10-Day Homemade Limoncello Recipe

AAA World Article

There’s nothing like a glass of chilled aromatic limoncello to transport you to the beautiful, sunny Amalfi Coast. Locals love raising a glass after lunch or dinner to toast with this traditional liqueur distilled from the peel of lemons. It calls for only four simple ingredients – lemon peels, alcohol such as vodka, sugar and water – but each sun-kissed bottle contains generations of knowledge and family secrets passed down throughout the years. Makes 1 bottle.


  • 6 unwaxed lemons (preferably organic)
  • 1 (25 ounce) bottle vodka, preferably Belvedere
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1 cup water

Wash the lemons well, scrubbing thoroughly. Using a vegetable peeler, remove the rinds from the lemons, being careful not to include any of the white pith. In a large sterilized jar, combine the lemon rind with the vodka. Seal with a sterilized lid and let stand in a dark place for 6 days.

In a small saucepan over medium-high heat, combine the sugar and water and bring to a simmer, stirring until the sugar dissolves. Let cool. Transfer the lemon rind from the vodka to the syrup. Reseal the lid on the vodka jar. Transfer the syrup and rind to a sterilized jar and seal with a sterilized lid. Let both jars stand in a dark place for 3 more days.

Remove the rind from the syrup. Add the syrup to the vodka, adjusting the syrup to the desired sweetness. Strain the mixture through a coffee filter until clear and store in a sealed sterilized bottle.

Celebrating nearly a decade with Oceania Cruises, Chef Kelly’s passion for adult learning has been the driving force behind The Culinary Center since first developing it with Oceania Cruises co-founder Bob Binder in 2011. While overseeing a faculty of dedicated Chef Instructors, she is the chief architect of more than 100 unique culinary classes as well as our popular Culinary Discovery Tours™, which are immersive chef-led excursions offered in more than 40 destinations worldwide. Chef Kelly is an honors graduate of the Culinary Institute of America, completed her doctoral studies in Epidemiology at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health and also holds dual Master’s degrees in Community Medicine and Public Health. Chef Kelly resides on Amelia Island and is an avid golfer, proud grandmother and heritage seed gardener.

Other Articles