Candied Kumquats

Super easy recipe for candying kumquats, those mini citrus you can eat whole. Great as a sweet condiment for meat and cakes.

  • Prep time: 10 minutes
  • Cook time: 30 minutes


  • 4 cups of roughly chopped kumquats (roughly 1-1½ lbs.)
  • 1 cup of water
  • 2 cups of sugar


1 With a pairing knife roughly chop the kumquats. Discard any seeds you can that are easy to get too, but they're edible so don't fret if some get chopped up or stay in the fruit. Feel free to leave any small kumquats whole.

2 Heat the water and sugar over high heat until it comes to a boil. Simmer for 4 minutes. Add the kumquats and simmer for 10 minutes.

3 Drain the kumquats through a sieve set over a bowl. Return the syrup to the pan and simmer for 5 minutes to reduce the syrup. Combine the kumquats and 1/4 cup of the syrup together.

Serve or jar and refrigerate. Can be stored for up to two weeks.

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  • Dana

    It takes 45 minutes to properly candy kumquats till translucent.

  • Annette

    These are awesome and so easy to make. I cut the recipe in half and just cooked them until the syrup got thick. Delicious! I’ve been eating them just as is, but can’t wait to try them with waffles!


  • Kelly

    These are amazing. Served with a blueberry galette and some lavender whip! Your recipes never disappoint. :)


  • Margaret

    I’ve made this a few times, and adapted it over time to simmer the kumquats for about 15 mins, not 10, and without separate reduction of the syrup, to make it even simpler. It’s a simple and very accessible recipe, absolutely delicious. Thank you. Great with chocolate and olive oil mousse or with Greek yoghurt.


  • Tcielo

    Does anyone know if I can water bath can them when completed? I have an abundance of these little gems and want to preserve them for as long as I can… I’ve already made several jars of marmalade

    • Rachel

      Did anybody respond/did you figure it out? I just got a ton of Kumquats and would love to can them

    • Elise Bauer

      My guess is that this recipe would lend itself well to water bath canning. There’s a lot of acid in the kumquats and there is plenty of sugar in the recipe. Both the acid and the volume of sugar help preserve the kumquats.

  • Paul

    Thanks for the reply. I’m using your recipe as we ‘speak’.


  • Paul

    That campus wouldn’t be San Diego State would it by any chance. When I was there ’74 to ’78, there was a kumquat tree on campus that made LOTS of kumquats.


  • Jon

    Love this simple recipe Elise, this was my first effort with kumquats and it is delicious! Will now explore other kumquat options such as marmalade, and cooking these little gems with microwave. At some point I’ll try blending in other citrus or ginger/cloves/cinnamon.
    Thank you!

  • Joan mace

    This is a great recipe. You can also add, dried fruit and a hint of fruit liquer. *note* No need to peel, and you can rough chop, our slice. Depending on the size of fruit, you may want to remove larger seeds.

  • Trivia

    These are remarkable! Strangely, I would never have thought of using kumqauts to candy, but I guess it makes perfect sense. I relate the fruit to when I was little and living in Florida. My dad’s mother had a kumquat tree in her backyard and we’re run out barefoot to collect as many as we could, eating them there.

    I made them with cloves and cinnamon stick, and I gave them to my parents to try. We all have the mutual opinion of “Yum.” Thanks so much for the recipe!

  • Janie

    I love these halved in a favorite cup of tea with honey for a soothing drink. I bet a speck of Grand Marnier (orange liquer) would be awesome in it as well. :o)

  • Liz

    Thank you, thank you, thank you. We’ve had a kumquat tree for about 10 years, and every year we’re inundated by buckets upon buckets of kumquats. Sometimes we struggle to give them all away, but now we have a reason to keep some!

    I made this recipe and added a little clove and cinnamon. The kumquat skins aren’t nearly so bitter and the syrup is incredible. I have a feeling that I’ll be using this simple recipe over and over.

  • Liz

    Do they need to be peeled first? My only real experience with kumquats in the past is being pelted with them (by my much older step-brother)as a kid – somehow I think eating the candied ones would much more enjoyable!

  • Pieg!rl

    Makes a soothing tea for the throat, especially with honey!

  • Marina

    Hi, I love kumquats and can’t wait to try this recipe out! When heating the water and sugar, do I have to keep stirring constantly? Does the same apply for after when simmering the syrup? Thanks!

  • Garrett

    I am going to also add that if you want, you can add spices such as cinnamon, cloves or star anise to the cooking syrup if you want to fragrantly spice these.

    I recently added some of these to a chicken tagine. Very, very tasty!

    I plan to use some for some cocktails later. Yum!