How do I Remove the Wax Coating From an Orange?

by M.T. Wroblewski

In addition to teeming with vitamin C, oranges are an abundant source of calcium, potassium and vitamin D. Oranges are made even more attractive with a waxy sheen. Producers sometimes apply a coat of wax to oranges and other citrus fruit to provide a barrier against moisture loss. Once you arrive home, you can remove the wax coating in a few simple steps.

Place the oranges in a colander, but don’t stack them on top of each other. Rinse the oranges under hot water from your faucet or pour boiling water over them from a tea kettle. Remove the wax from a large bag of oranges in batches.

Clean the bristles of a stiff vegetable brush – such as one you use for scrubbing potatoes – with hot water and a little bit of baking soda. Rinse the bristles with hot water.

Scrub one orange at a time with the vegetable brush. Be sure to cover the entire surface of the orange.

Attack a thick or stubborn wax with baking soda and water. Pour ½ tablespoon of baking soda into four cups of water in a bowl and stir. Dip the vegetable brush into the solution then scrub the orange.

Rinse the orange with cool water. Let it dry on a paper towel before peeling it or placing it in a fruit bowl.

Items you will need

  • Colander
  • Stiff vegetable brush
  • Baking soda
  • Bowl
  • Paper towels


  • Avoid using a brush or scrubber that you reserve for cleaning dishes. Your goal is to avoid getting soap residue on the orange, especially after taking the time to remove the wax.

About the Author

With education, health care and small business marketing as her core interests, M.T. Wroblewski has penned pieces for Woman's Day, Family Circle, Ladies Home Journal and many newspapers and magazines. She holds a master's degree in journalism from Northern Illinois University.

Photo Credits

  • Visage/Stockbyte/Getty Images