How To Prepare Your Fruits And Vegetables For Juicing

Fruits And Vegetables For Juicing

It is a well-known fact that all fruits and vegetables must be cleaned with water before eating or juicing. Moreover, you cannot just clean them in a bowl – use running water! But water is only enough if you have grown fruits and vegetables on your own, which is quite rare nowadays. In case you buy them, a lot of diverse chemicals can stay on their surface after rinsing with water.

One of the most widespread mistakes is to wash products with a dish detergent. Even the most ecological wash-up liquids can hardly be rinsed out from greens and berries, for example. The substance for cleaning should be totally natural. In other words, it should be something you can eat. Pay extra attention to it if you want to juice fruits and vegetables for your kids. There is a wide range of special sprays or liquids in the market. Mind that they can contain lemon acid, apple acid, glycerin, sea salt, different agricultural oils, sodium bicarbonate, ethyl alcohol and various natural essences. You can also make a special cleaning product yourself.

Vinegar is one of the most popular means to clean almost anything. Mix one part of vinegar and one part of water. Another recipe is to mix one spoon of lemon juice (don’t forget to clean a lemon properly beforehand!), one spoon of sodium bicarbonate (baking soda) and a glass of water. Just like commercial agents, it is very important to rinse homemade ones carefully off your fruits and vegetables. Sometimes you have to use a brush.

Why Clean

Cleaning fruits and vegetables

Cleaning fruits and vegetables is not simply a process of removing dust, earth or sand. We are pretty sure that biphenyl, methyl bromide, and sulfur dioxide are not something you want to consume and, especially, feed your kids with. Are they? Well, it may surprise you, but these and many other chemicals can easily be found on the surface of the majority of fruit and vegetables we buy.

Biphenyl is used for preventing fruit and vegetables from rotting, especially those that cannot be naturally grown at this time of the year. Methyl bromide protects them from vermin. Sulfur dioxide is used to make fruits shinier and to store them longer. Some fruits and vegetables can also keep trace of exhaust gasses if they were grown by the road. Some means used by fruit manufacturers, such as wax, can cause serious allergies. And don’t forget about gems! They seem harmless in comparison with everything mentioned above, but still, provoke a number of severe diseases. It is equally important to clean fruits and vegetables before eating and juicing. Make no mistake: everything from the surface can get inside after the most careful peeling! A potential danger of juicing dirty fruits and vegetables is terrifying! Mind that the dirtiest fruits and vegetables are potatoes, apples, peaches, strawberries, cherries, grapes and different sorts of greens. The least dirty ones are bananas, onions, asparagus, eggplant, mango, and avocado. But it doesn’t mean you don’t have to clean them thoroughly!

Should We Peel Before Juicing?

Lemon Peel

Some people always peel all fruits and vegetables before running them through the juicer. Others are trying to take a maximum of useful elements from their juice and do not peel at all. Of course, it all depends on what exactly you want to juice. Many fruits and vegetables should be peeled at least for the sake of the juicer, as their peels are too firm. Remove a very small layer of firm vegetable rind, if all you want is to keep your juicer from the damage. Remember that it is the layer closest to the rind that is the most nutritious in such vegetables as pumpkin, for example.

Many experts argue that in melon and watermelon, the largest part of the nutrients are concentrated in the rind. The peels of many fruits and vegetables are an excellent source of protein, powerful antioxidants that boost the immune system, improve your cardiovascular system, strengthen your bones, and even have great anti-cancer properties. For example, citrulline contained in the peels of melons is one of the strongest antioxidants you can ever get from food. On the other hand, don’t forget that peels are a sweet home for bacteria. It should be noted that we can discuss whether to peel or not to peel, only if we are talking about healthy organic fruits and vegetables. Pesticides and chemicals are better to be 100% removed from products. So, if you are not sure that this nice melon or shiny apple is organic – peel it well!

The Ways of Preparing Fruit, Vegetables, and Herbs for Juicing

So, there is no doubt that any vegetables, fruits, and berries should be cleaned thoroughly. The general rules for washing fruits and vegetables are set forth above. Here, we can only remind you that the faster the process of cleaning vegetables, fruits and berries is, the more vitamins are preserved. But the quality of cleaning should not suffer from it.

