30+ Recipes Using Preserved Lemons

A host of recipes that used preserved lemons mjskitchen.com


Do you have a jar of preserved lemons sitting in the refrigerator feeling ignored?  Well, it’s time to quit ignoring it and put those lemons to use.  If you don’t have any preserved lemons, do not fret – one of the following recipes tells you how to make a small batch in just 24 hours.  Following are at least 30 luscious recipes that take advantage of the unique and absolutely divine flavor of preserved lemons.

Just a little note for those new to preserved lemons – Preserved lemons are not a “delicate” condiment.  In fact, they are quite the opposite.  Because of their salty sourness, they are quite bold and are best use in small amounts and in tiny pieces.  For most of the recipes in which I use preserved lemons, I minced them and limit the amount to about 1 tablespoon (depending on the recipe).  Large pieces of preserved lemons can be quite overwhelming and actually ruin a recipe, but then there are exceptions.  So treat preserved lemons like raw garlic.  There are very few of us out there that want to munch down on a large clove of raw garlic. 🙂


A process for making preserved lemons within 24 hours mjskitchen.com

Print or Save Recipe
Quick Preserved Lemons in less than 24 hours
10 mins
Total Time
10 mins

A quick & easy method for making mock preserved lemons in 24 hours.  No quick as good as the real thing but a great substitute.

Course: Condiments
Recipe Author: MJ of MJ's Kitchen
  • 1 large lemon
  • 1 tsp. Kosher salt
  1. Peel the zest off 1 large lemon. Try not to get any of the white pith.
  2. Juice the lemon and set the juice aside.
  3. Cut the zest into narrow strips and place in a glass jar or bowl. Top with 1 tsp. (5 g) salt and the lemon juice.
  4. Stir to dissolve some of the salt. If the juice does not cover the zest, add more lemon juice.
  5. Let sit on the counter for 20 to 24 hours or longer.
  6. After 24 hours, both the zest and the juice are ready for use.
  7. Be careful about adding salt to any dish in which you use preserved lemons. They are pretty salty.


Process and Appetizers with Preserved Lemons

A jar of preserved lemons

How to Make Preserved Lemons

Green Olive and Preserved Lemon Tapenade  @ Closet Cooking

Nectarine Salad with Preserved Lemon Dressing  @ Chel Rabbit

Crostini with Roasted Butternut Squash, Ricotta, and Preserved Lemon @ Food and Wine


Pasta Recipes with Preserved Lemons

Capelinni pasta with preserved lemons and an egg

Capellini with Preserved Lemons, Olives and an Egg on Top

Orzo salad with olives, veggies and pine nuts

Orzo Salad with Preserved Lemons

A quick, easy, healthy pasta dish with fresh broccoli, leek, herbs and preserved lemon | mjskitchen.com

Pasta with Broccolini, Leeks and Preserved Lemons

Fresh Pasta with Broad Beans and Preserved Lemons @ Taste

Penne with Chicken and Preserved Lemon @ Health.com

Couscous Salad with Dried Apricots and Preserved Lemons  @ New York Times

Roasted Vegetable Couscous Salad with Preserved Lemons   @ MailONline

Vegetable with Preserved Lemons

Leeks lightly braised with preserved lemons and tarragon

Leeks Braised with Preserved Lemons and Tarragon

Steamed, Chilled Vegetables with Preserved Lemon Dipping Oil  @ A House in the Hills

Broad Bean Salad with Preserved Lemons @ Essential Kids

Garlic Asparagus with Grilled Preserved Lemons @ The American Bite

Roasted Fingerlings with Preserved Lemons  @ Epicurious


Grains and Salads with Preserved Lemons

Rice with Preserved lemons and artichokes

Preserved Lemon Rice

Preserved Lemon Quinoa with Shaved Brussels, Toasted Walnuts  @ Simple Bites

Navy Bean Soup with Kale, Preserved Lemons, and Harissa  @ Sassy Radish


Salad with fresh tomatoes, cucumber, peppers, basil and mint

Strawberry Tomato Salad with Mint

White Bean Salad with Preserved Lemon  @ Gourmet Traveler

Moroccan Chickpea Salad   @ Delicious Everyday

Steamed Asparagus with a Garlic Lemon Dressing

A cool and refreshing watermelon salad with preserved lemon, mint and olives @mjskitchen #watermelon #preserved #lemon

