Vitamin C is an essential vitamin needed by the body to ensure proper growth and repair of skin, tendons, ligaments, bones, teeth, and cartilage. Vitamin C is also needed by the body so that it can properly absorb iron. It is also a natural antioxidant and helps prevent and reduce damage caused by free radicals.
Because the body cannot produce vitamin C on its own and is unable to store it, it is very important to make sure you get enough from your diet on a daily basis.
Vitamin C Foods
Below are some of the food options with the highest daily values of vitamin C.
1. West Indian Cherries
Single-handedly the best source of vitamin C, West Indian Cherries provides you with well over 2,000% DV of vitamin C in just 1 one-cup serving. These cherries contain 1,644 mg of vitamin C (which translates to an average 2,740% DV) and are also rich in fiber.
2. Yellow Bell Peppers
Get ready to be floored: one whole yellow bell pepper contains over 300 mg of vitamin C, which translates to 569% of your daily needs! Try adding bell peppers to your salads, or any dish to get more vitamin C every day.
Yet another vitamin C-rich fruit, papaya provides 188 mg of vitamin C per serving (1 medium papaya), which translates to about 313% DV. Papayas are also rich in calcium, potassium, and vitamins A and B.
One whole guava will provide you with 125 mg of vitamin C, which is about 200% of your DV needs. Even better news? One guava will only cost you 37 calories.
5. Sun-Dried Tomatoes
Sun-dried tomatoes are not only great in foods, but they are also rich in vitamin C as well. One cup will provide you with 112 mg (187% DV) of vitamin C.
6. Chili Peppers
One hot green chili pepper delivers 182% DV of vitamin C and costs you just 18 calories. Following just a little behind, red hot chili peppers will deliver 108% DV with 65 mg of vitamin C per serving.
Because they are so sweet and tasty, eating more strawberries won’t be a problem for many. One cup of strawberries will provide you with 98 mg of vitamin C, which translates to about 163% DV.
Good things truly do come in small packages, and this is true with the kiwi fruit. One kiwi will meet 141% of your daily vitamin C needs.
Another surprising element on the list, broccoli will provide you with 81 mg of vitamin C (or about 135% DV) in just one cup of the delicious green stuff. Broccoli is also rich in fiber and other vitamins and minerals needed for a healthy body.
While many think only fruits are rich in vitamin C, there are many vegetables that are rich in vitamin C as well. For just 34 calories, one cup of kale delivers about 134% of your daily vitamin C needs.
Pineapples are easy to incorporate into your diet, whether as a snack or in a smoothie. Not only are pineapples tasty, but they also provide you with 79 mg of vitamin C (131% DV) in just one cup of the fruit.
Mangoes are a popular fruit rich in vitamins such as A, E, B6, and, of course, C in addition to minerals like fiber and potassium. One mango will provide you with just under 100% DV (about 96%) of the Vitamin C the body needs.
One cup of cauliflower provides the body with 77% DV of the Vitamin C it needs (46.4 mg), which is ¾ of the amount the average adult needs per day. Cauliflower not only contains high levels of vitamin C, but it has a low calorie count (25 calories) as well.
14. Red Cabbage
One cup of chopped, fresh red cabbage adds 85% DV (50.73 mg) of Vitamin C the body needs, plus a good amount of Vitamin A and fiber. Red cabbage can be added to salads and other side dishes.
The most commonly known source of vitamin C, one orange (including the pulp) supplies 60% DV (36.11 mg) of Vitamin C the body needs. Oranges are also an excellent source of potassium, folic acid, and B vitamins.
16. Garden Cress
Commonly used in garnish, garden cress is packed with vitamins and minerals, supplying a great deal of nutrients to a healthy diet. One cup of this leafy green contains 58% DV (34.5 mg) of Vitamin C the body requires, plus protein, fiber, Vitamin A, calcium, Folate, and a rich supply of iron.
While this list includes some of the richest vitamin C foods, there are still many more options out there. Spinach, brussel sprouts, mustard greens, turnip greens, tomatoes, dried coriander, and cantaloupe, will all help you reach your daily vitamin C needs.
Even some herbs and spices, such as parsley, chives, dried basil, and clove, contain smaller amounts of vitamin C. Remember to combine these vitamin C-rich foods with a well-balanced diet to keep your body healthy and working at its best.