How To Keep Romaine Lettuce Fresh: Make it Easy to Eat More Salad

Home » How To Keep Romaine Lettuce Fresh: Make it Easy to Eat More Salad

Sneak Peek: Learn how to keep romaine lettuce fresh by vacuum-sealing it into jars 7-10 days in advance. If you’ve ever wondered if you could cut up lettuce ahead of time, this is the answer to your prayers. This easy technique transformed me into a DAILY salad eater.

lettuce vacuum-sealed into Mason jars to keep it fresh

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Do you wish you were eating more lettuce salads? I used to feel the same way.

Now I’m a DAILY salad eater, and you can be, too!

Preparing a lettuce salad every day can be too much trouble–especially when you’re hungry and ready to eat ASAP.

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With this unique trick, you can enjoy a daily salad as fast as you can take the lid off. I call it healthy fast food. It’s nearly as easy as opening a bag of chips.

How do you make romaine lettuce last longer in the refrigerator?

This “salad in a jar” is not the traditional layered salad everybody else makes. It’s also not “canned lettuce,” although it may look like it. The lettuce is not heat-processed.

Instead, this fresh, cleaned, and chopped lettuce has been vacuum-sealed into a Mason jar and stored in the fridge so it won’t wilt. The process is not complicated or expensive!!

Can you vacuum-seal lettuce?

Yes. When vacuum-sealed into a glass Mason jar, chopped romaine lettuce will stay crisp and fresh for 7-10 days. Store lettuce in the refrigerator.

To be clear: We’re assuming the lettuce is fresh. So don’t pack lettuce that has been hanging around in some warehouse or your fridge for too long.

Old and wilted lettuce will shorten the freshness window for a vacuum-packed jar of salad.

Are there other ways to save lettuce in jars?

1. Can I freeze these jars of lettuce?

No. The lettuce will wilt and spoil as soon as you remove it from the freezer.

2. Are these jars heat-packed or pressure-cooked?

No. Lettuce is much too delicate for that kind of treatment.

3 vacuum-sealed jars of chopped lettuce

What readers are saying:

I love your recipes and continue the habit of sealing lettuce every week-we are on our 2nd sealer now. LOL Makes my life so easy for salads daily for my work lunch and our dinners too. My husband and I talk about how we would be so tempted to skip salads and make not-so-healthy choices if those jars weren’t in our fridge ready to go.

Ellen E.

I am a Happy camper!!!!! I put up 6 mason jars of lettuce and I added a bit of red cabbage. The best salad EVER!!!!!! The romaine was so crispy. Thanks for the idea. It is a breeze to just dump the jar of prewashed salad on a plate ,,,,,,, add a tomato and an egg. Quick meal

Michaelle K.

Six benefits of vacuum-sealing lettuce to keep it fresh:

Vacuum-sealing jars of lettuce with equipment needed to vacuum-pack it.

1. Prepare 7-10 jars of ready-to-eat romaine lettuce in 30-45 minutes.

These numbers may vary depending on the freshness of your lettuce and how fast you work.

2. This process keeps lettuce from turning brown.

The vacuum-sealing process removes all the oxygen from inside the jar. So even though the leaves are chopped with a knife, the cut leaves are prevented from oxidizing.

3. You don’t have to get out your chopping board and salad spinner every day to make a salad.

Call me lazy, but when I’m famished, I don’t like to take the time to clean, dry, and cut or tear lettuce. So having prepared jars of lettuce salad in the fridge has saved me from eating a lot of junk food.

4. On the run? Grab a jar and take it with you.

You can eat your salad straight out of the jar. But it’s easier to pour it into a bowl. My lunch bag is big enough to fit a salad bowl if I’m taking my lunch with me.

5. Save money–especially when you buy romaine lettuce in bulk.

Bulk warehouses like Costco or Sam’s are the cheapest place to buy romaine. You can purchase the heads in packages of six.

I’m fond of the artisan romaine sold at Costco. They are slightly more expensive but worth it.

6. This habit encourages healthier eating habits.

No guarantees on this one. If you eat a healthy salad daily, it could be the start of a new lifestyle. I eat about 7-8 cups of lettuce salad almost every day. Works for me.

7. Customize your salad according to what’s in the fridge and your current mood.

Add your dressing and any veggies, nuts, or other extras after you open the jar and pour it into a bowl. Try adding fruits like sliced apples, orange sections, and pomegranate seeds, to name a few. Leftover meat, canned salmon or tuna, nuts, seeds, fresh veggies, or avocado are just a few of the ingredients I keep around to make a salad of the day in less than 3 minutes.

romaine lettuce leaves

How to prepare romaine lettuce for vacuum-sealing:

romaine lettuce, salad spinner, large bowl for cut lettuce, Mason jars and a portable vacuum packing device

Gather your equipment.

washing whole lettuce

Leave the lettuce leaves intact. Open head and wash well under running water.

slicing lettuce with a knife

Use a large knife to slice the lettuce lengthwise at least 4-5 times.

slicing lettuce into small pieces

Slice crosswise to create 1/2 inch or smaller pieces. Place chopped lettuce into lettuce spinner basket.

rinsing lettuce at the sink in a salad spinner basket

Optional: give chopped lettuce in the basket an additional shower before spinning.

putting lid on a salad spinner

Put cleaned and chopped lettuce into the salad spinner to remove excess water.

operating a salad spinner

Put the lid on and spin away until no more excess moisture is evident.

How do you vacuum-seal lettuce into Mason jars?

dumping spin-dry lettuce into a large bowl

Empty the contents of your salad spinner basket into a large bowl.

a large bowl of chopped romaine lettuce

The bowl holds nine chopped hearts of romaine lettuce.

stuffing Mason jars with lettuce by hand

Stuff jars full of lettuce. I pack mine tightly. I recommend you pack only as much as you will eat in one sitting. You can reseal the jar, but the lettuce will not be as good the next time.

checking rims of Mason jars to be sure nothing impedes the seal

Be sure no pieces of lettuce are hanging over the top edge.

placing a flat metal lid on Mason jar

Place a flat lid on top of the jar.

covering jar with a wide-mouth adapter

Cover the jar with the wide-mouth adapter.

vacuum-packing a jar of chopped lettuce with a portable device

Use a handheld vacuum-pack device to seal jars. Cover the adapter’s hole with the vacuum device’s suction cup. If you have trouble, see this post about sealing questions and answers.

vacuum-packing a jar of lettuce with a counter-top full-size device

Alternatively, use a full-size vacuum-pack machine and a hose to connect to the wide-mouth adapter.

putting collar on top of sealed jars of salad

Seal the jar and remove the wide-mouth adapter. Screw a metal collar on top of the flat lid. The collar will help preserve the seal.

storing jars in the refrigerator

The jars of lettuce must be stored in the refrigerator.


How do I open a vacuum-sealed jar of lettuce?

Opening a jar of vacuum-sealed lettuce

Pry off the lid with a can opener (as pictured above) or use your fingers. Empty your jar of lettuce into a bowl or onto a plate. Add whatever extras you want.

NOTE: I often add other varieties of lettuce, such as ready-to-eat spinach, arugula, or spring mix when I’m ready to eat my salad. Since this lettuce is ready-to-eat straight from the store, it doesn’t add any time. But unfortunately, these types of lettuce are unpredictable when vacuum-packed.

pouring a vacuum-sealed romaine lettuce salad into a bowl to eat

FAQ about Vacuum-Sealing Lettuce in Jars:

Can you vacuum-seal lettuce?

Yes. But it needs to be sturdy lettuce like romaine or radicchio. Iceberg would be my third choice. Napa cabbage is another fave that stores well.

Can I vacuum-pack leafy greens, spinach, or spring mix?

I’ve experimented with all of these, but none lasted more than 3-4 days. They’re too fragile for vacuum-packing. Although some say it works for them, I can’t recommend it. When it comes to vacuum-sealing, I’m a hearts-of-Romaine girl.

Even though I love romaine, the dark green outer leaves will not last as long as the crispier inner leaves. So if I have a lot of dark leaves, I try to eat those jars first.

Can I vacuum-pack other fruits and vegetables along with the lettuce?

You can, but I don’t recommend it. The results are unpredictable and will most likely shorten the time the lettuce will stay fresh. In my experience, sliced carrots and cabbage will vacuum seal pretty well. Avoid adding cucumbers and tomatoes. Beyond that, I suggest you experiment.

One of my readers, Rick, did an experiment adding various veggies to his jars of lettuce.  You can read about it here. I wrote a whole post about it if you’re still curious.

How long does cut lettuce stay fresh when vacuum-sealed?

7-10 days on average. The freshness of the lettuce when packing can make a difference. As noted earlier, if your romaine includes lots of outer dark green leaves, those leaves are more delicate and tend to go south first.

What do I need to get started?

1. Hearts of romaine lettuce (Romaine lettuce works best because the leaves are sturdy. Spinach and spring mix don’t like to be vacuum-packed.)
2. Sharp butcher knife (My favorite is a Wusthoff Santoku knife.)
3. Large chopping board (wood or plastic)
4. Salad spinner (the plastic ones work, but the stainless spinner from OXO is better if you are a heavy user)
5. Large mixing bowl
6. Wide-mouth jar attachment
7. Quart-size Mason glass jars with 2-part metal lids
8. Full-size vacuum-pack machine or a portable vacuum device (much cheaper and easier to store)

Note: Everything but the lettuce is reusable!

How long does it take to prepare the jars?

The actual time to prepare 6-8 jars is 30-45 minutes after you’ve had some practice. Expect to spend a couple of hours the first time or two. Once you get your system down, making the jars goes fast.

Do I really need a vacuum-pack device? I’ve heard rinsing the lettuce in lemon juice or vinegar will help it stay fresh longer.

After a reader suggested this, I did a side-by-side experiment. I rinsed lettuce with diluted lemon juice and compared it to vacuum-packed lettuce. The lemon-juice-rinsed and cut lettuce began to turn brown after three days. No comparison!

