7 Surprising (And Delicious) Sources Of Vitamin C (Slideshow)

My sister, a doctor in the UK, pours scorn on the idea of vitamin supplements. She believes strongly that we can get all the vitamins we need by eating the right foods. Since recent research has called into question the efficacy of Vitamin C pills, she may have a point.

Vitamin C, also known as ascorbic acid, is important because it helps the body maintain healthy tissues and a strong immune system, and it aids in the absorption of iron. It’s also great if you’re trying to get rid of a cold, and along with calcium and iron, it’s an important part of a diet that counteracts lead poisoning.

However, we humans cannot make vitamin C — we must obtain it from fruits and vegetables in our diets. The recommended dietary allowance for vitamin C is 90 mg for males and 75 mg for females aged 19 years and over. So why not do as my sister suggests, and get adequate amounts of vitamin C by eating some of these delicious fruits and vegetables each day? Here are 7 of my favorite food sources of Vitamin C, taken from the USDA’s Dietary Guidelines for Americans.

Guava is at the top of the USDA’s list. It’s packed with vitamin C: one half cup contains 188 mg of vitamin C. Try it by itself or mix it up in a delicious fruit salad.

First Photo: thinkstock; second photo: thinkstock

Red sweet bell peppers are green bell peppers that have ripened longer and are very sweet. Half a cup raw will give you 142 mg of Vitamin C; if you cook them, it’s a little less: 116 mg.

Photo Credit: fxdx/flickr

Strawberries are one of my favorite fruits, and it turns out that they are also full of fiber and antioxidants, including vitamin C. A half cup of strawberries contains 49 mg of the vitamin.

Photo Credit: thinkstock

Brussels sprouts are not on the top of everyone’s list of treats, but I enjoy their rich flavor. A half cup of cooked sprouts contains 48 mg of our favorite vitamin.

Photo Credit: Sofie Dittmann/flickr

Speaking of veggies, broccoli is another good source of vitamin C. If you enjoy it raw, you’ll get 39 mg of vitamin C in your half cup; once it’s cooked, that number drops to 37.

Photo Credit: thinkstock

Interestingly, tomatoes don’t figure in the USDA’s top 20, but tomato juice does. Three-fourths of a cup of this juice contains 33 mg of vitamin C.

Photo Credit: thinkstock

Dark leafy greens are a great source of vitamin C, as well as calcium and other vitamins. Kale provides the most vitamin C, with half a cup of the cooked vegetable containing 27 mg. Mustard greens are next best!

Photo Credit: Hey! Sam!!/flickr

These are my personal faves, but you can see the entire list of 24 top sources of vitamin C by clicking here.



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Monique D.
Monique D.2 years ago

thanks for sharing

Lynn C.
Lynn C.2 years ago


Elena T.
Elena Poensgen2 years ago

Thank you :)

g             d c.
g d c.2 years ago


Ala M.
Ala Morales2 years ago

I eat 2 oranges a day and watermelon after my meals and drink a lot of herb tea with lemon and honey. Also pineapple is high in vitamin C but I cannot eat it due to too much acid for me.
I haven't had a cold for many years. I also eat a lot of green vegetables and salads. I don't take any vitamin C pills.

Trish K.
Trish K.2 years ago

I grab frozen fruit at the market with the fresh. I crave ice and cold stuff so it works out nutritionally.

MGreat Kanth
Past Member 3 years ago

fruits i gonna eat like hell !!

Kathy Perez
Kathy Johnson3 years ago


Rui Cruz
Rui Cruz3 years ago

guess I'll be having more guava, then :)

Sheri P.
Sheri P.3 years ago

i love all of these foods except for guava. that's not exactly common around these parts...