6 Best Substitute For Orange Zest Will Make You Satisfied

Acidic ingredients such as orange zest, and kaffir lime leaves have long been recommended by doctors to use in daily diet due to their high nutritional values. Among them, the orange zest is the most commonly used in the meantime.

With a light orange shade and trademark tartness, the orange zest has been one of the few seasonings with a remarkable culinary position.

Recently, it has become more and more popular worldwide for its herb-alike smell and citrusy flavor.

However, there can be times that you will run out of grated orange zest, and it is a must to find a proper alternative for your recipes. In this post, let’s learn about some substitutes for orange zest and decide which is the best for your house.

What Makes Orange Zest An Excellent Seasoning?

Made from orange – the nutritional and healthy fruit that contains lots of vitamins – orange zest is an excellent seasoning, indeed. It tastes sour, tart, and slightly bitter with the citrusy aroma. 

That being said, the grating orange zest adds even more than just the fruit’s flavor to a dish. It’s strong in fragrance and taste, making it an appropriate complement for most meals. 

With just a small amount of this seasoning, the acidity can be increased, and the herb-alike smell will effuse. 

Furthermore, this ingredient is cheap and convenient. It’s such a piece of cake to find materials to zest an orange at any store. Therefore, considering all its nutritional benefits and comforts, orange zest is a great garnish for your daily meals.

Top 6 Things Use As Substitute For Orange Zest

Orange Zest Substitute

1. Lemon Zest

Lemon zest is best choice to substitute for orange zest. It is a convenient, affordable, and complimentary seasoning for your dish. It can be made by trimming some lemons, which are so easy to buy at a low price in any market.

Breaking down the nutrition facts, lemon zest contains many useful nutrients and minerals. On the 6g serving, there are only 2.8 kCal, 0g fat, 0g cholesterol, and 13% vitamin C. We recommend this seasoning because it could provide mostly helpful elements to your body.

In terms of taste, the lemon zest can provide the same sourness as the zest of orange. Not to mention, the lemon and orange have so many similarities in elements, so the lemon zest can work well with savory and sweet dishes, just like the zested orange. Briefly, you can use lemon zest at the exact proportion as the orange zest.

2. Fruit Juice – Good For Ladies

Fruit juice is also a good alternative for orange zest that to be introduced on the list. Considering that it is extracted from fresh fruit, the substitution is dewy and mouthwatering. Therefore, it is appropriate for pre-cooking steps as a marinade. 

The juice will retain the flavor the fruit is made of so if you want an acidic seasoning like the orange zest, we recommend you choose citrusy ones as lime, lemon, etc. to have the best replacement.

The acerbity level varies depending on the fruit, so it’s better to drop a tablespoon at first. Carefully tasting your food and adjusting until your food reaches the desired taste.

Evaluating the nutrition elements, it can be found that juice made from any fruit is good for health. Generally, there is a high percentage of vitamin C, A, B, and D in this mixture, as well as sugar and potassium.

One point to highlight is that it contains no fat, making it the right weight loss diet option.

However, because the juice is a liquid, it may not be ideal for all the cases. For instance, when it comes to smoking or baking, the machine specialized for the job cannot work with liquid ingredients, so you have to replace the fruit juice with other substitutes.

3. Fruit Concentrate – New Thing To Try

Fruit concentrate is a suitable replacement for orange zest which is often mistaken as fruit juice. However, this phrase is the term used for factory-produced, condensed, preservatives-contained juice. The main elements of this seasoning are fruit juice, sugar, and hygienic preserver. 

The fruit concentrate is made from fruit extracted and sweetener, so it retains the original flavor of fruit and the sugariness. For example, the orange concentrate has the citrusy bitterness with the slight herb-alike aroma, or the apple concentrate tastes sharply acidic sugary.

Therefore, the fruit concentrate works well in making mixes such as cocktails, salads, etc. Also, just by hearing the name “concentrate”, we can imagine the condensed flavor of it, right? So, We recommend you to add it sparingly to your food. For 1 part of orange zest, just take ¾ portion of concentrate.

4. Vinegar – Slight and Tart Flavor

Vinegar is another substitution for orange zest. It is the most common seasoning on this list. With the slight smell and moderate tartness, it has been long applied in cuisine worldwide.

