Technique: Candied Orange Peel

February 18, 2011

Candied Orange

Ever since my friend sent me candied orange segments from one of Madrid’s oldest sweet shops, I’ve been on a wild goose chase to find that flavour. I tried candying segments, but that didn’t work as I imagined. I ended up with sticky yet delicious syrup that I could add to drinks, but had to toss the segments. Next, I bought candied orange segments from Dalloyau when I was in Paris. Hardly a match for the Madrid ones. While I didn’t want to repeat my candied segment disaster, I thought I’d start with something relatively simple: candied orange peels.

Too petrified of messing things up, I followed the steps for candying orange I found on Smitten Kitchen made with simple syrup. At first, the candied oranges were a little firm and chewy, and I told them off on the first day. Surprisingly, the texture changed for the better after two days of sitting in a bowl of sugar, and I had myself some mighty fine candied oranges that I couldn’t stop nibbling on.

Candied Orange

  • First, cut 6 oranges into 4 segments. Carefully, turn the pulp out.
  • Now cut each quarter orange peel into 6-8 strips, depending on how large your oranges are. This, I found was the way to get even strips.
  • Next, blanch the oranges in boiling water for a few minutes. Repeat this 2-3 times. This helps get the bitterness out of the pith, as well as makes the orange peel more receptive to absorb the sugar in the next step.
  • Finally, prepare the simply syrup 245g. (8oz.) caster sugar and 245g (8oz.) water and bring this to simmer. Add the blanched orange peels to this and let it cook for 30-40 minutes, util translucent. Make sure to stir it every now and then, or you might end up with some burnt strips (which I did).
  • Once cooked, lay the strips of candied orange on a cooling rack in a tray (that will hold the excess syrup dripping off) and let it dry for 2-3 hours. I left mine overnight. It’ll still be pretty darn stick.
  • Now toss this some caster sugar until it’s well coated.

Tip: You can add some additional orange zest into the leftover sugar from coating the candied orange to have flavoured sugar!


  • Reply Denise @ Creative Kitchen February 18, 2011 at 12:43 AM

    Oh these look good & like something I would love!! Thanks for sharing!!

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  • Reply Sanjeeta kk February 18, 2011 at 11:10 AM

    Love those cute candied oranges. I think it is called ‘simple’ syrup!

  • Reply Kathy D February 18, 2011 at 12:13 PM

    I made candied orange peel last week, not once but twice. First with blood orange peel then with clementines. Absolutely amazing!

  • Reply Susie February 18, 2011 at 8:08 AM

    Thanks for sharing the recipe – I have thought about trying to make these several times, but have never attempted them. I think with your notes and beautiful pictures to guide me, I’ll give it a try.

  • Reply Michelle February 18, 2011 at 9:10 PM

    I’ve always thought these would be such a nice addition to my holiday baking, but why wait for Christmas? They look wonderful.

  • Reply Debjani February 21, 2011 at 7:18 PM

    Aaaaw! Thanks for the shout out, I´ll try and get some more candied orange supplies over to you soon and I´m going to try your candied ginger recipe this weekend.


  • Reply Radha February 24, 2011 at 11:08 PM

    lovely pics and recipe. which variety of oranges would you recommend. would kinnu work.

    • Reply The Purple Foodie February 24, 2011 at 11:32 PM

      Hi Radha, I used Malta oranges. Seville oranges would be great too, if you have access to them.

  • Reply Taz February 27, 2011 at 4:36 AM

    yum, this is perfect timing! I was just thinking about making candied orange peel so I’ll have to give your recipe a try.

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  • Reply jordan December 7, 2011 at 6:24 AM

    I used meyer lemons, its still in the process but i hope it turns out well :D

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  • Reply Vaishali March 8, 2016 at 5:13 PM

    At the risk of sounding very stupid I have got to admit that I have never heard of candied oranges before until I came across this recipe here, then I also clicked on to the smitten kitchen link provided in this post after referring to both the recipes I tried to make orangettes on my own even though the end result was good and all my friends who tasted it loved it too but my candied oranges where really gooey! I don’t know why?

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