Homemade Limoncello Recipes: Authentic Taste Made Easy

Homemade Limoncello

If you're feeling crafty and are looking to create some summertime cocktails, try making a homemade limoncello recipe. Whether you prefer it in the traditional style or want to incorporate other flavors or textures, the process is pretty consistent across the board. While these recipes do require a couple of days to make, the fruits of your labor will be well-worth the wait.

Homemade Limoncello

Limoncello is an Italian lemon liqueur which was originally brewed to be served as a digestif. Nowadays, it's incorporated into a variety of different mixed drink recipes. This specific batch of homemade Limoncello makes a large pitcher's worth and can be stored covered in a fridge for up to a month or in a freezer for up to a year.

Homemade Limoncello

Ingredients

  • 10 medium to large lemons
  • 1½ liters water
  • 3 pounds sugar
  • 4 cups 190-proof grain alcohol

Instructions

  1. Wash the lemons in hot water and gently scrub them with a vegetable brush to remove residue like wax, dirt, and pesticides.
  2. Using a vegetable peeler, carefully remove the lemon rinds; avoid cutting into the bitter, white pith.
  3. In a large jar or container, combine the lemon rinds with the alcohol and cover.
  4. Let the mixture sit undisturbed and unrefrigerated for seven days.
  5. On the eighth day, strain the mixture into a bowl through a fine sieve lined with damp cheesecloth or a damp coffee filter, and discard the peels. Set aside.
  6. In a small saucepan, mix the water and sugar and bring to a boil.
  7. Remove from the heat once the sugar has fully dissolved and let it cool to room temperature.
  8. Combine the syrup and flavored alcohol in an airtight bottle in either the freezer or refrigerator and remove when it's ready to use.

Homemade Limoncello Variations

Once you've mastered the original recipe for limoncello, you can take your at-home mixing skills further by trying out one of these modern variations on the traditional formula.

Americanized Limoncello

Whether based on drama, flavor, or a combination of the two, the Americanized version of the limoncello recipe takes much longer to prepare. This recipe yields about 13 cups of limoncello.

Ingredients

  • 15 lemons
  • 4 cups granulated sugar
  • 5 cups distilled water
  • 1 (750 ml) bottle of 190-proof alcohol

Instructions

  1. Thoroughly wash and dry the lemons.
  2. Using a vegetable peeler or peeling knife, peel the lemons with care and avoid cutting into the bitter white pith.
  3. In a large container, combine the lemon peels and alcohol and cover.
  4. Secure the lid and set aside at room temperature for a minimum of ten days and a maximum of 40 days in a cool, shaded place.
  5. In a saucepan, combine the sugar and water and bring it to a gentle boil.
  6. Boil over medium low heat for five to seven minutes and then set aside to cool.
  7. Combine the syrup into the lemon and alcohol mixture and age for another ten to 40 days.
  8. Strain the mixture through a cheesecloth or coffee filter-lined sieve and pour into sealable bottles.
  9. Store in the freezer or refrigerator and remove when needed.

Arancello

Arancello is incredibly similar to the regular limoncello recipe but is perfect for people who aren't a huge fan of lemons since it substitutes oranges in their stead. This batch makes about thirteen cups of arancello.

Arancello

Ingredients

  • 15 oranges
  • 4 cups granulated sugar
  • 5 cups distilled water
  • 1 (750 ml) bottle of 190-proof alcohol

Instructions

  1. Thoroughly wash and dry the oranges.
  2. Use a vegetable peeler to peel the orange part of the peel (leave the white part, or pith) with care and mix the orange peels with the alcohol in a large container.
  3. Secure the lid and set aside at room temperature for a minimum of ten days and a maximum of 40 days in a cool, shaded place.
  4. In a saucepan, combine the sugar and water and bring to a gentle boil.
  5. Boil over medium low heat for five to seven minutes and then set aside to cool.
  6. Add the cooled syrup to the orange and alcohol mixture and age for another ten to 40 days.
  7. Strain the mixture through a cheesecloth or coffee filter-lined sieve and pour into sealable bottles.
  8. Store in the freezer or refrigerator and remove when ready to use.

Vanilla Limoncello

If the tartness of citrus always makes your mouth pucker, add some vanilla beans to curtail some of that bite using this vanilla limoncello recipe. This recipe yields about 16 cups.

Vanilla Limoncello

Ingredients

  • 30 lemons
  • 5 vanilla beans, split
  • 4 cups sugar
  • 5 cups water
  • 2 (750 ml) bottles 100-proof vodka

Instructions

  1. Wash the lemons in hot water and gently scrub them with a vegetable brush to remove residue like wax, dirt, and pesticides.
  2. Carefully remove the lemon rinds with a vegetable peeler; avoid cutting into the bitter, white pith.
  3. Scrape the pods and vanilla seeds from the inside of the vanilla beans into a large container.
  4. Add the lemon rinds and alcohol to the container and cover.
  5. Let the mixture sit undisturbed and unrefrigerated for seven days.
  6. On day eight, strain the mixture into a bowl through a fine sieve lined with damp cheesecloth or a damp coffee filter, and then discard the peels.
  7. Mix the sugar and water together in a saucepan and bring to a simmer.
  8. Keep the mixture at a full simmer for 15 minutes.
  9. Turn off the heat and let the syrup cool to room temperature.
  10. Add to the flavored alcohol and store in an airtight bottle in either the freezer or refrigerator and remove when it's ready to use.

Creamy Limoncello

Some limoncello manufacturers add cream or milk to their recipes to make a thicker, richer flavor, and you can easily make this at home using this creamy limoncello recipe. This batch yeilds about eight cups.

Creamy Limoncello

Ingredients

  • 8 lemons, zested
  • 2 quarts milk
  • 2 cups white sugar
  • 3 cups 190-proof vodka

Instructions

  1. In an airtight container, combine the vodka and lemon zest and place in a cool, dark area.
  2. Shake the container once a day for five days.
  3. In a small pot, combine the milk and sugar and bring to a boil and stir until the sugar has fully dissolved.
  4. Once it's dissolved, remove from the heat and let it cool.
  5. Once cool, strain the vodka mixture into the milk using a sieve.
  6. Stir and pour the limoncello into a glass capped bottle and freeze for an hour before using.
  7. This will keep for about a week, so you may wish to make a smaller batch.

Limoncello Goes Great in Everything

All versions of limoncello can be served straight from the freezer or refrigerator, with or without ice. Those who're cutting back on their cocktail consumption don't have to worry; you can always add some of the lemon liqueur to a bowl of ice cream or frozen yogurt to add a tart kick to these cool desserts. With so many different ways to dress up a dessert or dirty a drink, homemade Limoncello may turn into one of your favorite new summer projects.

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Homemade Limoncello Recipes: Authentic Taste Made Easy