Any suggestions for other ways to use a vacuum-pack machine?

Use your quart jars to vacuum-pack rice, flour, oatmeal, granola, and other dry pantry items. Try storing vacuum-packed stir-fry sauce, barbecue sauce, or salad dressing in the fridge.

Use plastic vacuum-seal bags for cheese, leftovers, and meat. Food stays in the freezer much longer without freezer burn when vacuum-sealed.

Why is tearing lettuce with my hands or cutting it with a plastic knife unnecessary with this method?

Vacuum-packing removes the oxygen that causes the lettuce to brown when there are cut edges–torn or otherwise. I use a sharp knife so I can chop it fast and in pretty small pieces. Hands and plastic knives are way too slow for me.

Can I vacuum-pack lettuce into small-mouth Mason jars?

Yes, but the wide-mouth jars are much easier to fill, empty, seal, and wash. Therefore, I highly recommend the wide-mouth over the small-mouth jars.

Do I need a jar attachment for each jar?

No. You only need one jar attachment. The attachment fits over the opening with a flat lid between the top of the jar and the attachment. Pull the attachment off after sealing. See the video.

Large-mouth jar attachments are available online.  I’ve never seen them in a brick-and-mortar store, but readers have reported sightings.

Be sure you buy the large-mouth jar attachment if you have large-mouth jars. Otherwise, buy the small-mouth attachment.

Can I reuse the flat canning jar lids and collars?

Yes. You can reuse both. The lids should only be used once when using heat, such as pressure canning. However, vacuum-sealing involves no heat. Unfortunately, the lids and collars are prone to rust if not completely dried after washing. But they are easy and inexpensive to replace when necessary.

Why can’t I get the lid to seal on my jar of lettuce:

Check to see if a stray piece of lettuce on the top of the jar is preventing a seal.

Try using two stacked lids instead of one.

Apply some pressure to the adapter holding the lids.

Read this post about 10 tips for getting lids to seal on a Mason jar.

Why not store clean lettuce in a plastic bag with a paper towel?

A plastic bag is an excellent way to store washed lettuce if you leave the lettuce whole and un-chopped or un-torn. It will last longer than buying a bag of salad mix from the store, for sure.  However, the romaine must be cut or torn into smaller pieces before eating.

For me, that’s too much trouble when I walk in the door hungry. I like to have everything ready to grab and go, with leaves already in small pieces and prepared to pour into a bowl and eat. If you’re not as impatient as I am, then a plastic bag and some paper towels may be sufficient.

Why vacuum-pack my jar of lettuce instead of covering it with a regular screw-on lid?

Stuffing a jar with chopped lettuce and screwing the lid on is convenient. However, it won’t keep your lettuce fresh any longer than dumping it in a plastic bag like it’s sold at the grocery store. The oxygen must be removed to keep the chopped edges from wilting and browning.

Can I vacuum-seal lettuce in a plastic bag instead of glass jars?

Only if your vacuum-pack machine has a pulse feature that allows you to leave some air in the bag. Or you could stop short of vacuuming all the air out before the lettuce is crushed.

The lettuce won’t stay fresh as long as it does in a jar where all the air can be sucked out without smashing the lettuce.

Which vacuum-pack machine should I buy?

My preference is a portable device that runs on batteries. They are less noisy, take less storage space, and cost less.

If you want a countertop device, look for a machine with a port for the attachment. You don’t need all the bells and whistles for this project, but cheap machines may not have a port. So, beware.

Where can I find a good deal on vacuum-pack machines?

Check Tuesday Morning, Ross, eBay, warehouse stores, Walmart, Target, and online. Or just ask around. Many people have a vacuum-sealing machine sitting in their cabinets. Some quit using them after they run out of the bags that come with the device.

Portable units are much cheaper, and they work great.

How do I know if the lettuce has gone bad?

Some of the leaves may become translucent and limp. If the lettuce doesn’t smell right, throw it out.

Enjoy the virtuous feeling that comes with eating healthy vegetables!


An important safety reminder

Wash your lettuce thoroughly and keep refrigerated at all times for safety’s sake.

Looking for more information?

If you have questions or suggestions, email me privately to Paula at saladinajar.com. Hope to see you again soon! Paula

Vacuum-pack Lettuce to Prolong Freshness

How To Vacuum-Pack Cut Romaine Lettuce

Vacuum-packing fresh-cut or chopped romaine lettuce in Mason jars will keep it fresh for up to 10 days. It's "salad in a jar" my way. Makes it easier to eat a salad every day!
5 from 9 votes
Prep Time 45 mins
Total Time 45 mins
Course Salad in a Jar
Servings 4 servings

Video

Ingredients

  • 6 hearts of romaine lettuce
  • 1 small head of radicchio - optional

Instructions
 

  • Wash romaine lettuce well, leaving the leaves intact at the base.
  • Cut lengthwise through the entire head at least 4-5 times.
  • Now slice crosswise about 3/4 to 1 inch apart according to your preference.
  • Fill salad spinner and run under the faucet one more time. Spin dry.
  • Dump into a very large bowl. Fill jars with chopped, spun-dry lettuce. I pack them as tightly as possible.
  • Seal jars using a wide-mouth jar attachment and a vacuum-pack machine. Screw on rings as insurance to keep lid sealed.
  • Refrigerate up to 10 days depending on how fresh your lettuce is when you started this process.

Notes

The number of servings or quart jars you end up with depends on how many heads of romaine you use and how compact and large they are. It will also be affected by how tightly you pack the lettuce into the jars.
I use hearts of romaine because the inner leaves last longer than the dark green leaves on a whole head of romaine. In general, one "heart of romaine" lettuce will fill one quart jar, but that varies.

Nutrition

Nutrition Facts
How To Vacuum-Pack Cut Romaine Lettuce
Serving Size
 
1
Amount per Serving
Calories
 
7
Calories from Fat 9
% Daily Value*
Fat
 
1
g
2
%
Saturated Fat
 
1
g
6
%
Polyunsaturated Fat
 
1
g
Sodium
 
3
mg
0
%
Carbohydrates
 
1
g
0
%
Fiber
 
1
g
4
%
Sugar
 
1
g
1
%
Protein
 
1
g
2
%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Author: Paula Rhodes
Course: Salad in a Jar
Cuisine: American
Keywords: chopped romaine lettuce, mason jars, preserving chopped lettuce, preserving cut lettuce, romaine, salad in a jar, salads, vacuum-pack, storing lettuce,vacuum-sealed salad in a jar
Like this recipe? Thanks for leaving a 5-star rating inside the recipe at the top! 🤩

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344 Comments

  1. Jean Summers says:

    I love your website! Your sister, Kay, and I have been friends for a long time and have been out West with her and Elliott many times. She told me about your website. I love to cook and try new recipes. We eat lots of salads and I am going to try your salad in a jar method.

    1. Hi Jean,

      Welcome. Glad you stopped by. Hope you are enjoying the salads. Have you seen the new house yet?

  2. Great idea! I tend to like my salads about 50% romaine, 40% other chopped vegetables and 10% combined other (fruit, cheese, nuts, salad dressing, avacado, etc.)

    Had you tried a test of how long these last without the vacuum seal? I think the lettuce by itself might hold up for a few days. I’ll have to check it out. Love the fact that it is in re-usable glass! Thanks for the idea.

    1. I haven’t officially tried it without a seal. However, I’ve had jars lose their seal and they go bad in a day or two. When oxygen hits all those cut edges, the lettuce turns brown and limp in a hurry–just like the bags of prepared lettuce at the grocery store. Vacuum packing is the secret.

      I’ve learned to always screw the collar on the jar to prevent losing the seal.

      1. If you cut your lettuce with a ceramic knife, the edges won’t turn brown any faster than normal, even without a vacuum seal.

        1. Hi Val, Thanks for writing.
          Have you tried a side by side experiment? Several people have said the same about a plastic knife. But when I did a side by side test, there was no comparison. The vacuum-packed cut lettuce stayed fresh much longer. You can read about it here.

          I plan to buy a ceramic knife and try the same experiment, although I am dubious. It is the lack of oxygen that keeps the cut edges from turning brown. Regardless, I will post the results when I do it. Thanks for the challenge.

          1. Sorry, my comment wasn’t clear. I meant that using a ceramic knife will keep lettuce fresher than using a metal knife, but not as fresh as using a vacuum seal. That’s for those of us who don’t have vacuum sealers. Ceramic knives are much sharper than plastic ones, at least on par with my steel knives if not better. My favourite benefit is that ceramic slices tomatoes incredibly well; much better than anything else I’ve ever used.

  3. Jeannette says:

    why just lettuce? i would like to add tomatoes and cucumber to REALLY save time. have you tried this yet? is there a reason that it only works with lettuce?

    1. I stick to lettuce because 1) different foods have different lifespans under vacuum–can depend on their freshness too. I want my lettuce to last at least 8-9 days and not sure other things can go that long. 2) I’m not really big on raw vegetables other than tomatoes (which I don’t refrigerate) and carrots. I LOVE veggies–but prefer them at least slightly cooked. But it might work great for you. Let me know…

  4. kitchen Butterfly says:

    Wow. Lovely photos. Great tips…and another lover of Romaine lettuce. Yippe

  5. I LOVE this! I think I may need to borrow the idea.
    Adding you to my blogroll, recipes look divine as well.

  6. What a great and creative way to do lettuce. I have looked at vacuum pack machines but was never sure what I thought of them. I love this idea. I have been working to loose those extra baby pounds and this looks like an excellent way to stay motivated. Thanks for sharing your ideas! My husband is from Indiana. We don’t live there, but I notice I admire the ladies I have met from IN. They are practical and capable. Good problem solvers and lots of fun too. I found your site when I read 9-11 comments on PW’s web site. HAPPY BIRTHDAY ROMAINE!

    Sherry

  7. Fiber One instead of croutons — great idea! I like those crunchy chow mein noodles in my salad, so I’d imagine it would taste pretty much the same. Great site, and I love the photos!

