If you love lemon, White Chocolate Limoncello Truffles will make you a very happy person! Prepared with white chocolate, lemon zest, and limoncello liqueur, these truffles are perfectly sweet and sour. These pale yellow delights will melt in your mouth!
On the second last day of Lord Byron’s 12 Truffles of Christmas, I am offering up my last alcohol-based truffle recipe in the series. White Chocolate Limoncello Truffles is the fourth truffle with a splash of booze. I shared a truffle recipe with Irish Cream, another with rum, another with blue curacao, and finally, this one with limoncello.
I can still remember the first time I tasted limoncello. The bottle was taken right out of the freezer, so it was ice cold! Poured into a shot glass, I was told to just drink it all at once. I remember hesitating because I am most certainly not one to drink alcohol unless it’s mixed and quite frankly, much less concentrated. Limoncello was not what I expected at all. It was more like a dessert rather than a shot. It was quite good!
Fast forward a few years, and I started to experiment with cocktails and mixology with the purpose of publishing a few recipes here at Lord Byron’s Kitchen. In fact, I published a new cocktail almost every Wednesday this past summer. After spending a small fortune on building up a home bar, I find I have lots of leftovers, and opened bottles, so using some of it up in a truffle was a no-brainer. White Chocolate Limoncello Truffles is the result of experimenting with boozy treats for the holidays.
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WHAT IS LIMONCELLO?
Limoncello is an Italian liquor made from the zest of lemons, sugar, water, and alcohol. I read somewhere that one should think of limoncello as a grown-up version of homemade lemonade! It’s quite delicious, but the production of limoncello requires a great deal of precision and attention. First, the lemons are harvested by hand. They cannot touch the ground – not even for a moment! The lemons come Capri, Sorrento, and the Amalfi Coast in Italy.
It is said that limoncello was first made in a small family home in the early 1900s. A woman called Maria Antonia Farace grew her own oranges and lemons. She used them to make liquor so that she had something to offer her family or guests whenever they came to visit. Later, after World War 2, her grandson opened a bar and started to serve his grandmother’s limoncello to his patrons.
To most Italians, limoncello is described as a dessert drink that is sipped after a meal. It is very commonly used in desserts such as cake and cookies, and these White Chocolate Limoncello Truffles, of course! Perfect on its own, limoncello can be found in many cocktails as well.
HERE ARE THE INGREDIENTS NEEDED FOR THIS RECIPE:
- White Chocolate – Use good white chocolate. Truffles are meant to be inexpensive, but you still want them to taste good. I tried making these with cheap white chocolate chips and they turned out rather chalky, not smooth at all.
- Sweetened Condensed Milk – When combined with the melted chocolate, a sweet, ganache-type of recipe is the result, which makes for a great truffle!
- Lemon Zest – A whole zested lemon is required.
- Limoncello – This sweet Italian liqueur is made from an infusion of fresh Sicilian lemon peels without the use of any artificial flavours or colourings. The result is an intense yellow colour with a bouquet of fresh lemon peel and balanced sweet, tangy lemon flavours that give it a refreshing quality.
- Confectioner’s Sugar – This ingredient plays double duty. It will thicken the truffle batter and act as a coating for the outside.
- Yellow Food Colouring – This is optional, but the Limoncello alone will not make the truffles yellow. A drop or two of yellow food colouring will give these truffles a nice, pale yellow tint.
Looking For More Christmas Confections?
Lord Byron’s Kitchen has more than enough to satisfy your sweet tooth! Click on the links below to see a countdown series of holiday recipes from that category!
WHAT IS SWEETENED CONDENSED MILK?
I have a lot of recipes here at Lord Byron’s Kitchen with sweetened condensed milk as one of the ingredients. (Click here to see them!) Growing up in Newfoundland, it was always something I’ve been aware of. But, that’s not the case for everyone. I get many questions from readers about it. For someone unfamiliar with gooey, sticky canned milk, it might be easily confused with canned Carnation condensed milk, for instance. Let me explain what it is here.
So, first of all, it’s condensed. The milk is condensed by removing water. This can be accomplished by applying heat. The water will evaporate causing the milk to condense, which thickens the milk. Sugar is added to sweeten the condensed milk. The main purpose of adding sugar is to prolong the shelf life of condensed milk, which can sit on room-temperature shelves for years. Sugar prevents microorganisms from growing in the milk and helps to thicken it even further—it’s added after the milk has been boiled, reduced, and pasteurized.
