Easy Citron Tea (Made with Meyer Lemons)

Sharing an easy citron tea that mimics the flavor and texture of the traditional Korean Yuja Cha but uses meyer lemons instead of yuzu. It has all the essentials of Yuja Cha, but uses an easier-to-source and cheaper ingredient. It’s a perfect winter drink that will warm your soul. It’s also very pretty and makes a great edible holiday gift. {Vegan, Gluten-Free}

Homemade citron tea using meyer lemons

What is citron tea

Citron tea is a popular traditional Korean herbal tea that doesn’t contain any caffeine. It’s usually made with honey and / or sugar and yuzu fruit, a type of citrus that’s common in Asian recipes. The tea is usually sold in big jars in Korean markets, containing thick syrup with yuzu flakes in it. To make the tea, you simply mix a scoop of the syrup with hot water. It’s a comforting drink that is perfect for winter or when you’re feeling under the weather.

Why this recipe

Traditional citron tea is made from yuzu, which is quite rare and can be very expensive, even when in season. Since there are so many types of fresh citrus that are much cheaper, I don’t see why you can’t use these options to create a similar result.

  • This recipe uses meyer lemons, which are much easier to find and cheaper. You can even use lemons as an alternative.
  • The super easy recipe simply mixes the ingredients. No cooking needed!
  • I’ve included a few different ways to make fun drinks to enjoy the tea.
  • The end product is very pretty and can be stored for a long time, making it perfect for holiday gifting.

Homemade citron tea in a jar

How to prepare the lemon

The part that is most time-consuming (although it will take 10 minutes at most!) is cutting the lemon peels. Here is the fastest way to do it.

  1. Halve the lemons lengthwise and scoop out the flesh using a spoon, to separate the peel
  2. Cut the lemon shell in half
  3. Stack the two halves together
  4. Slice into thin strips, as thinly as you can

I love using meyer lemons for this recipe. Meyer lemon is a hybrid between a lemon and a mandarin orange. It has a slightly sweet taste and the skin is tenderer and thinner than that of a regular lemon, which works well for the tea. But if you wish, you can use regular lemons to make this recipe as well.

How to prepare lemon to make tea

Sliced and peeled meyer lemons

How to mix the tea

All you need is:

  • Add the lemon peel into a big bowl along with 1/4 cup of juice squeezed from the lemon flesh.
  • Add the sugar and honey.
  • Stir to mix well.
  • Transfer the mixture to a mason jar for gifting or to a tight-sealing container for easy storage.

You will need to let the mixture sit overnight to allow the sugar to dissolve completely before using. Once dissolved, it will form a fragrant and thick syrupy texture. I prefer to let the tea sit for at least two days, to help the citrus flavor to further develop and melt into the syrup.

How to make citron tea step-by-tep

How to serve citron tea

To make the traditional tea, simply mix the syrup and lemon peels with hot water. The hot drink will be sweet with a citrusy aroma and super hearty. The peels are not for eating, but you can totally eat them for the health benefits.

There are a few other ways to enjoy this tea:

  • Black citron tea –  lemon syrup + black tea of your choice + hot water
  • Cold citron tea – lemon syrup + sparkling (still) water + ice cubes
  • Tea after 5PM –  lemon syrup + splash of bourbon + hot water

I make different types of tea depending on my mood and the time of the day. A big jar of citron tea mixture usually empties itself in no time!

Meyer lemon tea

Other delicious Asian drinks

If you give this recipe a try, let us know! Leave a comment, rate it (once you’ve tried it), and take a picture and tag it @omnivorescookbook on Instagram! I’d love to see what you come up with.

Easy Citron Tea | Sharing an easy citron tea that mimics the flavor and texture of the traditional Korean Yuja Cha but uses meyer lemons instead of yuzu. It has all the essentials of Yuja Cha, but uses an easier-to-source and cheaper ingredient. It’s a perfect winter drink that will warm your soul. It’s also very pretty and makes a great edible holiday gift. {Vegan, Gluten-Free}

Easy Citron Tea (Made with Meyer Lemons)

Sharing an easy citron tea that mimics the flavor and texture of the traditional Korean Yuja Cha but uses meyer lemons instead of yuzu. It has all the essentials of Yuja Cha, but uses an easier-to-source and cheaper ingredient. It’s a perfect winter drink that will warm your soul. It’s also very pretty and makes a great edible holiday gift. {Vegan, Gluten-Free}
Print Pin Rate
Course: Drink
Cuisine: Asian
Keyword: gifting
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 1 day 10 minutes
Servings: 2 cups (make 32 cups of tea)
Calories: 45kcal
Author: Maggie Zhu

Ingredients

  • 6 meyer lemons (or lemons)
  • 1 and 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1 tablespoon honey

Instructions

  • Thoroughly wash the lemons. Cut them in half, along the long side of the lemon. Use a spoon to scoop out the lemon flesh and transfer it into a medium-sized bowl to use later. If the lemon peel still has some pulp attached, don’t worry about it.
  • Stack two pieces of lemon peel together and slice it into thin strips, as thinly as possible. You will get about 2 cups of sliced lemon peels.
  • Transfer the peels into a large bowl or container. Add the sugar and honey.
  • Squeeze out some juice from the lemon flesh. Remove the seeds but allow the pulp to stay. Transfer 1/4 cup of the juice to the bowl of lemon peels. Stir to mix thoroughly.
  • Transfer everything into mason jars (great for gifting) or leave it in a tightly sealed container. Make sure you leave some space in the container (don’t fill it to the top) to prevent spilling, because the lemon peel will release juice during the process. Let it sit at room temperature overnight. Stir it with a clean spoon and transfer it into the fridge. You can store it in the fridge for up to a month.
  • The citron tea mixture is ready to use once the sugar dissolves.

How to use

  • Regular citron tea - add 1 heaping teaspoon of lemon peel mixture and 1 cup of hot water.
  • Black citron tea - add 1 heaping teaspoon of lemon peel mixture, 1 black tea bag, and 1 cup of hot water.
  • Cold citron tea - add 1 heaping teaspoon of lemon peel mixture, sparkling (or still) water, and ice cubes.
  • Tea after 5PM - add 1 heaping teaspoon of lemon peel mixture, a splash of bourbon, and 1 cup of hot water.

Nutrition

Serving: 1serving | Calories: 45kcal | Carbohydrates: 12g | Protein: 0.1g | Sodium: 1mg | Potassium: 8mg | Fiber: 0.3g | Sugar: 11.7g | Calcium: 4mg
Easy Citron Tea | Sharing an easy citron tea that mimics the flavor and texture of the traditional Korean Yuja Cha but uses meyer lemons instead of yuzu. It has all the essentials of Yuja Cha, but uses an easier-to-source and cheaper ingredient. It’s a perfect winter drink that will warm your soul. It’s also very pretty and makes a great edible holiday gift. {Vegan, Gluten-Free}

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Omnivore's Cookbook is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to amazon.com.
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Meet Maggie

Hi I'm Maggie Zhu! Welcome to my site about modern Chinese cooking - including street food, family recipes, and restaurant dishes. I take a less labor-intensive approach while maintaining the taste and look of the dish. I am originally from Beijing, and now cook from my New York kitchen.

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2 thoughts on “Easy Citron Tea (Made with Meyer Lemons)

    1. Maggie Post author

      Yeah you can use more honey and less sugar if you wish the tea has a strong honey taste. We tried different blend but found out using sugar will make the end result more citrus.

      Reply