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How to Prep a Head of Lettuce #DIY

Whether you’ve decided lettuce is a healthy choice for lunch or just like the possibilities a head of lettuce offers, this article will show you how to prep a head of lettuce.

How To Cut Iceberg Lettuce

Cutting a head of lettuce isn’t hard. All you need is a head of lettuce, a cutting board, and a sharp knife. With these three items and a few minutes of your time, you can prep the lettuce for a salad, hamburgers, sandwiches, etc.
We recommend washing the head of lettuce first, but it’s up to you.

how to prep lettuce for a Crowd in Advance

It’s BBQ season- and I prep a LOT of lettuce heads for salads and hamburgers/sandwiches etc… (and I love to get as much done “in advance” as possible).

Chopping or Shredding Iceberg Lettuce

First, decide if you want to chop the lettuce or shred the lettuce.


Lettuce that is chopped usually offers wider strips sliced first and then turning the head of lettuce 90-degrees and slicing in the opposite direction to create square chops of lettuce.


Shredded lettuce offers narrower pieces of lettuce by slicing closely to the previous cut in the head.

Remove a few of the outer leaves on the head of the lettuce.

The lettuce head may have damaged leaves due to transport, picking, and handling. These leaves are typically yellow or may have brown spots. Remove these before beginning. This will ensure an a nice presentation.

Use a plastic knife so lettuce doesn't turn brown

Use a plastic knife to help avoid the “browning” of your lettuce leaves.

remove the core

Remove the base and core.

After the lettuce has been washed, place the lettuce head on the cutting board and, using a sharp knife cut off the knob or the core.
Keep the knife as close to the core as possible to prevent waste.
This will be a deep cut into the head.
Once you have the core out, discard it.

Slice the lettuce head in half

Now, we can begin cutting the lettuce head for serving.

Using a butcher knife, slice the head in half. 

You can set the head on the core area you just worked on to give it a flatter edge for stability, then slice all the way through.

cut lettuce head into quarters

Cut the lettuce into quarters 
Cutting in quarters gives smaller pieces which makes eating the lettuce easier.

Turn your half and cut again to make a quarter.

To shred, you’ll set take the quarter and, with the flat side down, make thin cuts across the head, starting left to right.
Slices should be thin and as close together as possible, so it is “shredded” rather than “chopped.”
Repeat this process with the remaining lettuce quarters.

place in container

Separate the leafy parts from the veiny/crunchy parts.

chop the crunch parts

Chop the crunchy parts for salads/tacos etc.

 Fill each Tupperware (or in this case- cheapo Ziploc container) with water to cover and "burp" containers to remove air.

Store your lettuce in the fridge for up to 3 days.

Cut lettuce for salad can be stored in an airtight container or zip-typed bag in the refrigerator for up to three days.

To keep from turning brown quickly.

Fill each Tupperware (or in this case- cheapo Ziploc container) with water to cover and “burp” containers to remove air.  The water and removal of air will extend the life of your lettuce and help avoid browning… Keep refrigerated.

lettuce on cutting board with knife

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