A friend of mine DIYed her own candles, made from the peels of Satsuma oranges, for a recent dinner party. I was so excited by this simple yet clever idea, I had to share the tutorial on HonestlyWTF. My only regret is not discovering this sooner when Satsumas were at their absolute peak in December. Hopefully, you’ll still be able to snatch up a few at your local grocery store or farmer’s market and impress your guests at your next dinner party!

You’ll need:

  • Satsuma oranges with stems attached
  • olive or vegetable oil
  • a serrated knife
  • a spoon
  • matches

The stem side of the Satsuma will be the bottom and base of the candle. Lightly score a ring around the top 1/3 portion of the orange. Peel off the top.

Because Satsumas are known for their loosely attached peels, the orange should easily be removed. Gently separate the orange from of the peel with the help of a spoon. Slowly work the spoon towards the bottom and pry the orange out from the sides, making sure not to break through the middle.

Once the flesh of the orange is taken out, the pith connecting the outer stem should remain. The pith will be the wick of the candle. Snip the outer stem off with a pair of scissors so the candle can sit flat.

Pour a few glugs of olive oil into the orange, leaving just the very tip of the pith exposed. Use the spoon to submerge the top of the pith into the oil for just a few seconds. It’s now ready to be lit! *** Tip: if you’re having trouble lighting the pith, it’s probably because it has too much moisture. Try letting the peel dry overnight (without oil) and don’t forget to submerge the tip into oil for a few seconds before lighting.

Depending on the length of the pith, the candle should burn for at least a couple of hours. Remember, never leave candles unattended while burning! xx


(all images via HonestlyWTF)