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What to do with Orange Peels? 25 IDEAS!!

What To Do With Orange Peels will give you some ideas on orange rinds and how not to let them go to unnecessary waste. Citrus peels not only smell amazing, but you can use them for cleaning, beauty products, in gardening, and as an ingredient for recipes.

If you’re looking for more articles on not creating waste, How to Use Leftover Ingredients and How to Dry Orange Slices will help you on your journey.

What to do with Orange Peels - Slice of Orange and Peel of an Orange
What to do with Orange Peels

I use at least one to two oranges a day to make an orangeade or to add to my morning juice or smoothie. Throwing away the orange rind seemed like such a waste. I knew there had to be multiple ideas on what to do with orange peels.

Who knew there were so many unexpected ways to use the skin of this popular fruit? What to do with Orange Peels? will give you the answers you want.

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Here’s What to do with Leftover Orange Peels

1. Using Orange Peels for Cleaning

What to do with orange peels? Make orange cleaner
What to do with Orange Peels – Homemade Orange Cleaner

Yumiko Sekine, in her book Simplicity at Home, gives her favorite recipe for her own natural cleaner using fresh orange peels.

Orange peels have the perfect concentration of limonene oil that is great for cutting through grease and conditions wood surfaces. Simply peel one orange for every 1/2 cup of water and let simmer for 15 minutes. Let cool and pour into a spray bottle for a natural way to clean surfaces.

2. Leftover Orange Peels for Freshening the Garbage Disposal

Can you put orange peels in the garbage disposal? Yes, you can.

Cut your orange peels into thin strips and add to your garbage disposal to eliminate bad odors. Turn it on and let the oils from the peels deodorize the garbage disposal. You can also use other citrus fruits like limes and lemons in addition to the orange rinds.

If you’re not ready to clean your garbage disposal, place the citrus peels in an ice cube tray and add water. Freeze the cubes and place them in a freezer bag. Use In the citrus peel cubes at a later date.

3. Remove Coffee Stains in Mugs

Coffee stains will disappear if you rub the pithy side of an orange peel on the inside of your mug.

4. Orange Rind Candle

A friend of mine loves to make candles out of orange rinds. She starts with a half an orange shell base and pours the wax in the rind with a wick. They look beautiful on her dinner table and she will often gift me with an orange peel candle.

5. Stove Potpourri

Make stove potpourri with a handful of orange peels, lemon peels, and a cinnamon stick to give you home a fresh scent with a citrus.

Using Orange Peels for Beauty

6. Invigorate Bath Time

Store your orange peels in a mason jar in the refrigerator. When it’s time for a bath, throw a handful of peels into your tub. The heat of the water will release the citrus scent, making bath time even more special.

As an extra bonus the citric acid in the peels will help slough off dead skin.

7. Orange Peel Powder

You can dry orange peels and grind them up in a food processor to grind into a fine powder. Store in a glass jar until you use the powder in recipes. It’s a popular ingredient in making beauty products at home for your hair, skin, or teeth. You can find different ways of using orange peel in beauty recipes here.

What to do with Orange Peels in the Kitchen

8. Make Candied Orange Peel

Homemade Candied Orange Peel
Homemade Candied Orange Peel

This is my favorite idea on What to do with orange peels. You can easily make your own Candied Orange Peel recipe at home. Make sure you take off the white pith, it makes the it bitter tasting. Here’s a recipe for how to make it on Epicurious.

Things to do with Orange Peels in the Kitchen

YouTube video
Orange Peel Uses – Candied Orange Peels

9. Use Orange Peels for Zest in Recipes

Orange Zest and zester
What to do with Orange Peels – Orange Zest

There are a lot of recipes that call for orange zest. If you’re not going to use it right away, freeze the zest in a freezer bag for future use. Orange peels are loaded with Vitamin C and add an abundance of flavor.

12. Fresh Bouquet Garni

What is a bouquet garni you ask? It’s a French term for a bundle of herbs like parsley, thyme, and bay leaves. It’s usually tied together with fresh celery or leek. Adding a twist of orange peel will give even more flavor to your dish.

The French use these bundles to give flavor to soups, stews, roasts, and sauces.

13. Orange Peels for Tea Blends

Herbal Tea Mix in a Teapot with Hot Water
Homemade Herbal Tea Mix

If you enjoy herbal teas, you can make your own blends using dried orange peels. Mix it with herbs, florals, and even black teas for a wonderful combination.

Dried citrus peel has anti-inflammatory properties, which makes it a good thing for you body and taste buds.

14. Lump-Free Brown Sugar

Prevent your brown sugar from getting hard by keeping a 3-inch piece of orange peel in the container.

