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Citric Acid Fruit and Vegetable Soak

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  • Lemi Shine


Some lessons are timeless, like learning from an early age to always rinse your fruits and veggies before eating them. But did you know that washing your fruits and vegetables with cold water only removes up to 80% of pesticides? Some require three washes, like apples, peaches, grapes, or tomatoes! Sound excessive? Those extra washes can help you eliminate possible lingering bacteria, like E. Coli, Listeria, Salmonella, or even polioviruses. 


While no home cleaning method is 100% effective at removing all pesticide residues from your fruits and veggies, you have many tools that will remove up to 98% of pesticide residues using staple and inexpensive pantry items like citric acid. 


Soaking is ideal to ensure your fresh produce gets the clean it deserves. You can use citric acid powder in proportion of 2-3 tbsps per one liter of water for large batches of produce, rinsing them in the prepared water for a minimum of 2-4 minutes.


But when you only have one or two pieces to clean, this DIY Fruit and Vegetable Wash spray is helpful and more effective than commercial products because it contains fewer chemicals:


  • 1 tbsp eco-friendly dish soap 
  • ½ tsp Lemi Shine's 100% Pure Food Grade Citric Acid 
  • 1 ¾ cups filtered water
  • 20 drops lemon essential oil


Tip: Do not substitute castile soap for the dishwashing detergent. Acid and soap, when mixed, form a thick curd that'll make it hard to spritz from the spray nozzle. The lemon essential oil in this recipe contains high amounts of D-limonene, which is known to break down pesticides.


Rinse your produce under cold, running water and spray your mix on heavy-skinned fruits and vegetables to break down wax coatings that prevent pesticide residues from being rinsed off. Allow this to sit on the produce for 60 seconds before rinsing off. Use a vegetable brush before rinsing to clean the fruit thoroughly on rough-skinned fruits like melons or squash.


Go ahead and enjoy your food knowing that you can easily remove toxic pesticides from your meals using these simple steps.

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