Homemade Limoncello

Homemade Limoncello Recipe

  • Author: Azlin Bloor
  • Prep Time: 30 minutes
  • Cook Time: 10 minutes
  • Total Time: 40 minutes
  • Yield: Makes about 2.25 litres (9 cups) 90 shots 1x


In this post, I’m going to share with you how I make traditional Italian limoncello. Serve it straight out of the freezer!



  • 1 litre (4 cups) grain alcohol, Everclear, 75.5% (150 proof) – if using vodka, read my explanation and formulae above
  • 15 lemons
  • 500g (2 1/2 cups) sugar
  • 1 litre water (4 cups)

You will also need

  • a large preserving jar, or one sold for the purpose. It needs to be able to hold all our ingredients.
  • 24 bottles to strain the finished article, depending on their size


Day 1

  1. Rinse and dry the lemons. Peel or grate the skin, carefully. We only want the yellow parts, the white is bitter.
  2. Place the lemon peel into your preserving jar.
  3. Top with the alcohol, cover, and keep in a cool, dark place for 2 weeks. Stir every 4-5 days.

Day 15 (Week 3)

  1. At the end of 2 weeks, make a simple syrup with our water and sugar, by simmering it for 10 minutes.
  2. Cool completely, then add to the lemon peel mix. Stir well. Cover, and return to the cool, dark place, this time for a minimum of 4 more weeks, but ideally, 10 more weeks, so that your grain alcohol can mellow out, and so you’ll have a smoother drink.

If you are making your limoncello with no water, that is, with 37% or even 40% vodka, just add the sugar now, along with the lemon zest/peel. NO WATER NECESSARY.

Straining the Limoncello (minimum 1 month. 3 months is good)

  1. Strain through a fine mesh sieve into your bottles. For a crystal clear drink, strain through a coffee filter (which takes forever), or line your sieve with a double layer of muslin or cheesecloth.
  2. Place the bottles in the freezer and serve in ice cold shot glasses for the best experience.

If you are making this with good quality vodka, your limoncello will be very drinkable at 1 month, and great at 2.


Total time does not take into account the steeping period of 1 – 3 months. 1 shot = 1 serving = 25 ml = 1 fluid oz

  • Category: Drinks
  • Method: Easy
  • Cuisine: Italian


  • Calories: 48.4
  • Sugar: 5.8g
  • Sodium: 0.8mg
  • Fat: 0
  • Carbohydrates: 6.5g

Keywords: limoncello, drinks, homemade