You also should eat or juice freshly washed fruits and vegetables immediately after washing. The reason for this is that the skin gets damaged during the cleaning, and products begin to spoil and lose their beneficial properties rapidly. To save a maximum of nutrients, use a stainless steel knife (a silver knife will do if you have one) to peel and cut fruits and vegetables. If you have found yellow spots under the skin of cucumbers, zucchinis, and potatoes, you are better to throw these vegetables away, because they contain too many nitrates. To reduce the amount of nitrates, you can put your fruit and vegetables in salted water for a day. However, this will reduce the amount of vitamins, too.

Also note that different juicers require different ways of preparing fruit. Some products are not suitable for certain types of juicers at all. For example, you cannot juice wheatgrass with a centrifugal or a hydraulic juicer.

Seed Fruits

Seed fruit juice, thanks to apples, is one of the most popular all over the world. That is why the prevailing majority of juicers have an option of juicing these fruits. The juice made with different devices will be different, but it will keep all the nutrients. Except for the fiber.

Pears

Pears

Pear juice is much sweeter than the apple one. Pears spoil quickly, so pick them thoroughly. The stick should spring slightly when it is compressed between the thumb and forefinger. Clean the pears before running them through the juicer. Normally, there is no need to peel them and take the seeds off. But you’d better do so if you are juicing pears for babies.

Quinces

Quinces

Freshly made quince juice is one of the most efficient ways to reduce fever. It has a lot of other useful properties. Don’t juice quinces immediately after you buy them. After ten days, the number of vitamins in a quince will rise significantly. Clean them right before juicing.

Kiwi

Kiwi

It is up to you whether to peel a kiwi before juicing or not. The peels can contain pesticides. So, if you eat a kiwi, you will get all of them. On the other hand, juicing kiwis with rind will let you get the maximum vitamins and the minimum pests.

Pomegranate

Pomegranate

Cut off the stamen cluster. Carefully cut the skin separating the fruit into four parts. Break the pomegranate with your hands and take all the seeds out. Use a masticating juicer to juice the seeds.

Worst Choice: Apples

Apples

Unexpectedly, but true. Apples have plenty of vitamins. They are the most popular fruit type in the world, that is why a lot of people juice them. However, apple juice lacks natural fiber, which is greatly beneficial for digestion. So, it is much better to eat whole apples. On the other hand, apple juice can be mixed with other juices, especially made from vegetables and greens with a very strong taste (like spinach) or with no taste at all (like sweet potatoes). Wash your apples, cut them if necessary. No need to peel and remove the core.

Best Juicer for Seed Fruits

Pick a centrifugal juicer. They will juice your seed fruits with maximum efficiency. Be attentive with pomegranates. Some centrifugal juicers don’t allow small seeds; so study the manual first.

Stone Fruits

The juice made of stone fruits should not be mixed with that of any other type of fruit and vegetables. This way, the nutrients are better preserved. So, you can easily mix apricot, cherry, peach, plum. The juice will be delicious, and good for your health. The only exception is apple juice. It can be mixed with all stone fruit juices perfectly.

Peaches

Peaches

Before you rinse peaches, wipe them with a dry cloth. Then, clean them. Don’t peel. Cut in half and remove a pit.

Nectarines

Nectarines

Nectarine skin is much sweeter than that of peaches. So, there are even more reasons not to peel nectarines. They are not ‘fluffy,’ so you can get to rinsing immediately. Don’t forget to remove the stone, of course.

Plums

Apples

Rinse your plums with running water. Cut them a little with a stainless steel knife and take the stones out. Even if plums have small stones (in comparison to peaches, for example), they can damage your juicer.

Apricots

Apricots

Clean your apricots carefully, as they can be sprinkled with chemicals. Rinse them. Don’t peel apricots, because you will lose half of the juice. There is actually no need to cut them. You can remove the pit with your hands if the apricots are ripe enough.

Worst Choice: Cherries

Cherries

Actually, cherry juice is hugely beneficial for your health. Pectin and trace elements are the reasons to spend as much time removing stones, as needed! Sure, it will take you long if you want a full glass of juice! However, you cannot give up such a good opportunity to improve your immune system, just because it is time-consuming. Mix small amounts of cherry juice with other juices. Don’t forget to rinse cherries before you start taking out the stones.

