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The Official Whole Foods Market® Blog

Why I Love Lemons

Lemon Marmalade

Next time life gives you lemons, go beyond lemonade with Sparkling Spring Punch or Rosé Lemon Sorbet. Or if you prefer, make a batch of Lemon-Caper Deviled Eggs or sauté your favorite veggies with a pat of Lemon, Garlic and Herb Butter.  

Lemons’ tartness enlivens beverages, vegetables like Roasted Radishes with Lemony Herb Butter, soups, salads like Lemony Potato Salad, main dishes such as Grilled Spiced Sardines with Couscous and desserts. When blended with other ingredients such as oils in salad dressing, honey in tea, or butter and seasonings in sauce, lemons add just enough “jazz” to brighten things up, adding balance. Remember, a little bit goes a long way!

Roasted Radishes with Lemony Herb Butter

The most common varieties of lemons are Eureka and Lisbon. Eurekas have bumpy, knobby looking thick skins, lots of seeds and a moderate amount of juice while Lisbons have smoother, thinner skin, are mostly seedless and juicier. Both are used interchangeably in recipes. Meyer lemons are a hybrid of lemon and orange so they’re a bit sweeter and more orange in color. They’re also super juicy and wonderful in salad dressings, sauces and desserts. Here are some idea and recipes to help satisfy a longing for lemons:

  • Make Lemon Marmalade to spread over scones, biscuits, toast or croissants. Or, spoon over slices of cheese, stir into hot breakfast cereal, or baste a roasting chicken.
  • Add lemon juice and zest to dips, spreads and salsas along with or in place of vinegar. Serve Lemon Tarragon Smoked Salmon Spread with crackers.
  • Roasted Asparagus with Lemon Feta Crumble celebrates fresh spring asparagus. Lemon-Sesame Asparagus is easy to make; it’s flavored with toasted sesame oil and sesame seeds.
  • Make salad dressings with lemon juice in place of or alongside vinegar. My favorite is extra virgin olive oil or roasted walnut oil mixed with lemon juice, lemon zest, chives or garlic chives, local raw honey, sea salt and freshly ground black pepper. Serve this Big Beautiful Salad with Lemon-Miso Dressing as a side dish or a main dish or this Shrimp Salad with Lemon Dressing with hot crusty whole grain bread.
  • Add a squeeze of fresh lemon juice to smoothies, hot or cold teas, steamed or sautéed vegetables, or soups and sauces.
  • Lemony Carrot Slaw is a healthy, tasty concoction of currants, mint, parsley and some pretty surprising spices.
  • Add lemon juice and zest to marinades for meats, chicken, pork or fish. Have a spring get-together featuring Lemon-Marinated London Broil.
  • Make lemony treats and desserts. Here are a few ideas:
  • Homemade Lemon Curd is absolutely divine with scones for afternoon tea.
  • Lemon Sponge Cake is wonderful topped with fresh blueberries and sliced strawberries.
  • Lemon Chess Pie is almost identical to the pie both my mother and grandmother used to make. It’s a slice of heaven!

Rosé Lemon Sorbet

Got a favorite lemon recipe or special lemony treat you really love? I’d love to hear about it.