noun \ˈle-təs\

: a plant that has large leaves that are eaten especially in salads

Full Definition of LETTUCE

:  any of a genus (Lactuca) of composite plants; especially :  a common garden vegetable (L. sativa) whose succulent leaves are used especially in salads

Examples of LETTUCE

  1. I like a little lettuce and tomato on my sandwiches.

Origin of LETTUCE

Middle English letuse, from Anglo-French letuse, probably from plural of letue lettuce plant, from Latin lactuca, from lact-, lac milk; from its milky juice — more at galaxy
First Known Use: 14th century

Other Food Terms

Reuben, calamari, chuck, curry, edamame, foie gras, hummus, leaven, nonpareil, peel


noun    (Concise Encyclopedia)

Lettuce (Lactuca sativa, variety capitata)—Derek Fell

Cultivated annual salad plant (Lactuca sativa) that produces clusters of crisp, water-filled leaves. The best-known varieties are head, or cabbage, lettuce (variety capitata); leaf, or curled, lettuce (variety crispa); cos, or romaine, lettuce (variety longifolia); and asparagus lettuce (variety asparagina). Head lettuce is further divided into butter heads and crisp heads (e.g., iceberg lettuce). In the U.S, large-scale farms grow mainly crisp-head varieties, shipping them nationwide. Small-scale, local farmers raise leaf and butter-head varieties. Lettuce is an early annual crop that grows best in cool weather and with ample water. Though usually consumed in salads, it may also be cooked.


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