  8. My family is leaving for vacation and I’m staring at my foodsaver and the 5 heads of Romaine lettuce I have waiting to be preserved. 🙂 However, when I use my salad spinner, it never dries the lettuce completely. Do you seal with the residue moisture or do you have a secret of how to get your lettuce bone dry? I have placed in an unbleached pillowcase and ran it through the spin cycle in my washing machine and it works very well but I’d like to make sure the lettuce isn’t stripped of it’s moisture. Any advice would be great as we’re leaving tomorrow. 😉

    1. After I wash/spin my lettuce I place in a clean kitchen towel, roll, and flatten out. Dries in minutes!

  9. vicsailgarden says:

    I wonder if you rinsed the lettice in a little lemon (or vinegar) water, maybe they would last longer (if you don’t have a vacuum packer).

  10. vicsailgarden, I’m not sure about the lemon or vinegar. But I’m skeptical. Oxygen is the culprit. That’s why the vacuum pack lettuce stays fresh so long. No oxygen inside that jar. If you eat a lot of salad or would like to, it’s worth the money.

  11. Sarah Galvin says:

    Love this salad in a jar idea. I have begun to keep berries in a jar and they keep much longer. I don’t even vacuum pack.
    Sarah

  12. I got a foodsaver for an early birthday present. I’m waiting for the wide mouth attachment to come from Amazon. Do you have any other good advice for ways to use the foodsaver? I’m planning on getting some lettuce to try soon.

    1. Gina,
      You can put just about ANYTHING in the mason jars with vacuum sealing. It will never take the place of canning, so stuff that has to be refrigerated still needs to go in the fridge.
      -When you open a canister of coffee, transfer 2/3 of the can into mason jars and seal. It really keeps the flavor much better that way.
      -Seal cottage cheese, or cubed/shredded cheese
      -You can freeze in mason jars as long as they are the sloped size jars. As tempting as it may be, don’t pop ’em straight from freezer into microwave. With the sloped jars, you can rinse the sides of the jars to loosen the contents and they will slide out easily. Soup works great like this.
      -You can seal ANYTHING you’d normally keep on the shelf: popcorn, pancake mix (I buy the big 5lb bags of krusteez mix), brown sugar, rice, tea bags, oatmeal, just about anything you can think of. It keeps the staples bug free, moisture-free, and fresher longer
      -use small jars for long term spice storage
      -The wide mouth jars are also good for marinating meat (foodsaver sells a device for this but it is pricey) that is either cubed or in smaller sizes. Marinating goes much faster because the vacuuming pulls the liquid into the pores of the meat, I think
      -You can toss fresh veggies in jars and keep them in the fridge (I like celery sticks, carrots sticks, cucumber wedges)
      -The sky is the limit.
      Note: you can re-use the lids indefinitely as long as you don’t bend them (which can happen when you pry them off). For things that I use often (like tea bags) I use the pin-hole trick. You can find it online in a bunch of places, but in a nutshell: you poke a small hole in the top of the lid, and then put a piece of electrical tape over it. Seal like normal, but then when you want to access your contents, you can pull up on the tape and it releases the seal and the lid can be pulled off easily. Simply put the tape back on and seal back again. I wouldn’t recommend this for anything you keep long-term, but for often-accessed items it works like a charm.

      Sorry this went long!

      1. I would not recommend your technique with tea or coffee – at least not more than once for storage. Every time you ‘re-seal’ you are literally sucking aromatics out of the bean/leaves. That is why most coffee roasters have swtiched to actually pressurizing the tins with inert gases (to keep the oxygen away) rather than sucking the air out. Coffee should also be away from light, so if you go with a clear jar, put it in a cupboard.

        The best way to keep coffee is freezing – go straight from the freezer to the grinder. If you buy ground coffee, then all is lost already 😉

        1. Hi Elwood, Noted. I don’t do it myself anymore. Too much trouble to seal and unseal everyday.

    2. Gina,
      I make homemade jam. I’ve spoiled my kids – none of them will eat store-bought jam. This caused my Naval LT son a problem, ’cause they don’t have homemade jam on US ships. I didn’t want to mail jars which could break, so tried sealing it in foodsaver bags, and sending them with plastic storage containers. It works great! Now I can send all kinds of food items to family all over the country! You just have to gauge when to hit the “seal” button so it doesn’t suck the jam out, or squash the cookies or breads.

  13. As a personal chef, I have been leaving salads in gallon ziploc bags for my clients for years. I leave a fresh paper towel or two crunched up and they stay well for a week or longer. They are always amazed!

  14. Amy @ Simply Sugar & Gluten-Free says:

    I have thought and thought about buying a FoodSaver. It’s just my husband and I and he travels a lot – sometimes last minute. Balancing grocery shopping is tough. I can’t stand to have food go to waste – I might finally have to get one of these.

    Everyone has their own kitchen tricks – I love learning about all of them.

  15. Michelle Pugliese says:

    Are the seals for the canning jars re-usable?

    1. Michelle, Yes, they are—over and over and over unless you accidentally bend them.

  16. I love this idea.
    We have had a Foodsaver machine in the family but it was generally only used around this time of year to package & freeze venison that the menfolk got during the deer hunting season here in Wisconsin.
    Thanks again.

  17. Love the lettuce in a jar idea! I recently used my foodsaver to preserve chocolate in various forms (chips, candy bars, powder, etc. and also a variety of seeds,nuts, snack mixes and dried fruits–I love knowing I have all those things that don’t need refrigeration in my pantry (for a pantry, it’s huge- roughly 5×15′!) We also pressure can beans and meats and I want to can some breads and cakes and butter, too. I think I’ll try using the foodsaver to seal some cereals and baking ingredients, too. It’s great that jars can be opened, partially used and resealed several times. Thanks for sharing!

  18. I’ve been researching this topic for a while and I’d like to offer a suggestion for those cramped for funds. I don’t have a vacuum sealer yet, but the information for a Pump N Seal has me leaning in that direction. Pump n Seal goes for about $32.00, and it is capable of 25+ inches of mercury. I think it’s a mediocre choice for bags (from what I’ve read) but probably a good choice for those who use jars.

    I used quart mason jars a while back for salads with lots of other veggies included. I don’t have a vacuum sealer (yet), and I did experience some browning as you suggested, but only after about 4 days. It seems logical that the vac pack idea could concievably double that time in a good cold fridge, and I was excited to see this page. I was about ready to pull the trigger on a pump n seal before reading this, but I’m gonna order it for sure now. I want to try both the little valve thingys and the FoodSaver Lid Sealers, as I can see uses for both methods. Thanks for posting this and all the pictures!

    Stan

  19. Does the vaccum seal attachment fit over the jar lids? On their website it says that the attachment replaces the lids.

  20. With the FoodSaver jar sealing attachment, you only need the Ball jar lid. You do not need to use the band (and shouldn’t while vacuuming). The vacuum inside the jar holds the lid down securely.

  21. Hi, Paula, I love this idea. My dad just bought me a foodsaver several months ago. I work full time and have a wonderful and energetic 3 year old. I am always on the go and always looking for time saving tips. I love salad, and is time consuming to make. I can’t wait to try this, I will need to buy the jar attachment. Thank you!!!

  22. I am not sure how I found your blog but I tried your salad in a jar and LOVE IT! I tried mine with carrots and cut up tomatoes and it worked but I would add cherry tomatoes next time. I am going to try with lettuce, spinach and cabbage too. I love being able to grab one out of the fridge when ever I need it. I have gotten hooked on adding beans to my salad! Thank you thank you thank you for sharing this AWESOME idea. I will never go back to making daily salad!
    Shorty

    1. So glad to hear you are enjoying daily salad. Love your ideas about adding veggies.

  23. I love this idea. I’m not a big salad fan but really need to do something to eat healthier. Can I ask what it was that made you start to like eating salad? Is it that you did it so frequently you just started liking it? If someone has prepared a nice salad, I will enjoy it but I dread making my own so I’m hoping this idea will help me! 🙂

    1. For me, learning to eat salad started with eating salads packed with flavorful stuff that might not have been all that healthy–a salad dressing that I like, bacon bits, possibly shredded cheese or cold meat, tomatoes. Over time I’ve learned to include more and more healthy stuff (with crunch) (carrots, broccoli, snap peas, green pepper, sometimes beans like garbanzo or kidney beans) and less of the unhealthy stuff. I substituted those “fake” (vegetable based) bacon bits for the real thing, and rarely add cheese or meat any more (although that wouldn’t be all bad).

      The most recent improvement is finding out this site–now I cut up a head of lettuce and pack it into pint jars with other vegetables (except tomatoes). So, to make a salad, I just get out a jar of salad, dump it in a bowl, cut up part of a tomato, add it, some croutons, some bacon bits, and salad dressing. Much less of a hassle than cutting up part of a head of lettuce each time.

  24. Sandi Vanthoff says:

    I have been using the Foodsaver for years. You are spot on with using the jars. My only suggestion would be, try not to cut lettuce with a knife. Just tear it with your hands. The leaves will not turn brown so quickly. A great idea and thanks for sharing. Your pictures are fantastic.

    1. I hear ya about the knife. However, I make this stuff in a huge quantity—and I like small pieces. It would take me forever. I have found the lettuce does not brown on the edges when vacuum packed even when cut with a knife so I chop away. Thanks for visiting.

  25. This is an outrageously brilliant idea. You’re a genius!

  26. stephanie says:

    Just found your site and LOVE it. I have a food saver machine, with a few plastic jars included. Does the food saver machine work on the mason jars? I’m not sure I understand how you would take the air out without the handy hole that the included plastic jars have. Since I LOVE dessert (especially the coffee angel food cake) need to eat those salads.

    1. Stephanie, you must have the special wide-mouth attachment. It can be ordered on line for about 10$.

  27. After finding your blog, I had to give this a try. I bought the wide mouth attachment and I have been doing my salads this way for the past 3 weeks and I LOVE it. I just grab a jar in the morning on my way to work and it has made mornings much quicker and my Friday salad is as fresh as Monday’s salad. Thanks for sharing your great ideas.

