Flavored with the zest and juice of oranges, orange liqueurs, including triple sec and brand-name liqueurs, add an intense orange flavor to baked goods, glazes, sauces and cocktails. If you don’t have orange liqueur on hand, or if you prefer to avoid using alcohol, you have options to replicate its sweet and bitter taste.
Orange marmalade may make a reasonable substitute for orange liqueur due to its tart orange flavor. Its consistency makes it a useful part of a glaze for pork, chicken, beef or fish or to flavor cranberry sauces. Orange marmalade can also be used in place of liqueur in breads and muffins. Use the same amount of marmalade as you would liqueur. Due to its thick texture, marmalade won’t work in mixed drinks.
Orange Juice Concentrate
An equal amount of concentrate can stand in for orange liqueur. Orange juice concentrate is a viable option because it imitates the sweet, tangy flavor of the liqueur.
Orange extract is an option for frostings, glazes, muffins and cakes because extracts such as vanilla, almond and others are often used in these dishes. Use 1 teaspoon of orange extract to replace every 1 tablespoon of orange liqueur. Do not substitute orange extract measure for measure for orange liqueur. Orange extract is stronger than liqueur and your dish will be bitter if you use too much.
Other Fruit Liqueurs
You can also substitute other fruit-flavored liqueurs for orange liqueur. Mandarin or kumquat liqueurs are close stand-ins due to their sweet-tart flavor. If a general citrus flavor will do in place of orange, try limoncello or lemon liqueur. Sabra liqueur is an option if you don’t mind a hint of chocolate mixed with your orange flavor. If a melon flavor is an option, try a melon-flavored liqueur. Any of the liqueurs are suitable for mixed drinks but not in frozen desserts. The alcohol will not freeze and your dish will likely be runny.
Double the amount of orange juice to substitute for the liqueur or use 1 tablespoon of orange juice and 1/4 teaspoon of orange extract for every 1 tablespoon of liqueur needed.
References and ResourcesDrinks Mixer: Orange Liqueur
What's Cooking America: Alcohol Substitutions in Cooking
The Cook's Thesaurus: Fruit Liqueurs