Best Juicer for Stone Fruits

If you want to get a nice glass of clear apricot, plum, or any other soft stone fruit juice, you should better choose a centrifugal juicer. A masticating juice extractor, in this case, will make something similar to a smoothie, not juice.

Melons

The juice produced of different kinds of melons has a strong hydrating effect and normalizes water-salt balance in your body. It improves digestion, reduces stress, allergies, and removes toxins, too. Mind that melon peels are only useful if organic.

Melon

Melons

Whether to peel a melon or not is totally your decision. You should ground it on whether the melon is fresh and organic and whether your juicer can manage to juice the peels. Melon peels are very healthy. But you have to clean the melon super carefully if you don’t want to peel it.

Papaya

Papaya

Although papaya rind contains a lot of vitamins, it has been chemicalized almost for sure. So, don’t risk! Clean a whole papaya with special spray or liquid and peel it before juicing.

Cantaloupe

Cantaloupe

It is cleaned and peeled just like all the other melons. Don’t forget to take out the seeds! Cantaloupe juice is perfect for mixing with that of pineapple or ginger and lemon.

Worst Choice: Watermelon

Watermelon
Watermelon juice contains pure distilled water, which makes it beneficial for your liver. It also helps to reduce intoxications of different kinds. The problem is that watermelon seeds are not concentrated in the middle, like those of other melons. So, first, they can hardly be removed and can damage a centrifugal juicer. And, secondly, you will get less juice even in a masticating or manual juicer. If you still decide to juice a watermelon with seeds, clean it well before cutting.

Seedless watermelons

Seedless watermelons
This type is much better for juicing. Clean a watermelon and cut it. It is way easier not to peel a watermelon, but to separate the flesh from the rind when your watermelon is already cut into pieces.

Best Juicer for Melons

A masticating juicer or dual auger juicer are more suitable for melons. You can use a centrifugal one, but in this case, you’ll have to juice twice to get all the juice. And it is not really convenient to juice the pulp.

Citrus Fruits

Citrus juice has plenty of useful properties. Besides, it is perfect for mixing with other juices to improve their taste. However, it is important to remember that citrus juice has a number of adverse side effects. You should not drink it if you have gastritis, hepatitis, pancreatitis, etc. It is better not to drink citrus juice during pregnancy. Citrus fruits should be poured over with boiling water to get rid of chemicals. Then, they need to be rinsed with cold running water.

Lemons and Limes

Lemons and Limes

Rinse your fruits well. Depending on the type of juicer, you may either cut a lemon or lime in half and squeeze it with a citrus juicer; or, you can peel and cut it to run through a masticating or centrifugal juicer. No need to peel, only if you are sure that your fruits don’t contain pests.

Oranges

Oranges

Some juicers allow running a whole orange. Please mind that the peels and pits, although provide plenty of useful nutrients, can change the taste of your juice significantly. So, if you prefer classic orange juice, you are better to remove them.

Tangerines

Tangerines

Tangerine juice is delicious and useful. Squash your tangerines slightly in your hands. Peel them. You can run a whole tangerine through your juicer (for centrifugal ones) or divide it into segments (for masticating and manual juicers). You can also remove seeds if there are too many of them. Seeds can spoil the taste of your juice.

Best Choice: Grapefruits

Grapefruits

Grapefruit juice is not as popular as orange one because it has a bitterish taste. However, it contributes hugely to the rapid weight loss and also has a lot of other useful properties. Drinking grapefruit juice regularly positively affects the skin and the whole body. Select fresh grapefruits. Rinse them. Cut them in half and juice with a citrus juicer.

Best Juicer for Citrus Fruits

There is a great range of special citrus juicers on the market. They are excellent for efficient and rapid juicing of oranges, lemons, grapefruits, etc. Such juicers are the best choice for daily morning juice when you do not have enough time to peel citrus fruits. In addition, are extremely convenient to clean and not noisy.

Berries

Berries need to be thoroughly cleaned before juicing. But you should be very careful, as berries are much more fragile than any other fruit. It is very important to select only ripe berries. Unripe ones have less sugar and vitamins, while over-ripe berries have too much sugar and less juice.

Grapes

Grapes

There are different opinions on whether grape stalks should be removed or not. Many people think that stalks contain a lot of nutrients and cannot spoil juice. It is only true if you are juicing black grapes. The stalks will make your juice taste more like wine. When dealing with white grapes, you should remove the stalks. They will spoil the color of the juice.