  28. Meal Plan Mom (Brenda) says:

    I LOVE this idea! My husband has been buying the bagged salads forever because our local grocery store would put them on “clearance” a few days before they were to expire. Lately though he says they have not been having them discounted so he’s stopped eating salads as much. We’ve had a Foodsaver for years and I’ve not used it in a couple of those year…but I may have to order the attachment and pull it out. Ironically I also just came across some off the canning jars in the attic and thought I should just donate them…now I’ve found a new use for them.

    I will be posting this tip on my blog too–what a great meal planning trick! Thanks!

  29. Ok…as I read this it sounds great…. I can see spending 170 dollars for the vacuum machine….

    But as I read more – I see that I have to buy one of those special lids for each of the jars I want to seal. According to the manufactures page, I cannot use canning lids for this….
    But when I look at your site – it seems like you are saying I can use just the canning lids….

    What’s the situation on this??

    Thanks 😉

    1. You don’t have to use one of those attachments for each jar, and you do reuse the canning lids.

      I’ve found a better approach–part of it is what is suggested here–poke a small hole in a canning lid, then use tape (I use scotch, others suggest plastic electrical tape) to seal the hole. I just lightly put the tape on over the hole, then use one of those hand held Ziploc vacuum pumps (they’re sold at Walmart to vacuum seal special bags for very cheap–$3-$4). I put the pump over the tape and hole, but try to leave an edge of the tape free (in other words, not held down by the pump), and then pump several times to get the vacuum seal. There’s a little bit of an art to it, but once you get the idea, it works quite well. (I’ve had a few bad lids that wouldn’t seal, maybe because they were very old and the rubber cracked.)

      If you use the hole in the lid approach, the lids are very easy to remove for reuse–just lift the tape to break the seal).

      You can also reuse canning lids that have been sealed without the hole (including if they’ve been used in a “real” boiling water or pressure canning process) if they are in good condition and if you learn the trick for taking them off without bending them. The trick I learned (from someone else) is to take something like the handle of a typical teaspoon (one you’d stir your coffee with), put it on the thread of the jar, and run it up the thread until it touches and then lifts off the lid).

      While I’d doing a partial brain dump here, the one thing I’m cautious and slightly worried about is botulism. Foodsaver warns against vacuum sealing soft cheeses because of the possibility of botulism. (I would like to vacuum seal cream cheese (while refrigerating it). Foodsaver warns against this, but a UK site seems to think it is OK.)

      The salad ingredients we’re talking about here (lettuce, carrots, peas, broccoli, etc) are not acidic, and this vacuum sealing process is not a real canning process, so there would seem to be potential for the growth of botulism producing bacteria. I will keep trying to learn more, and, will err on the side of caution in throwing any of the salads away if I start to see signs of spoilage.

  30. Love the idea! One tip about brown edges on lettuce: Use a serrated plastic knife. I got one for about $5 at a kitchen supply store and use it frequently with great results.

    1. Helen, Thanks for your idea. I’ve tried it before and the plastic serrated knife is fine–but not needed if you vacuum- pack in glass jars. The edges don’t turn brown no matter how you cut them. And since I do this in quantity, I want the best, sharpest knife possible so it will go fast. Since I’ve been doing this for years, it only takes me about 20 minutes to prepare salad for 6-7 days.

  31. have used a vacuum sealer for many years, haven’t thought of this application but I’m sure going to try it! Sounds like a winner. I’ve used mason jars for many years also and love them to freeze things like sauces and soups because it is easy to thaw in the micro or in a pan of room temp water
    before re-heating

  32. Putting a link to this on my blog, I love this concept! I seriously need to find a reasonably priced vacuum sealer with a wide mouth jar attachment and some mason jars!

  33. I found your website a while back and I have to say you are so right about the salad in a jar! I had to try for myself because I use the foodsaver put corn in the freezer and it is so good even a year after freezing it. I still wasn’t sure it wouldn’t turn brown, so I cut up my lettuce 9 days ago and it is still as green and fresh as the day I sealed it. I only did 2 jars to see for myself. It is awesome! I am glad to find more uses for my foodsaver and to stop wasting food. Thank you so much and I will be checking your website often.

    1. Thanks for the testimonial. Glad it works for you.

  34. David Bower says:

    This is really a great idea. However lettuce does get a little boring so maybe some baby spinach, purple cabbage, a few plum tomatoes, carrot sticks, slices of radishes,baby peas,some edamame and some unsalted sunflower seeds and slivered almonds. Please when opening this jar of goodies stay away from all the salad dressings that are high in sodium and high fructose corn syrup. A few drops of olive oil , red vinegar or a few sprays of Balsamic Spritzer is really good. Food savers are great . We use it on all our salmon and chicken breast. Our food saver doesn’t have the port for the lid assembly so I guess were stuck.

  35. Janet in Houston says:

    I love your sight and visit it often. The “salad in the jar” idea is genius! I ordered the 2 jar lid sealers for my foodsaver and it works great. Thanks so much, I am starting Weight Watchers again and this will help a lot.

    1. So glad to hear salad in a jar works for you. Best wishes with your endeavors to lose weight.

  36. Hi: What a great idea! I love salads, but don’t like all that prep for a day or two. However, I don’t have a vacuum pack machine; is it ok just to buy the Food Saver Jar Sealer?
    Thanks.

    1. I’ve never heard of a Food Saver Jar Sealer. All I know about is the jar sealer attachment. Of course, you have to have a vacuum pack machine for the attachment. If you have a link on the web, send it and I’ll check it out.

  37. rachsbabycakes says:

    Thank you Paula! I just ordered my Jar Sealer, so excited!! This will really help me because I already store much of my food in glass jars. We shop at Costco, it’s similar to Sams, and I often have to toss out lettuce because I can’t eat it fast enough.

  38. Hi Paula, like Ruthann (comment from July 8th), I’m confused about whether or not you have to buy a jar sealer attachment for each jar … your pictures look like you still use the mason jar lids but the link to the website makes it sound like the jar seal attachment remains on the jar until you open it … so 6-7 if you are doing a weeks worth of salads at once. Can you clarify for us?

    Thanks!

  39. Kirsten, I took another look and the pictures on the FoodSaver website are a little misleading. (They don’t show the hose that attaches to the machine). I can see why you are confused. See the addendum I added in the post. Hope this clarifies the issue. Again, only one attachment is needed. You use it to seal with the flat part of the metal lid (is there an official name for that? — I don’t know) inside of attachment, then pull it off and go to next jar.

  40. Great idea! I usually keep mine in a Foodsaver cannister. I like the jar idea. There is another way to seal the jars using your Foodsaver if you don’t have the jar sealer. Just put your jar with a lid and screw band on it inside of a Foodsaver cannister. Then suction the air out of the cannister as usual. When it is done remove the lid of the cannister and your jar will be sealed. The air is removed from the jar as it is removed from the cannister. You can now take the screw band off the jar.
    Linda A

    1. Linda, this is genius! Take note everybody.

  41. thanks for recept :))

  42. Elizabeth N says:

    Hi, love the idea. Just curious, have you heard of the OXO containers that have the push button vacuum seal? I’m wondering if those would work as well as the jars.

    1. I have not heard of these but am intrigued. However, in looking online, I did not see a quart size which is my favorite. I plan to buy one though and try it out.

  43. I absolutely LOOOOOOVVVE your idea. Thanks so much for sharing!

  44. Elizabeth says:

    You are a genius! I came here from foodgawker to see your french bread recipe and was intrigued by the salad in a jar. We have a foodsaver and I’ve used it on jars for other things, but never this. Coincidentally – I was diagnosed today with diabetes and we were just talking about how to eat better and I find your site. This is the perfect way to do salads in an evening and then grab one on the go each morning. Thank you so much for this!!!

  45. What a GREAT idea! I’ll be trying this out, it sounds like a great time saver as well as a nice jump start everyday to a healthy lunch. Darling blog you have here 🙂

    1. Thanks Cristie, and you said it perfectly, it’s a “nice jump start everyday.”

  46. This is great! Thanks! I never would have thought of that. I love salad, I’m vegetarian and need to watch the pounds I put on, so I eat a lot of salad. If I had the money I wasted in lettuce that has gone bad before I could eat it I’d be rich! We have tons of those jars because my grandma used to can, and I know there’s a food saver somewhere I never use. This is the kind of great idea that makes one wish they had thought of it, well done!

    1. Jenni, Same here. All the money I’ve wasted on lettuce I didn’t eat is shameful. But no more.

      Just a tip about all the jars grandma used to can….In the old days, everybody used small-mouth jars. Unfortunately, they are much more difficult to pack with lettuce and seal (not sure why they don’t seal as easily) than the wide-mouth jars. If you decide to try this, I would definitely recommend the wide-mouth jars. They are a small investment for a huge but “skinny” return.

  47. Is there any reason that your couldn’t add other veggies prior to vacuum sealing ? such as cucumbers, tomatoes, celery etc…

    1. Carole, Excellent question. In general, the veggies won’t keep as long as the lettuce–some better than others. Commenter Rick did his own experiment. You can see the results here. http://blog.rickk.com/food/2010/03/the-great-salad-experiment.html

      For me personally, I never add extras. It takes more time and I don’t want to spend more than about 20 minutes putting the jars together each week.

  48. Hi! I love the idea, and I’m looking forward to trying it. However, I keep stumbling across either really crappy reviews, or crazy price tags. Do you have any suggestions for a relatively poor college student that’s trying to eat healthy? I understand this is an investment n stuff but I have books and rent to worry about , too 🙁

    1. Heidy, Have you checked ebay or craig’s list for a like-new machine? Also, watch the Food Saver website for specials. They frequently run 50% sales. I bought one at Tuesday morning for quite a good price. They don’t seem to last long according to some people’s reviews but I have not had that problem.

