In this post on candied lemon slices, I am going to share with you my recipe for making lemon slices cooked in sugar syrup that are not only delicious but are also super easy to make, and even more than that, make the most gorgeous decoration for your cakes, cupcakes and other treats.
This post is an extension of my candied lemon peels recipe, where I share my method of making candy out of just the lemon peel. It’s a great way to use up the lemon peel which we often discard after juicing lemons.
This recipe is pretty similar to that one, except that I use whole lemon slices for this recipe. The lemon slices are cut into thin round strips and cooked in sugar syrup over low heat until the lemon slices become translucent and deliciously soaked in thick sugar syrup. These peels are then left to dry overnight, and they are then good to be enjoyed.
Unlike the candied lemon peels, I do not coat my lemon slices with sugar after cooking them in syrup. You can always give them a coating of granulated sugar if you like.
The candied lemon slices are sweet and sour at the same time and are perfect for those who like sour candy. I often make these candied peels to decorate cakes. Without any sugar-coating, the translucent and glistering candied lemon slices make a really pretty decoration on any treats.
How to Make Candied Lemon Slices
Preparing the lemons and making the sugar syrup
Wash and dab the lemons dry.
- Place them on a clean chopping board and slice them into thin slices, about 2mm or 3mm thick. Remove the seeds.
- In a wide saucepan, add water and sugar.
- Place it on the stovetop and turn on the heat to medium.
- Stir to dissolve the sugar.
Cooking the lemon slices in syrup
- As soon as the sugar is dissolved, add the lemon slices in, one at a time, making sure they do not overlap on one another.
- Turn the heat to low.
- Place the lid on the pan.
- Let the lemons simmer in the sugar syrup for 15 minutes. After 15 minutes, take off the lid and turn the lemon slices over.
- Let them simmer again for another 15 minutes. At this stage, the lemons should have turned translucent. If not, let them simmer for another 5 to 10 minutes. At this stage, keep a close eye on the sugar syrup as it may caramelize.
- Remove the candied lemon slices, one by one, and place them on a parchment-lined tray. Place them apart and make sure they are not touching or overlapping as it will be difficult to separate them once the syrup sets.
Let the candied lemon slices rest at room temperature (uncovered) overnight. I place them in the oven as it is the safest place to keep them uncovered.
Storing the candied lemon slices
- Once set, the sugar syrup on the slices would have set, however, the candied slices will still remain tacky.
- If not consumed or used immediately, keep them in an airtight container. To avoid them from sticking to each other, place each slice in between parchment paper squares.
- The lemon slices are best kept refrigerated and can last for at least 3 to 4 months.
Wash the lemons well
- The main ingredient for this treat is lemon with its skin intact. With all the pesticides and wax being used on commercially produced lemons, it is important that they are washed well before using.
How to slice the lemons
- The best way to cut the lemons is with a sharp knife. You can also use a mandolin if you want. Whichever way, take note to ensure you slice them thinly, about 2mm to 3mm thick. Too thick slices will take a longer time to cook and soften, and too thin might leave you with nothing much to munch on. And, to ensure the slices cook consistently and uniformly, it is best that they are cut in the same width.
- Also, it is best that you remove any seeds you see in your lemon slices before cooking them. It is easier to remove the seeds while the lemons are fresh than when they are all cooked and syrupy.
The best pan for cooking the lemon slices
- When cooking the lemon slices in syrup, it is best that they are placed in a single layer in the syrup rather than on top of one another. This will ensure they don’t stick to one another and cook consistently.
- For this reason, a wide saucepan would be a better choice and a smaller one. If you are not able to find one that is wide enough such that your lemon slices end up overlapping, it is still ok. All you need to do is make sure you keep turning them around every 5 to 10 minutes so that all the slices get equal opportunity to cook on all sides.
- Also, when using a wide pan, the tendency for the sugar syrup to thicken quicker is high due to the larger area of the pan. Keeping the pan covered with a lid will avoid the syrup from thickening too soon and allow your lemon slices the necessary time to cook.
Is it necessary to blanch the lemon slices in hot water before cooking in syrup?
- I do not have this step in my recipe and it is not necessary.
Can you coat your candied lemon slices with granulated sugar?
- In my candied lemon peel and orange peel candy recipes, I coat the peels with granulated sugar after cooking them in sugar syrup.
- For these lemon slices, however, I leave them plain and that is because I like them that way. Plus, they look much prettier with all the shiny translucent centers and make excellent decoration for cakes and cupcakes.
- Having said that, if you prefer your lemon slices covered in granulated sugar, you can always do so. After removing the slices from the syrup and after letting them rest overnight, dip them into granulated sugar.
How to make caramelized lemon slices
- Caramelized lemon slices are simply slices cooked in sugar caramel. To do this, you let the lemon slices cook in the sugar syrup until the syrup starts to caramelize. Once you get the caramel to a light amber hue, turn off the heat and remove the lemon slices onto a parchment-lined tray.
- Once the sugar syrup starts to caramelize, it will darken very quickly, hence keep a close tab on the sugar syrup and the lemons after 30 minutes of cooking.
Candied Lemon Slices Recipe
Here is the full printable version of my candied lemon slices recipe.
Candied Lemon Slices
- 1 lemon
- 100 ml water
- 100 g sugar
- Wash the lemon and dab it dry with a kitchen towel.
- Using a sharp knife or a mandoline cutter, slice the lemon into 2mm to 3mm thick slices. Remove and discard the seeds.
- Fill a wide pan with the water.
- Add sugar and place it on a stove.
- Turn on the heat to a medium flame and stir the sugar to dissolve it.
- Once the sugar is dissolved, add the lemon slices, one at a time. Make sure the slices are not overlapped.
- Turn the heat to low and cover the pan.
- Let the lemon slices simmer in the sugar syrup for 15 minutes.
- Turn them over and cook for another 15 to 25 minutes until the centers are completely translucent.
- Turn off the heat and remove the lemon slices onto a parchment-lined tray. Place each slice apart from one another.
- Let the candied lemon slices dry overnight, uncovered before consuming or using for decoration.
- To store the candied slices, place each slice between parchment squares. The slices are best stored in the refrigerator. Keep them in an airtight container.
- To sugar-coat the lemon slices, dip them in a bowl of granulated sugar after drying them overnight.
- To make caramelized lemon slices, let the slices cook in the sugar syrup until the syrup starts to caramelize. Remove from the syrup and dry as usual.
And that’s that. My super easy, super delectable candied lemon slices recipe for you.
Here are my other posts you might want to check out:
- Orange Peel Candy – How to Make Candied Peels
- Coconut Candy – A Quick and Easy Treat
- Coconut Candy – A Homemade Treat
- Cream Cheese Candy – Easy Homemade Mints