- Hide menu

Washing Fruits and Vegetables

LoadingFavoriteAdd to favorites

Eating a diet high in fruits and vegetables is one aspect of leading a healthy life. However, to make the most of these nutrient-filled foods, it’s equally important to make sure that the produce we consume is safe to eat. One way to do that is to make sure any of the fruits or vegetables you enjoy have been thoroughly washed before you peel, cut, eat, or cook with them. Pesticides, herbicides, and disease-causing bacteria may be naked to the human eye, but they are there.

To reduce your pesticide exposure, the obvious answer is to choose organic food when you can, but almost no food is 100% free of pesticides. Surprisingly, even organic produce may contain some pesticide residues either due to growing practices or overspray from other farmers. Always do your best in these cases. If money is tight and organic produce seems like such a hard reach, learn which fruits or veggies are on the Dirty Dozen list. If they are on that list, I HIGHLY encourage you to find a way to eat those only when organic, even if you have to opt for organic frozen.

Should you happen upon conventional fruits and veggies with thin skins such as zucchini, apples, plums, etc. be sure to wash and remove the skins before eating to reduce the intake of pesticides. If you don’t wash them first, you can transfer bacteria from the outside of the vegetable to the inside as you peel.

What to Wash Produce With

There are tons of “produce cleaners” on the market, do we need to use them? It’s very overwhelming if you are trying to get down to the nitty-gritty of it all. Many of you may already have a practice in place or a method that you feel comfortable using. For those of you who are unsure, there are methods don’t require special “produce cleaners.”

I have spent A LOT of time reading up on this very topic. Research has shown that most commercial produce cleaners are no more effective than plain water. Not mention that a lot of those cleansers are not FDA tested. We can liken this to our food labels, if you don’t know the ingredients used or can’t pronounce them, maybe stay away from them. You can read some studies that were done recommending water (here), (here), and (here). Below are some natural ways that you can also clean your produce.


Baking Soda

Vinegar and Water

Salt Water

Before you Start – Inspect the Produce

How to Wash Firm Produce

How to Wash Greens

Greens require special and delicate attention. Start by removing any wilted leaves; then prep and wash greens as directed for each type.

How to Clean Mushrooms



Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *