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13 Vitamin C-Packed Foods (That Aren’t Oranges)

Have you ever wondered how much vitamin C is in a lemon? Or in broccoli? While oranges are the poster child for food with vitamin C, there are plenty of other options. Here are our most nutritious picks.

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horizontal photo of heirloom different varieties squashes and pumpkinsShutterstock / Alina Demidenko

Winter Squash

Getting through the tough rinds of butternut, acorn and spaghetti squashes awards strong-wristed cooks with creamy, nutty flavor and a hearty texture that withstands high heat. They’re also a good source of vitamin C, which can help bolster the immune system during cold weather. Check out our top 10 squash recipes to keep things interesting throughout fall and winter.

Psst: If a cold has gotten the best of you, here are some foods that could help you feel better faster.

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Lemon slices on the old wooden table.; Shutterstock ID 585968516Atiwan Janprom/Shutterstock

Lemons

How much vitamin C is in a lemon? Almost as much as the amount in an orange! Pack in nutrients (and flavor!) by adding lemon peel, zest or juice to your meals (we LOVE these lemon recipes). And for a quick vitamin C boost, toss a little lemon in your water bottle.

Do you know all of lemon’s health and beauty benefits? Find out here.

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background from freshly harvested strawberries, directly aboveShutterstock/GCapture

Strawberries

Small, sweet and oh-so juicy, this beloved fruit can be tossed into smoothies and salads or eaten fresh for a healthy helping of vitamin C with almost no effort. Our huge list of strawberry recipes is loaded with dozens of options for any meal of the day.

Strawberries aren’t the only immunity-boosting berry. Find out how to make elderberry syrup here.

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Green KiwiPixomentum Photography/Shutterstock

Kiwifruit

This exotic fruit—also known as the Chinese gooseberry—comes in a furry little package for easy transport to school or the office. Back at home, it’s surprisingly versatile. Take a refreshing sip of sparkling kiwi lemonade after a day in the garden or add some flair to dinnertime with a honey-pecan kiwi salad.

If you’ve been doing this to your kiwis, you can stop.

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mango and mango slices on a wooden tableValerii__Dex/Shutterstock

Mango

From mouthwatering mango salsas to hearty chutney chicken curry, this tropical staple adds island-like flair to countless dishes. The sweet fruit, however, is protected by a tough and pesky skin—learn how to peel a mango like a pro.

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Beautiful red ripe heirloom tomatoes grown in a greenhouse.eugenegurkov/Shutterstock

Tomatoes

In all its forms, this household staple provides a decent amount of vitamin C. Raw green tomatoes and sun-dried tomatoes give the most bang for your buck, but even tomato juice and canned tomatoes will contribute toward your daily vitamin needs.

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Colorful green , red and yellow peppers paprika backgroundAlexeiLogvinovich/Shutterstock

Bell Peppers

Just one cup of green bell pepper can contain more than twice the daily recommended amount of vitamin C. The riper red bell pepper has even more, along with the eye health-friendly vitamin A. Whip up this sweet onion and red bell pepper topping to punch up everything from hot dogs to cream cheese.

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red Chili peppersChayasit Fangem/Shutterstock

Chili Peppers

Along with giving dishes a mouth-tingling zest, chili peppers—both red and green varieties—load dishes up with vitamin C. They’re not just used in Mexican dishes, either. Check out our collection of chili pepper recipes to expand your spicy horizons.

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fresh raw brussel sprouts in glass bowl.Anna Shepulova/Shutterstock

Brussels Sprouts

When eaten raw, one cup of these mini cabbage cousins can provide an entire day’s worth of vitamin C. Worried the kids won’t like them? Try sauteing sprouts with bacon and maple syrup. They’ll lose a little vitamin C in the cooking process, but they’ll be more palatable for picky eaters. If you’re ready to go for it, here’s an awesome sprout salad.

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Fresh green kale leaves on wooden tableElena Shashkina/Shutterstock

Kale

Considering this leafy green is a staple of most health-food trends, it’s no wonder it’s packed with vitamin C. Its kitchen possibilities are nearly endless, too. Try whipping up a snack like Old Bay crispy kale chips or make a meal out of it with hearty, nutritious soups.

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Broccoli cabbage in a wicker basket. A lot of broccoli in a wicker box on a brown background.EVGENIYA68/Shutterstock

Broccoli

Raw, steamed or roasted, this quintessential vegetable goes a long way toward a healthy, balanced diet, and can be found year-round at grocery stores. Fend off the complaints of picky eaters with our collection of cheesy breakfasts, crunchy sides and creamy dinners—all of which put broccoli at center stage.

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Green tops of parsley on a wooden background.Valentin Balan/Shutterstock

Parsley

Sprinkling a couple tablespoons of parsley on a dish doesn’t just make it look prettier. The little leafy green also rounds meals out with vitamin C, along with a healthy dose of iron. Its mild flavor goes well with just about anything, from simple lemon potatoes to mouthwatering baked cod.

Here’s what to do with an entire bunch of parsley.

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Organic cauliflower on wooden backgroundTim UR/Shutterstock

Cauliflower

There’s a reason cauliflower is a staple of trendy diets like keto. For what broccoli’s paler cousin lacks in color, it makes up for in nutritional value. You don’t have to struggle through flavorless steamed cauliflower, either—there are dozens of ways to dress it up with family-friendly flavor.

Rory Cooper
Rory was raised in rural New Hampshire before spending a few years in the hustle and bustle of Chicago. Now back in New England, he's stocking up on fishing tackle, amassing an ever-growing collection of crochet hooks and fantasizing about one day living in a cabin.
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