Limoncillo Cocktail Recipe

Jump to Recipe ⬇️

Limoncillo Nutrition Facts






Created by

Nic Polotnianko

I fell in love with the art of mixology 6 years ago. Since then, I've honed my skills, crafting a myriad of cocktail recipes, and sharing my passion with other enthusiasts.

Last Updated: January 7, 2024


The Limoncillo cocktail is a refreshing and zesty drink that originated in Italy. It is believed to have been created in the early 20th century by Italian bartenders who were looking for a way to showcase the bright flavors of their local lemons. The Limoncillo cocktail quickly gained popularity among locals and tourists alike, and it is now enjoyed by people all around the world. The drink is particularly popular during the summer months, as its light and citrusy flavors make it the perfect beverage for sipping on a hot day.

How Limoncillo Tastes?

The Limoncillo cocktail is a delightful blend of sweet, sour, and slightly bitter flavors. The lemon juice provides a tangy and refreshing taste, while the Limoncello adds a touch of sweetness and a hint of bitterness. The overall flavor profile is light, zesty, and incredibly refreshing.

Interesting facts about Limoncillo

  • The Limoncillo cocktail is named after the Italian lemon liqueur, Limoncello, which is one of its main ingredients.
  • Limoncello is traditionally made from the zest of Sorrento lemons, which are known for their bright yellow color and intense flavor.
  • The Limoncillo cocktail is sometimes served as a digestif after a meal, as the citrus flavors are thought to aid in digestion.


  • Limoncello: 1.5 oz(45ml)
  • Lemon juice: 1 oz(30ml)
  • Simple syrup: 0.5 oz(15ml)
  • Soda water: 2 oz(60ml)
  • Ice: 1 cup
  • Lemon wheel: 1
  • Garnish: Mint sprig


The star of the show: This sweet, lemon-flavored liqueur provides the signature citrus kick. If you use less, you'll miss out on the lemony goodness; more would overpower the drink. No Limoncello? Try an orange liqueur for an 'Aranciato' twist.

Emma Rose

Lemon Juice

The tart counterpart: Freshly squeezed delivers the zing and keeps the cocktail balanced. Skimp on this and your Limoncillo becomes a syrupy slump. Too much? Pucker up, it'll be sharp!

Alex Green

Simple Syrup

The sweet mediator: Just enough to soften the edges of the citrus without causing a sugar rush. Skip the syrup and brace for a tart takeover. More puts you in a sweet spot – not the good kind!

Mary Mitkina

Soda Water

The fizzy friend: Brings lightness and effervescence to the mix. It uplifts the Limoncello, preventing it from feeling too heavy or intense. Lose the bubbles, lose the fun. It's that simple.

Emma Rose


The chiller: It's what turns the mix into a refreshing quencher. Sans ice, you get a lukewarm limon-yawn. It's all about temperature and texture here.

Alex Green

Lemon Wheel

The citrus crown: It's both prettifying and hinting at the flavors within. No wheel? The drink goes undercover, but the world still turns.

Mary Mitkina

Mint Sprig

The fragrant finale: Offers a nose-pleasing aroma and a touch of color. Mintless? The Limoncillo won't mint-d, but it's just not the same.

Emma Rose

Recipe. How to make Limoncillo Drink

  1. Fill a cocktail shaker with ice.
  2. Add the Limoncello, lemon juice, and simple syrup to the shaker.
  3. Shake well until chilled and combined.
  4. Strain the mixture into a glass filled with ice.
  5. Top with soda water and gently stir to combine.
  6. Garnish with a lemon wheel and a sprig of mint.

Pro Tips

  • Shake well to ensure all ingredients are well combined.
  • Use fresh lemon juice for a more vibrant flavor.
  • Chill your glass beforehand for a cooler cocktail.

Perfect Pairings


  • Seafood: Limoncillo's bright citrus flavors make it a perfect match for seafood dishes, especially those that are lightly seasoned or come with a citrus-based sauce.
  • Cheese: Pair with mild cheeses, such as mozzarella or a young pecorino. A cheese platter with a variety of textures and flavors would work well.
  • Canapés: Choose canapés that have a hint of citrus to complement the Limoncillo, such as smoked salmon with a squeeze of lemon.

