You Should Be Making Citrus Stock More Often. Here's Why

Citrus stock might come as a surprise to most, but it's a recipe that's changing the way we view citrus fruits and their environmental impact. The citrus industry is massive, with a staggering 15.4 million tons of limes alone produced and shipped globally each year (via Considering the substantial amount of citrus fruit involved, it's crucial to address potential waste.  

This is where citrus stock steps in to save the day. The process is simple; just pressure cook leftover citrus scraps and pulp them in water for 30 minutes. This method has caused a bit of a shake-up in the bar scene since it was introduced with the help of Kelsey Ramage of Trash Tiki, a company that aims to reduce bar waste. Restaurant and bar owners have been quick to catch on, and one place even uses the mix to replace its citrus juices completely. 

Mixologists have been enthusiastic about jazzing up the formula, concocting their own unique versions. One bartender in NYC puts her own twist on a lime stock, adding sugar to stabilize the mixture and extend its freshness. She describes it as a blend between a cordial and a stock, dubbing her creation a Sour Lemon. Ultimately, this waste-reducing technique is a win for both your wallet and the environment.

How to use and reuse your citrus stock

Once you begin to experiment with citrus stock, you might be wondering about its potential uses. It's incredibly versatile and can be added to a wide range of cocktails. Simply incorporate it into a vodka soda or add a splash to your margarita. While its primary purpose is to replace citrus, you can also blend it with pure citrus juice for added depth. 

Another unconventional way to utilize this stock is by incorporating it into your favorite chicken brine. Just be sure to exclude the original recipe's citrus components to avoid overpowering the flavors. The secret to a successful brine lies in the salt, which assists in breaking down proteins and enabling the chicken to absorb the citrusy essence.

Moreover, your leftover citrus from cocktails can serve various purposes beyond stock creation. Consider candying peels and using them for drink garnishes or for snacking. You might also explore making household cleaners, which is particularly beneficial for people who prioritize knowing what is in their cleaning products. Finally, you can donate your citrus remnants to local farmers, as the peels can be excellent food for livestock. Whether you're using your citrusy leftovers for stock, snacking, or other innovative applications, rest assured that you're contributing to environmental well-being, one peel at a time.