Thursday, April 18, 2013

10 Ways to Recycle "Used" Lemons

10 Ways to Use "Used" Lemons!

My son and I  made a homemade batch of lemonade and ended up with a pile of "used" up lemons! I didn't want to throw them away (even though my husband looked at me like I was crazy) so I had to find ways to use these "leftovers" . Believe it or not, the were very easy to use up and there are hundreds of uses for them. Here are just 10 of them!

 **Quick Tip** Make your lemons easier to juice by rolling them in your hands and then microwaving for about 15 seconds. This will work up the juices and make it easier to squeeze and easier to get out all of the juice possible!

1. ZEST! There is so much of the lemon's flavor held in the rind so it is a shame to waste it! You can flavor almost anything with lemon zest! Add it to pie crusts, meringues, yogurt, etc! It is easier to zest the lemon first BUT it can still be done! If you need to save your zest for later lay your lemon zest out on a paper towel and allow it to dry then store in a glass jar.

2. Flavored Water - So what if you already squeezed out the juice..there is still flavor left! Drop one of these guys into a water bottle or tea pot and you will have delicately flavored water or toss in some crushed mint, rum, sugar, and soda water for a LEMON MOJITO! went too fast! :)

3. Stains on Clothing - Lemons work in the same way that bleach does so be careful! Remove stains from grass, tomatoes, ketchup, and red wine by blotting with lemon juice. You can rub a little salt into too for  a boost of cleaner, and then wash as usual. (may want to test a spot first!)

4. Polish Metals! You can use these to polish aluminum, chrome and stainless steel - use the actual  cut side of the lemon to buff away marks and fingerprints.  If you need a little extra cleaning power, mix a bit of  lemon juice with salt or baking soda to make a paste (this can be used almost anywhere in the house!). It will be gentle enough not leave scratches on the finish but still leave it polished and pretty!

5. Mani Pedi! Give your self a salon perfect manicure! Soak the fingers in warm water for 2-4 minutes and then rub the lemon slice on the nails and hands. If you need a little extra exfoliation..add a dash of salt while you are rubbing!  Lemon helps get rid of dark finger joints and will help moisturize your skin!  Gently rub the nail cuticles. Rinse with warm water and then apply your favorite moistureizer.

6. Clean your microwave!  Add  the used lemons to a microwave-safe bowl and fill it halfway with water. Cook on high for 5 minutes, allowing the water to boil and to steam. Allow the steam to sit for a few minutes then carefully remove the bowl and wipe away the mess!

7. Keep brown sugar soft! How did I not know this?! My brown sugar always turns into a brick of sugar that I have to hack away at to use. To avoid this, try adding some lemon peel -with all of the pulp removed to your bag or container of brown sugar! This will help keep it moist and usable!

8. Soften dry knees and elbows Use a half of the used  lemon and sprinkle it with baking soda.  Just place your elbow or knee in the lemon and twist the lemon (just like it was on a juicer) for about 5 minutes..

9. Garbage Disposal Cleaning - yep....cut these guys down a bit and toss them into your garbage disposal for a quick cleaning!
10.  Homemade "Febreeze" Air freshener - make your own air freshener!  Mix as indicated below them let it set for a bit so the oils in the lemon will infuse into the liquid!
•16 ounce empty spray bottle
•vodka, rubbing alcohol or witch hazel
•smash then add the "used: lemons

11. Whiten Teeth! I haven't tried this yet BUT it is on my list of things to do TODAY!!! Place some baking soda on your toothbrush and add a few drops of lemon juice. DO NOT DO THIS EVERYDAY as lemon juice is acidic!!! Brush your teeth right after with your normal toothpaste.  If you have these handy "used" lemons....cut it in a small piece..add the baking soda and brush WITH the lemon!

There are so many more ways to use them! They are said to remove age spots, sooth sore throats, lighten dark hair in the sun, clean your house and even brighten teeth!

Check out my list of homemade "green cleaners" click HERE! you can add lemon to any of these to boost the scent AND the cleaning power!

If you have a fun way to re-use Used lemons...please share!

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