Make your own candied mixed peel at home, with any citrus fruit you have on hand and just sugar and water. Candied peel is a great addition to baked goods, from hot cross buns to garnishes for cakes and pies.
This is a really simple candied mixed peel recipe, with no drying or other time-intensive steps needed. Just juice, peel, and cook the fruit in a simple syrup.
The fruit is cooked three times. Twice just brought to a boil in plain water to soften the peel, then simmered for about an hour in simple syrup to candy. Once the peel is translucent, it’s ready to use or store.
It’s a great way to reduce waste, too, because you juice the fruit beforehand and use up the peel instead of composting or disposing of it. The peel keeps for a month in the fridge so you can make a new batch every once in a while to have on hand.
What can I do with mixed peel?
The most popular ways to use candied orange peel or other candied citrus is in baking. Think hot cross buns, fruit cake, cookies – but you can also add it to cocktails, as a beautiful decoration to any baked goods, or just dip it in dark chocolate for a simple dessert.
Try adding a bit of mixed peel to any recipe that uses the same kind of citrus in the base, like this lemon buttermilk cake or vegan carrot cake with orange. It makes a nice edible garnish to drinks like hot chocolate, too.
Use the syrup that the peel is soaked in as an addition to cocktails and other drinks, or as a special simple syrup for soaking cakes. Anywhere you’d normally use simple syrup, you can use this instead. (And it’s better.)
We’ve done a blend of both lemon and orange for this recipe, because they’re so easy to come by. You could do any kind of citrus fruit, though. Grapefruit, pomelo, and blood orange are all great.
The recipe calls for cane sugar but any light/white sugar will be fine. We don’t recommend brown sugar because the flavour is too strong, and liquid sweeteners won’t candy the fruit properly.
Tips and Tricks
Make sure to use unwaxed citrus fruits here. Organic fruit will work best, since you’re using the peel, and won’t be coated in paraffin or anything that’s really hard to wash off. Wash the fruit well with hot water beforehand to remove any waxes that might be present.
More Great Citrus Recipes
If you make this recipe, let us know by tagging @baked_theblog + #bakedtheblog on Instagram! We love to feel like we’re in the kitchen with you.
Candied Mixed Peel
- Measuring cups or a digital kitchen scale
- Large pot
- Small saucepan
- 3 oranges, halved horizontally
- 2 lemons, halved horizontally
- 1 ½ cups cane sugar
- 1 ½ cups water, plus more for boiling
- Place citrus peels in a large pot and cover with cold water. Bring to a boil over high heat. Once it has reached a rapid boil, remove the pot from the heat and drain the fruit, discarding the water. Repeat this process a second time. The peels should be soft at this point.
- Once peels are cool enough to handle, gently fillet the flesh and pith away from the zest (getting as much pith as possible). Note: This is sometimes easier if you cut the peels into smaller pieces. Compost the pith and set peel aside. Continue with remaining peels.
- To a small saucepan, add peels, sugar, and 1 ½ cups (375 ml) water. Bring to a boil, then partially cover and reduce to a simmer. Simmer until peels look slightly translucent, approximately 45 minutes to an 1 hour. Remove from heat and set aside to cool.
- Store peel and syrup in an airtight container in the fridge for up to a month.