Salad is healthy and light. So that you don’t have a sad head of lettuce looking at you very quickly after shopping, you will find out here how you can store lettuce and keep it fresh so that it always ends up crisp and fresh on your plate.
Due to its fine leaf structure, you should only buy fresh lettuce when you really need it. The leaves are not only delicate and light but also super sensitive. The sensitive little among the vegetables not only wither particularly quickly but also quickly loses its good ingredients. Therefore, when buying, pay attention to:
- regional and seasonal goods because of the shorter transport routes
- juicy, crisp, and uncrushed leaves
- a light stalk without brown spots
- a whole head as a better alternative to ready-made mixed salads
Tip: If your lettuce does have yellow leaves, it is best to remove them immediately before you store the rest so that more are not infected.
The best place for any type of salad is in the crisper drawer of your refrigerator. To keep it fresh, you should always wrap it in either a damp cloth, foil, or a plastic bag with small openings. As a roommate, your head of lettuce likes other vegetables best. Fruits such as apples or even tomatoes emit ethylene, which leads to faster ripening and, in the case of lettuce, to wilting and browning of the leaves. He also likes more space a lot better than being squashed.
Which salad do you like?
As a rule of thumb, you can remember that the softer and more tender the lettuce leaves are, the faster you need to eat them.
Keep lettuce fresh
With the classic salad, you should cut the cutting edge at the root with a cross and place it in a shallow bowl of water. Wrap the whole thing loosely in foil and then put it in the vegetable drawer. This way it stays fresh for several days.
Lollo rosso, oak leaf lettuce, radicchio
They’re not quite as sensitive. Simply wrapped in foil or in a plastic bag, these types of lettuce will keep in the vegetable compartment of your refrigerator for 3-4 days without any problems.
Store lettuce properly
The fine leaves collapse very quickly and become greasy, so lamb’s lettuce should be taken out of the vegetable compartment of the refrigerator and prepared as freshly as possible or wrapped in foil after a day at the latest.
Keep arugula fresh
So that you can store the cut lettuce leaves, it is best to place the stalks in a glass of water, which you then keep in the refrigerator for 1-2 days. Alternatively, wrap it in a damp cloth.
Iceberg lettuce, chicory, romaine
These types of lettuce have relatively strong leaves and are therefore less sensitive. They can be kept in the vegetable drawer for up to a week, either individually or whole in a damp cloth or plastic bag.
Store finished mixed salads
At first glance, the pre-cut colorful salad mixes from the supermarket seem to be super practical. But be careful: the cut surfaces offer bacteria perfect breeding ground. Therefore, only store such ready-made mixtures for a short time, wash them thoroughly before preparation, and keep your hands off them if the bag is already swollen.
With or without dressing
If you want to prepare the salad a few hours before actually eating it, it is advisable to always keep the spun-dried lettuce leaves separate from the salad dressing. Whether it’s a light vinaigrette made from vinegar and oil or with cream or yogurt, you should only mix the dressing into the salad just before serving, otherwise, everything will crumble quickly.
Tip: If you have leftover salad, put it in a freshness box in the fridge and spice it up the next day with a few fresh lettuce leaves.
Save wilted lettuce
As long as lettuce leaves don’t get moldy or rotten, you can save limp leaves with the following trick:
- fill a bowl with ice cold water (also with some ice cubes)
- add a tablespoon of sugar
- put the lettuce leaves in for about 10 minutes
Attention: Lamb’s lettuce ticks differently. You can get it from wilting to crunchy again with half an hour in a lukewarm water bath without sugar.
Are you looking for delicious salad recipes to further process your fresh salad? Then try our lamb’s lettuce with potato dressing and bacon and our colorful lettuce with a 5-minute dressing.