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Moroccan-style Preserved Lemons


Lemon preserves in jar
Lisa Romerein/The Image Bank/Getty Images

Preserved lemons are a classic, essential ingredient in tagines and other Moroccan-style dishes. They are also delicious simply slivered and added to grain or pasta salads. For a subtle variation on the flavor of these lemons, try using Meyer lemons in the recipe.

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Total Time: 10 minutes

Yield: 1 pint


  • 4-5 lemons, quartered lengthwise
  • Juice of 3-4 additional lemons
  • 1/4 cup kosher or sea salt
  • 1 Tbsp. granulated sugar
  • 2 whole cloves


Combine the salt and sugar.

Pack the quartered lemons into a clean glass pint jar in layers (it is not necessary to sterilize the jar). Press down on each layer to squeeze out some of the juice. Sprinkle each layer with some of the salt and sugar mixture, and add the spices as you go. Leave 1/2-inch headspace at the top. Pour in any remaining salt and sugar mixture.

Add the additional lemon juice until the lemon quarters are completely submerged in the liquid. Secure lid.

Shake the jar to help dissolve the sugar and salt. Reopen and push the lemon pieces back under the brine if they have floated out of it.

Leave out at room temperature for one week. Transfer to the refrigerator. Ready to use in 2 weeks. Keeps indefinitely, but best used within 6 months.

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