Salad Greens are those veggies which are consumed raw in salads and are leafy green in nature. They often are very nutritious and add color to the monotonous salads making them more appealing and attractive.
These greens are generally rich in vitamins and potassium. There are various types of salad greens available in the market.
Not all green leafy vegetables are called salad greens as they cannot be consumed raw due to their bitter taste or other reasons. Only those leafy veggies which can be consumed raw are called Salad Greens.
Types of Salad Greens
Types of salad greens are:
This leafy green vegetable has tender leaves which are blackish green in color. They have a mild peppery taste with a touch of mustard and slight bitterness to it.
2) Baby Kale
The leaves of kale usually range from dark green to bluish purple. It has a mild taste which is somewhat similar to cabbage.
3) Baby Spinach
Spinach leaves which have not yet matured fully are often consumed and have a mild flavor. Their oblong leaves are adorable to look at.
It is also called Bibb and Boston lettuce. It has a mild and sweet taste. The leaves are wrinkled and almost buttery in texture.
Cabbage can be red or green. Red cabbage is often called Purple cabbage. The leaves of this cabbage are crispy and crunchy. They have a robust taste and are sometimes bitter too.
Large leaves of this vegetable are dark green. These wrinkled leaves are similar in taste to beets. Their stalk is also edible and tastes like celery.
7) Dandelion Greens
These leaves are tender and flat. The edges of this leafy plant often have jagged edges. They are often bitter but nutritious.
8) Edible Flowers
Some flowers are edible like roses and can be added to salads.
The endives have smooth and tender leaves. They have a mild taste which can be bitter at times.
Leaves of Escarole are wide and frilly. Escaroles have a mild taste, and the leaves are frilly and attractive.
These slightly peppered leaves with a nutty flavor are usually green in color. At times they are red too.
12) Green Mustard
There many further types of green mustard with varied leaf shapes available. Their taste ranges from mild to intense.
13) Iceberg Lettuce
Iceberg lettuce has crispy and tender leaves. They are usually pale green. They are mild to taste and have a crunchy flavor to them.
14) Lambs Lettuce
It has smooth and textured leaves which are very succulent and delicately flavored.
15) Leaf Lettuce
This lettuce has dark green leaves with red tips. The leaves are ruffled and tender in texture.
When more than one tender green leafy vegetables are mixed and presented in a salad, they are called mesclun. It usually tastes bitter or peppery.
Mizuna usually has a spicy, piquant flavor which is not appreciated by many.
These smooth edged leaves are spicy to eat.
19) Pea Shoots
The pea shoots are tender tips of the young pea plant. They are sweet in flavor and often succulent.
The radicchios have red-white leaves which are crispy in texture. They usually have a peppery taste which can be bitter at times.
These have long and green leaves with crunchy veins. They have a succulent and bitter taste.
22) Red Chard
These leaves are often green and have red veins. Their flavor is like beetroot and is great for warm salads.
Same as Arugula. It’s just a synonym.
24) Red Mustard
These leaves have mustard-like flavor. The leaves are small and red on the upper surface.
25) Tat Soi
This leafy green is also called baby bok choi or spoon cabbage due to the shape of their leaves. They have a peppery flavor.
They have small leaves which are dark green and have long stems too. They have a bold peppery taste.
27) Wild Rocket
It has thin leaves which are intensely spicy in flavor.
Health Benefits of Salad Greens
These salad greens are essential for your body. They have immense benefits on our body. Some of them are:
1) They are naturally rich in fiber which in turn helps to reduce cholesterol, maintains our digestive system, helps in controlling blood sugar and most of all it helps in recurrence of certain types of cancer.
2) It provides us with healthy fats which are essential for our body.
3) Salad greens provide us with calcium which helps in maintaining healthy bones.
4) The carotenoids help in taking care of light intensity and protect you from the formations of free radicals.
5) The high – water levels of these compounds help in keeping you hydrated and adds a glow to your skin.
6) The vitamins in the greens help in maintaining your eyes and eyesight healthy.
7) They help in maintaining good muscle health.
8) These reduce the risk of diabetes and help in maintaining a healthy heart.
9) Watercress, in particular, is known to protect women of all ages from the risk of breast cancer.
It has been believed since primitive times that greens are the best medicines for all our body ailments. Your parents must have forced you to consume greens right from your adolescence years as they help in the healthy development of your body and their muscles.
Micheal Pollan had once stated, “Came from a plant, eat it and made in a plant, don’t eat it.” This clearly shows how important these veggies are in our diet. They not only make you look beautiful but also aid in making all your organs in the perfect health condition.
Lastly, let’s end on a beautiful note that no diet will ever help you as much as a healthy and a balanced diet and there is no other way to make your diet healthy but, adding greens to it.
So, just make sure you continue your consumption of salad and greens in all diet forms that you are following, to make sure you stay healthy and disease free and live a long life.