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Here’s a trick for how to clean strawberries! It removes surface bacteria and residue, and extends the life of the fruit.

How to clean strawberries

Do you wash your strawberries? That’s not just giving the container a quick rinse under the tap! There’s a genius trick you can use to really clean strawberries, removing any surface bacteria and chemical residue from pesticides. Even better: this tip makes the berries last longer in the fridge! It’s going to sound a little wacky, but stick with us…

How to clean strawberries…the right way!

How to clean strawberries? You’re going to soak the berries in vinegar and water. Vinegar?! Yes, it sounds a little crazy. But trust us: once you rinse it off, it doesn’t taste like vinegar. (Promise!) Here are the basic steps:

  • Mix vinegar and water: Add 3 cups cold water and 1 cup vinegar to a bowl.
  • Soak 5 minutes: Add the strawberries and soak for 5 minutes.
  • Rinse: Drain and rinse with thoroughly cold tap water. This removes all vinegar flavor!
  • Dry: Pat the berries dry with a clean towel. This is important, since if they’re wet it can compromise storage time! Place the berries in a sealed container and refrigerate.

Why clean strawberries?

Strawberries are consistently at the top of the Dirty Dozen List. This means conventionally grown strawberries have more exposure to pesticides than any other fruit or vegetable. So one reason to clean strawberries you’ve bought at the store: to remove any surface chemicals!

What about organic strawberries? Organic strawberries are grown without synthetic pesticides, but they may have natural pesticide residue and they can still have germs and dirt. This slick method removes all of this surface material and also extends the life of the berries in the fridge!

How long do cleaned strawberries last?

The storage time depends on the freshness of the berries when you buy them. Clean your strawberries in vinegar and water, and they can last up to 2 weeks! We did a storage test and our cleaned berries lasted for 2 weeks, but again: depends on the freshness.

Best ways to use them

Once you’ve cleaned those beautiful fresh berries, they’re ready for snacking or for use in strawberry recipes. Here are a few standout ways to use them:

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How to clean strawberries

How to Clean Strawberries

  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 0 minutes
  • Total Time: 5 minutes
  • Yield: 1 pound 1x


Here’s a trick for how to clean strawberries! It removes surface bacteria and residue, and extends the life of the fruit.


  • 1 pound fresh strawberries


  1. Add 3 cups cold water and 1 cup vinegar to a bowl. Add the strawberries and gently toss. Soak for 5 minutes.
  2. Drain and rinse the berries with thoroughly cold tap water (this removes the vinegar flavor). Pat the berries dry with a clean towel, then place them in a sealed container and store in the refrigerator. Berries can last up to 2 weeks.
  • Category: Essentials
  • Method: Wash
  • Cuisine: Fruit
  • Diet: Vegan

Keywords: How to clean strawberries

About the authors

Sonja & Alex

Meet Sonja and Alex Overhiser: Husband and wife. Expert home cooks. Authors of recipes you’ll want to make again and again.

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