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5 Surprising foods packed with Vitamin C

Updated on September 25, 2016

When people think about giving themselves a natural Vitamin C boost they often reach straight for the oranges or pure orange juice. Oranges aren’t the only food that is packed full of Vitamin C though, in fact there are some quite surprising ones. Here are 5 surprising foods packed with Vitamin C other than the obligatory orange.


To give us a benchmark to compare against, oranges are known to contain around 53.2mg (89% DV) of Vitamin C per 100g of the fruit. So what about the humble pepper? Well when you learn that Yellow Bell Peppers contain about 183.5mg (306% DV) of Vitamin C per 100g and Sweet Red Peppers a huge 349% DV, you can see that the pepper isn’t such a humble vegetable after all, at least not when it comes to Vitamin C content.


We all love a bit of broccoli with our Sunday roast, don’t we? Or perhaps you prefer to blanch it and have it nice and crunchy. However you like it, broccoli packs a real Vitamin C antioxidant punch containing about 89.2mg of Vitamin C per 100 grams, or 149% of your recommended daily intake. Amongst other minerals broccoli also contains high amounts of calcium for healthy teeth and bones, and manganese – a trace mineral which helps protect your cells from damage caused by oxidative stress.


So when you think of Vitamin C you think of the color orange, right? Well perhaps we should start thinking of the color green instead. We’ve already mentioned Broccoli and we’re also going to talk about leafy greens in just a minute. Here though we should really mention the Kiwi Fruit, a green colored Vitamin C powerhouse which again contains far more Vitamin C than its fruit bowl friend the orange when we’re talking in grams. 100 grams of Kiwi fruit contains about 92.7mg or (155% DV) of Vitamin C, which is around 65% more than is found in 100 grams of orange fruit. It is true that – depending on the size of the fruit – you will often get more Vitamin C from one orange than you will from 1 kiwi, but that is only due to size and weight of the fruit. When it comes to Vitamin C content per 100 grams the kiwi wins hands down.

Leafy Greens

So we’re sticking with green again for our 4th food packed with Vitamin C. I don’t want to blow your mind by giving you the Vitamin C content figures for every dark leafy green going but if I was to tell you that 100 grams of Kale contains 120mg of Vitamin C – more than twice as much as an orange - then I think you’d be pretty impressed. I know I was when I discovered that fact, and it’s not just Kale. Other dark leafy greens such as Turnip Greens, Swiss chard and Spinach also contain decent amounts of Vitamin C and make for a great addition to any healthy balanced diet.


If I was to say that two average sized cooked tomatoes contained almost as much Vitamin C as an orange, would that surprise you? I know it surprised me, but it’s true! If you were to eat two cooked tomatoes at a weight of 246g then that would provide you with 56.1mg (93% DV) of Vitamin C, not that much less than one orange would provide. Couple the antioxidant power of this Vitamin C with the amazingly powerful antioxidant action of lycopene - another antioxidant contained in abundance in tomatoes – and suddenly tomatoes become an antioxidant force to be reckoned with.

So it’s not all about oranges

Here we’ve mentioned just 5 surprising foods packed with Vitamin C and there are many, many more. So if you are trying to increase your Vitamin C intake but you find that too many oranges or too much pure orange juice is playing havoc with your digestion or causing other health issues as it does for so many people, then perhaps some of the foods mentioned on this list can provide a great alternative to help you meet your Vitamin C needs.

Do you know of any other surprising foods that are packed with Vitamin C?


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    • nutritionhub profile imageAUTHOR


      4 years ago

      Thanks Janellegems, glad you found it useful. I discovered a few new facts myself while researching the post, like the amount of vitamin C in Peppers!

    • Janellegems profile image


      4 years ago from United States

      We do only think of oranges when it comes to Vitamin C. Thanks for this excellent information of other fruits and vegetables packed with Vitamin C.


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