Healthier Homemade Limoncello

Healthy All Natural Homemade Limoncello - Healthy Dessert Blog

Limoncello (pronounced: lee-mohn-cheh-loh) is an Italian lemon liqueur that is served chilled, often as a palate cleanser or an after-dinner drink.  However, did you know that most storebought versions aren’t 100% natural?  I know, it’s terrible, right?  Because Limoncello is pretty much the best-tasting liqueur out there, but it oftentimes contains artificial food coloring, a TON of refined sugar and sometimes even preservatives!  But not anymore, because I just made an all-natural homemade version  🙂

I’ll let you in on another secret too…  compared to storebought Limoncello, this DIY recipe is lower calorie, gluten free and contains no refined white sugar…  and it tastes ahhhmazing.


Healthy All Natural Homemade Limoncello - Healthy Dessert Blog

^^ Healthier Homemade Limoncello in the making!

This bottle will sit in the fridge for twelve days to “steep,” and soon enough, you will be pouring this liquid gold into glasses and chugging sipping on its amazingness.

Healthy All Natural Homemade Limoncello - Healthy Dessert Blog

Twelve days might seem like a long time, but it is SO worth it.  Trust me  😉

Healthier Homemade Limoncello (all natural!)

Yield: 7+1/4 cups

Healthier Homemade Limoncello (all natural!)



  1. Peel the lemons with a vegetable peeler (don’t bother using a microplane!).
  2. Place peels in a large jar and pour in the vodka. Seal tightly and refrigerate for 12 days.
  3. After 12 days, set a sieve over a very large bowl. Pour the lemon+alcohol mixture into the sieve so that all that lands in the bowl is liquid. Discard the lemon peels.
  4. Pour the water into the bowl, then scoop the stevia in and whisk slowly. The stevia should dissolve pretty quickly!
  5. Pour the Limoncello into jars and refrigerate to store... but you can totally drink some now... you waited 12 days for this moment!


**If you use plain vodka or Everclear, I would recommend steeping the mixture for a little longer.

This recipe is: fat free, reduced calorie, all natural and gluten free!

Recipe adapted from: Cocoa and Lavender

I am not sure if the specific type of Smirnoff used in this recipe is vegan, however the majority of their flavors are indeed vegan friendly  🙂

Healthy All Natural Homemade Limoncello - Healthy Dessert Blog

Healthier Homemade Limoncello (all natural!) - Healthy Dessert Blog  Healthier Homemade Limoncello (all natural!) - Healthy Dessert Blog

What?!  My version has just ONE QUARTER the calories of regular Limoncello?!  Not to mention, zero sugar.  Oh yes, I will have another shot please.

Healthy All Natural Homemade Limoncello - Healthy Dessert Blog

If you start a batch of this Homemade Limoncello now, it will be ready by Thanksgiving.  Better yet, it will be in perfect condition for the winter holidays!

But really now, you should just start a batch for yourself…  you know, for when you need it  😉  Bottoms up!

22 comments on “Healthier Homemade Limoncello

  1. Yuck, the nutrition facts for the original are scary. I really want to try your version!!

  2. When do you add the water?

  3. I am going to try this this year. I had some last year at holiday party and I know being a diabetic i could buy this but now I just have to have it. Thanks and Happy and Holy days this year.

  4. How did you find out that this was gluten free?

  5. Ciao, I am from Italy and I love the idea of making limoncello substituting the huge amount of sugar with Stevia, to make it much lower in calories.

    However, the original recipe for limoncello calls for rectified spirit, which is a highly concentrated ethanol (190 proof), instead of vodka.
    In addition, if you want to have good results, the infusing time is much longer than 12 days.

    Specifically, the lemon zest should be soaked in 3 cups of alcohol (the rectified spirit) in a airtight glass container, in a dark cool place for 30 days.
    Then, you can make the sweet syrup by bringing water to boil and dissolving the sugar (in this case Stevia) in it.

    When the syrup has cooled off, it should be added, together with another cup of rectified spirit, to the alcohol + lemon mixture in the airtight container, again in a dark cool place.
    After 40 days, you can filer the content put it in the freezer and enjoy.

    • Simone-
      I used a lemon-flavored vodka in this recipe to cut down on the lemon-steeping time, and also because I could not find Everclear (190 proof) in my area. I also like the taste of the Smirnoff vodka and find that the lemon flavor comes through just fine after 12 days. You can definitely infuse it for longer if you wish. I put the steeping mixture in the fridge because I live in Arizona and it’s still quite warm here, other wise you can leave it in the pantry or somewhere dark/cool.
      Stevia in the Raw dissolves readily into water unlike sugar, which will crystallize and taste pretty bad!

  6. This looks beautiful!! I bet this would be amazing in so many recipes too! Also, my sisters and I nominated you for a blog award on our site today. Hope you check it out. Thanks for the great recipes. Our mom has even tried some of your recipes and loved them. 🙂 Keep up the great work!!

    • Thanks Annie! I want to try this in my healthy Lemon Fro Yo recipe, because when I made it I used a storebought Limoncello which sadly had artificial food coloring in it :/
      I’m so glad your mom liked my recipes! I always get anxious and wonder if people don’t like them… everybody has completely different tastes so I get totally paranoid lol.
      And thank you so much for thinking of DWB! That makes me so happy 😀 Natural Sweet Recipes is definitely one of my favorite blogs to visit when I receive your emails 🙂

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  9. Lori Williamson

    Yeah! I wanted a natural recipe for lemoncello! So so glad you are here♡ I’ll be starting it in the morning. I frequently use liquor for extracts in cooking, baking etc. I am allergic to artificial dye, so yes I learned the hard way after a reaction to store bought 🙁 so gave it away, new natural hunt came up with your wonderful site, THANK YOU. I’ll be trying many other recipes in the near future from your collection. 🙂 glad I found you.

  10. Lori Williamson

    Well Jess, I finally got to taste my home made lemoncello! I left it quite a bit longer to age…..ok…. it’s so much better than any I’ve ever tasted. Yummmmy. So you did it again. =)

  11. Hey Jess,
    i’m so glad someone has already made limoncello with stevia! I have my lemon peels steeping and will give it a try!
    Although, limoncello as a digestif is quite a strong alcoholic drink and when substituting 40% vodka for 80% spirit i would recommend using a lot less water (or not at all).
    Limoncello is traditionally served straight out of the freezer- light alcohol would just freeze and would not be sticky like liqueur 🙂

  12. How long can it be stored?

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