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The Body Retreat

The Body Retreat

Women Only Weight Loss & Wellbeing Retreats

Dried Citrus Zest

At the Body Retreat we are always trying to think of ways to reduce waste and make the most of the produce we buy in. We found that the zest of citrus fruit was sometimes forgotten about when using the juice. Now we zest citrus fruit before juicing and dry it out allowing us to use it for weeks to come.

Makes 2-4 tsp
  • 1 Orange / Lemon / Lime

How to dry citrus zest:

Zest citrus fruit then leave on a plate or board overnight. Cover with a tea towel or kitchen towel. It may take a couple of days to dry out depending on the temperature and humidity of your room. You can also use a dehydrator to keep the temperature consistent.

To speed up the process you can put the zest in the oven on a low temperature, around 160C, for a couple of hours. When first using your oven check every 30 mins to make sure the zest isn’t browning.

Once dry put into a kilner or jam jar. It should last months if kept dry. Like any dried goods it will loose it potency over time so the sooner you use it the stronger the flavour.


Dried Citrus Zest can be used in soups, on roasted vegetables, in baked goods, steeped with teas, used in spice mixes and rubs for meat and fish. We use any dried orange zest in our Chia Seed Bliss Balls. I like to use the dried lemon zest in dishes like the Leek and White Bean Soup and the Immune Boosting Soup when I don’t have any fresh lemons to hand.

You can use a microplane, box grater, zester, peeler or paring knife. You will get different size pieces so depends what you will be using it for or what is most convenient. I mainly use a microplane as I find this avoids most of the pith. The pith is the white layer between the peel and the fruit and has a bitter flavour, try avoid getting too much when zesting otherwise it will affect the taste of your peel.

We have plenty of dried zest in the Body Retreat store cupboard, do you ever use it in any recipes at home?

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