Cooking with Rocco
by Cooking with Rocco
1 Litre
30 min

How thirsty are you? I bet you’re thirsty enough to enjoy some homemade limoncello!

I’m a sucker for a good limoncello - homemade or not. But this is probably the easiest liqueur to make homemade. It only requires four ingredients - lemons, alcohol, sugar, and water - and 30 to 40 days of patience. You can easily double or triple this recipe and make a large batch, bottle it, and share it with your family and friends.

Limoncello is the perfect after dinner drink to end a great meal, and the perfect way to end the night. Really… if you drink too much of this, the limoncello will end your night, not you!

The best part about this recipe is that it is very interchangeable. If you want to make limoncello, just use lemons… If you want to make orangecello, just use oranges… you can use any citrus fruit you want. Meyer Lemons are also excellent.

Recipe details
  • 1  Litre
  • Prep time: 20 Minutes Cook time: 10 Minutes Total time: 30 min
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  • 8 lemons
  • 500mL pure grain alcohol
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 cups sugar

Using a vegetable peeler, peel the lemons. When peeling each lemon, try to remove only the outer yellow skin and avoid the white pith as much as possible. If your lemon peels have some pith, trim the pith away with a paring knife. But it does not have to be perfect.
Transfer the lemon peels to a lidded jar, big enough to fit the 500mL of alcohol (or more if using). Pour the alcohol over the lemon peels, cover, and store in a cool, dry place for about 30 days. The longer you let the lemons infuse the alcohol, the better it taste.
After 30 days elapsed, prepare the simple syrup. In a small saucepan, mix together the sugar and the water. Bring the water to a simmer and stir until the sugar dissolves. Once dissolved, remove the pan from the heat and allow it to cool.
While the simple syrup is cooling, strain the alcohol. Line a strainer with cheesecloth (or a coffee filter), and set it over a bowl or jar big enough to hold all the liquid. Strain the infused alcohol through the filter. You may need to strain it once or twice to get the little particles of leftover lemon peel out.  
Once strained, pour the simple syrup into the infused alcohol and stir gently to mix. Taste and adjust the sugar if desired (see notes below).  
Bottle the limoncello into jars, and store in the fridge or freezer. The limoncello can last in the freeze for up to a year (maybe longer). 
  • If you taste the limoncello and it's to strong, or to sweet, you can adjust the ratios. Adding more water will dilute the limoncello. You can add more water to accommodate your taste. If you want to add more sugar, be sure to make another simple syrup so it easily dissolves into the limoncello.
  • After you mix the simple syrup with the infused alcohol, I like to let it sit for another 10 days. But that part is optional.
Cooking with Rocco
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  • Vee Vee on May 06, 2021

    Sounds like a great summer "sip", with a fresh mint garnish. Throw in a few frozen cranberries and place in the freezer until Christmas, make a great base for cheery cocktails, and gifts for special friends!

  • Bridget Morgia Straight Bridget Morgia Straight on May 06, 2021

    The 30 days should show in the prep time.

    • Anyone that reads the recipe through it becomes easily apparent. Problem is a lot of people do not read it through or comprehend some of the steps, and with so many novice cooks each step needs to be spelled out in detail. Most home cooks it is second nature and are not professional recipe authors. One must expect a minor detail to be different. In addition, if one submits a recipe, some of the fields are limited or do not have a "category" option.