Recently I found out about “True Lemon” and “True Lime” citrus substitutes, and I couldn’t wait to give them a try in cocktails. So we were very excited when True Lemon offered to send us some samples. Since we often hear folks talk about how hard it is to keep good fresh citrus around (especially in the winter), I was really hoping True Lemon/Lime might be just the ticket!

By the way: This post includes affiliate links – that means if you click on the link and buy, we get a small commission. This doesn’t cost you anything and helps us out a lot. Thanks for your support!


Making a “True Lime” Margarita and “True Lemon” Lemon Drop



The Lemon Drop

P1 - True Lemon in Cocktails

We made the Lemon Drop using the recipe suggested by True Lemon on their website. If I made it again, I’d probably double the lemon (which is reflected in the recipe above.)

The Verdict:

Its not terrible but doesn’t have that round Lemon flavor that you get from fresh lemon juice. They did do a good job of maintaining some of the citrus aroma (which surprised me), but I think in a cocktail like a Lemon Drop, you really need the “real thing.”



The Margarita

P2 - True Lemon in Cocktails

  • 4 packets of True Lime Concentrate (or ~1 tsp)
  • 1/2 oz Water
  • 1 barspoon Agave Nectar
  • 1 1/2 oz Blanco Tequila

The Verdict:

I have to say, I was really impressed with the True Lime in this Margarita. Is it exactly the same as a fresh lime? Nope, not quite. Is it way better than what comes out of the squeezy lime-shaped bottles at the grocery store? Absolutely! I would drink this cocktail without hesitation, it’s a great drink.




Bonus Round: True Orange and True Grapefruit

We didn’t test these two on video because we didn’t want it to get long and boring – and let’s be honest, 99% of the citrus used in cocktails is lemon and Lime. But since you’re here, here are the results from our Grapefruit and Orange experiments!


The Greyhound

P3 - True Grapefruit

The Verdict:

Yes, you read that recipe right. We made a half-size cocktail and felt it needed 5 whole packets to really get the flavor of Grapefruit. In all fairness, the Grayhound does use a significant amount of grapefruit juice, after all. As far as the cocktail, I was really surprised. The aroma was distinctly grapefruit, and the cocktail was not bad at all. Like the Margarita, it lacked a little bit of that roundness that comes from fresh fruit, but I felt that the True Grapefruit did a really impressive job.


The Screwdriver

P4 - True Orange

The Verdict:

Similar to the Grayhound, we found we needed quite a few packets of the True Orange to get a strong enough flavor. Unfortunately, we didn’t feel that the True Orange really created anything comparable to orange juice. Julia and I both felt that it tasted (and smelled) very reminiscent of something from way back in our childhood – not terrible, but really not a great “orange juice” flavor either.


I’m Impressed!

I have to say, the True Lemon / Lime / Grapefruit / Orange products outdid my expectations 3 out of 4 times. (Sorry, orange!) All brought aroma, which I didn’t expect at all, and most managed a pretty good flavor profile as well. I should point out that we chose the most “challenging” types of cocktails for each of these four types of citrus, and I suspect that you could definitely use these packets even more successfully in cocktails which were not so strongly featuring their main citrus juice.  (Especially for the Grapefruit and Orange.)

Thanks again to True Lemon for sending us some samples to try out! I stand by my previous statement – if you have to choose between this product and something that comes in a bottle shaped like a lemon or lime, True Lemon / Lime is definitely a superior option in cocktails.