In its most basic form, lemon pepper is simply a combination of two popular flavoring agents: lemon and black pepper. The point in history at which these two spices were first combined is unknown. As with many simple seasoning blends, the identity of the inventor was never documented and has been lost to history; however, both the lemon and the black peppercorn originated in India. It is not unreasonable to think that they were first combined and used as a seasoning blend there (or elsewhere in the east) as well. Both lemon zest and black pepper are used in a number of Indian dishes.
Lemon pepper flavor profile
Manufacturers may offer their own unique lemon pepper seasoning blends, which may include salt along with garlic or celery seed. Each of these will have a distinctive flavor profile, but the strictest definition for a lemon pepper blend is a simple mix of lemon zest and ground black pepper. The result melds the strong citrus notes of lemon oil with the slightly bitter, pungent notes of black pepper. Most pre-made lemon pepper blends are baked to dry them out for storage. Baking tones down the lemon so that it does not overpower the black pepper flavor and other flavors in the dish.
Health benefits of lemon pepper seasoning
Lemon pepper seasoning is not a good source of any nutrients. While its constituents do have some nutritional value, the serving size is typically too small to provide a significant quantity of vitamins or minerals. Despite all that, lemon pepper seasoning does have some health-enhancing characteristics.
- It is fat and carbohydrate free: The ingredients that make up lemon pepper provide 0 calories from fat or carbohydrates in each 1-teaspoon serving. Lemon pepper is a great way to flavor your food without adding fat or carbs.
- It can be low in sodium: The amount of salt in lemon pepper blends varies dramatically from manufacturer to manufacturer. While many are high in salt, others offer salt-free and low-salt options.
- It has no cholesterol: Cholesterol is not necessarily a bad thing. Your body needs some of it to make cells. However, too much cholesterol in your blood can cause heart disease. Cholesterol comes mainly from animal products like meat and dairy as well as from your own body. In addition, certain oils like palm oil can cause your body to make more cholesterol. Lemon pepper seasoning has none of these things, so it does not increase your cholesterol.
Lemon Pepper can be used to help prevent health conditions such as:
- Obesity: Lowering your caloric intake is essential if you want to lose weight. Because it has 0 calories per serving, lemon pepper seasoning is great for weight loss.
- High blood pressure: While sodium may not cause high blood pressure, cutting it out can lower your blood pressure if it is high. Lemon pepper blends with low or no salt can help you to reduce your salt intake while still enjoying flavorful food.
- Heart disease: High blood pressure is one of the factors in heart disease, so a low-sodium lemon pepper blend can help you to reduce the risk on that front. In addition, the fact that it has no cholesterol means that you will be able to season your food without increasing your risk of atherosclerosis.
Common uses of lemon pepper
Lemon pepper has long been used as a flavoring for fish. It can be sprinkled onto salmon before grilling or used to make a compound butter for lobster or other seafood. It is also popular for use on pasta and on chicken wings. Lemon pepper wings have become a staple in the southern United States, especially in the city of Atlanta.
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