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Why is green leaf lettuce bitter?

In case you are someone who is unfamiliar with all the types of lettuce (lol) green leaf lettuce is not romaine or iceberg which are the two most common types youd get in a restaurant salad.
I bought some from Whole Foods to make a simple salad and it has a bitter characteristic (like fresh spinach) and I'm just wondering what causes that. I'm guessing its a nutrient or natural chemical in the plant. What do you think?

Answer Question

Asked by AmandaI1021 at 3:09 PM on Jan. 5, 2010 in Food & Drink

Level 5 (91 Credits)
Answers (4)
  • As a gardener I can tell you, from my experience, it has to do with the nutrients in the soil, the amount of water it gets while growing, and the pH balance of the soil. Might also have to do with the age of the plant when the leaves were harvested. The older the plant, the more bitter it tends to taste.

    Answer by michiganmom116 at 6:53 PM on Jan. 5, 2010

  • Don't know the answer to that, but I just bought a bag of romaine mixed with that purple stuff (can't remember the name) and that purple stuff is awful bitter! I just try to spear a bunch of green along with one piece of purple when I eat a bite!

    Answer by PSMother at 6:53 PM on Jan. 5, 2010

  • 2 reasons
    lack of lime in the soil and not enough water. it'll do the same with cucumbers.

    Answer by jewjewbee at 8:50 AM on Jan. 6, 2010

  • Some lettuces, like arugala, are bitter. Baby romaine (a mix of green and purple) is a staple at our house.

    Answer by rkoloms at 8:55 AM on Jan. 6, 2010

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