      Here’s something else to think about. How much would you pay to be healthier and skinnier? Salad in a Jar is no guarantee, of course, but for me, it helps more than anything else to keep my weight in check. It’s my lunch everyday–along with some small, usually-less-than-200 calorie leftover or half sandwich or burrito. I don’t even consider eating out.

      I can imagine it would take some real discipline to pull this off in college when your schedule and eating times may be different every day not to mention friends who are tugging at you to go eat junk food with them. Hopefully, you have your own kitchen with a place to store the machine and jars not to mention refrigerator space for the lettuce.

  49. Thanks Cristie, and you said it perfectly, it’s a “nice jump start everyday.”

    1. The food saver is expensive and a lot of effort. You can get the same result by placing half a paper napkin on top of your lettuce before you seal the jar. It absorbs the liquid, keeps the lettuce good for a solid week.

      1. TP, Thanks so much for your comment. I have never tried the paper napkin idea so will give it a try. I have done several tests with cut lettuce in unsealed jars compared to the vacuum-packed sealed jars. You can read about it here. I just want to be clear–you are talking about doing this with chopped lettuce, right? Because if you leave the lettuce leaves whole…well, that’s an entirely different game. I want my lettuce chopped and ready-to-eat right out of the jar. I’ll report back.

        And one other thing, you can do the vacuum-packing with a small hand-held device to save money. Works just as well. You can read more about that here and a really cheap way here.

  50. Jules @ Everyday Mommy says:

    Okay…so I’ve got our salad spinner and am awaiting delivery of our FoodSaver. All geared up to start eating better and (perk!) lose weight. I ask hubby (a regular character) what his favorite salads toppings are and he says, “Lots and lots of bacon.”

    Why did I marry a cartoonist.

  51. Jules@EverydayMommy says:

    Guess who has a FoodSaver due to arrive via FedEx tomorrow?

  52. sohbet odalari says:

    thank you very nice blog

  53. Love the idea! One tip about brown edges on lettuce: Use a serrated plastic knife. I got one for about $5 at a kitchen supply store and use it frequently with great results.

    1. Good tip about the plastic knife. Not necessary if you are going to vacuum-pack your cut salad because it doesn’t brown when there is no oxygen. Otherwise, higly recommended. Thanks so much for stopping by.

  54. iş arıyorum says:

    A wonderful thank you letter.

  55. Colleen Drake says:

    BRILLIANT! I can’t wait to try this!

  56. I love this idea. I just made my first batch (is that what you call it?) and I plan to share your site in my blog about my journey into frugal living. Thank you and I’ll be back.

    1. Yes, I think this would definitely fit into the whole idea of frugal living. Hope you enjoy your convenient salads.

  57. Jenn @ Frugal Upstate says:

    This. Is. Brilliant.

    I need to dig my foodsaver out right now. . . and buy more lettuce on my trip to the store today. Thanks for the encouragement.

  58. jan knapp says:

    I love the salad in a jar. Can’t wait to try it. My entire family loves salad so I can see me doing this from here on out.

    Thanks, jan

  59. thanks for sharing i love this idea and i will check everytime your post:))
    see ya again in new post.wish you continued success

    1. Hi Elise, I am skeptical. As best I can tell from the picture, the hose is permanently attached between the machine and the attachment so you would not be allowed to use anything else. I’ve never seen it in person so that’s the best I can offer. Have you looked at Tuesday Morning? The ones near me always have 2 or 3 for a good price.

  60. Bloody awesome. I had no idea this machine even existed.

  61. ROFL.. I feel like an idiot! Should have read instructions because I thought you needed one white lid thing for every jar! That thing is going to get a LOT more use now. BTW.. this is exactly how we do lettuce.. only in different containers.. not any more though 🙂 Love the mason jar idea.

  62. angelique says:

    I love the mason jar idea. I always pre-wash and store my lettuce. I’ve just used regular food containers. The vacuum-pack machine is honestly more than I would ever do. If you rip the lettuce instead of using a knife it helps with the browning of the sides. A little secret I learned from my chef hubby. I’m going to start using mason jars now! (minus-the vacuum-pack machine) Thanks for the great idea!

    1. Angelique, I agree with you that ripping the lettuce instead of a knife helps. Problem is…I am much too impatient or maybe it’s laziness to hand rip all the lettuce I eat in a week. I can slice it all up in very little time and vacuum pack it and it stays good for at least 7-8 days although better within 5 or 6. I did an experiment which I wrote about here where I vacuum-packed some jars and compared them to others that were not vacuum-packed. You might find it interesting.

  63. angelique says:

    I think the vacuum-pack is a great idea! We just haven’t had a problem with our lettuce going bad even though we buy in bulk at Costco. We love salads. Ripping is actually faster for me, not sure why. I’m probably just a slow chopper. LOL You have a wonderful blog, found it through Pinterest. 🙂

  64. Stephania says:

    New to this site and really like the recipes and LOVE the salad in a jar idea. Don’t own a Food Saver. Can you recommend a model number or more details as their is a wide range on the web site. Thnx

    1. Stephania, Here’s the deal on a Food Saver. To do the jars you must have two things: 1. an accessory port on the FoodSaver unit and 2. the wide-mouth jar attachment. When buying the Food Saver, look for an accessory port in the features list. The jar attachment is available separately on the website.

      If you have a Tuesday Morning in your area, I recommend you look there for a good price. Beyond that try Sam’s and Costco then Walmart. Just remember the key word is accessory port. I’ve never seen the wide-mouth attachment anywhere but the FoodSaver website. You only need one.

  65. Glenda The Good Foodie says:

    I love this idea. I plan to try it even without the machine. I think I will work better than what I am doing now.
    http://glendathegoodfoodie.wordpress.com

    Thanks for sharing.

    Check me out if you have time.’GTGF

  66. Just ordered the wide-mouth jar sealer and I’m finally going to try this!

  67. Stephania says:

    Bought a FoodSaver at Tuesday Morning as you advised – $50 and ordered the wide mouth attachment. Made my first batch of salad. I used knife and kitchen scissors, pint jars (just couldn’t face a quart of lettuce) and added celery and carrots to the jars. This is still plenty especially when you add stuff to it after opening. Been eating them for over a week – such a great idea, THANKS!

  68. What a great idea – the versatility of salad is endless. Some protein additions and health-building fats and you’re on your way. Very nice Paula!

  69. I did it, and I think it’s pretty safe to say I’m hooked on this idea!

  70. I couldn’t love this idea any more. I am going to try it out.

  71. I totally bought into the concept of Salad in a Jar………went out and bought jars, foodsaver and jar saver attachment…………but it’s not working. Please provide the tips………the instructions on the jar saver are not very informative………..and I’ve done all the trouble shooting it says……….leave space at the top, new jars (3 different ones), new lids (3 different ones), centered, push down all the way (then pushed down partway, not pushed down)………everytime, the lid comes off when I take off the Jar Saver. Very frustrated…….I tried for an hour — I wanted this to work. I like salad — but end up eating less of it because it is always a pain to clean all the lettuce and the prepacked stuff is tasteless…………I hope you can help me please!

  72. Mary Burleson says:

    What a fantastic idea. I would love to blog about this on my site and link back to your. I know sharing this idea will give my friends great joy and a skinny lunch! How fun.

    Thanks,

    Mary

    1. That would be great. Thanks for stopping by.

  73. Keesha Summers says:

    Brilliant idea! I love my foodsaver and store all kinds of things in wide-mouthed jars, but never thought to pack lettuce this way. I’ve been wasting too much produce lately, so will have to give this a try.

    1. That’s exactly where I was about 6 years ago. I was tired of buying the expensive plastic for bags so was thinking of getting rid of my FoodSaver when I tried romaine lettuce in quart jars. Wow! The convenience of grabbing a pre-made jar out of the fridge everyday has increased my salad consumption many times over. Hope you enjoy.

  74. I’m just a little confused. I don’t have wide-mouth jars at home–just regular quart canning jars. Amazon has two food saver jar sealing attachments: One for wide-mouth jars and one for what they call ‘regular’ jars. Does the wide-mouth attachment only work for wide-mouth jars? It makes sense to me to order the ‘regular’ ones to use on my ‘regular’ jars, but you were so specific about the wide-mouth, I just got a little mixed up. Help? Thanks!

  75. Found you on pinterest. I went to order the jar attachment for my food saver and read that if you already have canisters for your food saver you can just stick the mason jar in the canister and it will seal it in there. I tried it and it worked! So, now I just do it that way instead of buying the extra piece.

  76. Bonnie Childress says:

    SO freaking awesome!!! I LOVE it!! I am so excited to do this once the kids go back to school!

  77. Hi Paula,
    Now that I’m sold on this idea for lettuce I’m wondering if you’ve tried it with other kinds of greens. I’m thinking about experimenting with spinach, which is something I love to buy in those big tubs at Costco but never manage to use up before it goes bad.

  78. Hi there,
    Thanks so much for your post. We’ve been doing this for about a month now, and love it! I wondered-have you attempted it and/or had any success with doing spinach this way, too?
    I have a new box from costco and want to know if it’s ok to do this with it too, before I ruin the whole batch.
    Thanks,
    Jen

  79. Mr. salade ^^ says:

    Tear and don’t cut the salad. It adds days of usability

    1. Mr. Salade, I’m sure you are right but I don’t want to take the time to tear. When I vacuum pack the lettuce it doesn’t turn brown on the edges even when I use a knife so it saves me a lot of time. If the president ever comes to my house for dinner, you can be sure I’ll tear the lettuce. It is nicer but on a daily basis, give that knife!

  80. Good job, I haven’t used their plastic containers because they crack, or so I’m told. But can you use a FoodSaver FSMSSY0210 MealSaver Compact Vacuum-Sealing System? They are cheaper.

    1. You can use any system that has a port for the attachment. I’ve also been told you can put a jar inside of one of their large plastic containers and vacuum pack it that way. Like you said, mine cracked immediately after I bought them so I threw them away in disgust and so have been unable to try it myself.

  81. This may finally be the reason why i NEED a food saver! I have tried this before by putting the lettuce in ziploc bags, but I still worried that they would go bad by the end of the week. Great idea!