Seedless grapes

Seedless grapes

There is a great variety of seedless grape types, such as Termarina Rossa and Black Beauty. Please, mind that grapes can turn out to be a very strong allergic agent. Often, it is caused not by the grapes themselves, but by the diverse chemicals that manufacturers use to preserve them. Especially, it concerns seedless types, because they spoil faster. Clean grapes very carefully!

Blueberries

Blueberries

Blueberries can be easily damaged, so they should be kept in a small basket and not for too long. Then, they are to be sorted quickly. Pick whole berries that are suitable for juicing. Put them into the water for a while and then rinse with running water.

Blackcurrants

Blackcurrants

Select good berries first: they must be ripe. The overripe blackcurrants will give you less juice. In the case of immature currants, you’ll get juice with a specific flavor and a lack of vitamins.

Raspberries

Raspberries

Raspberries are the most fragile of all, so you shouldn’t wash raspberries with running water. Put berries in a colander; then, put the colander into a bowl with cold water. You should do it more than once, changing the water.

Strawberries

Strawberries

Remove the green stems with your hands. You don’t have to do it with a knife. Strawberries are among the dirtiest berries from the point of view of both mud and pesticides. So, clean them with special sprays. Don’t leave the berries in the water for too long.

Banana

Banana

If you decide to juice banana, which is better to be used for preparing smoothies, don’t forget to clean it. No, you will neither eat nor juice the peels. But the bacteria can get from the skin to the fruit. By the way, banana is one of the rare fruits you get clean with soap, because the skin is rather thick and is never juiced.

Best Choice: Cranberries

Cranberries

Cranberry juice seems to be a universal remedy. It contains plenty of vitamins and antioxidants. It is good for your kidney, cardiovascular system, skin and all together is hugely beneficial. It is better not to clean cranberries before juicing. But it is only possible for berries you’ve grown yourself. Otherwise, clean, but be very careful not to damage them.<

Best Juicer for Berries

Pick a manual, masticating juicers or triturating juicers. You will constantly have to scrape the seeds off the centrifugal juicers. Moreover, some centrifugal juicers are not suitable for juicing berries at all.

Dried Fruits

Dried fruit retain all the biologically active elements in a concentrated form. They have no artificial nutrient additives but do have trace elements, vitamins, fiber, and pectin. However, the idea of juicing something that has been dehydrated first seems like a double work. Dried fruits are really not the best choice for juicing, but there are exceptions.

Dried Apricot

Dried Apricot

Rinse with cold water. Then, put in a strainer and quickly pour over with boiling water. You can leave them in water to remove the dirt.

Best Choice: Prune

Prune

Prunes improve your immune system hugely. They are used even for small kids to reduce constipation. Don’t pit a prune before you juice it, it will be much easier to do it afterward. Clean prunes thoroughly.

Best Juicer for Dried Fruit

You actually don’t need a juicer for dried fruits. Just put them into water. Prunes should be simmered for 3-4 hours, and dried apricots can be just left in cold water for 5-6 hours.

Vegetables

Normally, you don’t have to choose between vegetable and fruit juices, because drinking both are a part of healthy nutrition. But it is worth saying that vegetable juices have a number of benefits. They contain more nutrients than the fruit ones. So, they help you stock up on energy. They are very good for people recovering from illness, as well as children. There is a little fructose in veggie juices, so they can be used even by people with diabetes. Besides, vegetable juices are less allergenic.

Tomatoes

Tomatoes

Even if you like the smell of tomato leaves, you are better to cut them off. Seeds don’t have to be removed. There is normally no need to peel a tomato. But if you have some sort of stomach problems, or you are making juice for small kids, put a tomato in boiling water for a couple of seconds. It will be easier to take the peel off with a knife after this.

Seedless tomatoes

Seedless tomatoes

This type is prepared just like ordinary tomatoes. Mind that seeds have a certain flavor and seedless tomato juice will taste more like a commercial one. You can also pick seedless tomatoes if you want your juice to be clearer.

Cabbage

Cabbage

Cabbage juice will provide you with iron and chlorophyll. The juice is vital for those, who have digestive problems. Rinse the cabbage and cut it, according to the size of your juicer. You can soften the juice taste by mixing it with pineapple juice.

