Have you ever heard the saying, when life gives you lemons, make lemonade? Of course, you have!
But have you ever wondered what types of lemons those lemons might be? Maybe not! You might be surprised to learn that there’s a whole world of delicious citrusy goodness out there.
Below we’ll talk about the types of lemons, from variety to brand names. There are all kinds of lemons to discover and use in your drinks, desserts, and savory meals.
These are some of my favorites, and I hope they will become some of yours too.
Types of Lemons
Learn about the most common kinds of lemons – some that you’ve probably seen before, some that you may not have!
The Lisbon lemon is one of California’s most widely planted types of lemon and is popular worldwide.
Their flesh is highly acidic with a sour, tart taste and subtle sweetness. I love this lemon because of its versatility.
It works well in all kinds of dishes, from confectionaries to freshly cooked meals with chicken or fish.
The Verna lemon is the second most abundant lemon grown in the countryside of Spain.
Their skin is thin, and they have a higher volume of water than some other types of lemon.
They’re low on acidity and seed count and have a distinctly sour taste that’s bound to impress any lemon enthusiast.
Meyer lemons are a super exciting type of lemon that I love to incorporate into dessert recipes.
They’re a hybrid of your standard lemon and mandarin oranges. They’re lower in acidity and without the harsh tang lemons are known for.
Instead, they’re much sweeter and make an ideal ingredient for confectionaries.
Bearss lemons are tart and acidic, with more water content than the average lemon.
The extra juiciness makes them a fantastic candidate for juicing. It also helps that they have fewer seeds than other fruits.
They also have a high concentration of lemon oil, a quality that makes them attractive to bakers.
This lovely lemon was initially grown in Brazil, where it’s known for its intensely colored yellow rind and floral notes.
Unlike other types of lemon, this variety has a flavor that reminds me more of a lime.
This difference makes them a unique substitute in all manner of recipes where you might be going for a more original flavor.
The Dorshapo lemon was discovered in 1914 and owes its name to the three explorers who first happened upon it in Brazi, Dorsett, Shamel, and Popenoe.
Low in acid and higher in sweetness, this fruit works exceptionally well in drink recipes.
After making sure the rind is nice and clean, I like to leave it in my pitcher drinks as a garnish.
The Volkamer is another type of lemon born from crossing mandarin oranges with citrons, creating a distinct fruit set apart from others.
Instead of the traditional lemon flavor, this lemon is more like an orange. I enjoy its tangy sour orange flavor.
The difference makes it suitable to be subbed in for more robust orange flavors in chocolate desserts.
If you were expecting the Ponderosa lemon to be larger than your average lemon, you’d be correct!
This lemon can weigh from one to two pounds and is the size of a grapefruit.
The Ponderosa is a cross between the traditional lemon and the citron, yielding large fruits with plenty of juice and a nice thick rind for zesting.
With a high juice content and intense fragrance, the oils of this pale to dark-colored lemon are valuable and sought after.
The Primofiori lemon has a significant amount of oil glands in its rind! Moreso than other lemons, making it a prime purchase for those looking to extract essential oils.
The Interdonato lemon was cultivated between 1875 and 1880 by Giovanni Interdonato and prized for its maturation times, mainly in fall or winter.
This variety is disease-resistant and pest-resistant, with a highly acidic flavor and slight bitterness.
It accounts for about 5% of Italy’s lemon production.
There’s something to be said for going with what you know.
While I would always encourage you to be adventurous and try out any fun lemons on this list, you can’t go wrong with the Eureka lemon.
It’s a classic and one of the two most popular lemons in the United States.
Balanced sweet, and sharp flavor, they’re used across food service, from mouthwatering meals to delicious lemon cocktails.
Yen Ben Lemon
If you enjoy the Lisbon lemon, you’ll love the Yen Ben.
This variety was grown from the Lisbon lemon and was produced originally at Benyende near Burrum Heads, Queensland, in the late 1930s.
The taste and appearance are similar to the Lisbon lemon and are very popular in New Zealand. The lemon has also grown a following in Japan.
The Villafranca lemon is similar in appearance and taste to the Eureka lemon.