  82. booturtle says:

    This may be a dumb question but do you believe this would have the same success with spinach or mixed greens? I love salads but not lettuce. Odd, I know.

    1. Not a dumb question at all. Many have asked. I’ve experimented with both and neither spinach or mixed greens stayed fresh any longer than they would have otherwise so the answer is “no”. Romaine works the best, hands down.

  83. Ken Hassman says:

    Paula, this is one of the greatest ideas of any kind I’ve seen in years. Almost every week greens go to waste. I have a question for you. I’m a single person in a one-person house (me!). Which of the vacuum-pack machines with your recommended attachment is the least expensive. I have never had need for one before and this might be the only time I use this -weekly to set my salads up for the week (although this might open up a whole new world for me!). Greatly appreciated!
    Ken

    1. I don’t have a good answer for you. I have bought mine at Tuesday Morning and also Sam’s. Check online too. Just make sure whatever you buy has a port for an attachment which excludes some of the cheaper ones. Good luck. Paula

  84. Thanks for your idea. I, too, have followed the directions, but condensation appeared on the inside of the jars and the lettuce went limp and soggy. I’ve tried it again after making sure the leaves are throughly dr, but I haven’t used the jars yet. Can you tell me if you ever noticed any condensation and how to possibly avoid it? Thanks for the terrific idea!

    1. Hi Sandy, The only time I have had condensation is when a jar loses its seal. I always check before I screw the collar on over the flat lid. Are you using Romaine lettuce? Other lettuce such as spring mix or spinach need not apply in my experience. They just don’t hold up well. Thanks for writing. paula

  85. Absolutely brilliant!! I hated vegetables and salads, then after following the advice of a nutritionist, started having green smoothies for breakfast every day and incorporating green salads into my meals every day. I’ve lost a lot of weight doing this and now I love vegetables and salads! This awesome idea is going to make it so much easier to prepare my salads in advance – thank you! One question though… I only see lettuce in the jar, and my salad consists of more than just lettuce… so are we able to put anything else in the jars with the lettuce? Thanks again!
    Cynthia

    1. Hi Cynthia, Some have experimented with adding fresh veggies to the jar. It will usually shorten the time you can use the salad depending entirely on the vegetables you choose. For myself, this is all about saving time in the morning but still having a nutritious lunch so I make it easy and my salads are relatively simple as you read in my salad “fixins” post. If I want a sophisticated salad for dinner or company, that is a whole different deal. I still use a “jar of salad” but take time to prepare and add more interesting ingredients.

  86. Forgive me for not reading fully before the post I just did. I just finished reading everything and see now that you add the rest of the salad ‘fixins’ when you are ready to have your salad and at that time you would also open up one of the jars of lettuce. So no response needed on my previous post and I thank you again!
    Cynthia

  87. I’ve read a lot of bad press about the Foodsaver breaking easily and a lot. Has your experience been good?

    1. Matt, I’ve read the same thing. I have two machines (wanted to make sure I had a spare because of the reports) and they both still work. I’ve been doing this for 7 years. Because I use mine so much, I would be happy with a year but I’ve gotten much more than that. Maybe I’ve been lucky. Don’t know if it matters that I’ve used them mostly for glass jars and not the expensive plastic bags. On the other hand, I wouldn’t give you a dime for the canisters. They all cracked almost immediately.

  88. Thanks for the info. 🙂 Which specific machine do you recommend?

  89. The poor mans version, which I have used for year.

    1. put the salad in a clear freezer bag
    2. suck out as much air as possible (with your mouth) from the bag
    3. twist bag and tie a knot.

    This will keep your salad fresh for many days as well. The salad is not harmed and will fold spring back to full volume and freshness when bag is opened.

  90. For those who don’t live in the US, the jar attachments are available on eBay for international shipping. I bought some, and the seller had them in the mail in a very short time. That was today, so clearly to soon to comment on anything else, but I wanted to let other Australasians know they could try this.

  91. My DIL sent this to me—genius!! A couple of notes: the canisters that come with the Food Saver can seal the jars. I think the canister works better than the attachment. You simply put the jar into the canister and seal. There is now a counter top ‘wand’ device made by Food Saver that works great on the canisters.

    Also, DO NOT attempt to can bread or cake. You are inviting botulism big time. I know, I know this was all a fad and it comes back around regularly. If you want to truly can something, buy or borrow The Big Blue Book of Canning by the Ball jar company.

    Canning lids can be re-used for vacuum sealing, but not for actual canning. You can purchase reusable lids, but they must be special ordered.

  92. I just ordered the FoodSaver Lid Sealers. I can’t wait to try this. What else do you “can” with the FS Lid Sealers? Thanks for the great post!

    1. I sometimes vacuum pack flour that I don’t use often, like cake flour or self-rising. The gallon glass jars (can be hard to find) are good for that. Sometimes I also vacuum-pack homemade salad dressing and sauces i.e. stir-fry sauce. Have also done rice and cornmeal.

  93. I did this with spinach one week ago since i was going on vacation in hopes that i could save the spinach until i returned. When i returned home i found moisture in the jar and the spinach was semi wet. What is this a sign of? the jars seal had not been popped.

    1. Charles,
      Based on my experience, spinach is not well-suited for this technique. Nor is Spring Mix. Works best with a sturdy green like Romaine. My results were exactly like yours when I tried it. Paula

  94. I have 8 jars full of spinach, is it still safe to eat?

  95. Mary Welch says:

    Where would I purchase the vacuum sealer? Also, to you recommend a particular brand or size. This is all new to me.

    1. Hi Mary, Welcome! The only vacuum sealer I have used is Food Saver. They are available at Walmart, Sam’s, Costco, often at Tuesday Morning and many other places. They also have a website. You must have the wide-mouth sealer to do this and Food Saver is the only one who makes it to my knowledge and it is only available online. See link in the post on my blog. When you buy one, check to make sure it has a port to accept the wide mouth sealer. This is very important and not found on the cheaper models. Good luck. Paula

  96. Scott, Let me know how your experiment goes. FoodSaver recommends against vacuuming mushrooms but maybe in the vinaigrette, it will work.

  97. I disagree. I ran a food truck and would keep bulk, cleaned, dried lettuce in vacuumed bags for 3-4 weeks, fresh as the day it was picked. It was a great time saver. I would suck out the bags and they would look like the lettuce was getting crushed but as soon as the bag was re opened it was fluffed up like new.

  98. tricia richner says:

    Seriously?? Really? I HAVE GOT to try this. I eat salad all the time but complain and moan the whole time I am cutting lettuce – thinking there has got to be an easier way.

    !!!

    1. Hi Tricia, Seriously, it works. I didn’t complain and moan much. I just didn’t eat much salad. This method makes it so easy I have no more excuses. It’s hard to beat the convenience of grabbing a jar for your lunch bag as you dash out the door in the morning.

  99. tricia richner says:

    I actually TRIED to do this last night, as we have 5 giant bunches of lettuce from Sam’s in the fridge. Unfortunately, the attachment piece we have for our vacuum sealer was not the right size for the jars we have. Ugh. Now, I guess I’ll have to get some other vacuum piece part? Suggestions? Food saver website for the different piece of find different sized jars? Which’d be easier?

  100. Shortcinema says:

    @Tricia Richner
    It would be faster to buy different size jars and buy the new attachment later.
    An ACE or True Value hardware store will carry them in both sizes.

  101. Snow Warner Brenner says:

    Hi, I have so been looking forward to this. Couldn’t find the Food Saver attachment in my local stores so I had to order online. Came home today to finally begin. So disappointed. Followed all your instructions. Put lettuce in jars, attached lid & the attachment. hit canister & it was clearly sucking the air, waited until it was totally through & slowly tried to release the attachment from the jar…….. the lid was stuck inside the blue rubber ring of the attachment, tried 2 more times. What am I doing wrong?

  102. Hi! I came across your website via Pinterest.com and was so excited about your method that I went out and got a foodsaver, bought the attachment on Amazon, and bought Mason jars. When I sat down to start sealing, it wasn’t working. I then realized I had purchased Pint sized jars instead of Quart, is this the obvious reason it’s not sealing?

    1. Hi Jessie, The volume of the jar is not important. The important thing is the opening of the jar. If you have a wide-mouth attachment, you must use wide-mouth jars but they can be quart, half-gallon, or pint size. I don’t recommend the old jars with the regular size opening. They are harder to fill, harder to clean and harder to seal. Hope this answers your question.

      If you are having trouble sealing, make sure there are no pieces of lettuce obstructing the seal. Also check to make sure the hose to the attachment is securely and completely pushed into the port on the FoodSaver. You can also try using two flat lids inside the attachment. Of course, only one will seal and the other will fall off when you remove the attachment. Worth a try.

      p.s. A pint-size jar would never be enough lettuce for me but they make handy containers for lots of other things.

  103. Anyone tried this with just spinach? I make green smoothies 1-2 times a day and greens don’t always stay the freshest, and wilty greens make yucky smoothies.

  104. Another idea for the Seal A Meal. I cook ahead dinners or just cook double when I do cook. The put the extra in a freezer bag and seal it. When I get home I pull it from the freezer and put the sealed bag in a huge pot of boiling water DO NOT OPEN THE BAG. It reheats and does not recook the food like a microwave would. In 20 minutes or less I have a hot meal, no dirty dish from cooking and it is homemade. As good as frozen but better because it is homemade. Pasta is great to do this with because it does not get gummy and overcooked like a microwave does. With 2 of us there and most recipes being for 4 it saves us a boat load of money

  105. I was wondering what type of vacuum sealer you recommend. I am making a christmas wish list(!) and I’ve already added the mason jar attachment to my list but… I don’t anything about vacuum sealers and I have no idea where to start. I don’t want anything too expensive (probably in the $100 or less range) and I realize that eliminates choices …but I didn’t know if vacuum sealers were a you-get-what-you-pay-for type of thing. Any suggestions?