Broccoli

Broccoli

Broccoli juice contains plenty of magnesium, necessary for human brain, and vitamins. Rinse your broccoli carefully. Cut the bottoms, but not all the stalk, as it also contains important nutritional elements. The juice tastes a little bitter, so you’d better mix it with water of other juices.

Kale

Kale

Kale is a sort of a cabbage, so preparing these vegetables for juicing is pretty much the same. Rinse it and cut the leaves. Note that the taste you get will be very strong. Kale juice is to be mixed with carrot or apple juices in 1:4 as a ratio.

Celery

Celery

Celery is to be properly rinsed before juicing. You can even leave it in water for some time. There are different opinions on whether the leafy tops should be juiced as well. It all depends on your taste, after all!

Carrots

Carrots

Carrot juice is the sweetest of all the vegetable juices, and it can be mixed with almost any other juice types. Choose dark-colored carrots for juicing. Rinse them and scrape them with a brush. You can cut the greens before juicing or leave them.

Sweet Potatoes

Sweet Potatoes

It is hardly possible to drink potato juice as it is. It is almost tasteless. But if you mix it with other juices, you will get the whole range of B group vitamins, vitamin C, and beta-carotene. It is highly important to pick only organic potatoes for your juice. Wash potatoes with a brush and cut into pieces, if needed. Peel the potatoes only if they are very dirty.

Asparagus

Asparagus

Juice fresh white or pale-green sprouts. They should be about 20 cm. Leave them in a bowl of cold water for a while and then rinse them.

Avocado

Avocado

Cut your avocado in half vertically. Open the two sides to remove the stone. You can do it with a knife or spoon. Afterward, scoop out all the flesh. Use only ripe avocados for juicing.

Beets

Beets

You definitely need to cut the firm bottom of your beets. There is no need to peel them before juicing. But the juice will taste better if you do. The beets should be carefully washed and cut. Mix beet one part beet juice with four parts of another.

Bell peppers

Bell peppers

Up to 70% of the nutrients contained in bell peppers are lost during heating. So, these vegetables are better to be eaten fresh or juiced. Besides, all nutrients are concentrated around the pepper stalk, in the white pulp and seeds. Don’t throw too much away before juicing to preserve all of the useful properties of your peppers! Seeds, on the other hand, should be removed, because they will spoil the taste.

Cucumbers

Cucumber

A cucumber is 95% water so you will get a lot of juice from it. Wash your cucumbers before juicing. Don’t peel them. But if it tastes a little bitter, you can cut them from the sides. Then, cut in half and juice. Cucumber juice is not really flavorful, so it is perfect for mixing with other juices.

Eggplant

Eggplant

Choose the freshest eggplants you can find. When kept for too long, eggplant rind obtains a bitter taste; and you will definitely need the rind! It contains antioxidants that prevent brain damages. Rinse the eggplant properly and cut the green cap and the stem off.

Pumpkin

Pumpkin

Pumpkin juice is great for your nervous system; it improves health and mood. Half a glass of pumpkin juice before going to bed will prevent sleep disorders. Drinking such juice can also help you lose weight. Rinse a pumpkin, cut into it slices and remove seeds. Then run it through your juicer.

Onions

Onions

Alongside with garlic, onion juice is better to be mixed with other vegetable juices. Onions are very juicy so you will not need many of them. They don’t require any special preparation, except for peeling.

Parsnips

Parsnips

Clean the stalks. Then, scrape your parsnips with the brush and cut them into pieces. Parsnip gives very pale, but surprisingly sweet juice. It contains a lot of vitamin B, which is useful for your skin, hair and nails.

Radishes

Radishes

Rinse your radishes with water. You can even scrape them a little from dirt. Don’t cut the greens. Mix radish juice with others to reduce side-effects it can have on your stomach.

Zucchinis

Zucchinis

Rinse your zucchinis carefully. Cut the stem off. Peel a thin layer of the skin. Remember that a lot of useful elements are contained just under it, so don’t peel too much.

Best Juicer for Vegetables

Vegetables are the widest kind of products for juicing. In the majority of cases, you should pick a masticating juicer. Please, mind that the juicer should be cleaned immediately after juicing such vegetables, as carrots and beets, because they can give it a distinctive bright color.

