for up to six months for the best flavor.
How to use lemon zest for after taking it out of the freezer?
Freezing lemon zest makes it easily accessible for you in the future. There are many options to use lemon zest after taking it out of the freezer.
You can add the lemon zest in your from-scratch recipes that call for lemon zest, you can include lemon zest or lemon peels in your favorite beverages, or use it to make lemon sugar.
Lemon sugar is one of the best ways to use your frozen lemon zest. This is a substitute for regular granulated sugar.
Lemon sugar may be used in drinks, recipes, and other concoctions that call for regular sugar. This will add an extra zest to any drink or recipe that calls for sugar!
How to freeze lemon juice in ice cube trays?
You can opt to freeze lemon juice so that you get to use out of your whole harvest of this citrus fruit. Making lemon juice into frozen cubes helps provide you with a quick grab-n-use option for your favorite beverages all year round!
Steps to Freeze Lemon Juice in Ice Cube Trays
- You’ll need to gather your lemons. Slice each lemon in half using a sharp knife.
- Using a citrus press you will squeeze each lemon half into a large bowl or mason jar.
- As the bowl or jar fills up, pour your lemon juice into ice cube trays.
- Once all of your lemons have been squeeze into juice and the ice cube trays are full, place the ice cubes in your freezer.
- Freeze the juice for 24 hours.
- You can take your frozen lemon juice cubes and place them inside a freezer bag.
- Seal the bag and date it for quick access to your frozen lemon juice ice cubes in the future.
So, freeze lemon juice in jars this year – a great way to eat healthy year round!
More Lemon Recipes You’ll Love
- Mediterranean Lemon Chicken – so so good!
- This quick and easy home made Lemonade tastes so delicious on a hot summer day.
- Feel like doing some baking? This Lemon Loaf with a Rosemary Glaze is sure to please.
- Want more information on the juicer I use and love? Plant a citrus tree indoors!
Originally published 2014; updated June 2022