If you find unsweetened condensed milk, it’s most likely that it’s simply evaporated milk or condensed milk, which is thick, but not gooey and sticky. Evaporated milk is often used as a cream added to tea or coffee. If you are unfamiliar with it, please read the can carefully. Also, shake it – can you feel the liquid splashing about inside the can? If so, it’s not sweetened condensed milk; it’s evaporated or condensed milk only!
HOW TO MAKE WHITE CHOCOLATE LIMONCELLO TRUFFLES:
I said this in almost every truffle post in this series, but it’s worth repeating again today. Even though truffles are super easy to make, they do require a little bit of patience. I’m speaking of course about the time it takes for the truffle mixture to set up in the fridge before they can be rolled into balls. It’s something I really dislike. I can’t tell you how many times I refuse to make a recipe because I have to wait for something to chill. I have no patience, I tell you! Ha! But if you have ever worked with ganache before, then you’ll know that patience is key.
Unlike most ganache-type recipes, we are not going to be heating cream and pouring it over the chocolate. For this recipe, we are going to add the white chocolate, the sweetened condensed milk, and the yellow food colouring into a bowl and microwave it together. It’s not ganache really, but it’s like ganache so I’m using the term anyway!
So, add the chocolate, condensed milk, and yellow colouring to a microwave-friendly bowl. Heat in 30-second increments at half speed. Stir well between each increment, until the mixture is creamy and smooth. Next, stir in the lemon zest and the confectioner’s sugar. Cover and refrigerate for two hours to firm up.
Lord Byron’s Annual Christmas Cookie Series
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FORMING THE TRUFFLES:
While the chocolate mixture sets up in the fridge, set up a bowl of your rolling option. I’m using confectioner’s sugar. These truffles are soft and creamy. Dipping them into melted chocolate is not the way I would go with these. First of all, I think they would be just too sweet to eat. And, I think that once the chocolate firms up, it would take away from the texture of the limoncello truffle on the inside.
So, once the 2 hours have passed, set up a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Measure out a slightly heaping teaspoon of the mixture. Roll into balls and then roll in the confectioner’s sugar. Place on the parchment-lined baking tray. Once all of the balls are rolled, place the baking tray in the fridge for an hour to set up.
STORING, PACKAGING, AND FREEZING
When it comes to truffles of any kind, they taste best at room temperature, but they don’t hold up well to being left out on your countertop. Store them in a food-safe container in your fridge. When you want one, two, or half a dozen, take them out of the container and place them in a single layer on a plate. Let them sit at room temperature for 5 minutes and they’re ready!
If you plan to freeze these truffles, again, pile them into a food-safe, freezer-friendly container. You’ll want to ensure a very tight-fitting lid too. (I use these quite often when freezing baked goods.) I like to place a sheet of plastic wrap over the top of the container before pushing the lid on. This helps to create a better seal. The goal is to keep all of that freshness locked in! You can freeze these for up to three months. Enjoy!
Do You Like This Recipe?
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White Chocolate Limoncello Truffles
- 3 cups white chocolate chips
- 14 ounces sweetened condensed milk
- 1 tablespoon limoncello
- 1 whole zest of lemon
- 3 cups confectioner's sugar
- yellow food colouring, optional
- Add the chocolate, condensed milk, and yellow colouring to a microwave-friendly bowl.
- Heat in 30 second increments at half speed. Stir well between each increment, until the mixture is creamy and smooth.
- Next, stir in the lemon zest, limoncello, and two cups of the confectioner’s sugar. (For an alcohol free version, use 1/2 tablespoon of lemon juice and 1/2 tablespoon of vanilla extract instead of the limoncello. If you use one full tablespoon of lemon juice, the truffles will be very tart, but still quite delicious!)
- Cover and refrigerate for two hours to firm up.
- Once chilled, place the remaining one cup of confectioner's sugar into a shallow bowl. Set aside. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Measure out a heaping teaspoon of the mixture.
- Roll into balls and then roll in confectioner’s sugar.
- Place on the parchment-lined baking tray.
- Once all of the balls are rolled, place the baking tray in the fridge for an hour to set up.
- Transfer to food-safe container with a lid. Keep refrigerated.
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