The lemon juicing hack that has TikTok buzzing

If you've ever had the unfortunate experience of taking a squirt of lemon juice to the eye during an attempt to hand-squeeze, you know it's not a fun feeling. Perhaps that's one reason why the art of juicing lemons has inspired so many tips and tricks, including one that's become a hit right now on TikTok, with Dallas-based Johanna Westbrook raking in nearly 2 million views since posting her #lemonhack video on May 13 (via Yahoo!).

The clip shows Westbrook trying out a lemon juicing shortcut, which she says she also saw on TikTok, adding, "I need to see if it's true." She then jams a skewer into what she calls the "butt" of the lemon (the raised, bumpy end on one side) and presses the fruit, aiming the skewered hole at a small glass bowl. The lemon juice easily squirts out as Westbrook marvels, "Wow, it actually works .... That is so cool!"

The best part of the experiment? No seeds shot out into the bowl of perfectly pressed juice. Westbrook implored fellow TikTokers to try the trick, and they jumped on board: According to Insider, nutritionist Jacqui Bain and others took up the #lemonjuicechallenge, with similarly successful results.

Does the lemon juicing hack work for other fruits?

Unfortunately, the effortless extraction of juice did not translate to different citrus fruits that Westbrook attempted on another TikTok video. An orange crushed under the weight of the squeeze, while the lime had the opposite problem — it was both difficult to skewer and emitted only a few drops of juice, possibly requiring the pressure of a bodybuilder.

As Westbrook admitted, the lemon juicing hack had circulated before her video went viral. Though exact origins are always iffy when it comes to the internet, a YouTube video from channel How to Make Sushi in 2017, called "6 Food Hacks," has garnered nearly 7 million views for its savvy cooking shortcuts, including the lemon trick. The technique was also noted for its ability to better preserve the lemon, versus cutting the fruit into halves for juicing, which exposes the innards to oxygen and encourages rotting. You can squeeze just the juice you need and save the rest of the lemon for later — genius!

More lemon juicing hacks

If there's one thing there's no shortage of on the internet, it's hacks. And there are plenty of other tips floating around the web that make juicing lemons easier. If you know that you'll need to juice the entire lemon, there are several ways to ensure you squeeze every last drop of juice out. 

According to Food NDTV, cutting the lemon lengthwise rather than crosswise goes a long way in making the juicing process easier. Another trick is to heat the whole lemon in the microwave for 10-20 seconds before juicing. This softens up the membranes and allows the juice to flow. One last trick? If you don't have a juicer, a fork can fill in just as well. Simply stick the tines of the fork into the cut side of the lemon, squeeze, move and rotate the fork, squeeze again. Repeat until the lemon is completely juiced. 

These tips may not be as fun as the viral TikTok hack, but hey, they get the job done.