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Romaine lettuce cut on a wooden cutting board with a chef's knife next to it.

How to Cut Romaine Lettuce for Salad

Get all of your romaine lettuce questions answered here! We will go over how to properly cut romaine lettuce for salads, how to prep the lettuce, and how to store it for the best, long lasting freshness and more.
Course Salad, Tutorial
Cuisine American
Diet Diabetic, Gluten Free, Kosher, Low Calorie, Low Fat, Low Lactose, Low Salt, Vegan, Vegetarian
Prep Time 5 minutes
Total Time 5 minutes
Servings 6 servings
Calories 18kcal
Cost $5


  • 1 head romaine lettuce


  • To prepare the lettuce, start by removing any outer brown leaves or leaves that may not look very fresh.
  • Cut the entire head of lettuce in half lengthwise, including right through the core at the bottom.
  • Now you will have two halves of the lettuce head. Set aside one half, allowing you to work with one half at a time.
  • Starting at the top, leafy green end of the head, begin chopping. Depending on what you are using the lettuce for, you can create larger chopped pieces, or smaller, shredded lettuce-sized pieces. Continue chopping in an even, consistent thickness.
  • Stop chopping right before reaching the white, tough ribbed core at the bottom. Repeat steps with the second half of the romaine head.
  • Discard the core end of the lettuce head, then transfer the chopped lettuce to a salad spinner or colander. Thoroughly rinse the chopped romaine under cool, clean water. Spin the chopped romaine in the salad spinner until a majority of the water has pooled in the bottom, leaving the lettuce crisp and dry.
  • Serve the chopped romaine with desired salad toppings and dressing. Then, enjoy!


  1. Contrary to what you may think, you do not need to wash the romaine lettuce first. I find the best way to wash leaf lettuce is after chopping because it is easier to wash the lettuce thoroughly once it is chopped into individual pieces. When the lettuce is still intact in a large head, it is difficult to wash the inner layers of the head of lettuce.
  2. To store whole lettuce: A head of lettuce that has not been rinsed or chopped will last in the refrigerator for up to 10 days.
    For optimal, long lasting freshness, wrap the romaine heads individually in a paper towel to absorb any moisture, and store in a plastic bag or an air-tight container.
    To store cut lettuce: Once your lettuce is chopped, it won't have as long of a storage life, but there are few things you can do to extend its freshness:
    Most importantly, prevent the romaine from sitting in any excess moisture by storing in a colander set in a bowl or directly in a salad spinner. Top with a clean, dry paper towel to absorb any extra moisture.


Calories: 18kcal | Carbohydrates: 3g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 1g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 8mg | Potassium: 258mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 9087IU | Vitamin C: 4mg | Calcium: 34mg | Iron: 1mg