With a rich yellow color, this fruit does well in home gardens and is even grown along the coast.
It bears fruit from May through November, handles frost relatively well, and is a vigorous grower, making it ideal for home gardens.
With similarities to the Eureka lemon, the Genoa lemon tree is popular among lemon enthusiasts.
The fruit has a juicy and acidic flesh with a thin rind and grows on a short, bushy tree with an abundance of thorns.
Sometimes this can make harvesting difficult, but it’s worth it for the rewards of this tangy fruit.
Buddha’s Hand Lemons
If you’re anything like me, you’ll take one look at the Buddha’s hand and wonder if it’s a prop from a sci-fi movie.
Just as likely to grow on some off-world planet as in tropical climates, the Buddha’s Hand is edible!
With finger-like segments, the Buddha’s Hand is all rind with no flesh or juice. It’s used for zest, infusing flavors, or candied down into a chewy sweet snack.
Bush lemons are sometimes called “rough lemons,” a rare lemon variety that grows in India.
They’re believed to be a hybrid cross between mandarins and citrons.
They have less flesh and more rind than other varieties, but their taste is more intense and sweet than different types of lemons.
The Greek citron is an ancient fruit, dating back to the time of Alexander the Great.
It’s not as commonly used as it was years ago, but it still retains an important historical place.
This timeless crop has three varieties: acidic, non-acidic, and pulpless. From there, the different types of citron can be broken down into one of those three categories.
While similar to a lemon, the Citron lemon has some differences.
This fruit is mostly a fragrant, thick rind. It has almost no flesh and very little juice.
Instead, the Citron can be candied and turned into a tasty citrusy treat. It’s popular in Southern Italy, where these candies are typical.
You’ve probably tasted an Avalon lemon before and never known it!
These bumpy-rined lemons aren’t available commercially, but because of their fantastic juicing qualities, they are a common ingredient in juices.
They do best in a semi-tropical environment, which is why you’ll find this citrus crop growing in sunny Florida.
The Kagzi lime is the most popular citrus food in India.
Despite sometimes being referred to as a lemon, this tangy-tasting citrus is a lime.
It’s used in traditional Indian recipes and drinks across the country. The fruit is also prized for its medicinal qualities and can be found in holistic remedies.
Lumia lemons are a pear-shaped type of lemon with the classic bold lemon flavor and a thick skin.
This lemon produces every season of the year except for winter. The fruit is large, excellent for juicing, and an overall ideal candidate for recipes in your kitchen.
Because of its vigorous growth, it’s incredible as an ornamental addition to your garden.
Throughout Cyprus, the Lapithkiotiki lemon is the primary type of lemon grown.
The Lapithkiotiki is thin-skinned and considered a true bitter lemon with high juice and acid content, similar to the Eureka lemon.
Harvested from October through February, this is a popular lemon.
Perrine lemons are a hybrid cross between the key lime and the Genoa lemon.
They’re smaller in size, resembling the lime in that fashion. This lemon is resistant to diseases and was brought about to combat ailments decimating the lemon population in the 19th and 20th centuries.
Even though their flesh has a sweet and tangy flavor, they have yet to see much commercial success. Instead, you’ll find them in hobbyists’ gardens.
Types of Lemons
- Lisbon Lemon
- Verna Lemon
- Meyer Lemon
- Bearss Lemon
- Baboon Lemon
- Dorshapo Lemon
- Volkamer Lemon
- Ponderosa Lemon
- Primofiori Lemon
- Interdonato Lemons
- Eureka Lemons
- Yen Ben Lemon
- Villafranca Lemon
- Genoa Lemon
- Buddha’s Hand Lemons
- Bush Lemons
- Greek Citron
- Citron Lemons
- Avalon Lemon
- Kagzi Lime
- Lumia Lemons
- Lapithkiotiki Lemon
- Perrine Lemons
The Lisbon and Eureka lemons are the prize of the lemon world, popular across numerous countries, and well suited to any number of recipes.
Any of the types of lemons I’ve written about could be adapted to your newest culinary creation, so give them a shot!