Watermelon Salad with Preserved Lemon, Feta and Olives


Lamb and Beef Recipes with Preserved Lemons

Lamb Tagine with Preserved Lemons and Green Olives  @ Cooking on the Ranch

Brisket with Olives and Preserved Lemons  @ My Recipes

Braised Beef Shanks in Preserved Lemons @Ang Sarap

Poultry Recipes with Preserved Lemons

Bites of chicken marinated with preserved lemons and pepper.

Peppered Lemon Chicken Bites

Roasted Poussin (Cornish Hen) with Preserved Lemons, Olives and North American Spices  @ Spicie Foodie

Chicken Salad with Preserved Lemons and Basil  @ Blue Kale Road

Braised Chicken with Preserved Lemons and Olives  @ Tasting Table

Grilled Chicken with Corkscrew Pasta in Preserved Lemon and Garlic Sauce   @ The Fork Ran Away with the Spoon

Chicken Tagine with Preserved Lemons, Green Olives and Golden Raisins  @ Camille Styles


Seafood & Other Recipes with Preserved Lemons

Crispy Skin Snapper with Peas & Beans and Preserved Lemon Butter @ MindFood

Grilled Clams with Jalapenos and Preserved Lemons @ Barbecue Bible

Salmon Quiche with Preserved Lemon  @ Shockingly Delicious

Spicy Crab Linguini with Preserved Lemons @ StoneGable

The Secret Ingredients:  Preserved Lemons  @ Serious Eats

For even more recipes, visit Simple Living and Eating’s post on Recipes with Preserved Lemons.


Do you have a recipe that uses preserved lemons that you would like to see added to this list?  If so, please send me an email with a link to the recipe.


51 Responses to “30+ Recipes Using Preserved Lemons”

  1. Roz February 16, 2014 at 3:47 pm #

    Thank you so much for giving the instructions on preparing preserved lemons . . . now that is something that I need to learn, MJ! Nice round-up of recipes, but I prefer yours above all, and not just the recipes, but your beautiful photography! I’m printing this preserved lemon recipe right now! Thank you SO much for teaching me something new!

    • mj February 17, 2014 at 10:22 am #

      Thank YOU Roz! So glad to help. Preserved lemons are so very easy to make, I just feel like everyone should have a jar in their fridge. 🙂 Thanks for all of your comments! You’re so very sweet!

  2. Sissi February 14, 2014 at 2:03 pm #

    I feel a bit ashamed: I have been here some time ago, read the post, admired the photos and… forgot to leave a comment! Anyway, I wanted to say that lemons are among the rare products I have never tried preserving. Moreover, I have never even tasted them! I am very grateful for your quick preserving method and for such an array of recipes; when I finally do preserve lemons one day, I’ll know where to look for wonderful ideas!

    • mj February 15, 2014 at 9:41 pm #

      No problem Sissi! I know you come to visit. You don’t always have to leave a comment. However, I do appreciate when you do. 🙂 With all of the preserving, particularly salt preserving you do, I’m surprised you haven’t done lemons. I’m sure you would enjoy them.

  3. Nancy/SpicieFoodie February 13, 2014 at 8:01 pm #

    I love, love preserved lemons — just reading your title made my mouth water. What a scrumptious roundup MJ, thanks for including my recipe.

    • mj February 13, 2014 at 10:25 pm #

      Thanks so much Nancy!

  4. Gloria February 13, 2014 at 11:41 am #

    this is such a lovely post with such great collection of recipes…thank you for sharing

    • mj February 13, 2014 at 10:22 pm #

      You are most welcome and thank you!

  5. cquek February 12, 2014 at 7:27 am #

    i love all the collections. thanks for sharing.

  6. Nami | Just One Cookbook February 11, 2014 at 11:56 pm #

    This was actually a very fun post for me. Unfortunately I do not have a jar of preserved lemons (I do love to have more than a jar! though), but all these recipes are very interesting (because mostly new way of cooking for me) and sound so delicious. Perfect for a citrus lover like myself. I still love your Peppered Lemon Chicken Bites. I would love to eat that….

