The Dirty Dozen And The Clean Fifteen- What To Buy Organic


Choosing organic when buying produce is pretty important. USDA certified organic produce means that the food has not been treated with pesticides, fertilizers, GMO’s, antibiotics or hormones. More and more research has been coming out showing how dangerous some of the commonly used pesticides can be for our health and planet. Pesticides and fertilizer pollute our drinking water and upset the balance of the ecosystem. GMO foods have been shown to cause an increase in food sensitivities and digestive upset.

Organic produce is grown in soil that is richer in minerals so you end up with a higher nutrient content in your food plus it’s better for our environment and helps support local farmers.

But since organic farming is more labor intensive and expensive for farmers, the produce tends to cost more than non organic varieties. Sometimes we simply can’t afford to buy everything organic. That’s where this list comes in handy since there are some veggies and fruits that we absolutely should buy organic and others that are less important.

The Dirty Dozen- these should always be bought organic

  • apples
  • celery
  • cherry tomatoes
  • cucumbers
  • grapes
  • bell peppers
  • nectarines
  • peaches
  • potatoes
  • spinach
  • strawberries
  • hot peppers


The Clean Fifteen- these don’t need to always be organic

  • asparagus
  • avocados
  • cabbage
  • cantaloupe
  • eggplant
  • grapefruit
  • kiwi
  • mangoes
  • mushrooms
  • onions
  • papaya
  • pineapple
  • corn
  • peas
  • sweet potatoes


If you are juicing or making smoothies, the general rule is to buy organic since you are going to eat the skin of the fruit or vegetable. Those with thicker skins that you peel away don’t always need to be organic.

And don’t forget organic frozen fruits and veggies, those are always good to keep on hand!

6 thoughts on “The Dirty Dozen And The Clean Fifteen- What To Buy Organic

  1. Now this is a helpful post for me. I’m always trying to buy more fresh produce, and organic when and where possible, but never know where to start. I’ll be starting with that top list then. Thanks for the information.

    Would you be interested in sharing your thoughts and posts with our community of health, fitness and nutrition enthusiasts over at “The Active You”? We’d love to hear what you have to say. You can check us out over at!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’m so glad this post was helpful for you! It was always a challenge for me too trying to figure out what to buy organic when you’re on a budget.
      I’d be happy to share my posts with your community. I sent a request to join!

      Liked by 1 person

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