How to store lettuce and salad leaves forever

Well ok then, not FOREVER, but certainly longer than it lasts now.

I asked our lovely facebook event fans what their top three wasted foods were and salad leaves and lettuce were one of the top three offenders.

It took me back to the time when I was standing in the fruit and veg aisle of the supermarket listening to a couple of friends talking. (as you do).

These friends were rummaging through the pillow packs of mixed salad leaves. One remarked to the other that she could never finish the bags before they went off.

The other reassured her that it didn’t matter; she bought these knowing full well she would only eat half and the rest she threw away!

I figured if they bought one salad bag a week and threw away half, they were chucking £36 a year in the bin; and don’t get me started on the environmental impact of all that embedded energy from water, fertilisers, transportation and packaging…

You’ll be delighted to hear that today I’m going to share one tiny tip that will help you reduce salad waste. Yes, I can help you keep those pesky salad leaves fresher for longer, which means your budget will stretch further AND you can get a high five from Mother Nature for doing your bit.

Here goes then.

Take a good look at the salad leaves in this photo and have a guess how old they are:

how to store lettuce to reduce food wasteThey look pretty fresh right? Maybe two or three days old?

Well my friends, these are TEN days old!

Did I lovingly hug my lettuce, thus giving it a reason to live? Or have I just found the secret to eternal youth?

Alas not; so I won’t be making my fortune just yet.

No, I simply separated the leaves when I got them home and put them into a container of water. That container was kept in the fridge and hey guess what? No wilting salad, even after TEN DAYS!

So there you have the secret to never having to pull out green, slimy, smelly lettuce leaves from the back of the salad crisper again.

How do you keep salad leaves fresh?

Posted in

Rachelle Strauss


  1. Nancy on September 1, 2013 at 3:35 pm

    We keep our salad leaves fresh by growing our own, for what you pay for 1 bag of cut leaves you can buy a packet of mixed leave seeds that will give you a crop almost all of the year by sowing every 2 weeks…

  2. […] Strauss of My Zero Waste suggests separating your lettuce leaves and putting them in a bowl of water, which is then stored in the […]

  3. Kicia on April 25, 2016 at 9:25 am

    Brilliant advice, and one I had no idea about!
    If you want you can share some of mine, I have some experience in keeping food fresh for longer too, and your post has been an inspiration for this:

  4. […] The water keeps the lettuce from drying out and spoiling. […]

  5. Vee Scott on August 21, 2019 at 8:45 am

    How much water?

    • Rachelle Strauss on August 21, 2019 at 12:45 pm

      It doesn’t really matter, and it depends on the size of your container. Just lie the leaves in the container and let them float on an inch or so of water 🙂

  6. […] The water keeps the lettuce from drying out and spoiling. […]

Leave a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.