Italian Limoncello or Italian Arancelo

Catherine Grilli


My husband and I have traveled to Italy to visit my husband's ancestral home. I've always enjoyed this lemon-flavored liqueur. Living in Arizona, I have access to fresh lemons and fresh oranges from my own trees. I know this recipe is a bit involved and takes patience to make and can be a bit messy but all the work is worth the effort. The Arancello works great in homemade Margaritas instead of Triple Sec or Cointreau. My Mom also loves a dollop in her tea before heading to bed.

pinch tips: How to Chill a Drink in 2 Minutes




1 (750 ml) bottle
everclear (95% alcohol - 190 proof)
1 (750 ml) bottle
vodka (premium 40% alcohol - 80 proof)
large thick skinned lemons or oranges
3 c
filtered tap water
4 c
white sugar

Directions Step-By-Step

Pour the bottle of Everclear and the bottle of vodka into a gallon jar.
Try to use organic lemons or oranges or make sure lemons or oranges are cleaned to remove any chemicals, pesticides, dirt, and wax.
Dry the lemons. Using a potato peeler, peel off just the yellow/orange part of the skin without any of the pith.
Put the lemon/orange peels in jar and stir gently.
Cover tightly and put away in a cool (not cold) dark place for the alcohol to extract oils from the peels.
Gently stir lemon/orange peels once a week for four weeks.
At the end of the fourth week, scoop out the lemon/orange peels and discard. Using coffee filters, filter remaining liquid two times before proceeding.
Make a simple syrup by dissolving sugar in water. Bring to a boil. Boil for 5 minutes. Set aside to cool.
Add cooled simple syrup to filtered lemon/orange infusion. Return jar to cool dark place for 40 more days.
Filter resultant liqueur two more times, using coffee filters. Pour into bottles, label, and enjoy. The longer the limoncello/arancello ages, the better the flavor will be.

About this Recipe

Course/Dish: Other Drinks
Hashtags: #limoncello, #Arancello