    1. SStone, the most important thing is the machine MUST have a port (small round hole about the size of a normal straw) for the attachment. Go to the FoodSaver website and browse through their selection with that in mind. Machines below 100$ should not be hard to find at places like Walmart and Tuesday morning. I plan to do a blog post in reply to your question soon, after I do some more investigation. Hope Santa Claus brings you what you want.

  106. Marjorie l Bevans says:

    This is AWESOME. I love the idea, But how can I find them in Canada. Thanks to my Daughter for sending this Infro. to me. Keep up the great work..

    1. Hi Marjorie,

      I would advise you to check out FoodSaver.com. You can order online. Paula

  107. I am a believer. I have been reading and researching for a couple of weeks, and started my Salad In A Jar journey today! For my first meal, I topped my S.I.A.J with sun-dried tomatoes, black-peppered almonds, All-Bran, and Thousand Island dressing made with yogurt. Yummy!

    1. Shayla,
      Black-peppered almonds? I think I need those in my life. Did you make those or buy them? Paula

  108. Paula,

    I purchased the black-peppered almonds. Now that I have tried them I intend to make my own; they are delicious! Here is the website as listed on the package:
    http://www.almondaccents.com/

    Best regards,
    Shayla

    1. Me again Shayla. That’s kind of a crummy website. But no matter. I’m pretty sure they carry this brand at my local Kroger so I’ll be on the lookout. Thanks so much for the tip.

  109. Marjorie l Bevans says:

    Where would you purshase a “Food Saver” from?

    1. Marjorie,
      Food Savers are everywhere–from big box stores like Costco and Sams to Walmart and Target and even some grocery stores. I have also seen them at Tuesday Morning at reduced prices. Of course, you can go online also. Food Saver has their own site but many different websites i.e. Amazon, sell them. As far as the attachment to vacuum seal large mouth mason jars, I have only seen it online. Perhaps some other reader has seen them somewhere else. When considering which one to buy, look for a port for the attachment. It’s a small hole on the front or top about the same diameter of a small drinking straw. That is the most important feature if you are going to vacuum-pack salads as I do. paula

  110. Beatrice Dukes says:

    I have found out that this will really work in plastic bags as well you fill your kitchen sink with ice water then add chopped lettuce and 1/8 cup of lemon juice let set in sink long enough for the ice to melt then put in spinner to remove water and place in plastic bags refrigeator, remove bags as you need them..

    1. Thanks for sharing Beatrice. I may try this. For now, I would rather vacuum pack and go. I don’t want to wait for the ice to melt. I also like using the jars over and over again.

      How long do your bags last? Paula

      1. Hi Beatrice, Reporting back on my experiment with your method. Last Friday, I prepared 3 bags of lettuce as I understood your instructions. (Wash lettuce and chop. Cover with water and ice and add lemon juice. When ice melted, I spun dry and stuffed ziplock bags–then placed into fridge.). I also prepared vacuum-packed jars to compare.

        This morning when I went to pack my lunch, the lettuce in the bags had begun to turn brown on the edges. The lettuce in the jars prepared at the same time looked just like it did when packed. Right now, I’m eating lettuce from a jar packed last Wednesday and there’s not one brown edge in sight.

        Beatrice, did I do something wrong? Do you chop your lettuce before soaking in ice water? Regards, Paula

  111. Mary Wilson says:

    Have you ever seeded the cucumber and tried it in the jar salad? I have found seeded cucumbers last longer just in the refrig. Just cut lengthwise and using a spoon remove the seeds.

    I am just about ready to make my salads in a jar. Got the foodsaver. Still need salad spinner, attachment and jars but with Thanksgiving tomorrow thought the foodsaver was needed. Each year I throw out a lot of leftover turkey and ham after a week. This year it will be easier to send home leftovers as well as package for the freezer. I am looking forward to making and enjoying my salads in a jar. Thanks and Happy Thanksgiving!!

    1. Hi Mary,
      I don’t eat cucumbers in my salad so have not tried that. I find that adding anything but Romaine lettuce to the jars decreases the storage time to varying degrees. Other commenters and bloggers may have a different experience. I prefer to add whatever I want when eating the salad, depending on my mood and the contents of my fridge.

      I love my Food Saver for preserving leftovers, especially if I can use glass jars. The special bags are just so expensive. However, I do use bags for cheese, since I like to buy big chunks and then cut them up in sizes appropriate for one casserole, one batch of nachos, or a pizza.
      Thanks for writing.

  112. VERY cool idea!!! LOVE the eco-friendly aspect too!!! I reuse LOTS of my glass jars after their initial purpose to store leftovers in. They are great for soups and again you have a quick way to take it on the go and w/o the worry of leakage or staining plastic (if it were in tupperware). Thanks for sharing your creative ideas!!

  113. We love this idea over here at Koopik! I like shopping at Costco or buying in bulk but find that things go bad too quickly. This is a great idea for the salad and has inspired me to try it 🙂 Salads here I come!

  114. I love this! I like getting ready for the work week on Sunday night. I could have my lunch packed for the whole week if I had one of these machines! Very cool!

  115. I’m from Germany and I just found this blog post while I was looking for tipps on getting my salad to stay fresh.
    Unfortunately I have no idea where to buy such jars with seals and this vacuum adapter within Germany. Such a pity! Would love to try your method 🙁

  116. What a super idea. Will share at Weight Watcher’s meeting. I HATE dragging
    my salad spinner so often just skip the salad.
    One tip I saw on Rachel Ray was if you’re doing spinach or something that could be more “dirty”, she chopped and washed it right inside the salad spinner, drained by lifting out the strainer and then reinserted it and spun dry. Just a quick way to to
    wash dirty produce too.
    Thanks!!

  117. tried this! first thing that ever worked for me!!!! thx for sharing it… What a great find!

  118. I love this idea too! Thank You for the tutorial on cutting Romaine luttuce. I’m looking forward to a New Year of eating more salads. You sure have made it seem easier. We start our Daniel Fast next week, yay for salads in a jar.

  119. Small suggestion: Cutting the lettuce with a metal knife is what causes the edges to brown in a day or two. I bought a plastic knife with serrated edges at Target a year ago and it works well. Tearing instead of cutting with a metal knife will work too, I think.

    I don’t have a sealer so I just use baggies and everything stays nice and fresh for 4-5 days.

  120. Leslie Robinson says:

    I’ve owned a Food Saver since the mid-80s when they came out. I’m on my 3rd one now. Couldn’t live without it. Just as you do, I seal lettuce for salad — tuna salad is terrific — open a jar 10 days after sealing, and it taste like I just made it.

    1. Haven’t tried tuna salad but why not? Thanks for the testimonial. Paula

  121. Hey just wanted to tell everyone that I cut my lettuce up and just put it in a plastic bag. It doesn’t stay there that long. It use to turn brown in a day, then….I bought a “lettuce” knife. It’s plastic and my lettuce no longer turns brown. Cheap and one of my favorite things to have, couldn’t live without it now!

  122. Becky in Fresno says:

    just wanted to say I love the idea. watched the video and got the gist of the message and technique … would like to suggest that you redo the video without the music, it is too loud and made it difficult for me to hear/understand all that you said.

    1. Thanks Becky, I will ask the guy who put it together for me to see if he can adjust it. pr

  123. Really good idea, I’m doing that with my Lava Vacuum Sealer since many years and as a small restaurant, with 20 tables this is the perfect way to prepare fresh salad a few days before and then open and serve. We also use this way of vacuum sealing with berries we use with the meals, for example strawberrys we keep fresh this way up to 1 week.

  124. Mel Florence says:

    What a grand idea, I love salad… This would probably work for chives and other herbs as well.
    I have owned my Food Saver for 15 yrs. and never knew the canister attachment was for jars also. LOL
    Very educational post!
    Thank you,
    Mel

  125. Hi Paula,
    Lava is a german manufacturer and these machines are very popular because you can use them the whole day without making a break, also they make a double or triple sealing, but I think these are only available in Europe…

    You asked me how I make this with the jars, well, very easy:
    I take the glass and close it almost completely, then I take a big vacuum-container and I put in that container the glass. After making vacuum in the container the glass is perfectly under vacuum. Lava also has many lids in different sizes that you can put on your bowls at home, the only point is, that the bowl is high enough.

  126. Love this idea.. How would you suggest keeping the lettuce fresh if you don’t work. Would you still pack it in the jars? I am a stay at home mom but would love my lettuce to last longer than a day or two.
    Thanks!

    1. Jackie, I would still use the jars because they are cheap, reusable, and protect the lettuce from being squashed. So easy to just dump in a bowl and add whatever you feel like for lunch. pr

  127. I store shredded cabbage in jars without a vacuum seal. It lasts several weeks. I do a whole head at once and always have some handy for slaw.

    1. Valia, Good idea. I just threw away a half-head of cabbage. Will have to try it. Having it already shredded would save time when the tummy is demanding food. pr

  128. Melissa J says:

    Not sure if you have discovered it but My mother gave me a plastic lettuce knife. works like a charm and no browning on lettuce from using a metal type knife.

    1. Hi Melissa,
      Thanks for the tip. I have one of those somewhere, but vacuum-packing makes the lettuce last WAY longer so I don’t need it. But, it certainly is nice for lettuce you plan to eat fairly quickly. At least, that’s my experience. Have a great day! pr

  129. Just a note about cutting up lettuce. They make lettuce knives out of a hard plastic/resin material and the edges of the lettuce do not turn brown. Part of the reason they turn brown without the plastic knife is the metals in your regular knife. You can get one of these lettuce knives anywhere now. I think I got mine at Walmart.

    1. Hi Jana,
      Thanks for writing. I’ve tried the plastic knife but it doesn’t keep the lettuce from turning brown near as long as vacuum-packing which can last up to 8-10 days. At least, that is my experience. pr

  130. Do you have to use new lids? Or will it still seal if the lids have been used before?
    Thanks! Such a great idea!!

