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Subbing lemon for lime?

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  • mocro May 23, 2009 02:00 PM
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Do you think I can effectively substitute lemon juice for lime juice in a marinade for swordfish and lamb?

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  1. I do that all the time, but I think limes are somewhat more sour than lemons, so I usually add a bit more lemon juice than called for in the recipe.

    1 Reply
    1. re: phofiend

      I do all the time too. Very similar and yes a bit more lemon then lime. Sometimes dependent on the marinade I will add a small amount like 1/4 of a teaspoon of honey if I subbed lime for lemon. It tends to balance it out, but again, it really depends on the recipe. I also have used 1/2 lime and 1/2 orange instead of lemon for some marinades which seems to work well.

      This works in vinaigrettes or marinades. If lemon was the main component in a dish I would be careful substituting the flavors. Mexican, Caribbean dishes or Thai dishes (just as an example) without lime to me wouldn't be right using lemon or orange.

    2. In a marinade? Certainly. In my experience, marinades tend to be pretty forgiving. Like phofiend said, I'd probably just use a little more. I don't think you're going to notice much of a difference.

      1. No problem. Different taste, of course. Add more lemon than you would have used lime - try 50% more and then taste, it'll probably need even more to get the right sourness balance.

        1. Not too much difference. I buy limes out of habit because except for a couple northern Mexico states, lemons are unavailable. Lemons are much better for zesting because the rind has much more oil than limes.

          2 Replies
          1. re: Veggo

            Thanks for all your advice. i ended up running out to get limes as I decided to also do a lime-chive butter for some corn on the cob and I wasn't sure lemon would work. Appreciate your help.

            1. re: mocro

              lime chive is great on corn so is a blue cheese butter, chili powder and lime butter, and orange and garlic butter. All good.