Greens, Herbs, and Spices

Essential oils contained in almost all greens, herbs and spices not only stimulate appetite but also have a great variety of beneficial properties. These products don’t lack in vitamins and trace elements either. Greens, herbs and spices juices should be consumed in small amounts or/and in mixtures with other juices.

Parsley

Parsley

Like the majority of other greens, parsley grows from the ground so it can be really dirty. Besides, it can keep a trace of pesticides. So, it is not enough to rinse parsley. You are better to leave it in water and rinse afterward.

Dandelion Greens

Dandelion Greens

Dandelion juice normalizes blood pressure and promotes weight loss. Iron contained in the greens increases the level of hemoglobin. Collect a lot of fresh greens. Rinse them and put into hot salted water for about an hour. Then, rinse the greens again.

Ginger

Ginger

Ginger juice should be consumed in various inflammatory processes. It can help to reduce a toothache and stomatitis. Ginger has a strong anti-aging effect. In addition, ginger is a perfect component for mixed juices. Clean it thoroughly and peel with a sharp knife. The peels should be very thin, because all the useful essential oils are concentrated right under them.

Butter Lettuce and Romaine Lettuce

Butter Lettuce

Separate the leaves and rinse them carefully. You’d better use special cleaning solutions if you bought your lettuce in the market.

Garlic

Garlic

Peel it carefully, as you don’t want garlic skills to stick to your teeth. It will be quite hard to get enough juice from garlic, so put it in the juicer with other vegetables. Mind that the taste is truly strong. It is perfect to be mixed with tomato or eggplant juices.

Leeks

Leeks

You should clean your leeks only after you took off spoiled upper leaves, if any. It is also necessary to cut leeks along. This way, the dirt is better removed from the leaves. Wash leeks in large dishes with plenty of water.

Spinach

Spinach

Spinach juice is actually all you need to improve the work of digestive organs and get the daily amount of iron. Take about 20 big leaves to get half a glass of spinach juice. Rinse them properly and run through your juicer.

Mint

Mint

Mint juice is helpful in case of stomach problems, heart diseases, rheumatism, headache, toothache, and others. You can grow mint yourself, as it doesn’t require too much attention. If you buy it, rinse it carefully.

Best Choice: Wheatgrass

Wheatgrass

Wheatgrass is rich in vitamins E and B. It also contains calcium, phosphorus, and iron. Wheatgrass juice stabilizes metabolism, improves the immune system and helps your body to get rid toxins. It is not allergic; moreover, it cures allergies. The wheatgrass greens should be about 15 cm long. Cut them carefully with scissors and rinse the dust off. You can store the cut greens for a week, but it is much better to juice them immediately.

Best Juicer for Greens

The best choice is twin gear juicers or special wheatgrass juicers. They have a wider range of possible ingredients for processing, so they can easily juice greens. Besides, such a juicer should not be cleaned as often as a centrifugal one.

The Takeaway: How to Make the Most of Your Juice

Drinking freshly made juices is a perfect opportunity to improve your health because they contain the whole range of biologically active elements, necessary for our life: vitamins, carotene, trace elements and many others. The most popular juices are vegetables, such as tomato, carrot and pumpkin, and fruit, such as orange, apple, and pear. However, a useful beverage can be made of berries, greens, and even dried fruits.

You can pick different juicing methods: from manual to mechanical, using the most advanced juicers. Anyway, the quality of juice depends on its ingredients. The purer, fresher and better a fruit or vegetable is, the more tasty and healthy is the juice. So, use only fresh fruit and vegetables, without any trace of rotting, chemicals, and pests for your juice. Mind that greens should be green, not faded. Fresh juices cannot be stored for a long time, which is why it is vital to drink them immediately – usually, in less than 15-20 minutes after they were prepared. Remember that fresh juices can get quickly oxidized and lose all their nutrients.

Note also that some juices, such as cranberry, apple and lemon, can have a diverse effect on one’s sick stomach, so you need to drink them wisely. It is equally important to make sure that the products selected for juicing are thoroughly cleaned, and some of them – peeled and pitted. If you want to learn more about juices, juicing and preparing fruits and vegetables for it, don’t hesitate to ask any questions below. You can also leave your comments and smart tips for preparing fruits and vegetables for juicing.