Citrus fruit juice is a live saver in many recipes and adds that acid needed to take a dish over the top.

A ton of recipes call for it but even when not they can sometimes still be added anyway.

When you hear common measurements for 1 cup, 1/2 cup, or 1 tbsp – do you ever think just how much fruit do you need? We sure do.

This obviously depends on the size and freshness of the fruit. Some can be more juicy while others can be much less. This largely depends on the season you are in and when you are purchasing.

That being said it’s good practice to know just how much should be in the fruit.

We break down some common citrus fruits and tell you what to expect when it comes to juice.

Juice in One Lemon

Lemons are arguable the most common citrus fruit to juice so it’s important to know what to expect.

On average, there are about 3 tablespoons of juice in one lemon. So if you needed a whole cup of fresh lemon juice you are looking at about 5 and 1/4 lemons.

Note lemons vary widely in the amount of juice so to be save you would want to buy at least 6 and most likely have a little leftover. This should also equal about a pound of lemons which is between 4 – 5, with some grocery stores prepackaging them together in a bag.

Juice in One Lime

Limes are also one of the most popularly used fruits whether you are making guacamole or fresh margaritas.

There are about 2 tablespoons of juice in one lime meaning one cup would be about 8.

While they don’t vary as much as lemons, limes do also vary in size.

Juice in One Orange

Whether you are using an orange for fresh squeezed juice or just as a marinate will depend on how much you need.

There are about 1/4 to 1/3 cup of juice in each orange. Therefore to make one cup of fresh orange juice you’ll need about 3 oranges.

Note that there are multiple types of oranges on the market. Varieties such as Valencia, navel, mandarin, or blood oranges will produce different quantities of juice.

Juice in One Grapefruit

Grapefruits are one of the largest and juiciest citrus fruits, and they can be used in a number of ways when cooking.

A standard grapefruit has roughly 3/4 cup of juice. Meaning you will need roughly one and a half or two fruits to give you over 1 cup of fresh juice.

Juice Level Recipe Chart

We decided to create this easy chart to help you find out how much you need depending on your recipe.

Fruit1 Fruit1 TBSP1/4 Cup1/2 Cup3/4 Cup1 Cup
Lemon3 tbsp juice1/3 lemon1 and 1/4 lemons2 and 1/2 lemons4 lemons5 and 1/3 lemons
Lime2 tbsp juice1/2 lime2 limes4 limes6 limes8 limes
Orange4 tbsp juice1/4 orange1 orange2 oranges3 oranges4 oranges
Grapefruit12 tbsp juice1/12 grapefruit1/3 grapefruit2/3 grapefruit1 grapefruit1 and 1/4 grapefruit

Tips When Juicing Fruits

The amount of juice in any one fruit will depend on the fruit itself, but there are ways that you can get the most out of it. Here are some tips you should keep in mind.

  1. When possible use a juicer or citrus squeezer instead of your hands.
  2. Microwave your fruit for 10 seconds before juicing. This helps break down the membranes that hold the juice.
  3. Firmly roll the fruit on your countertops before cutting. This also breaks down the fruit’s membranes.
  4. If you’re planning on juicing fruits regularly, it might be worth it to upgrade to a manual juicer.

Knowing how much juice is in a single fruit is a handy way to plan any recipe. Once you know it you can even toss the measuring and start to flow in your cooking.