15. Orange Rind Uses – Bowls

Orange Rind Bowls for Sherbert
Use Orange Rinds for Bowls

If you want to add a little beauty to your table, use orange rinds as a bowl for ice cream, sherbet, or fruit ice is a simple way to impress your guests. It’s a great way to give visual interest to your dining table.

16. Orange Peel Cocktail Garnish

Orange Peel Cocktail Garnish
Orange Peel Cocktail Garnish

Your cocktails will be elevated to a new level with fresh orange peel garnishes.

Orange Zest Garnish
What to do with Orange Peels – Orange Zest Garnish

Adding orange zest as a garnish to food makes an inviting presentation. Chocolate desserts look especially festive, topped with orange zest. The holidays are a perfect time to use the orange rind creatively.

17. Infused Water

Add orange peels mixed with other ingredients to create infused water is one of the easiest ideas for what to do with orange peels.

18. Orange Peel Olive Oil

If you like infused olive oils, you’ll love making your own orange olive oil. They are great to use in salad dressings. It’s easy to make with just two ingredients – oil and orange peel. You can find the recipe here on Epicurious.

19. Citrus Butter

One of my favorite ways to turn my meals from good to great is to make compound butters. Using fresh orange peel to make a citrus butter is a fun way to elevate pancakes, waffles, toast, English muffins, and even fish.

20. Homemade Orange Marmalade

Homemade Orange Marmalade
Homemade Orange Marmalade

Orange Marmalade uses fresh orange peel in thin strips as an ingredient. It’s the perfect idea when you are searching for what to do with orange peels.

What to do with Orange Peels in the Garden

21. Orange Peel Starter Pots

Use the hallowed-out orange peel halves as starter pots for seedlings. Fill half orange rinds with potting soil, seeds, and then water.

Plant the “pots” directly into the garden once the seedlings are mature enough.

22. Orange Peel Bird Feeder

Orange Rind Bird Feeder
What to do with Orange Peels – Orange Rind Bird Feeder

Turning your orange rinds into homemade bird feeders is a fun activity for both kids and adults. They look so beautiful and vibrant against a winter backdrop.

Uses for Orange Peels in the Garden

YouTube video
Uses for Orange Peels – How to Make an Orange Peel Bird Feeder

23. Using Orange Peels for a Compost Pile

Adding your orange rinds to your compost pile to help make healthy soil is a perfect solution for what to do with orange peels. It’s good for the environment and will help you create the garden of your dreams.

24. Repel Insects and Cats

Use small pieces of orange peel as a natural insect repellant in your garden is a great use for your leftover peels. Cats don’t like the scent of oranges as well. If you have a problem with stray cats digging in your garden beds, simply scatter orange peel in the areas they frequent.

25. Decorate Snow Art

Using Orange Peels for Snow Art
Using Orange Peels for Decorative Snow Art

Saving your orange peels for snow art is a fun project to celebrate the holiday season. Look how cute these orange peel lips are!

We’ve reached the end of the What Can You Do With Citrus Peels?  I hope you enjoyed it.

Let me know in the comments below how you liked What Can You Do With Orange Peels and your favorite ways to use them.

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What to do with Orange Peels - Pin for Pinterest - Sliced Oranges and Orange peels / Orange Peels Uses / Orange Peels in the Garden / Orange Peels for Plants / How to Prevent Food Waste / Kitchen Scraps / Zero Waste Kitchen / Zero Waste Lifestyle / How to Reduce Food Waste / Zero Waste Home
What to do with Orange Peels – Orange Peels Uses

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Saturday 13th of May 2023

I often use sliced fresh peel as a salad garnish, it goes well with my garlic/olive oil/vinegar dressing. If it is kale salad add a spritz of juice and pulp as that helps you get more of a vitamin boost.


Sunday 14th of May 2023

That's a great idea Andrea! I'm going to have to try that. - Kelly


Monday 8th of May 2023

Orange (and virus on general) peels are VERY TOXIC TO CATS! Limonene cannot be processed by their livers, and even using it for cleaning, diffusing, etc. can be concentrated enough in the air to be inhaled and enter the bloodstream, or if they lick their fur (or anything else the limonene is on), they ingest it. Either way, it can cause side effects as mild as lethargy, but all-too-easily, result in a painful death.

Please be careful with these if you have kitties!

... otherwise, this is a really great list of things to do with those perks! I'll have to try the coffee mug one, since my babies don't drink from my mugs. 🙂👍


Monday 8th of May 2023

That's good to know. Thank you for the information. - Kelly

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