How to make orange essential oil

by Cybele

It’s no secret I have a crush on orange oil. It smells amazing in home fragrance diffusers. It’s also one of my favourite oils for home cleaning products, because it contains a lot (sometimes up to 95%, according to the editors of Green Living Tips) of d-limonene a cleaning agent.

Essential oils aren’t cheap. On the other hand orange peels often end up in the garbage, so it’s nice to find a use for them and save the cost of buying essential oil. The only real cost here is the vodka and a cheap one will do the trick.

In the past, I have made a pretty potent lemon oil, using the infusion method, but I wanted to have a go at making an orange essential oil at home (without a still), as essential oils are believed to be more potent and pure. The result using the method below is not as pure as cold pressing, but it does mean you can do it at home easily.

Orange essential oil

How to make orange essential oil

IngredientsHow to make orange essential oil

Orange peels (as many as you have available) with as little of the white pith as possible

Glass jar with a tight fitting lid

Vodka (I didn’t use the fancy pants vodka in the picture, it’s just that the el cheapo one had an ugly bottle and I couldn’t bring myself to take a pretty picture of it) or undenatured ethyl alcohol (I have tried this, so it best to follow the instructions in this post) but not rubbing alcohol

Coffee filter or cheese cloth/muslin

Paper towel or cheese cloth/muslin

How to make orange essential oil

Dry the orange peels on a paper towel somewhere warm and out of direct sunlight until they are hard. This usually takes about two days, depending on the humidity (it’s faster if you tear the orange peels into smaller one-inch pieces.)

How to make orange essential oilCut the dried orange peels into smaller pieces with a sharp knife. Pop the diced peels into a glass jar. Warm the alcohol, by placing the bottle of vodka into a bowl filled with hot tap water. Pour the vodka into the jar until it covers the orange peel.

How to make orange essential oil

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