    • mj February 13, 2014 at 10:19 pm #

      Thanks Nami! I did a search and couldn’t find any Asian cuisine with preserved lemons, so no, it’s not something I would expect you to have. But next time you feel adventurous, you might give them a try. I know that you would love them!

  7. Soni February 10, 2014 at 6:11 pm #

    What a delicious round up of recipes using preserved lemons!I have yet to make them but looking at this list I’m inspired 🙂

    • mj February 10, 2014 at 8:36 pm #

      Thanks Soni! Glad to be an inspiration. 🙂

  8. Asmita February 10, 2014 at 8:40 am #

    Lovely round up! Need to get some preserved lemons or make some soon.

  9. easyfoodsmith February 9, 2014 at 11:14 pm #

    I have a recipe for preserved lemons which I have been planning to make but never did. With so many ideas to using preserved lemons, I am going to make this one asap. thanks for sharing.

    • mj February 10, 2014 at 8:24 pm #

      Well what are you waiting for? 🙂 There are lots of great recipes here and I plan to try many, if not all of them myself. Thanks for stopping by!

  10. Peachy @ The Peach Kitchen February 9, 2014 at 5:19 pm #

    Oh WOW! I didn’t know about preserved lemons until today.I will have to try this but I’ll wait until we’ve moved in to our new home..

    • mj February 9, 2014 at 9:18 pm #

      Thanks Peachy! Glad to be able to introduce you to something new. HOpe you do make a batch because they are quite good.

  11. Raymund February 9, 2014 at 3:25 pm #

    This is a good timing as I am waiting for my preserved lemons to pickle

    • mj February 9, 2014 at 9:17 pm #

      How exciting! This was good timing! Enjoy!

  12. Liz February 9, 2014 at 12:23 pm #

    I DO have preserved lemons in my fridge! How’d you know?? Thanks for all the inspiration 🙂

    • mj February 9, 2014 at 9:17 pm #

      So glad to be of service my dear. 🙂

  13. Ramona February 9, 2014 at 10:55 am #

    I love these recipes. Making preserved lemons was on my to do list… thanks for reminding me that I still have not done them. I like your 24 hour method.

    • mj February 9, 2014 at 9:16 pm #

      Thanks Ramona! Hope you get a chance to make them. With the type of recipes that you come up with, a bit of preserved lemons would be quite complementary!

  14. The Wimpy Vegetarian February 9, 2014 at 10:14 am #

    What a fantastic idea for a post. I’m so glad you did this. I have a HUGE jar of preserved lemons my husband’s ex-wife gave me for Christmas. She’d recently been to Morocco and took a cooking class one day there and came home full of wonderful Moroccan recipes. I’ve been looking for ways to use them! Thanks soooo much!!

    • mj February 9, 2014 at 9:14 pm #

      Thanks Susan! What a great gift from Morocco! I hope you find some recipes from the list that you enjoy! and you are MOST welcome!

  15. Debra February 9, 2014 at 9:16 am #

    Excellent quick tip and round-up of recipes!

  16. Angie@Angie's Recipes February 9, 2014 at 8:33 am #

    An amazing roundup, MJ. Thank you for sharing.

  17. Jodee Weiland February 8, 2014 at 10:20 am #

    MJ, what a great idea! I love lemons, but so many go bad before I ever have a chance to use them. I usually squeeze them and try to use the juice any way I can in a short amount of time. I love this idea…thanks for sharing!

    • mj February 9, 2014 at 9:12 pm #

      Thanks you Jodee! You really should try preserving some of those lemons. They can last up to a year in the fridge. Hope you give preserving a try!

  18. Terra February 8, 2014 at 9:13 am #

    Wow, what a gorgeous round-up, and such a lovely mix of unique recipes! Now I wish I had a jar of preserved lemons in my fridge! Thank you for sharing so many fun ways to use preserved lemons! Hugs, Terra

    • mj February 8, 2014 at 9:20 am #

      Thanks so much Terra! Because preserved lemons are one of my most favorite condiments I’m always surprised when someone doesn’t have a jar in the fridge. 🙂 Have a great weekend!

