Get to Know Leafy Salad Greens

My Garden Life
May 20, 2020
Table of Contents

Salad bars with nothing on them but romaine and cottage cheese have gone the way of discos and pet rocks. Today, there are a huge variety of salad greens (and reds and purples) you can grow yourself or find at the farmer’s market. Here are 16 leafy salad ingredients that represent a wide range of tastes, textures and nutritional profiles. Mix and match to put together a custom bowl that is uniquely you.

Leaf lettuce

Leaf Lettuce

Consistent crisp flavor across many different types.

Green, red, flat and ruffled varieties.

Perfect base for all sorts of dressings.

Find more information here.

head of iceberg lettuce

Head Lettuce

Includes iceberg and butterhead varieties.

Iceberg lettuces have very crisp leaves and tight heads.

Holds up to heavy, creamy dressings.

Find more information here.

head of romaine lettuce

Romaine Lettuce

Crisp, dark green leaf lettuce.

Primary ingredient in classic Caesar salad.

Leaves can be served chopped or whole.

Find more information here.

head of bibb lettuce

Bibb Lettuce

Soft, sweet leaves.

Mini bibb lettuce heads make excellent single servings.

Pairs best with lighter dressings like vinaigrettes.

Find more information here.

basket of mizuna leaves

Mizuna

Asian green eaten raw or cooked.

Mild taste pairs well with arugula and spinach.

Often found in baby lettuce mixes.

Find more information here.

bowl of watercress leaves

Watercress

Spicy flavor.

Vitamin packed, including hard-to-get vitamin K.

Adds zest to any lettuce mix.

Find more information here.

colander of endive

Endive

Frilly leaves traditional in French salads.

Pleasantly bitter taste good with sweet dressings.

Often confused with escarole, which has flatter leaves.

Find more information here.

wooden bowl filled with arugula leaves

Arugula

In the same family as broccoli and kale.

Peppery, mustard taste.

Holds up well with robust vinaigrette.

Find more information here.

dish of fresh spinach

Spinach

Crunchy, sweet taste especially when harvested in colder months.

Great source of iron and vitamins C and A.

Pairs well with balsamic vinegar-based dressings.

Find more information here.

fresh kale leaves on table

Kale

Cabbage cultivar with curly or flat leaves.

Can be eaten cooked or raw.

Packed with essential vitamins and minerals.

Find more information here.

Fresh chicory leaves on a table

Chicory

A type of endive sometimes referred to as frisee.

Tart taste and frilly light green leaves.

Traditionally served with bacon and vinaigrette, oftentimes warm.

Find more information here.

Fresh heads of escarole

Escarole

Flat, broad leaves and a mildly bitter taste.

Inner leaves better for salads.

Outer leaves can be used in stir fries and braises.

Find more information here.

Small heads of Radicchio on table

Radicchio

Resembles tiny red cabbages, but is more closely related to chicory.

Spicy taste adds punch to mixed green salads.

Used often, cooked or raw, in Italian cuisine.

Find more information here.

Fresh French sorrel plant

French Sorrel

Herb with lettuce-like leaves suitable for salads.

Tangy taste with hints of lemon.

Use in mixed salads or cooked in soups and sauces.

Find more information here.

Fresh leaves of Komatsuna

Komatsuna

Asian green similar in appearance and taste to spinach.

Best in salads when in its baby form.

Great non-dairy source of calcium.

Find more information here.

Fresh perilla leaves on table

Vietnamese Perilla

Asian herb with green and purple varieties.

Member of the mint family with a slightly minty taste.

Acid dressings balance sweet flavor.

Find more information here.

The spring garden is a great place to grow many of the cool-weather lettuces. Did you know you can also harvest delicious greens into the winter? Learn more in our article about fall friendly crops that extend the harvest season.

0 Comments

Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Related Posts

Preserving Your Summer Harvest

Preserving Your Summer Harvest

Learn more about the variety of ways homegrown fruits and vegetables can be preserved for use long after the harvest season has ended.
Vegetable Garden Companion Plants

Vegetable Garden Companion Plants

Find out which vegetable companion plants can help each other grow better and which can cause harm when planted nearby.
Plant a Salsa Garden

Plant a Salsa Garden

Plant a salsa garden in a garden bed or containers and you'll have the basics on-hand to prepare and eat your favorite recipe on a regular basis.

Related Posts

Vegetable Choices for Cold Frames

Vegetable Choices for Cold Frames

All About Homegrown Vegetables, Fruits, and Berries

All About Homegrown Vegetables, Fruits, and Berries

Plant a Salsa Garden

Plant a Salsa Garden

frost map with dates

Frost Map with Dates

USDA zone finder with zip code search and maps

USDA Zone Finder

plant library

Plant Library

Save plants to your personal library

Join My Garden Club to access more features

Already a member?
Log in now

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This

Share this post with your friends!