dried oranges for holiday decorating

dried orange slices lay on a cooling rack on a lightly marbled kitchen counter next to three brown glass jars


for better or for worse, i have a minimalist approach to decorating my house for the holidays. i appreciate the enthusiasm and wild abandon that some bring to this task and part of me actually aspires to it. i love attending holiday parties in homes that are fully decked out, but in my own home the decorating is relatively restrained (all of my decorations pack up into a single box... and I don't usually put everything out!)

these orange slices are perfect for me because they pack up small, they add a lovely fragrance and they're really easy to make. they last for a couple of years and then you can make new ones!

what you need:

  • several nice oranges (other citrus fruit will work too!)
  • parchment paper


  1. preheat oven to 200 degrees
  2. cut your oranges into thin, even slices about 1/4" thick. cut across the width of the orange to show the star shape of all the orange segments (rather than end to end)
  3. lay the slices flat on a clean cotton teatowel or papertowel and pat each slice dry, trying to absorb as much moisture as possible without actually squeezing out the juice - you can leave them out on the counter for a couple of hours to help the drying if you like
  4. line baking sheets with parchment paper and lay the orange slices out in a single layer. the edges of the slices can be touching but they shouldn't overlap
  5. slide the baking sheets into the preheated oven for 3-4 hours (though it might take longer) flipping the slices every half hour so they dry evenly
  6. when the slices are fully dried, remove from oven and transfer them to a cooling rack. they will continue to cure for the next few hours

once the slices are dried and cooled you can use them in cocktails, transform them into tree ornaments, add them to your holiday wreath, create a garland or use them to dress up wrapped gifts. here are some little ornaments i made with my orange slices this year

 dried orange slice holiday ornaments with leather loops and fabric bows lay on a white surface

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