How to Boil Orange Peels in Water

Written by jenna johnson
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How to Boil Orange Peels in Water
Orange peels don't need to be tossed out with the garbage; reuse them. (Orange Peel image by styf from

The value of orange peels is frequently underestimated. A popular way to use an orange peel is for deodorising. Boiling an orange peel helps release its natural oils into the air, creating a pleasant citrus scent. Orange peels can also be boiled and then candied for some recipes. Whatever the ultimate purpose, using the whole fruit peel puts a few cents back into your pocket and keeps the peels from going to the trash heap.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • Vegetable scrubber (optional)
  • Water
  • Orange peels
  • Small, sharp knife
  • Water
  • Small pot for boiling
  • Strainer

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  1. 1

    Wash the peels thoroughly. This step is important, especially so if the peels will be consumed after being boiled. If one is available, use a small scrubber made specifically for fruits and veggies.

    How to Boil Orange Peels in Water
    Wash the peels thoroughly, especially if they will be eaten after boiling. (Wasser / Water image by Nazar Chabara from
  2. 2

    Remove the white layer of flesh from the orange peels. Using a small paring knife, remove the bitter flesh, called the pith. Slide the blade along the peel until little or no white flesh is visible.

    How to Boil Orange Peels in Water
    Using a sharp paring knife, remove the pith to prevent bitterness. (Orange with one slice peel image by Igor A. Bondarenko from
  3. 3

    Cut the peel into small strips. Using the paring knife, gently slice the peel lengthwise creating small ribbons.

    How to Boil Orange Peels in Water
    Use a small paring knife to slice the orange peels. (knife image by apeschi from
  4. 4

    Fill a pot with water. Use a pot large enough so that the peels are free to roll with the boiling water. Too many peels in the pot will prolong the boiling time.

    How to Boil Orange Peels in Water
    Use a large pot when boiling many peels at once. (stove - kitchen interiors image by Gina Smith from
  5. 5

    Put the peels in the boiling water, and reduce the heat to simmer them. Let the peels simmer for about 15 minutes or until they are soft. If using the peels as a deodoriser, allow them to simmer for as long as desired. Check on the water level regularly so that the pot does not dry out.

    How to Boil Orange Peels in Water
    Boil the orange peels until they reach desired doneness. (pâtes 7 image by Nathalie P from
  6. 6

    Place the strainer in the sink and pour the peels into the strainer. Allow the peels to drain for a few minutes to remove excess water.

    How to Boil Orange Peels in Water
    Strain the peels safely in the sink. (colino image by Renato Francia from

Tips and warnings

  • If you are boiling the peels for later consumption, try to find organic oranges. Most pesticides used on conventionally grown fruits stay on the peel.
  • Always use caution when using sharp objects or the stove.

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