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Preserved lemon puree in a small white bowl with a wooden spoon scooping some out.

Quick Lemon Puree Recipe (try with limes!)

  • Author: Tracey Hatch-Rizzi
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 10 minutes
  • Total Time: 15 minutes
  • Yield: 1/4 cup 1x
  • Category: Sauces, Dressings and Dips
  • Method: Stove
  • Cuisine: American
  • Diet: Gluten Free


Add some depth and complexity to any dish by making a quick lemon paste.  It’s as close as you can get to pureed, preserved lemons without waiting for them to cure at home or making a special purchase.



3 large lemons (see note for trying with limes)

¼ cup fresh lemon juice (or juice of about 3 large lemons)

1/2 cup water

1 tablespoon sea salt

Optional herbs: bay leaves, curry leaves, kaffir lime leaves, peppercorns, savory, rosemary, thyme, hot peppers or chilis.


Wash the lemons.  Make sure to remove any waxy residue.

Trim the ends and discard.

Slice into ¼” slices and remove the seeds.

Combine the sliced lemons, lemon juice, water, salt and herbs (if using) in a small saucepan and simmer over medium-low heat and cover.  TIP:  Check often to make sure the liquid hasn’t evaporated.  Add more water or lemon juice if needed.

Simmer until the rinds are tender and translucent, 10-15 minutes.

Let cool completely.

Remove any herbs, if using.

Transfer to a blender (I like to use my Nutribullet for this) and puree until thick and smooth (think baby food consistency).  If too thick, add water or more lemon juice, 1 teaspoon at a time.

Store in a small airtight jar and refrigerate for up to two weeks or freeze (see note).


To make a quick preserved lime puree:  Follow the above instructions, substituting the lemon for 5-6 limes and use lime juice instead of lemon juice.

Freezing:  Spoon into ice cube trays for several small servings or freeze in small freezer-safe containers.  The puree should stay good in the freezer for at least a year or more.


  • Serving Size: 1/2 teaspoon
  • Calories: 3
  • Sodium: 290 mg
  • Fat: 0
  • Carbohydrates: 1 g

Keywords: preserved lemon paste