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 Stock cubes and concentrates, especially chicken.

Check carefully as some brands


are fine and others aren't.
 Soft drinks - almost all of them, especially any fruit-flavoured ones. The only citric-
free canned soft drinks I've discovered are Rubicon brand, which come in flavours
like mango and guava.
 Jams and fruit preserves - including fruit yoghurts and desserts. Chutneys and
pickles are much less likely to contain it as they use vinegar (acetic acid) to preserve
and acidify intead.
 Canned tomatoes (NB tomatoes also contain a small amount of citric acid
naturally). If you want to use canned tomatoes try organic varieties, which may be
citric-free.
 Canned fruit
 Fruit flavour sweets - especially fizzy or sour ones. Citric acid is a major ingredient
in sherbet!
 Some ice creams - Only some brands contain it, and they're often the cheaper ones
which use vegetable fats. Citric acid in ice cream acts as an emulsifier to keep the
globules of fat separate - this isn't necessary with "real" ice cream since the milk and
cream are emulsified in and of themselves. As a rule, the more expensive the ice
cream the less likely it is to contain citric acid; it's such a terrible hardship to only be
able to eat very nice expensive ice cream ;-)
 Convenience foods: especially tomato-based sauces.
 Crisps: Only certain flavours, but often the more "complex" ones such as prawn
cocktail and cheese and onion. Check the packet as brands vary.
 Mayonnaise - Can be made with vinegar alone, but is

Foods that have Citric Acid Naturally:

 Citrus fruits: all of 'em. It's strongest in lemons and limes, which are up to 8%
citric acid by weight and can even be used to extract the chemical from; sour
oranges can also be used, so we assume that the more sour the fruit the higher the
citric acid content.
 Berries and soft fruit: Almost all berries with the possible exception of blueberries.
Certainly found in: strawberry, raspberry, gooseberry, cranberry, redcurrant,
blackcurrant. Redcurrants are one of the worst offenders - redcurrant juice can be
used to replace lemon juice in jam recipes!
 Exotic fruits: Pineapple, tamarind
 Stone fruits: Cherries (apparently only a small amount)
 Vegetables: Tomatoes, cayenne peppers (not the same as sweet peppers),
Jerusalem artichoke, lettuce (!)
 Wine - as a by-product of fermentation, and to improve clarity
 Cheese - Citric acid is used in the manufacturing process to help clot the milk faster.
It may be an integral part of making certain cheeses, especially mass-produced
mozzarella, but appears to be a by-product of industrialisation for most British
cheeses: the traditional method of adding bacterial culture to the milk and allowing it
to act slowly does not use added citric acid as far as I know. I don't, however, know
whether citric acid also appears naturally in cheese as a by-product of the bacterial
reactions. Conclusion: traditional (read: expensive) cheeses are likely to be safer,
but the jury's out overall.
 Sourdough breads eg. rye bread - as a by-product of fermentation.