Main Courses

  • Chicken: Grilled or roasted chicken with herbs and lemon would be a delightful pairing.
  • Pasta: A simple pasta with olive oil, garlic, and a sprinkle of Parmesan cheese would complement the cocktail without overpowering it.


  • Sorbet: A lemon or other citrus sorbet will echo the Limoncillo's refreshing qualities.
  • Fruit Tarts: A fruit tart, particularly ones with a citrus twist, would be divine.

Other Drinks

  • Sparkling water: On the side can help cleanse the palate between sips of the cocktail and bites of food.

🍹 Discover the Top 50 All-Time Recipes! 🍹

Enter your email, and we'll send the exclusive list straight to your inbox.

We respect your privacy and take protecting it seriously

What you could change in Limoncillo

  • Limoncello can be replaced with any other citrus liqueur.
  • Simple syrup can be replaced with honey for a natural sweetener.
  • Soda water can be replaced with tonic water for a different twist.

Explore all drinks starting with L here

And of course - twists🍹

Rosy Limoncillo

Ingredients: Add 0.5 oz of rose syrup in place of the simple syrup. Recipe: Follow the original recipe, substituting rose syrup for simple syrup. Description: Expect a floral bouquet to take the lead, with a rose-tinted twist on the classic.

Spicy Limoncillo

Ingredients: Include a small slice of jalapeño with the lemon and muddle before shaking. Recipe: Muddle jalapeño in the shaker, then add the rest of the ingredients and shake. Description: Adds a kick that dances with the lemon, for those who like it hot and zesty.

Limoncillo Spritz

Ingredients: Replace soda water with Prosecco. Recipe: Follow the original recipe, topping with Prosecco instead of soda water. Description: For an Italian twist, the spritz plays up the bubbly aspect, injecting a vivacious vent to your vesper.

In case you forgot basics how to make Limoncillo

The basic composition of simple syrup is relatively straightforward – a 1:1 ratio of sugar and water. This mixture is heated until the sugar dissolves, resulting in a clear, sweet syrup.

Learn everything about simple syrup

Add your ingredients to the shaker first, then ice. Fill it up to ¾ of its capacity to ensure enough space for shaking. Hold the shaker with both hands (one on the top and one on the bottom) and shake vigorously. The shake should come from your shoulders, not your wrists.

Learn everything on how to shake

Place your chosen strainer on top of the shaker or mixing glass, ensuring a secure fit. Pour the cocktail into a glass through the strainer, which will catch solid ingredients and ice. If double straining, hold the fine mesh strainer between the shaker and the glass.

Learn everything on how to strain

Insert the spoon into the glass until it touches the bottom. Keep the back of the spoon against the inside wall of the glass, and stir in a smooth, circular motion. The goal is to swirl the ice and ingredients together without churning or splashing.

Learn everything on how to stir

Garnishing a bar drink depends on the type of garnish and the cocktail. Generally, it involves preparing the garnish (like cutting a citrus wheel or picking a sprig of mint), and then adding it to the drink in a visually appealing way (like perching it on the rim or floating it on top).

Learn everything on garnishing

Find the cocktail you'd love!

If you want to drink something else - you can use our AI-augmented search to find the best cocktail for you!
Completely free!

Frequently Asked Questions on Limoncillo

What are the origins of Limoncello?

Limoncello is an Italian liqueur that was first made in Southern Italy along the Amalfi Coast and the Sorrentine Peninsula, which is known for its lemon groves.

What kind of garnish could I use if I don't have a lemon wheel?

You can use a slice of lime or orange, or even a cherry. Remember, the garnish should add something to the cocktail, either in terms of flavor or appearance.

What is simple syrup and how do I make it?

Simple syrup is a basic sugar and water syrup, usually made in equal parts, heated until the sugar dissolves and then cooled. It's a staple in many cocktail recipes and can be stored in the refrigerator.

Can I make Limoncillo alcohol-free?

Yes, you can make an alcohol-free version of this drink by omitting the Limoncello and replacing it with lemonade or another non-alcoholic citrus drink.

Is there a specific type of soda water that works best in cocktails?

Any type of soda water will work for cocktails. However, some bartenders prefer to use tonic water or club soda for a little extra flavor.

How long does it take to make a Limoncillo?

It should take around 5-10 minutes to prepare the ingredients and mix a Limoncillo cocktail.

More similar recipes to Limoncillo!

Explore new cocktails you'd love!

Please rate this recipe