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Leafy Vegetables

Leafy Vegetables are vegetables whose leaves we eat.

This is a smaller category than vegetables with leaves, because pretty much everything we call a vegetable (with the obvious exception of mushrooms) has leaves at some point even if they're trimmed off before we see them.

We don't eat the leaves off of sweet corn, or potatoes, but we do of spinach. That makes spinach a Leafy Vegetable.

Other examples of Leafy Vegetables are Bok Choy, Cabbage, Chicory, Cress, Endive, Escarole, Lettuce and Mache.

Some people class celery as a Leafy Vegetable, but you could argue that even though the leaves are good and should be used in cooking, most of the leaves are trimmed off at the store because the primary purpose in buying celery is to eat the stalk.

Leafy Vegetables are often just called "greens", though some people reserve the word "greens" for Leafy Vegetables that get cooked, as opposed to eaten raw. Leafy Vegetables that get cooked are often called "Pot Herbs." The word "greens" though is broader than "leafy vegetables", as it includes the leafy tops of dual-use vegetables such as beets normally classed as root vegetables as they are primarily grown for their root.

Dark Green Leafy Vegetables

Dark Green Leafy Vegetables

Dark Green Leafy Vegetables
© Denzil Green

Leafy Vegetables are always green (except for those that have been blanched, such as Belgian Endive), but some are distinguished further by being called "Dark Green Leafy Vegetables."

The darker the leaf, the more Vitamin A, Vitamin C, and calcium the leaves will have.

As well, the darker the leaf, the more "vigorous" the taste, which is why it's more of a battle to get people to eat them.

Arugula, Chicory, Collard Greens, Dandelions, Kale, Mustard Greens, Spinach and Swiss Chard are Dark Green Leafy Vegetables.

See also:

Leafy Vegetables

Agave; Artichokes; Belgian Endive; Branch Lettuce; Cabbage; Dandelion; Dark Green Leafy Vegetables; Endive; Enset; Frisée; Horseradish Tree; Lamb's Quarters; Leafy Vegetables; Lettuce; Lotus; Mesclun Mix; Mizuna; Pak Wan; Potherbs; Pumpkin Leaves

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Also called:

Grüngemüse (German)


Oulton, Randal. "Leafy Vegetables." CooksInfo.com. Published 15 January 2004; revised 06 December 2005. Web. Accessed 03/19/2018. <http://www.cooksinfo.com/leafy-vegetables>.

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