  19. fati's recipes February 8, 2014 at 3:34 am #

    Love the roundup! And even happier to see the preserving recipe

    I might give it a go with the lemons from our tree:)
    I am still waiting for the day I make those chicken bites. They look so delectable!

    Here’s a funky twist of a thought that came to mind: Have you come across any desserts that use preserved lemon? I didn’t seem to spot any in the roundup 🙂

    • mj February 8, 2014 at 9:04 am #

      Thanks fati! You have a lemon tree – I’m envious! 🙂 About preserved lemons desserts? I actually did a search for that and found nothing. I was quite surprised at how few recipes (other than the standard Moroccan recipes) were out there with preserved lemons. It has to be one of my most favorite condiments, so I was surprised to see so little. Oh, those chicken bites are so good. Hope you do make them someday. Have a wonderful weekend my friend!

  20. Evelyne@cheapethniceatz February 7, 2014 at 10:23 am #

    I did recently throw out a very neglected preserved lemon 🙁 Now I wish I had not because this is a great collection. I guess I did not use it from lack of inspiration. Time to make some again. I do love the classic Lamb Tagine with Preserved Lemons and Green Olives.

  21. Giulietta | Alterkitchen February 7, 2014 at 9:44 am #

    WOW!! So much recipes with one single and delicious ingredient!

  22. Lea Ann (Cooking On The Ranch) February 7, 2014 at 6:01 am #

    Thank you so much for this line up of great recipes. I just bought another jar last weekend and was going to start a search for different ways to use them. I’ve only ever cooked with them in my lamb tagine (listed here). The flavor is so fabulous and unique I look forward to trying a couple of recipes. Thanks for the link back to my Lamb Tagine.

    • mj February 7, 2014 at 8:18 am #

      Thanks so much Lea Ann! I’m glad you enjoyed the list! Your lamb tagine looks wonderful and I’m hoping my BIL sees it. He has a tagine and just made a jar of preserved lemons. I think he (and I) would love the dish. Maybe I can get him to make it for me the next time we visit. 🙂

  23. Minnie@thelady8home February 6, 2014 at 7:47 pm #

    This is a pretty neat post!! I don’t do preserve lemons, but I think I should do some just so that i can make some of those fantastic looking recipes that you have posted.

    • mj February 7, 2014 at 8:16 am #

      Thanks Minnie! You could always make a quickie batch to give them a try. Once you do that, you’ll be making a while batch. 🙂

  24. Choc Chip Uru February 6, 2014 at 3:01 pm #

    I love this collection of preserved lemon recipes, they are so flavoursome 😀

    Choc Chip Uru

    • mj February 7, 2014 at 8:15 am #

      Thanks Uru! I agree – the flavor of preserved lemons is awesome!

  25. Donalyn@The Creekside Cook February 6, 2014 at 1:22 pm #

    MJ, what a fantastic collection of recipes! I love making – and using – preserved lemons and now I have wealth of new ways to try them. Thank you so much!

  26. John@Kitchen Riffs February 6, 2014 at 9:13 am #

    Really great roundup of recipes! I have no problems using preserved lemons, but it’s always great to have more ideas. You have some good ones! My problem is getting around to making the lemons in the first place! I should really try the quick method you posted — that way I can have my lemons, and use them almost right away!

    • mj February 7, 2014 at 8:14 am #

      Thanks John! I’m with you. They never go to waste and about every 3 months I have to start a new batch. The quick methods does work great! The texture is a little different, but the flavor of the preserved lemons is still there.

  27. Maureen | Orgasmic Chef February 6, 2014 at 6:33 am #

    Dorothy said it and I second it. I have made preserved lemons (I made the mistake the first time of making 3 jars) and then hunted for ways to use them.

    • mj February 7, 2014 at 8:13 am #

      Thanks Maureen! 3 jars? Even I would take a while to use that many lemons and I use them A lot! 🙂

  28. Dorothy at Shockingly Delicious February 6, 2014 at 6:21 am #

    Great collection of recipes…wonderful cooking resource! Thank you for including my salmon quiche!

    • mj February 7, 2014 at 8:12 am #

      You are most welcome Dorothy! Your quiche looks fabulous!


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