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Homemade Limoncello

How to make limoncello

When Brandon and I recently visited Italy, we fell in love. We fell in love with absolutely everything about the region, include homemade limoncello. This tasty adult beverage arrived at our table after every meal and was the perfect way to top off an immense amount of pasta. We found ourselves missing it when we returned home and decided to give it a shot ourselves. Anything I can do you can do – I promise! So without further ado this is my easy homemade limoncello recipe!

First, and my favorite part, find containers to store it in. I prefer glass jars and bottles. Smaller is better for gifts. I choose these bottles from World Market along with little chalkboard labels. I will admit, the labels are not holding up too well in the freezer since the jar gets a little frosty on the outside. You could easily tie a little tag around the neck of the bottles for gifts.


1 750 ml bottle of vodka (100 proof is best, but 80 proof will work)
10 lemons, washed and zested.
2 cups of sugar
Zester, container, strainer and bottling jars


Zest your lemons. Thicker-skinned lemons are better and easier to zest.

Combine the vodka and lemon zest and let sit for at least 4 days, but a full week is even better. Cover loosely.

Strain the mixture once it’s been infused.

Boil sugar and water for 10-15 minutes, then bring to room temperature. Play with the ratios of water to syrup. More water will dilute the vodka while more sugar will make it sweet. I usually stay around the 2 cups of sugar/water ratio.

Finally, add to the vodka mixture and jar them as planned. A funnel makes this process a whole lot easier!

Some recipes call for letting it age for 2 weeks at room temperature, but we placed ours in the freezer the next day.

Keep the bottle in the freezer and serve chilled, optional with a sugar rim!

Ciao bella!


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