How to Candy Orange Peel

For the Holiday Layer Bars, I needed Candied Orange Peel. Can you buy that? I have no idea. I looked for it at my local grocery store with no luck, but came prepared with an ingredient list to make it myself. It’s pretty easy, but does take a bit of time. The result? Way better than I imagined! I kept sneaking strips of them and popping them into my mouth like…well, candy. I’m not sure who came up with candying peel, but it’s a great way to inject mega orange flavor into just about anything and you don’t waste that part of the orange!

How to Candy Orange Peel | So, How's It Taste?

How to Candy Orange Peel

Start by cutting the tops and bottoms off of your oranges.

How to Candy Orange Peel | So, How's It Taste?

Next, cut the skin away using a knife. I start at the top and cut down to the bottom in a sawing motion. I can control how much pith comes off better this way. Alternatively, you can score the orange into quarters and peel the skin off in larger pieces. Save the orange for another recipe. (Cut the orange into segments and freeze for my Cranberry Orange Smoothie!)

How to Candy Orange Peel | So, How's It Taste?

Next, cut the peel into strips about 1/4-inch wide.

How to Candy Orange Peel | So, How's It Taste?

Put the orange peel into a saucepan with cold water to cover. Bring to a boil over high heat. Then pour off the water. Repeat this process two more times. Why? It softens the peel and takes away the bitterness. Remove the peel from the saucepan.

How to Candy Orange Peel | So, How's It Taste?

Whisk the sugar and water in the saucepan. I just used a wooden spoon. (I live on the edge!)

How to Candy Orange Peel | So, How's It Taste?

Bring to a simmer and cook for 8 to 9 minutes.

How to Candy Orange Peel | So, How's It Taste?

Add the peels and simmer gently, reducing the heat to retain the simmer. Cook until the peels become translucent, which is about 45 minutes. Don’t stir! Instead swirl the pan to move the peels around.

How to Candy Orange Peel | So, How's It Taste?

This is how they look at the halfway point. Getting there!

How to Candy Orange Peel | So, How's It Taste?

This is how they look after 45 minutes. Bubbles everywhere!

How to Candy Orange Peel | So, How's It Taste?

Drain the peels, but save the syrup. You’ve now got an orange simple syrup that would be great in iced tea or cocktails!

How to Candy Orange Peel | So, How's It Taste?

Use tongs to move the peels to a bowl of sugar, working in batches. Careful, they’re hot! Roll the peels in sugar. You can use your hands once they are cool enough to touch.

How to Candy Orange Peel | So, How's It Taste?

Dry peels on a wire rack for a few hours. I placed my wire rack in a pan lined with parchment paper so I could save the excess sugar for storing. The directions have 4 to 5 hours listed, but I found they were good to go in about 2 hours. Store in an airtight container with the leftover sugar.

How to Candy Orange Peel | So, How's It Taste?

Yield: about 1 cup peel

Prep Time: 25 min

Cook Time: 1 hr 13 min

Total Time: 5 hr 38 min

How to Candy Orange Peel

Ingredients:

3 thick-skinned navel oranges
2 1/4 cups granulated sugar, plus 3/4 cup for rolling/storing
3/4 cup water

Directions:

1. Cut tops and bottoms off of the oranges and score the orange into quarters, cutting down only into the peel and not into the fruit. Peel the skin and pith of the orange in large pieces, use the orange for another recipe. (Cut orange into segments and freeze for my Cranberry Orange Smoothie!) Alternatively, use a knife to cut the skin away from the orange instead of scoring and peeling. This is the method I used.

2. Cut the peel into strips about 1/4-inch wide. Put the orange peel in a large saucepan with cold water to cover, bring to a boil over high heat. Then pour off the water. Repeat 2 more times. Remove the orange peels from the pan.

3. Whisk the sugar with the water. Bring to a simmer and cook for 8 to 9 minutes (If you took the sugar's temperature with a candy thermometer it would be at the soft thread stage, 230 to 234 degrees F.)

4. Add the peels and simmer gently, reducing heat to retain a simmer. Cook until the peels get translucent, about 45 minutes. Resist the urge to stir the peels or you may introduce sugar crystals into the syrup. If necessary, swirl the pan to move the peels around. Drain the peels, (save the syrup for ice tea or a cocktail).

5. Using tongs (peels are hot!), roll the peels in sugar and dry on a rack, for 4 to 5 hours. Store in an airtight container with leftover sugar from rolling.

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4 Responses to “How to Candy Orange Peel”

  1. #
    1
    Sues — December 27, 2013 at 1:30 pm

    Love this! I candied grapefruit peel for the first time and am obsessed :)

  2. #
    2
    Natalie @ Tastes Lovely — December 28, 2013 at 12:35 pm

    Oooh, yum! I bet your house smelled delicious when you were making these.

  3. #
    3
    Shannon @ Bake.Frost.Repeat — December 28, 2013 at 8:27 pm

    I’m definitely trying this. I’ve wanted to do this for sometime and you have motivated me!

  4. #
    4
    Karen (Back Road Journal) — December 29, 2013 at 2:20 pm

    Your did a wonderful job making your own. I used to have a candy store and sold candied orange peel and yours looks very professional.

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