Almost no food is 100% free of pesticides but washing vegetables before cooking it with vinegar can remove chemicals. Surprisingly, even organic produce may contain some pesticide residues.
To reduce your pesticide exposure. The conventional advice is to choose organic food. Especially for the foods most likely to be contaminated with pesticides.
And then, to wash your fruits and veggies before eating or cooking with them.
Vegetables washing in vinegar
Wash vegetables for 20 minutes in vinegar, a salt water solution. Plain water to eliminate the residue of four common pesticides chlorpyrifos, DDT, cypermethrin, and chlorothalonil.
10% salt water solution was the most effective, and far more so than washing with plain water.
Full-strength vinegar found to be equally as effective. But using vinegar would get quite expensive and would leave foods with an unwelcome vinegary flavor. Making it less than ideal for a daily vegetable wash.
The baking soda solution used in the study was very weak. A mix of only one ounce of baking soda mixed with 100 ounces of water. And it took 12 to 15 minutes of soaking to completely remove the pesticides.
Most people would never wash vegetables for longer than a couple of minutes, so we’ve adapted the results of these studies to more practical everyday use.