Wash Veggies in the Washing Machine

When my harvest is in, I clean my carrots and cukes and any hard skinned veggie by rinsing out my washer and fill it with cold water and throw in my veggies. I let them soak then put them in the spin cycle and after the spin stops my veggies are totally clean. No soap is needed. Saves a lot of time if you have bushels of veggies to clean.


Source: I got this recipe from my mother in law 25 years ago.

By Rae (Raymonde) from NY

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By NY MOM (Guest Post)
February 19, 20090 found this helpful

I don't know how sanitary it is.

What about using a nylon scrubbie pad; ideally recycled from your veggie and onion bags to do the trick? And who wants to have to then again run your washing machine to clean out bits of food so your clothing isn't exposed to mold and bacteria from rotting food particles?

I believe using a recycled scrubbie and clean, bleached sink for health reasons, wins out over using your washing machine.

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By k w (Guest Post)
February 19, 20091 found this helpful

I have done this,even with collard greens,good idea,good luck.

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By Becky (Guest Post)
February 19, 20090 found this helpful

Doesn't that use an insane amount of water and electricity vs just giving it a once over in the colander?

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By Kay (Guest Post)
February 19, 20090 found this helpful

What a good idea. But I must tell you when I was young (many years ago) I was told to wash greens in the washing machine. Don't do it!!!! Nobody told me not to run them throught the spin cycle. What a mess.

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By jeannette1940 (Guest Post)
February 21, 20090 found this helpful

What on earth type of washing machine was she using 25 years ago? Was it one of those old sytle agitators? My washing machine would destroy the fruit or veg. during the first spin cycle..

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Gold Post Medal for All Time! 846 Posts
February 23, 20091 found this helpful

At first I thought you were crazy because all I could imagine were a small amount of veggies being beaten to death by the spin cycle ;-) LOL! But I went back and re-read 'bushels' and smiled thinking what a great idea because I remember how many bushels of 'hard skin' veggies my grama grew and how long it would take her to wash them all in the sink a few at a time :-o It took 'a lot' of water to do that because the water would get dirty so fast and especially with the carrots and potatoes! Your mom was a smart cookie ;-)


I don't think I'll ever have a garden again to try it myself but I think it's a great idea!

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By Lisa from Lena, WI. (Guest Post)
February 23, 20090 found this helpful

My mother would do this with her cucumbers. She would load them in the washer by 5-gallon bucketsful. Remember to use the gentle cycle :) Mom would remove them before all the water spun out so as not to beat them up too much. It also removes all the pickers.

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By Cathy S. (Guest Post)
February 24, 20090 found this helpful

Id be tempted to put the veggies in a plastic laundry basket and hose them off outside first to keep as much dirt and sand out of my washer as possible (seems things just arent made as sturdily any more - plastic parts instead of metal, etc.) This is definitely an interesting idea, though. Thanks so much!

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Bronze Feedback Medal for All Time! 145 Feedbacks
February 24, 20090 found this helpful

I've done this with mustard greens, and it works great. There really isn't a problem with bits of rotting food, because the washer takes anything that you don't get out of the bin down the drain.


Does it tear the greens up a bit? Yes, but that's just less to tear up.

Of course, you have to be sure that the washer is free of any cleaning products before you do this, but that hasn't been a problem either. I love this method as it saves a bundle of time!

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By Barb (Guest Post)
February 24, 20090 found this helpful

As a retired lawyer - I believe this practice will totally cancel any service agreements you have and any warranties in place.

The small print always says, "This agreement is in effect as long as the product is being used for the purpose it was intended."

Outside of LA, I doubt you could find a jury that would believe that when Whirpool designs its machines it believes they will be used to wash undies and a load of cucumbers. It just won't fly...



To make sure it's safe, PLEASE contact your County Extension Office.

Good Luck (I see a whole new series of "Veggie Tales" coming from this discussion!!)

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February 27, 20090 found this helpful

When washing bushels of cucumbers for pickles, I put them in my jacuzzi tub; works great.

I do, however, sanitize it first, running a cycle with dishwasher detergent, (gets rid of the oils/bath salts/soap scum), then I rinse it with a cycle of clear water with a few drops of bleach.

Yes it uses lots of water, but so does scrubbing them, one by one, then rinsing them, in the kitchen sink; this is just so much faster, and more effective at removing the fine sand on the cukes.

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December 28, 20120 found this helpful

I thought this was a great idea and decided to first clean / rinse out my brand new ( 3 weeks old!) front loader with a vegetable detergent followed by an additive rinse with baking soda. Meanwhile I decided to do some research and landed on this page.


I was all the more determined to carry out washing some potatoes cauliflower and brocolli, until I read the comments by the "lawyer" guy!
Visions of my wife and worse, the service engineer, admonishing me by showing me bits of broccoli that he teased out of the machine! Warranty void stamped on my forehead... and suddenly I got cold feet. I made a batch of water in a bucket with that veggie detergent and dunked the veggies in them. You know what, I finished cleaning before the machine could have. Still, once the warranty is over, I will definitely give it a try again. See you in 4 years.
- szar, India.

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January 3, 20130 found this helpful

I wash my greens in the washing machine using the slow or gentle cycle. The key is to put the leafy greens in a mesh bag which contains the bits and pieces.

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