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Celebrate Citrus Season with These Flavor-Packed Recipes

Broiled grapefruit, blood orange bars, and citrus salad.
Cookie + Kate/Inside BruCrew Life/Love & Lemons

Have you ever noticed that citrus fruits like oranges and grapefruits taste better during the winter and early spring? That’s not coincidental! Here’s why, and how to take advantage of that amazing flavor!

Why does citrus taste so good in the winter? It’s because most citrus fruits are in season between December and March. Even though you can access them year-round, they have a richer flavor during this time as they haven’t sat around in storage waiting.

Eating fruits and vegetables that are in season also offers a host of other benefits like better nutrition and being more environmentally friendly. Not to mention they’re cheaper and will save you money on your grocery bill!

Take advantage of their last of the prime season with these recipes that incorporate options like oranges, grapefruits, and limes. They can be made year-round, of course, but they’ll be especially delicious right now.

Citrus Salad

Citrus salad with oranges, avocado, and grapefruit
Love & Lemons

This salad, made with fresh oranges and grapefruit, is best when the fruits are in season and super sweet. It’s a refreshing addition to any meal and packed with different flavors and textures.

Make sure to remove all the white pith from your citrus fruits so you don’t add any unpleasant bitterness. Oranges and grapefruits can also keep your immune system healthy during winter’s notorious cold and flu season.

Get the Recipe: Love & Lemons

Blood Orange Bars

Blood orange dessert bars
Inside BruCrew Life

Blood orange is a variety of orange that is a deep crimson color and has a subtle taste of raspberries in addition to the citrus notes.

These dessert bars use the zest and juice from this for a bright treat that will add a pop of flavor and color to dull winter days. And because they contain fruit, they’re healthy, right?

Get the Recipe: Inside BruCrew Life

Tip: Don’t skimp on the blood orange zest! It’s what gives the bars a real punch of flavor.

Lime Bars

two lime bars on a plate
Rock Recipes

Bring the summery feeling of lime bars to your kitchen with this recipe that uses only five ingredients. Utilize a food processor to speed up the process and these treats can be put together in under 15 minutes.

Top them with powdered sugar, whipped cream, or a meringue topping. For major bragging rights, grow your own limes at home.

Get the Recipe: Rock Recipes

Salmon with Citrus Salsa Verde

Salmon with citrus salsa on top
Food Network

The citrus salsa in this recipe combines fresh-cut oranges with orange and lemon zest for a fantastic combo of flavors. On top of grilled salmon with a little salt and pepper? Forget about it.

If you’re grilling your fish outside, follow these tips to get the perfect char without letting the skin stick to the grates.

Get the Recipe: Food Network

Kiwi Sorbet

Bowl of kiwi sorbet with spoon
The Honour System

This 2-ingredient recipe is super easy and one of the yummiest ways to use fresh kiwis. Sorbet makes a refreshing snack or dessert that happens to be super healthy.

You can substitute kiwis with frozen strawberries, mangoes, or raspberries if you want to try a variety of flavors. Top with whipped cream or leave it as-is for simplicity.

Get the Recipe: The Honour System

Sicilian Whole Orange Cake

round cake with orange slices
Christina’s Cucina

This Italian cake is made with the entire orange (juice, zest, and pulp), so it’s important you use fresh fruit for the best flavor. This treat is bursting with citrusy flavor, freezes wonderfully, and can be adapted to use lemons instead of oranges. It’s perfect for breakfast with a cup of coffee or on its own for dessert.

Get the Recipe: Christina’s Cucina

Broiled Grapefruit with Yogurt

Broiled grapefruit with yogurt and granola on the side
Cookie + Kate

Don’t knock it ’till you try it! Grapefruit topped with brown sugar and broiled in the oven is delicious. It’s light on its own, so add some greek yogurt and granola for a satisfying breakfast.

Tip: You’ll want the sweetest grapefruits you can find for this recipe. Look for skins that are uniform in color and don’t feel too thick. Heavier grapefruits are juicier and tend to be sweeter.

If you want to get really fancy, use a culinary torch for a caramelized brûlée topping.

Get the Recipe: Cookie + Kate

Lemon Magic Cake

Slices of lemon cake with three layers
Jo Cooks

This recipe is what lemon dreams are made of. It gets its name from the fact that you only have to make one batter that magically turns into a gooey three-layer cake in the oven.

(This article explains the science.) The dessert is stunning on its own or dressed up with a dusting of powdered sugar on top.

Get the Recipe: Jo Cooks

Baked Lemon-Butter Chicken Thighs

plate of roasted chicken with lemon slices

Citrus compliments chicken beautifully and this recipe capitalizes on those flavors in the best way. It’s easy to make on weeknights and works best with freshly squeezed lemon juice. Add some lemon slices to the pan while roasting for extra flavor and moisture. Serve the chicken over rice or mashed potatoes with a side of roasted veggies for the ultimate comfort meal.

Get the Recipe: Allrecipes

Anne Taylor Anne Taylor
Anne Taylor is a writer with a BA in Journalism and a passion for storytelling. Her work has been published on a variety of websites including Mental Floss and Well + Good, and she recently published her first novel, What it Takes to Lose. When she's not writing, Anne loves to travel (19 countries and counting), spend time outside, and play with her dog, Pepper. Read Full Bio »
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