Dried Citrus Ornaments – A Beautiful Mess

Citrus season is upon us! You know what that means, don’t you? Elsie will be whipping up an orange cranberry margarita with the tart fruit, and I’ll be over here butchering oranges and lemons for holiday home decor. Haha!

That’s right, I’m getting au naturel and turning food into Christmas ornaments. These dried citrus ornaments smell great when you make them, and you can eat the leftovers. Sounds like my kind of craft!

a dried citrus ornament hanging on a Christmas Tree

Supplies:

someone cutting lemons and limes on a cutting board

How to Make Dried Citrus Ornaments:

Step One: Slice your fruit into 1/4″ slices and carefully remove the seeds. Use a wide blade knife (this knife set is so cute!) to ensure uniform thickness of individual slices.

slices of oranges, lemons, and limes on a paper towel

Step Two: Arrange the fruit slices onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and place in a warm oven set to about 150-170°F.

Bake for 3-4 hours, flipping every hour until the fruit is dried (but not completely shriveled up). You want the slices to retain their color and not look brown around the edges.

someone taking a baking sheet of sliced oranges, lemons, and limes out of the oven

Can You Air Dry The Citrus Slices?

I also tried a technique of air drying the citrus slices and was surprised at how quickly they dried out.

It took about four days for them to get to a nice stiffness, though the orange slices curled up rather than staying flat as they did after baking them. The lemon and lime slices didn’t curl.

a dried citrus ornament hanging from a Christmas Tree

Step Three: Pierce the dried fruit slices with ornament hangers. That’s it! Now you have pretty ornaments for your tree. These would also make a great gift.

Check out Homemade Gift Ideas for Everyone on Your List for more ideas!

several dried citrus ornaments hanging from a small Christmas Tree in a vase on a bedstand

I love how the slices are a bit like little pieces of stained glass. The light shines through them creating a pretty orange glow.

These citrus ornaments work great with an amber vase of evergreens, hung on a Christmas tree, or even strung up for a beautiful garland in front of a window. And I love how they look next to my DIY porcelain tree lights.

And if you’re pressed for time, you can also buy your orange slices already dried!

We’ve got a ton of fun holiday decor and recipe inspiration in our Christmas archives, so find something fun (and delicious!) to make this holiday season! –Mandi

More DIY Christmas Ornaments: