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Old 06-27-2019, 07:17 PM   #1
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Question Non packaged lettuce is better/healthier then packaged lettuce?

Hi, just want to know, is non packaged lettuce better or more healthy then packaged lettuce? Does that even matter? what are all the differences between packaged lettuce and non packed lettuce? if there really is not a difference, I want to save a few bucks and by the cheapest lettuce in the store witch I usually buy. Its packaged lettuce from ice berg company I think. On the net though I have seen that people are saying packaged lettuce is more prone to get contaminated or people getting sick from the food somehow so I am thinking it may be worth it to buy the non packaged lettuce in the store instaid.

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Old 06-27-2019, 07:43 PM   #2
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When you write "packaged lettuce", do you mean loose lettuce leaves and chunks?
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Old 06-27-2019, 09:23 PM   #3
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When you write "packaged lettuce", do you mean loose lettuce leaves and chunks?

I mean any lettuce that is in a package at the store
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Old 06-27-2019, 09:28 PM   #4
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All lettuce starts out as unpackaged. Some gets further processing; cutting, washing, bagging. I'd guess the closer the lettuce is to natural, the better.
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Old 06-27-2019, 09:29 PM   #5
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I mean any lettuce that is in a package at the store
No, I wouldn't say that any packaged lettuce was less healthy. I might have some concerns with lettuce that is washed in something that will keep it "fresh" longer, or as Andy described it, processed more. Often, the packaging is just to keep the outside leaves of the lettuce from breaking or falling off.
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Old 06-27-2019, 09:56 PM   #6
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Where I live, all iceberg lettuce is in a plastic shrink wrap. I can get Romain lettuce loose.

I really don't think it matters.

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Old 06-28-2019, 04:27 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by discusscookingnewbie View Post
Hi, just want to know, is non packaged lettuce better or more healthy then packaged lettuce? Does that even matter? what are all the differences between packaged lettuce and non packed lettuce? if there really is not a difference, I want to save a few bucks and by the cheapest lettuce in the store witch I usually buy. Its packaged lettuce from ice berg company I think. On the net though I have seen that people are saying packaged lettuce is more prone to get contaminated or people getting sick from the food somehow so I am thinking it may be worth it to buy the non packaged lettuce in the store instaid.
  1. Where I shop bagged lettuce and greens are always more expensive by weight.
  2. Chopping, separating leaves, and bagging, whether by human or robot, are all processes that present the possibility of contamination.
  3. I don't remember a lettuce recall due to E-coli contamination that wasn't a bagged product.
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Old 06-28-2019, 05:52 AM   #8
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You still aren't being clear as to whether you mean packages of cut up lettuce or whole heads in a package. Where I shop the whole heads are sold unpackaged, whereas the cut up pieces are sold in packages.

Lettuce stays fresh a lot longer if the leaves remain attached. I buy a head of lettuce and only break off leaves as required, and return the remainder in the plastic bag to the crisper.

Iceberg lettuce has far less nutritional value than other types of lettuce, such as leaf or romaine.

The romaine lettuce recall a few months ago applied to all romaine grown in a particular region, and included whole heads not in packages.
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Old 06-28-2019, 06:35 AM   #9
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I prefered packaged lettuce, which is just ready to cook and may be stored for a longer time than unpacked lettuce.
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Old 06-28-2019, 06:44 AM   #10
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I meant to add that whether you buy the whole head or cut/torn bagged leaves, in my opinion, a salad spinner for "washing and drying" is a worthwhile investment.
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Old 06-28-2019, 06:46 AM   #11
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My buddy raises and breeds tortoises. He does not feed them iceberg lettuce as it has no nutritional value or very little.

We buy loose as well as packaged lettuce. I don't believe one is better than the other. We also buy loose vegetables.
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Old 06-28-2019, 11:08 AM   #12
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I buy the least handled, the least packaged available lettuces. The more variety the better. Less of a chance of contamination, less waste. While it takes longer to wash and bag at home, each time we shop, we soak the lettuces, unbind them if they are bound, and stuff them in reusable zip lock bags, draining out the water, filling up the produce drawers in the refrigerator.


Greens, get soaked, torn off the stems, put in a kettle with a little water, cooked down to 1/6th their bulk, then refrigerated. 3 large bundles of kale cooked down to 6 cups.
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Old 06-28-2019, 11:27 AM   #13
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I prefered packaged lettuce, which is just ready to cook and may be stored for a longer time than unpacked lettuce.
You cook lettuce?
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Old 06-28-2019, 01:13 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kenmiller View Post
I prefered packaged lettuce, which is just ready to cook and may be stored for a longer time than unpacked lettuce.
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Originally Posted by jennyema View Post
You cook lettuce?
I was wondering about that too.
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Old 06-28-2019, 10:43 PM   #15
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I was at a Asian restaurant in Boston ( kind of a fusion of many Asian cuisines) and I ordered the wonton soup. When I got the soup, I fished around to see what was in it, and sure enough there were a few leaves of Iceberg lettuce.

The first thing that came to my mind was, they probably grabbed a salad bowl by mistake, and just souped it up, not realizing there was lettuce in it.

Not wanting any food to go to waste, I ate the lettuce, and although it didn't add much ( or none at all) flavor to the soup, it had a nice crunch to it, even after being cooked.

The following year we returned to the same restaurant, and I got the wonton soup again, and sure enough, more lettuce in the soup. ( ive now been back. to that restaurant at least 5 years in row, and have confirmed that lettuce is the intended ingredient .

I now make the soup at home, and add, what else?? Lerttuce . I like the crunchiness. But at home, I refer to it as " Lettuce soup".

I also was at the Waldorf Astoria in NYC and had grilled romaine lettuce with a reduced balsamic vinaigrette , and it was delicious.

Although probably not considered a lettuce, I love escarole fried up with garlic, oil, salt.
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Old 06-28-2019, 11:50 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by larry_stewart View Post
I was at a Asian restaurant in Boston ( kind of a fusion of many Asian cuisines) and I ordered the wonton soup. When I got the soup, I fished around to see what was in it, and sure enough there were a few leaves of Iceberg lettuce.

The first thing that came to my mind was, they probably grabbed a salad bowl by mistake, and just souped it up, not realizing there was lettuce in it.

Not wanting any food to go to waste, I ate the lettuce, and although it didn't add much ( or none at all) flavor to the soup, it had a nice crunch to it, even after being cooked.

The following year we returned to the same restaurant, and I got the wonton soup again, and sure enough, more lettuce in the soup. ( ive now been back. to that restaurant at least 5 years in row, and have confirmed that lettuce is the intended ingredient .

I now make the soup at home, and add, what else?? Lerttuce . I like the crunchiness. But at home, I refer to it as " Lettuce soup".

I also was at the Waldorf Astoria in NYC and had grilled romaine lettuce with a reduced balsamic vinaigrette , and it was delicious.

Although probably not considered a lettuce, I love escarole fried up with garlic, oil, salt.
Grilled romaine lettuce is good. That little bit of char adds some good flavor. You have to do it hot and fast. It retains its refreshing crunch, but takes on the grilled flavor.

A good friend of mine worked at a high end restaurant in college, and he introduced me to grilled romaine lettuce.

CD
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Old 06-29-2019, 02:08 AM   #17
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cd, we've done grilled romaine a couple of times. Good stuff. I've topped it with crisp bacon bits and chopped tomato, making basically a light vinaigrette dressing using some of the bacon drippings for the oil.

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I was at a Asian restaurant in Boston ( kind of a fusion of many Asian cuisines) and I ordered the wonton soup. When I got the soup, I fished around to see what was in it, and sure enough there were a few leaves of Iceberg lettuce...
I've made a soup that includes romaine for the past several winters. Unlike you, larry, I can't eat soup all year long. It's "cold weather" food to me - and this soup will warm you up. I bet it would be good with veggie stock instead of chicken.

Chickpea and Romaine Soup with Golden Vermicelli
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Old 06-29-2019, 02:50 PM   #18
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cd, we've done grilled romaine a couple of times. Good stuff. I've topped it with crisp bacon bits and chopped tomato, making basically a light vinaigrette dressing using some of the bacon drippings for the oil.


I've made a soup that includes romaine for the past several winters. Unlike you, larry, I can't eat soup all year long. It's "cold weather" food to me - and this soup will warm you up. I bet it would be good with veggie stock instead of chicken.

Chickpea and Romaine Soup with Golden Vermicelli
Ill definitely give it a go. I an grow romaine indoors in my aquaponic system all year longs it will be a nice way to still use fresh grown veggies in the winter.

And yes !! I love soup all year long., any time, any day. Infact, Im getting ready to head over to the Chinese restaurant in a bit for my favorite, Hot and Sour Soup. its 96 Degrees here in Philly right now, and all I can think about is how much Im going to enjoy that soup.
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Old 06-29-2019, 03:30 PM   #19
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cd, we've done grilled romaine a couple of times. Good stuff. I've topped it with crisp bacon bits and chopped tomato, making basically a light vinaigrette dressing using some of the bacon drippings for the oil.


I've made a soup that includes romaine for the past several winters. Unlike you, larry, I can't eat soup all year long. It's "cold weather" food to me - and this soup will warm you up. I bet it would be good with veggie stock instead of chicken.

Chickpea and Romaine Soup with Golden Vermicelli
We love grilled romaine. The first time I saw it was on Rachael Ray's Food Network show at least 10 years ago. She put grilled tuna with bleu cheese dressing on it. DH likes it that way, but I'm a vinaigrette lover, so I use Italian dressing made with red wine vinegar instead. Good stuff
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Old 06-29-2019, 10:58 PM   #20
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Ill definitely give it a go. I an grow romaine indoors in my aquaponic system all year longs it will be a nice way to still use fresh grown veggies in the winter.

And yes !! I love soup all year long., any time, any day. Infact, Im getting ready to head over to the Chinese restaurant in a bit for my favorite, Hot and Sour Soup. its 96 Degrees here in Philly right now, and all I can think about is how much Im going to enjoy that soup.
I also grow lettuce in my hydroponics in the off season (along with all those herbs), though I grow leaf lettuce, which, like many of the other greens and herbs is "cut and come again". I began harvesting 5 weeks after planting seeds, and kept harvesting until just after 3 months later. Bok choy and mizuna are two other greens I grow down there in the off season.

I have never tried cooking lettuce, however. I guess I've always had some other, more flavorful greens to put in a soup, or whatever was being cooked with greens. I never understood why lettuce has become so popular in China, but then I realized that it is because it is incredibly cheap to produce, the same reason it has been so popular here! It has slowly replaced much of their more nutritious greens in the last few decades - less labor intensive, and simply cheaper. I don't think is was a flavor preference!
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