10 Best foods high in vitamin C

Vitamin C is an essential vitamin that cannot be produced by the body itself. For this reason, everyone should take in enough vitamin C through their diet. Find out which foods are particularly rich in vitamin C and what health benefits the micronutrient offers here.
When you think of vitamin C, the first thing that comes to mind is citrus fruits like oranges and lemons. Yet there are many regional fruits and vegetables that have had a shorter journey behind them, are therefore better for the environment, and contain even more vitamin C in the process.

In the body, vitamin C is involved in the processes of building connective tissue, bones, and teeth. Vitamin C serves as an antioxidant that guards cells against oxidative stress. For vegetarians, it is particularly important that vitamin C improves the utilization of iron from plant foods.

The German Nutrition Society recommends 110 milligrams of vitamin C per day for men and 95 milligrams for women to prevent deficiency symptoms in the long term.

No. 1: Chili peppers

Green chilies contain 109 milligrams of vitamin C per pod, almost twice as much as their red relatives. This would adequately meet the vitamin C needs of an adult, making it the ideal vitamin C food.

Apart from their vitamin C content, however, chilies are healthy in another way: regular consumption of hot pods is said to lead to improved fat burning. Ref.


There are 109 milligrams of vitamin C in one chili pepper. So if you sprinkle even a few rings over your food, you’re already consuming 20 to 30 percent of your recommended daily intake.

No. 2: Black currants

Hard to believe: The small black berries provide almost twice the recommended daily intake per 100 grams. So it’s worth looking out for the bushes during an outing in summer.

Apart from the vitamin, the anthocyanins, which are responsible for the black color of the berries, are also true miracle workers. They are among the most powerful antioxidants and protect our cells from aging and other damage. Ref.


A handful of blackcurrants provides 100 milligrams of vitamin C – so it’s worth snacking on.

No. 3: Parsley

The garnish on pasta or casseroles tastes even better: the vitamin C food, parsley, contains almost four times the amount of vitamin C as oranges. Just a few grams can cover up to 10 percent of the daily requirement.


Apart from vitamin C, the smooth variety in particular contains many essential oils that have a diuretic effect and can therefore help with cystitis. There is also a lot of vitamin A and E in the herb.

To properly benefit from the health benefits of parsley, the greens should be processed raw, for example, to pesto or mixed into the salad, so you also take up larger quantities. Ref.


Per 100 grams, parsley contains 160 milligrams of vitamin C. To eat as much of it as possible, it is recommended to make pesto from it.

No. 4: Sweet peppers

The more ripe peppers become, the higher their vitamin C content. For example, red peppers provide 140 milligrams, the yellow variety 130 milligrams, and the green still 117 milligrams per 100 grams.

In addition to vitamin C, the peppers also contain beta-carotene and provitamin A, which also acts as an antioxidant and is good for the eyes. Ref.


No matter what color, one bell pepper provides 1.5 times the recommended daily intake for an adult.

No. 5: Kale

This green vegetable is a real all-rounder. While green cabbage is a true vitamin C food and one serving doubles the daily requirement of vitamin C, it is also particularly good for the eyes and skin, as vitamins A and E are abundant.

It is best to enjoy the cabbage raw with a little oil, so the vitamins are optimally absorbed. Ref.


There are about 100 milligrams of vitamin C in 100 grams of raw kale, while cooked cabbage provides only 47 milligrams – so kale does best in a salad.

No. 6: Broccoli

With half a head of broccoli, the daily requirement of vitamin C is covered even twice – provided you eat it raw. Due to losses in the cooking water or due to heat, the same amount of cooked broccoli covers a woman’s daily requirement only about 1.5 times.

Another reason why broccoli should be a regular part of every diet: in addition to vitamin C, it also contains vitamin E and various B vitamins that protect against skin aging and cell damage. Ref.

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Remember: one head of raw broccoli provides 370 milligrams of vitamin C. When cooked, the amount is reduced to 290 milligrams.

No. 7: Brussels sprouts

A delicious and healthy vitamin C food, especially in winter! A 200-gram portion of the cooked cabbage is enough to cover the daily requirement of vitamin C. It is also particularly easy to digest. In addition, it is particularly digestible.

In addition to vitamins, Brussels sprouts can do something else: researchers found that Brussels sprouts prevent some types of cancer. Ref.


Unlike other types of cabbage, Brussels sprouts do not cause stomach pain. Plus, 100 grams of the green balls contain nearly 80 milligrams of vitamin C.

No. 8: Lemon

For an extra dose of vitamin C in the morning, simply spike your tap water with a little lemon juice – the juice of one lemon provides about 20 milligrams of the bone-building vitamin, putting it in the list of top vitamin C foods.

Because the vitamin C in lemons also has antioxidant properties, it protects cut fruits and vegetables from turning brown at the cut edges. Ref.


One medium lemon contains 40 milligrams of vitamin C. So lemon juice over food is not only good for vitamin intake but also keeps fruits and vegetables from turning brown

No. 9 Kiwi

One kiwi already covers one-third of the daily requirement of vitamin C, so kiwi, being imported, is a quick and healthy snack all year round to replenish vitamin stores.

One study found that eating two to three Kiwis a day for 28 days stimulated processes that can reduce the risk of stroke. Ref.


There are 35 milligrams of vitamin C in one kiwi. In addition to the vitamins they contain, kiwis also provide other health benefits.

No. 10: Lychee

Frequently tired and weak? The reason for this may be a copper deficiency. The essential trace element cannot be produced by the body itself, so, like vitamin C, it must be taken in through food. Lychees contain about 200 micrograms per 100 grams.

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Ten lychees (about 100 grams) provide not only copper but also 40 milligrams of vitamin C, which already covers more than a third of the daily requirement. Thus, lychees also offer themselves as a vitamin C food! Ref.


In addition to 40 milligrams of vitamin C, 100 grams of lychees also contain the essential trace element copper as well as B vitamins and micronutrients.

FAQs: The most frequently asked questions

How do I process foods rich in vitamin C?
Since vitamin C is generally very sensitive to external influences, foods should not be stored for too long and should not be fried, baked, or cooked for too long.

In addition, vitamin C easily escapes through open cuts, which is why kiwis or lychees should not go into the lunch box already cut in the morning but should be freshly cut open.

Do I have a vitamin C deficiency?
Although it goes without saying that care should be taken to ensure that the body is supplied with all micronutrients and that one should also keep an eye on one’s vitamin C intake, there is no reason to panic.

In developed countries such as Germany, a vitamin C deficiency is rather unlikely in healthy people, because the requirement can easily be covered by a balanced diet.

As little as 10 milligrams a day protects against the “seafarer’s disease” scurvy, which in the past often caused teeth to fall out due to vitamin C deficiency during long stays at sea.

Although a deficiency is very unlikely, many people resort to dietary supplements with added vitamin C. Our Live Smarter blog reveals why this is not only unnecessary but can even be harmful.

Knowledge to go

Great vitamin C foods are close at hand! Local cabbage, in particular, provides sufficient amounts per 100 grams to cover the daily requirement. But fruit is also good to go. In summer, a handful of blackcurrants almost doubles the recommended daily intake; in winter, you can turn to oranges and lychees.

Especially important: Since vitamin C is very sensitive, foods should not be blanched too hot and only briefly so that the vitamin is not destroyed. In addition, open-cut edges lead to the loss of micronutrients.