Specifically, it can be used in almost any recipe without resulting in any flavor clash.

There are four primary resources to extract this marinade: beverages, fruit, grains, and fermentations. The seasoning from each origin has different tastes and nutrition elements, e.g., the vinegar made from grains are more acidic than those produced from fermentations.

Vinegar is the best seasoning for weight loss diet because there isn’t any harmful fat and cholesterol. Breaking down the nutrition facts, we can see that there are only 18 kCal and 6mg Calcium, making it the right menu for everyone.

In terms of taste, the acerbity level in vinegar is considered to be higher than the orange zest. We suggest you use just 1/2 vinegar tablespoon for a tablespoon of orange zest. 

However, there is just one point to be aware before cooking is that vinegar may not be an excellent complement for sweet-flavored dishes because it is purely sour with a robust and bizarre smell.

5. Orange Peel

You might confuse why orange peel is considered an orange zest substitute. Because right after seeing the title “orange peel” because if you have oranges to peel, that means you aren’t running out of oranges to make zest, so you don’t have to find a substitute, right?

The answer for you is: we introduce the orange peel in this list, not for replacement purposes, but because the orange peel can provide an extremely similar taste but a bit juicier than the zest.

To make orange peel, you need some oranges, a knife, and some technique to shave the orange exterior without cutting yourself. Sounds easy, right? It really is. 

What differentiates orange peel from the zest is that the peel mixture contains the zest and the pith, so its taste will retain the so-sour, so-bitter of the orange “skin” and the juicy, half-sweet, half-sour of the core. To add-in, the pith of an orange comprises nutritions, unlike the zest.

However, the orange peel isn’t likely to substitute the zest in every dish. The orange peel is half-liquid and watery because of the juice, making it hard to use in some recipes that require no liquid at all. We must be aware of using peel mixture in just some proper menus.

Evaluating the nutrition facts, it can be found that orange peel is such a great and healthy choice for everyone. On the 100g serving, there is 97 kCal with 1.7kCal from fat but more than 136 vitamin C and 161 mg Calcium. With many minerals and vitamins, the orange peel is an all-around choice for any person.

6. Pure Extracts – Last Thing

Pure extracts is a proper orange zest substitution. They are made from oil, fruit juice, water, and other food preservatives. They will provide the fresh, citrusy, juicy flavor from fruit

The nutrition breakdown of the extract is quite similar to juice because of the similarity in origin: both were extracted from the fruit and blended in water.

However, the extract provides a much stronger taste than the pure juice. So, we recommend you use a little drop of extract per usage, then taste the dish and adjust the taste until you are satisfied.

Pure extracts can be used as a substitution for orange zest in baking, making sweets and liquors. However, because of the liquid form, this seasoning is inapplicable for recipes requiring solid ingredients only.


zest of orange

Which orange extract substitution is the easiest to make?

Most of the orange zest alternatives mentioned above are quite easy to find. However, if we are to select the most effortless in terms of making among those, it must be lemon zest. 

To make lemon zest for orange zest supplements, you need a peeler or a knife and some lemons. Then, carefully trim the lemons until the zest produced is enough to use.

Which orange extract substitute is the most delicious?

The tastiness depends on each person’s flavor, so it could be subjective to point out the best one.

Personally, based on our preference, we will choose the fruit juice beyond other substitutes for orange zest because it is juicy and sour. Plus, the smell coming from juice is fresh and citrusy.

Final Thoughts

The post above has provided the background information of some orange zest replacements. Each seasoning has its pros and cons, and, according to your needs, we believe that you have already had your choice now.

If we have to choose the best orange extract substitute, we will select orange peel because it is healthy, fresh, and clean. Plus, it is cheap; the zest and the pith can be divided into different cooking purposes.

We wish this article provides you with much useful information for your shopping experience.

Kevin Richard

Hi all! I’m Kevin. I spend plenty of time in the kitchen every day because I love cooking healthy and delicious foods for my family and friends. Cooking gives me a chance to be creative and fun. It’s also one of the most meaningful ways to express my love and take care of my little family.

Click Here to Leave a Comment Below 1 comments
Jamie - last year

Great article! I loooove orange. BTW anyone interested in this stuff should definitely check out okinawa. Its an ancient remedy that gets rid of excess body fat better than anything I’ve ever tried.

Keep up the great content!


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