Marmalade recipes for the peak of citrus season

A table spread of bread and marmalade.
Solve the “California” problem of having too much citrus by learning to make marmalade.
(Silvia Razgova / For The Times; prop styling by Jennifer Sacks)

One of the most common problems I hear about from readers — and it’s a very “California” problem — is that they have too much citrus. Usually it’s because they have a fruiting tree in their yard, or they know someone who received a bucket of fruit from a friend who does — unannounced — as a “gift” that quickly becomes a curse.

With that dilemma in mind, I was excited to finally put out the third installment — all about citrus marmalade — in my series on fruit preserving. While sour oranges are what I call for (they make the best marmalade), other common citrus like Meyer lemons, Cara Cara oranges and kumquats can also be used, so use what you’ve got (or what’s given to you). There’s even a recipe for marmalade using oro blanco grapefruits from my friend Sonoko Sakai and her collaborator Alaina Wong that turns the bitterer citrus into a golden-hued preserve that smells intoxicating.

And if, after making these recipes, the marmalade bug bites you back and you want to branch out into other citrus, try out these recipes below, from our archives.

Master Orange Marmalade

This marmalade is bright and not too bitter. I blanch the peels once to remove some of the bitterness and add more lemon juice than the typical recipe calls for. If you like marmalade with a little more bitterness, skip the blanching.
Get the recipe.
Cook time: 2 hours 30 minutes.

Citrus marmalade being made in a dutch oven.
(Silvia Razgova / For The Times)

Oro Blanco Marmalade

This recipe takes two days and uses all of the grapefruit — juice, pith and rind — so, if possible, use high-quality, organic fruits. Oro blancos are common in Southern California markets this time of year, but if you can’t find them, use another fragrant, sweet grapefruit variety like ruby red.
Get the recipe.
Cook time: 5 hours 30 minutes.

Several glass jars of oro blanco grapefruit marmalade.
(Christina House / Los Angeles Times)

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Citrus Marmalade

Tangy and loaded with candied peel, this marmalade is as delicious on toast as it is over grilled pork. The tastier the fruit, the better the marmalade, so use citrus you like eating fresh. Stick with one, or mix and match whatever you find.
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Cook time: 2 hours 30 minutes.

Citrus marmalade on toast
(Genevieve Ko / Los Angeles Times)

Buddha’s Hand Marmalade

A mandoline makes quick work of slicing the irreverently shaped Buddha’s hand, so buy one (you can use it to slice dozens of other vegetables and fruits for salads too). If you have Meyer lemons, use those for their sweet-tart flavor, but regular lemons work just as well. Pomegranate seeds, while not essential, provide bursts of acidity as you eat the marmalade.
Get the recipe.
Cook time: 1 hour.

Marmalade made with Buddha's hand and pomegranate seeds.
(Mariah Tauger / Los Angeles Times)

Pomelo Marmalade

Pomelo makes the IPA of marmalades, with floral and fruity notes and a hoppy-like bitterness. Add some cardamom to the mix, as pomelos pair well with spices, aromatic herbs and particularly fresh ginger. The citrus is also terrific made into a compote that you can serve with tangy yogurt and whole-wheat crumbles in a dessert parfait.
Get the recipe.
Cook time: 1 hour 10 minutes.

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