What does orange blossom syrup taste like?

Orange blossom syrup has a sweet, floral, and citrusy taste. It is made by infusing orange blossoms in a simple syrup base of sugar and water. The delicate orange blossoms impart their lovely fragrance and flavor into the syrup, resulting in a lightly perfumed, sweet nectar that is lovely in drinks, desserts, and more.

What Are Orange Blossoms?

Orange blossoms are the fragrant white flowers that bloom on orange trees. They have a heady, sweet scent reminiscent of the orange fruit itself. Orange blossoms grow in warm climates and appear in the spring. In the United States, they are abundant in Florida, California, and the south.

The orange tree produces small waxy white flowers known as blossoms before growing the orange fruit. The blossoms only last for a short period between green buds and the beginning of fruit setting. During this time, the flowers perfume the air with their intense floral-citrus scent.

Orange blossoms are highly aromatic because they contain fragrant essential oils. These oils are what give the iconic orange flavor and scent to treats made with orange blossoms, like orange blossom syrup and orange blossom water.

How is Orange Blossom Syrup Made?

Orange blossom syrup is made by infusing fresh orange blossoms in a simple syrup. The basic process is:

  1. Harvest fresh orange blossoms
  2. Make a simple syrup by combining sugar and water over heat until the sugar dissolves
  3. Add the fresh blossoms to the hot syrup and remove from heat
  4. Allow the orange blossoms to steep and infuse their flavor into the syrup
  5. Strain out the blossoms
  6. Bottle the finished orange blossom syrup

The ratio of sugar, water, and orange blossoms can vary based on preference. Some recipes use a 1:1 ratio of sugar to water, while others use a 2:1 ratio for a thicker, richer syrup. Fresh blossoms are essential for full flavor extraction.

Orange blossom syrup keeps for 2-3 weeks refrigerated. It can also be canned or frozen for longer storage. The delicate orange blossoms lose their potency over time, so fresh syrup has the best flavor.

What Does Orange Blossom Syrup Taste Like?

When you take a first taste of orange blossom syrup, you’ll immediately notice its intensely floral, perfume-like flavor. It is sweet like honey or simple syrup, but with delicate citrusy orange notes and a slightly bitter, herbal nuance.

The flavor is reminiscent of orange zest, orange juice, and fresh orange peel, but much subtler with more complexity from the ethereal floral essence of the blossoms.

There are also hints of spicy, delicate ginger, lemongrass, and chamomile. The complexity of the flavor comes from the over 300 aromatic compounds found naturally in orange blossoms.

Overall, orange blossom syrup has a bright, sweet, floral orange taste complemented by herbal nuances. The flavor is stronger and more concentrated than orange flower water.

Common Flavor Descriptors

Here are some of the most common words used to describe the one-of-a-kind taste and aroma of orange blossom syrup:

  • Floral
  • Orange
  • Sweet
  • Citrus
  • Honey
  • Perfumey
  • Delicate
  • Aromatic
  • Zesty
  • Lemony
  • Ginger
  • Herbal

How to Use Orange Blossom Syrup

The floral citrus flavor of orange blossom syrup lends itself well to both sweet and savory applications. Here are some of the best ways to use orange blossom syrup:

Cocktails and Beverages

Orange blossom syrup shines in refreshing cocktails, lemonades, teas, and other drinks. Add it to:

  • Orange blossom gin and tonic
  • Orange blossom iced tea
  • Sparkling wine or champagne
  • Citrus lemonade
  • Flower petal martinis
  • Palomas
  • Margaritas
  • Mojitos


The sweet floral flavor pairs perfectly with fruit and creamy desserts like:

  • Panna cotta
  • Pound cake
  • Whipped cream
  • Parfaits
  • Almond cookies
  • Fruit salads
  • Trifles
  • Scones

Savory Dishes

Orange blossom syrup can provide a unique flavor in savory recipes like:

  • Orange chicken
  • Stir fries
  • Citrus salads
  • Roasted vegetables
  • Seafood
  • Middle Eastern dishes

Other Uses

Orange blossom syrup also shines:

  • Drizzled over yogurt, fruit, or ice cream
  • Swirled into oatmeal or yogurt
  • Used to glaze cakes and cookies
  • Added to simple syrups for cocktails
  • Used to sweeten tea or coffee

Orange Blossom Syrup vs. Orange Flower Water

Orange blossom syrup and orange flower water are both made from orange blossoms, but there are some key differences:

Orange Blossom Syrup Orange Flower Water
Thicker, syrup consistency Thinner, water consistency
Higher sugar content Lower sugar content
More concentrated flavor More delicate flavor
Better for cooking/baking Better for aromatics

Orange blossom syrup contains more sugar, resulting in a thick, syrupy liquid that can act as a sweetener in recipes. Orange flower water has a thinner consistency and more delicate orange blossom flavor that is better for aromatics.

Where to Buy Orange Blossom Syrup

You can find orange blossom syrup at some grocery stores, Middle Eastern markets, gourmet shops, and online:

  • Specialty grocery stores like Whole Foods
  • Middle Eastern markets
  • Online retailers like Amazon
  • Specialty food shops
  • Etsy shops

Look for brands like Cortas, Annabelle’s, and Jack Farmer’s to ensure you’re getting real orange blossom syrup. Read the ingredients to confirm it contains orange blossom extract or essential oil.

You can also make your own orange blossom syrup at home when orange trees are in bloom. Just use fresh blossoms, sugar, and water.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is orange blossom syrup the same as orange flower water?

Orange blossom syrup and orange flower water are made from orange blossoms but have some differences. Orange blossom syrup is thicker with more sugar, while orange flower water is delicate and thin. Orange blossom syrup works better for cooking while orange flower water is ideal for aromatics.

What does orange blossom syrup taste like?

Orange blossom syrup tastes floral, perfumey, and citrusy, with aromas of orange zest, juice, honey, and herbs. It has a sweet flavor with nuances of ginger, chamomile, and lemongrass.

What recipes use orange blossom syrup?

Orange blossom syrup works well in drinks like cocktails, teas, and lemonade. It’s also lovely in desserts like cakes, whipped cream, fruit salads, and more. A small amount can enhance savory dishes too.

Can you make your own orange blossom syrup?

Yes, you can make DIY orange blossom syrup by steeping fresh orange blossoms in a simple syrup mixture of sugar and water. Use about 1 cup of fresh blossoms per 2 cups of sugar and 1 cup water.

How do you use orange blossom syrup?

Orange blossom syrup can be used to sweeten and flavor drinks, desserts, yogurt, oatmeal, cocktails, salad dressings, glazes, and more. Start with small amounts, as the flavor is strong. Add more to taste.


With its sweet, floral, citrusy flavor, orange blossom syrup adds a lovely aromatic quality to countless recipes. Its taste combines the light zest of oranges with the delicate perfume of the orange blossoms. A little bit goes a long way in drinks, desserts, and other dishes.

Orange blossom syrup provides a simple way to incorporate the essence of orange blossoms, one of the most beloved signs of spring. So experiment with orange blossom syrup to bring its refreshing floral citrus flavors into your cooking and cocktails.

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