There are many reasons that you should wash your fruits and vegetables before you eat them. Some of these reasons include germs, pesticide residues, wax, dirt, and bug residuals.  Consider buying organic produce whenever your budget allows or make it a priority for those foods known to be highest in contaminants. Read more about what fruits and vegetables are of highest concern here and try my Homemade Produce Wash recipe.

Citrus based essential oils or lemon juice are used in most recipes because they help to bind waxy residues. White vinegar is essential to act as a natural disinfectant. Although you can purchase produce cleaners at most grocery stores, this recipe is far less expensive and allows you to use less plastic!

Spray this Homemade Produce Wash on whole fruits or vegetables and gently rub for 30 seconds before rinsing. For items like leafy greens or grapes, fill a bowl with 1/2 gallon of water and 1/2 cup cleaner. Let produce soak for 3-5 minutes before rinsing. 

Homemade Produce Wash

It is best to use a spray bottle that is 16 oz or larger to allow for some "fizzing" that will occur from the baking soda.

Homemade Produce Wash



  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • 3/4 cup white vinegar
  • 2 tsp baking soda
  • 5 drops lemon essential oil
  • 5 drops grapefruit essential oil
  1. Place 2 tsp baking soda into a dry spray bottle that you intend to store your produce wash.
  2. Mix water, white vinegar, and essential oils together in a measuring bowl.
  3. Slowly pour liquid into the spray bottle containing baking soda. Use a funnel for less mess. Expect the baking soda to bubble when liquid is added.


The baking soda and white vinegar will react when combined. This will release carbon dioxide and cause it to bubble. For this reason, it is best to combine them slowly and allow the mixture to rest at least 30 minutes before you place the spray nozzle on top of the bottle.

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