This easy blood orange granita is made with just blood orange juice, lemon juice, and sugar. You can even use store-bought juice if you prefer. No ice cream maker required.
Blood Orange Granita
- Quick Glance
- Quick Glance
- 20 M
- 4 H
- Serves 4 to 6
In a medium saucepan over medium heat, combine the blood orange juice, lemon juice, and sugar and bring to a simmer. Cook until the sugar dissolves, about 3 minutes.
Pour the mixture into a shallow freezer-safe dish and freeze until the mixture begins to form ice crystals, about 1 hour.
Use a fork to break up the ice crystals and then return the pan to the freezer for 30 minutes.
Run a fork through the ice again to separate and break up the crystals. Then return the pan to the freezer for 30 minutes more.
Continue the freezing and scraping process every 30 minutes until all of the mixture is in icy crystals, 60 to 90 minutes more. Serve immediately.
Recipe Testers' Tips
This blood orange granita had a great citrus flavor, was very refreshing without being overly sweet, and looked like pretty little icy garnet crystals in a bowl. We loved it and my husband said he wanted to see this more often. It takes a little time for it to crystalize but is so worth it!
Here’s what I learned about working with blood oranges. Don’t buy them in bags! You can’t inspect each one and mine ended up being rather small and of varying stages of freshness. Next time, I will only buy them in bulk bins where I can select the quantity as well as the size and quality of each one.
When you cut them open, they are indeed bloody and fleshy looking and very fibrous. While juicing them, I had to clear out the strainer tray of the juicer after each orange since it was so clogged up with the fibrous mess. They were probably not the freshest bunch, but they still tasted fine. And, since the recipe called for the juice of 8 large blood oranges, I needed to make up for the juice I was missing for size as well as a couple oranges that had areas which were unusable, so I supplemented navel orange juice to the scant 1 1/3 cups blood orange juice to total 2 cups. I added the juice of 2 lemons and the sugar to the saucepan and simmered to dissolve the sugar.
I poured the mixture into an 8-by-8-inch foil pan which filled the pan 1/2 inch and popped the pan in the freezer. (I put the foil pan into another foil pan for stability.) It took a total of 3 hours and 30 minutes in the freezer before I got to the icy crystal stage from being slushy. I tested after the first hour and it was still pretty liquidy with a little slush around the edges. Some 30 minutes later, still slushy, and again after the next 30 minutes, slushy. So, I gave it another hour, and the mixture was starting to get icy. After this stir, I gave it another 30 minutes and it was perfect!
We can’t think of a more perfectly refreshing dessert on a nice warm day, and the freezer does all the work!
I love blood oranges for the ruby color and sweet but refreshing taste. Granitas are always great to have in the freezer for a quick treat, to serve as a palate cleanser, or for picky eaters or those who do not consume desserts made with milk products. I usually have to add a touch of alcohol to extend the “scrapability” life of the frozen granita so I was intrigued about this one lasting without the alcohol.
I find that simmered orange juice takes on a medicinal taste. I simmered only 300 ml of the mixed juices until the sugar was dissolved (3 minutes) then added the remaining cold juice. This also helped cool the recipe faster before freezing.
The following day as well as 4 days later, I was able to scrape crystals and serve it again just as on day one. I enjoyed the flavor so much that I’m actually going to try getting some more blood oranges and checking if this recipe will last for a summer month serving. That way, this recipe could be advertised as saving the last blood oranges of the season to enjoy in the summer. (Blood oranges are seasonal and only available mid to late winter in my area.)