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The Best Way To Juice A Lemon Or Lime

Squeeze the day with expert tips on how to juice a lemon and lime - or any other citrus fruit.

Juicing lemons and limes

Looking to maximize the juice yield from lemons and limes? Aren’t we all. Most can agree that fresh juice takes any cocktail or beverage to the next level.

Luckily there are several different ways to get the most juice out of your citrus fruits. Many of the best methods require a citrus juicer, but even if you go without, there are a few basic tips & tricks to prepare your citrus to get the juiciest for your boozy.

Best Way to Juice Citrus

Before we talk citrus juicing tool options, there are three things you can do to prepare your citrus prior to juicing that will help get their juices flowing (pun intended):

Bring Citrus to Room Temperature

Letting citrus reach room temperature prior to juicing significantly increases the juice yield. Allow your citrus to sit out for at least 30 minutes (or until room temperature). If you’re in a hurry, microwave your fruit for 10-15 seconds.

Citrus Collage

Massage Citrus Juice Capsules

After your citrus has come to room temperature, rolling the fruit under the palm of your hand while pressing firmly down on the countertop will break open the juice capsules - making it easier to extract the juices once cut open.

Hand rolling a lemon

Cut Citrus to Expose Fruit Flesh

In order to juice the citrus, you’ll need to expose the fruit’s flesh underneath the rind. Determining whether you should cut your fruit in half or in quarters depends on the size and type of juicing method you will be doing.

Cutting a lemon in half

How to Juice Lemon or Lime with a Juicer

Whether it’s with a handheld juicer or with a manual juice press, there are two basic steps to juicing citrus.

Step 1: Place Citrus Cut Side Down

After massaging and cutting your citrus in half, place your fruit cut side down in your juicer. This will ensure the most juices from your citrus will be released through the juicer’s slots.

Lime being placed into handheld juicer Manual juicer juicing a grapefruit

Step 2: Press Down on Citrus

Once your citrus is positioned in the juicer with the flesh side down, over a bowl or glass, firmly press down on the citrus with the lever of your handheld or manual juicer.

Juicer squeezing a lime Manual Juicer

How to Juice Lemon or Lime Without a Juicer

If you don’t have a handheld or manual citrus juicer, a citrus reamer can still get the job done.  

Step 1: Ream Citrus

After massaging and cutting your citrus in half, over a bowl or glass, hold the citrus flesh side out in your hand. With your other hand holding the reamer, begin to push and twist the reamer’s pointed edge into the flesh side of the citrus.

Reaming a lime

Step 2: Squeeze to Extract Citrus Juices

Add pressure to the citrus with your hand, let all the juices extract into the bowl or glass.

Using a reamer with a lime

How Much Juice is in Citrus Fruit?

Within a single varietal of citrus, each fruit will hold a different amount of juice due to factors like size and growing environment. However, on average you can expect to get the following juice measurements from each of these staple citrus varieties:

Citrus Juice Measurement Chart

Citrus Measurement
1 grapefruit 3/4 cup
1 orange 1/4 cup
1 lemon 3 tbsp
1 lime 3 tbsp

How to Store Citrus Juice

While we recommended to use freshly juiced citrus immediately, you did just do all the work, it can be stored in the refrigerator for up to a few weeks. Be sure to use tight-sealing glass containers when storing to maintain the juice’s freshness for as long as possible.

Hinged Apothecary Glass Garnish Jar

Hinged Apothecary Glass Garnish Jar

How to use Fresh Citrus in Beer and Cocktails

With regularity and epicly refreshing results – lemons, limes, oranges and grapefruits are finding their way into today’s craft beer & cocktail scene.

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