Limoncello, nonna’s lemon liqueur

Limoncello is a very popular Italian liqueur made from the peel of lemons from Campania, in southern Italy. It is traditionally made with lemons typical of the Amalfi Coast: Sfusato Amalfitano or Ovale di Sorrento.

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The history of the limoncello is full of legends and different anecdotes

His invention is in fact disputed by the cities of Sorrento, Amalfi and Capri.

The first to register the “Limoncello” brand in 1988 was the entrepreneur Massimo Canale, and in Capri, many say that its birth is linked to the history of this family. It seems that this liqueur was born at the beginning of the ‘900 as an homemade preparation of his grandmother.

The limoncello has gained great popularity since the 1980s, becoming an object of large-scale industrial production. So much so that it has become a real favourite to prepare in the Italian summer and to drink during Christmas and the New Year.

How is limoncello drunk?

It is usually taken as a digestive after meals, but also in desserts or fruit salads.

Recipe of limoncello

The preparation of limoncello is simple but requires patience. With simple steps in two months, you can enjoy this perfumed yellow liquor.

Ingredients for 1.25 L of Limoncello

  • 5 organic lemons
  • 500mL of alcohol at 95° degrees (ethyl alcohol, drinking alcohol or simply alcohol)
  • 600 g of sugar
  • 750 ml of water
  • Hermetic container: it can be a plastic bottle or a glass jar with more than 1.25 L capacity


Day 1

  1. Wash the lemons in tap water, and rub the peel with a sponge to remove impurities ( we will use the peel), and then dry them with a cloth.
  2. Peel the lemons with a potato peeler, remove only the yellow peel and not the white part which is more bitter.
  3. Pour the alcohol and the lemon peels into the airtight container. Close the bottle and let the peels soak in the alcohol for 30 days in a dark place away from heat sources.

Day 30

  1. Today we prepare the syrup. Pour the water and sugar into a pan, and once the sugar is dissolved and reaches boiling point, turn off the fire.
  2. Wait until it cools down completely and add the syrup in the container of the lemon peel. Shake the jar to stir the syrup, then let it rest for 40 days, always in the dark, away from heat sources.

Day 70

  1. Take the container with the liquor and shake it.
  2. Pass the liquid through a sieve.
  3. Collect the liquor inside a transparent glass bottle or jar.

The limoncello is ready!


Personally, I prefer to keep the limoncello in the freezer. The amount of sugar and alcohol prevents it from freezing and every time you are going to consume it, it is frozen and delicious.


To make the taste of limoncello more particular, you can add the peels of other citrus fruits such as tangerine or orange.

Recipe by:  Giallozafferano


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  1. Charly


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