Did you just buy a lot of lemons from a sale? And now you’re wondering how to correctly store them so they stay fresh?

Most people put lemons on their countertop or in a fruit basket. But storing lemons at room temperature often harbors bacteria, which deteriorates them. After a few days, the rinds of your lemons harden and they produce less juice. Sometimes there’s also a change in the color of the lemon, indicating it is not fit for consumption.

Since the pores in the lemon rind are responsible for the evaporation of juice, keeping lemons in the refrigerator helps seal in their moisture and maintain freshness.

learn how to store lemons
Learn how to store lemons in a variety of ways

Lemons are good to have on hand. They are not only beneficial for your health but also for your skin. Since they are a rich source of vitamin C and citric acid, they can be used in various ways to clean your home and clear your skin.

Lemons also are a great taste enhancer for any mocktail. Plus, they add a splash of freshness to your salads.

Now when life gives you a lot of lemons, you’ll know what to do. Continue reading to learn how to store lemons and lemon juice for up to 3 months.

Method 1: Refrigerate Whole Lemons

Storing whole lemons in the refrigerator will retain their freshness longer than keeping them out in room temperature. Here are two methods for refrigerating whole lemons.

# In a Ziplock Bag

Refrigerating whole lemons in a ziplock bag helps trap the moisture in the lemons. This makes them stay fresh and retain their juice longer.

Single-Step Method: Put the lemons in a ziplock bag & refrigerate

vacuum seal and refrigerate to store lemons
Vacuum seal the lemons in a ziplock bag and refrigerate
  • Put the lemons in a ziplock bag.
  • Seal the bag, leaving one side open for inserting a straw. Use the straw to suck all the air out of the bag and finish sealing it up.
  • Put your ziplock bag in the refrigerator to keep the lemons fresh.

Keeping lemons in ziplock bags in the refrigerator will allow them to stay fresh for 4 weeks.

# In a Jar with Water

Here’s another way to keep those extra lemons fresh. All you need are the whole lemons, a glass jar, some water and you’re good to go.

Storing lemons immersed in water will keep them fresh and help them retain all their juice. Before you put the lemons in water, make sure you wash them properly. The rind of the lemons may have bacteria on them that can cause various infections and diseases.

Since the lemons will be in the water, they will have no exposure to air. Plus, the coolness in the refrigerator will delay deterioration of the lemons. In fact, you can also use this method to store mint or even fresh herbs like cilantro.

Things you’ll need:

things needed to store lemons

  • Lemons (whole)
  • Glass jar or mason jar
  • Water

Single-Step Method: Put the lemons in a glass jar; add water and refrigerate

refrigerate in a jar of water to store lemons
Refrigerate the lemons in a jar of water to keep them fresh for weeks
  • Put the whole lemons in a glass jar or mason jar.
  • Fill it with water up to the mouth of the jar.
  • Put the lid tightly on the glass jar, and store it in the refrigerator to stay fresh.

You can use this method to store lemons for 2 to 3 weeks.

Method 2: Cut Lemons

Using cut lemons in salads is a good thing, but wasting any of the cut wedges is not. Gone are the days of throwing them away. You can save your lemon slices or wedges from deteriorating by refrigerating or freezing them.

The following two methods will not only keep the lemons fresh but also trap in the moisture, in turn not making them any less juicy.

# Freeze the Wedges in an Ice Cube Tray

This is a simple way to store your lemon wedges and slices for a longer period of time. Using an ice cube tray, put one or two lemon wedges in each section with a bit of water. Then, you can just pop out the cubes and use them when needed.

Things you’ll need:

things needed to store lemons

  • Lemon wedges
  • Ice cube tray
  • Water

Step 1. Place the lemon wedges in an ice cube tray and add water

Place the wedges in an ice cubee tray and add water to store lemons
Arrange the lemon wedges in an ice cube tray and add water
  • Put 1 or 2 lemon wedges in each section of the ice cube tray.
  • Fill each section with water.

Step 2. Place the tray in the freezer

freeze in the refrigerator to store lemons
Freeze the lemon wedges in water; simply pop out and defrost a cube as and when required
  • Keep the tray in the freezer to retain the freshness of the lemons.
  • Pop out a cube with lemon wedges from the tray.
  • Defrost it before use.

Using this method, you can store lemons for up to 3 months.

# Refrigerate the Wedges in Plastic Wrap

Another way to store cut lemons is by wrapping the slices and wedges with plastic wrap. This will prevent any exposure to air, in turn keeping the cut lemons fresh and retaining their juice.

Things you’ll need:

things needed to store lemons

  • Lemon wedges or slices
  • Ziplock bag
  • Plastic wrap

Step 1. Wrap the wedges with plastic wrap

wrap the wedges in plastic wrap to store lemons
Use plastic wrap to seal the lemon wedges
  • Use plastic wrap to cover the lemon wedges.
  • Ensure there are no air pockets left in the plastic wrap.

Step 2. Put the wrapped wedges in a ziplock bag

seal the lemon wedges in a ziplock bag and refrigerate to store lemons
Place the wrapped lemon wedges inside a ziplock bag and refrigerate
  • Put the wrapped lemon wedges in a ziplock bag.
  • Put the ziplock bag in the refrigerator to maintain the freshness of the lemons.

You can use this method to store lemon wedges for a period of 3 months.

Method 3: Lemons after Zesting

The biggest problem after zesting lemons is how to store them so you can use the rest of the lemons later. The solution to your problem is either to refrigerate the whole lemon in plastic wrap or extract the juice and freeze it. In fact, you can also try out hacks to extract more from juice from a lemon.

# Refrigerate Whole Lemons Wrapped in Plastic

All you need for this method is plastic wrap and your zested lemons. Using this method, you can store the lemons and use the rest when needed.

Things you’ll need: 

things needed to store lemons

  • Lemons (zested)
  • Plastic wrap

Single-Step Method: Wrap the lemons in plastic wrap and refrigerate

wrap the zested lemons and refrigerate to store lemons
Plastic wrap the zested lemons and refrigerate
  • Use plastic wrap to cover the whole lemons after zesting.
  • Store the wrapped lemons in the refrigerator.

You can store these zested lemons in the refrigerator for 1 week.

# Freeze the Extracted Juice

You can easily store the extracted juice of zested lemons by simply freezing it in an ice cube tray. Freezing the juice will maintain its acidity and taste. Plus, you can easily use the cubes to make lemonade and other drinks.

Things you’ll need: 

thinsg needed to store lemons

  • Lemons (zested)
  • Knife
  • Ice cube tray

Step 1. Cut the lemons & squeeze out the juice

extract fresh juice from zested lemons to store lemons
Extract fresh juice from zested lemons
  • Use a knife to cut the lemons in half.
  • Squeeze out the juice into a bowl.

Step 2. Pour the juice into an ice cube tray and freeze

freeze the lemon juice to store lemons
Freeze the lemon juice in an ice cube tray and pop out a cube whenever required
  • Pour the extracted juice into an ice cube tray.
  • Put the tray in the freezer.
  • When needed, simply pop out a cube of lemon juice.

Frozen lemon juice will stay good for 3 or 4 days. After that, the juice will lose its taste and acidity.

Tips

  • Wash the lemons properly before storing them. The rind may have bacteria on it that not only deteriorates the lemon but can also cause infections after consumption.
  • To store extra slices of lemon, you can also just put them in an airtight container and freeze it. You can use them for up to 1 week.
  • When you freeze lemon juice, always smell it before using it. If it smells bad, don’t use it as a foul odor indicates that it might have gone off.