Earth-friendly tips for using your orange / lemon peels!

the orange peel guyI know, it has been AGES since I’ve posted. Life has just been to crazy busy to keep uP. So here’s some tips I found really enviro-green and interesting (as slaDE and I go through so many citrus items each week!).

Have you ever had a bunch of lemons or oranges going soft, but instead of pitching, you’ve wanted to maximize the life and use of them? Try squeezing the juice out of them, freeze it in one-cup containers to use whenever you need a cup of lemon juice for cooking. Waste not, want not!. When it comes to the peels, we traditionally have composted everything of organic matter for the past 2.5 years at the local community garden compost bin. However, in the near future, we’ll be ‘unable’ to compost such matter (living on the road). Ever the seeker, I wanted to research the possibilities of reusing, reducing, recycling. As a beginning tip, I found these t0 tips to stretch the most out of our citrus peels!

10 Easy Ways to Use Orange Peels
For Food

1. Make orange zest (preferably from organic fruit). Grate the peel with a hand grater or zester and use it in baking or cooking like my amazing pumpernickel bread.

2. Soften a brick of brown sugar. Put a piece of orange peel in a container of brown sugar to keep it from drying out.

3. Make candied orange peels . Yum!

4. Make orange liquor. Seal a container filled with orange peels and vodka and put it in a dark place. A few weeks later, strain out the orange peels, and have orange infused vodka. Double Yum!

For Cleaning

5. Destink your sink. Run orange peels through the garbage disposal to freshen up a stinky garbage disposal. Add a few ice cubes and you’ll sharpen the disposal blades too.

6. Rid a room of odor. Simmer orange peels, cloves, and cinnamon sticks in pot of water on the stove to freshen the air naturally. For safety’s sake, keep an eye on that pot and do not leave it boiling unattended on the stove.

7. Scrub a sink. Use a fresh orange peel to scrub through the gunk in your sink. The natural oils in orange peel are an excellent cleaner and shine your sink too.

For Pest Control

8. Scat cat! Scatter orange peels in your garden to deter cats from using it as a litter box. Cats hate the smell of orange oil and will do their business elsewhere.

9. As bug repellent. The oils in orange peels are also a natural insect repellent. Puree orange peels and water in a blender, and pour the solution down anthills to kill ants or pour/spray it outside the house to keep ants from coming into your home. Some folks rub a fresh orange peel on their skin and use it as a natural mosquito repellent too.

For Fire

10. Light your fire. Use dried orange peels instead of newspaper to start a fire. Orange oil is flammable and lights easily which makes it an excellent fire starter. Burning orange peels in your wood burning fireplace is supposed to remove any creosote that’s inside your chimney too. Just use caution because you are playing with fire in this tip.

How do you use orange peels?

PS One of slaDE~s hidden talents is his ability to always peel the shape of an ‘S’ out of his orange peels. It’s quite sweet and romantic actually :).

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