DIY Homemade Vegetable Wash/ Preserver

Get produce that lasts longer, gets cleaner, and stays fresher with this cleaner.

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I love gardening but hate sharing my fresh produce with the little creepy crawlies hiding in it.  A few years ago I found a recipe for veggie cleaners and preservers.  I have used them for years and they are amazing!  My fruits and vegetables come out cleaner and fresher looking than just rinsing plus they last longer.  Not to mention they draw out the bugs that like to hide in produce!  It also removes a lot of residue like wax, chemicals, pesticides and other matter quickly and easily.  The best part is it is natural so you are not ingesting any harmful chemicals.




  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon baking soda
  • 1 cup water


  1. Put all ingredients into a Spray Bottle.  You might want to do it over a sink because it will foam up a little.
  2. Shake gently to mix,
  3. Spray on veggies or fruit allow to sit for about 2-5 minutes.
  4. Rinse under cold water.

This soak is my favorite.  Usually when I would pick lettuce or parsley it would wilt quickly, not to mention the bugs that would be hiding in it.  I’m amazed how much dirt comes off vegetables that seem to be clean when I use this wash!  It also helps produce to last longer and stays crisp and fresh!  I actually use this for all of my fruits and veggies and I LOVE IT!


  • 1/4 cup vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons salt


  1. Fill a clean sink or a Large Bowl with cold water.
  2. Add in vinegar and salt, then swish around with hands (you can also do this in a large bowl).
  3. Place the fruit and/or veggies in and allow to sit for 25-30 minutes.  This will not effect the flavor at all, the vinegar cleans and the salt draws out any little bugs, dirt and other small unwanted things, it also will remove some of the wax.  
  4. Rinse under cold water and dry.  This job is made super easy using a Collander to hold the produce in while you soak it then you can drain and rinse easily.

Jerry Baker’s Giant Book of Garden Solutions: 1,954 Natural Remedies to Handle Your Toughest Garden Problems   4.5 star book on using common household items to solve your gardening solutions!

Here’s a few tools to get you started on the Veggie Wash and Preserver!


Cuisinart Mesh Strainers, Set of 3 – $12.95 & ships free with Prime

  • Strainers come in 3-1/8-inch, 5-1/2-inch and 7-7/8-inch sizes
  • Excellent for sifting dry ingredients
  • Made from durable, stainless steel mesh
  • Dishwasher safe
  • Lifetime limited warranty

Pyrex #1086053 Smart Essentials 8-Piece Mixing Bowl Set With Colored Lids

Pyrex Smart Essentials 8-Piece Mixing Bowl Set W/Colored Lids – $13.19 & ships free with Prime

  • 8-piece set of covered mixing bowls with 1-quart, 1-1/2-quart, 2-1/2-quart, and 4-quart capacities
  • Each cover with a different color and large size marking for easy differentiation
  • Clear, nonporous Pyrex glass won’t stain or absorb odors; allows you to watch your food as it cooks
  • Incredibly durable as long as sudden changes in temperature are avoided
  • Safe for oven, microwave, freezer, and dishwasher; 2-year warranty; made in USA

Spray Bottles

Soft ‘n Style 8 oz. Spray Bottle Set / 3 Piece Set – $5.14 (Add on item) Free shipping with Prime


I LOVE this colander! It’s a great size for rinsing out berries, spinach, lettuce, tomatoes and more from my garden as I prepare dinner for the night!

Cuisinart Over-The-Sink Colander – $24.00 & ships free with Prime

  • Perfect for rinsing fruits and vegetables or draining pasta
  • Nonslip handles extend to rest on top of sink
  • Made from durable, stainless steel mesh
  • Dishwasher safe
  • Lifetime limited warranty

Here’s another quick and easy way to keep your strawberries fresh for longer!

More Gardening Tips and Tricks

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  • Jenny Baker

    How long does this last? Do you have to make a new batch each time you want to wash your veggies?

    • Sherry

      Thanks for the tips but I ditto Jenny’s questions. Thanks again!

    • Kearna

      For the spray I make a batch and leave it in the fridge, it lasts for a few months at my house. I’ve never had it go bad. For the wash I usually make it up every time. It is so easy and I usually have a lot of produce. You could mix the vinegar and salt and keep it in a jar then just measure it into water when you needed it. It shouldn’t go bad because both vinegar and salt are preservatives.

  • Melinda

    Does the soak work for fruits as well, like blueberries and strawberries? Or strictly leafy vegetables also. Looking for a soak to clean produce (as opposed to my normal faucet rinse). Thanks in advance!

  • Audrey

    Melinda ~ rinsing strawberries & other quick-to-perish produce in a vinegar solution will add longevity – several days. I leave the vinegar on the berries & rinse them just prior to eating. Rarely do I throw away moldy produce. Great product & very inexpensive. Enjoy.

  • Lindsay

    I have read other recipes for produce wash and they say that strawberries (and other produce like it) if soaked to long will take on the flavor of the vinegar, has any had an issue with this?

  • Celeste

    Stupid Question: Do you use both the spray and soak? Or is it a personal preference to which one you use?

    • Kearna

      I use the soak for things that have potentially lots of bugs like berries or brocolli. I use the spray for fruit or veggies like apples, plums, cucumbers, you know big things. It takes the waxy coating off the store produce too.

  • Lindsay W

    Does it matter why type of salt?

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