12 Leafy Greens: A Quick Guide

When it comes to leafy greens you have many choices. We highlight 12 of the most commonly used leafy greens. What’s the difference in calories for arugula vs. spinach? Which leafy greens have a peppery taste? Which leafy greens are a good source of potassium? What leafy green is often used in Mediterranean cooking? Read below to find the answers to these questions and more.

 

Leafy Green Benefits

Arugula

  • has a peppery taste
  • used with salads
  • source of potassium
  • 3 calories per serving
  • serving size is ½ cup

Beet Greens

  • 39 calories per serving (boiled)
  • serving size is 1 cup
  • good source of vitamins A and C
  • sauté, eat in a salad or by themselves
  • the greens contain more nutrients than the root

Collards (Collard Greens)

  • use as a wrap (instead of tortilla or bread)
  • great to add to a protein dish
  • often used in Southern-style cooking
  • 11 calories per serving
  • serving size is ½ cup

Dandelion

  • 25 calories per serving
  • serving size is 1 cup
  • good source of Vitamins A, C, E, K, B6, Thiamin, Riboflavin, Calcium, Iron, Potassium
  • use the root, flower, and/or the leaf
  • stir fry with onions, red pepper, and garlic cloves

Endive

  • bitter tasting
  • use in a salad or as a side dish
  • 4 calories per serving
  • serving size is ½ cup

Kale

  • Has a ruffled edge
  • Comes in a variety of colors
  • 33 calories per serving
  • serving size is 1 cup

Mustard Greens

  • red and green leaf varieties available
  • has a peppery taste
  • when you cook it you’ll get the smell of mustard
  • 15 calories per serving
  • serving size is 1 cup

Romaine

  • crispier than many leafy greens
  • 8 calories per serving
  • serving size is 1 cup
  • good source of dietary fiber, vitamins A, C, K, Thiamin, Folate, Iron, Potassium and Manganese

Spinach

  • good source of
  • 7 calories per serving
  • serving size is 1 cup
  • 987% of DV for vitamin K
  • good source of antioxidants

Swiss Chard

  • taste often compared to beets
  • 7 calories per serving
  • serving size is 1 cup
  • sauté with parmesan cheese and lemon
  • common in Mediterranean cooking

Turnip Greens

  • good source of vitamin A, vitamin C, and vitamin K
  • often more tender than other leafy greens
  • 29 calories per serving
  • serving size is 1 cup
  • often eaten boiled

Watercress

  • has a peppery taste
  • great addition to a salad
  • 4 calories per serving
  • serving size is 1 cup

Additional Tips

  • The darker the healthier – that means that read leaf is a little healthier than green
  • The serving size for leafy greens is between one cup (about the size of half a baseball) and half a cup

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