  131. bebeupcycle says:

    I can’t thank you enough for sharing this wonderful way of preserving lettuce!! Your video was excellent. For years now I’ve separated the lettuce leaves – cleaned them separately and pulled the lettuce apart by hand – because years ago I heard taking a knife to the lettuce causes the leaves to go brown. I was very skeptical to take a knife to the lettuce like you demonstrated. Oh how much time I will be saving in the future preparing the lettuce the way you demonstrated. I just had a salad from one of the ten jars I packed full of lettuce seven days ago. The leaves were crisp and fresh like the day I purchased the lettuce (no browning at all). I will be doing this again and again and again!! I’m so happy you shared!!

    1. Bebe, I get many people who suggest using the plastic knife. I’ve tried it, but there was no advantage when I vacuum-pack. Also takes longer and I’m all about speed and convenience with this method. Thanks for your testimony. pr

  132. Is there anyway to seal them without the food saver, I dont have one, but Love this idea!

    1. Hi Jamie,
      I wish there was but I don’t know of it. You can get set up pretty cheaply, however. Have you seen this post? or this one?

  133. Lucy Richard says:

    Hi Paula,
    I found your website while looking for bread maker recipes. I have been making bread ever since with such success that people think I am a great baker,lol.

    I live in Canada and ordered the handheld FoodSaver unit withe wide mouth jar attachment from Amazon.com. This is a great company for fast service and taking returns at no extra cost.
    I tried t today and have one question. It worked so easily that I cannot believe it. I heard a distinct click after about 15 or 20 seconds, is this all it takes. Once the jars are sealed is that it? Too good to be true.
    I have my lettuce for the week in less tan 20 minutes………happy dance!

  134. SteffiniD says:

    I found this idea on Pinterest.com and have planned to do it for a while now. Well I finally bought the jars and lettuce only to realize no one seems to have the attachment in town. *sigh* So the order has been placed. I love salads and often said if I could have a salad bar in my refrigerator I would just eat salads! This will be the next best thing! I love my food saver and this will just add to the love!

  135. SteffiniD says:

    Well! Got my attachments on Thursday but could not use them until today. I used the regular iceberg lettuce this time. 2 heads cut up got me 6 jars! Took maybe 20 minutes from start to finish! I am so looking forward to having salads this week!

    I am restarting my blog and am definitely putting a link to here so that anyone one else that reads my blog will know about this wonderful idea! THANK YOU for making it easier for me to eat salads every day. You have made it possible to have a “salad bar” in my refrigerator!

  136. can you reuse the flat lid?

  137. Maeve Robertson says:

    Another way to use your Food Saver: Since I’m single, I rarely use a whole package of anything. Noodles, Stuffing mix, dried fruit, frozen vegetables, anything previously heat-sealed can be resealed with your Food Saver. I rarely use the Food Saver bags, but I do a lot of resealing with it. Works great.

    1. Hi Scarlett,

      Yes, it does worry me a little, but only as much as I worry about getting it from a bag of spinach and that’s not much. The article does say its ok to keep lettuce for a few days. That’s one reason why I never add other veggies to my jar of lettuce.  I am also careful to wash it well, which also removes most of the risk.  Thanks for writing. PR

  138. can anyone tell me if you can reuse the seals on the vaccume seal….??? i kind of figure you wouldnt be able to use them for canning but could you reuse them for resealing on vaccume packing?

  139. Larissa T. says:

    Hey, is it ok if I pin this?

  140. Jillian Burdick says:

    Can you not fill the jar with lettuce, leave a little room then on the day you are ready to eat you can add some veggies or does the jar need to be packed full of lettuce in order to work?

    1. Jillian,
      No, the jar does not need to be full. Your idea should work just fine–as long as you have the time in the morning. I had about one minute to assemble my lunch this morning and was so thankful I could grab a jar of lettuce and run. Thanks for writing.

  141. I always put fresh lemon juice in my rinse water when cutting up lettuce. The acidity will kill numerous bacteria. Will this affect the lettuce in the jar?

  142. Linda Ferrell says:

    Can you re-use the seals??

  143. Carinda Weston says:

    Love this great idea, saves money and is healthy too.

  144. Rhonda Corbett says:

    LOVE the idea! I use a vacuum sealer for tons of things. A Canning (or glass) jar keeps things colder in the frig; just a few degrees can make a huge diff in the amount of time t hings keep.

  145. Would this work for kale and other greens? Spinach, etc…? Thanks so much I love you blog. Rocio

    1. Rocio, I only do it with Romaine lettuce. Have never tried it with kale. It doesn’t help that much with spinach or spring mix in my own experience. I guess they are too delicate. pr

  146. Could you let me know if Kale, Spinach, Etc… also work well using this method? I love you blog!!! Thanks. Rocio

  147. I have heard that cutting lettuce with a plastic knife will help prevent the edges of the lettuce from turning brown. They make plastic knives just for cutting lettuce, you can find them at your grocery store.

    1. Hi Melissa,

      Funny you should mention it. I just did an experiment and posted about it. I think you’ll find it interesting.

  148. Hi, was wondering …. can you use the same technique for spagetti sauce in a jar ??? and keep it in a storage room ??

    thank you

    1. Hi Celine,
      So glad you asked. The answer is “no”, please no. This is not a canning-with-heat preservation type of thing. Perishable food that is vacuum-packed must be refrigerated as it has not been heat processed in any way. pr

  149. So can you tell me what is the best process to keep my spagetti sauce canned in masson jar and in a storage room. There are so many ways offered on the net that i don’t know which to use, it’s very confusing.
    thank you

  150. I am a manager for a popular restaurant on the east coast. It is a known fact In our Industry that it is imperative to use a plastic lettuce knife to avoid brown lettuce. Metal reacts to the lettuce causing it to brown & wilt quickly. You can buy one for under $5 online or at any kitchen store So if you don’t have a food saver, chop your lettuce with one Of these, store in a ziploc and suck the air out yourself. It’ll last just as long. Enjoy!

    1. Hi Deb, Thanks for stopping by. Have you read about my experiment with a plastic knife?

      You may not agree, but it certainly settled the issue for me. Of course, you mentioned the necessity of storing without oxygen if you want to keep it several days. But whether you use a straw and a plastic jar or some kind of mechanical vacuum-packer, the result is the same I suppose. A glass jar would keep the lettuce from being crushed. Also I wonder how the glass jar and a plastic bag would compare when it comes to length of storage. I think you have just given me an idea for another post. 🙂 Have a great day!

  151. I just found you through Beth Terry ‘My Plastic Free Life’ and so happy I did! I use wide-mouth mason jars for storing everything from dry pantry items to soups and such in the freezer. We are HUGE salad eaters (I’m vegan) so this idea is so appealing to me. I hate buying gadgets but this one seems to make good sense for us. I’ll bet a ceramic knife would work great to lessen the browning on the edges of the lettuce.

    Because are main meal is greens, I’m still looking at storing large quantities of greens in the fridge. I’m considering Progressive International Lettuce Keeper for my large heads of lettuce, chard and kale. If anyone has any experience with this product I’d love your feedback. Beth Terry recommends putting lettuce in an airtight container but not sure that’s the best method. I use Glass Lock containers for leftovers but haven’t tried them to actually store greens. Any thoughts would be greatly appreciated.

    Thanks again for this fabulous information Paula!

    1. Hi Darris,

      So glad to hear from you. You mentioned the ceramic knife and browning edges. When you vacuum-pack, it doesn’t really matter what kind of knife you use. Check out this post where I experimented with a plastic knife.

      I know plastic is different from the ceramic but think it is the same principle. Regards, Paula

  152. If you use a nylon knife instead of stainless, it will keep the edges of the lettuce from browning. Pampered Chef has one that is perfect for this application.

    1. Hi Karen,
      So glad you wrote. Several readers have suggested the same so I did an experiment and posted it here. I think you might find it interesting.

  153. I don’t have a foodsaver, but I do know that what you use to cut lettuce has an effect on it. When it is cut with a metal blade, it causes it to oxidize and turn brown. I use a lettuce knife (yes, really) that looks like a large chef’s knife, but it is made of plastic. I chop it up and toss it in a ziploc bag…lasts for about 7-10 days, 5-7 with other veggies in it, depending on how fresh they were going in.

    1. Hi Emily,
      You had better luck with your lettuce and a plastic knife than I did. I wrote about it here.

      I think you might find it interesting. Thanks for visiting. Regards, pr

  154. I love this! We’ve been getting tons of lettuce from our CSA share and it’s been tough to keep up. This is perfect, and we already have the equipment on-hand. Thanks so much for sharing.

    1. You’re welcome Shea. Wish I had CSA available to me.

  155. love the idea, but I must disagree about the sealer bags, I have been using the bags to seal my romaine and spinach for a few months now, and it works great, my lettuce stays fresh for about 9 days, and if you keep an eye on the “vacuum” process, you can override it to start sealing once you see the air is gone before bruising begins.

    1. Hi Dee, 
      Very interesting comment. But I have a question and a thought.  Are you chopping or tearing the lettuce before you vacuum-pack? Or are you storing whole leaves?

      The other problem I have with the bags is the price.  Yikes! I eat a jar of salad almost every day so the cost of bags would add up fast. Have you found a cheap place to buy them?

  156. Great idea!
    My son will be leaving for college next week, and living in a dorm. He loves salad. It’d be great to send him with some salads to enjoy.

    Question:
    I’m the only person in my house that likes avocado & I’d like get the health benefits by eating it more often. Do you know anything about vacuum sealing avocado. Have you heard of anyone/any tips for including it in a prepared/sealed salad?

    Thanks!

    1. Hi Nicole,
      I have tried vacuum-packing avocado. It will give you another day or two. But even though it doesn’t turn brown or black, the flavor is not as fresh as I would like. Just my opinion. I definitely would not add it to a jar of vacuum-packed salad unless you plan to eat it within a day or two. I feel the same about most vegetables. I wrote about it here.

  157. Had the jars already, bought lettuce and the ziploc vacuum. Found the vacuum by the ziploc bags for a little less than $5. Great way to have my salad somewhat ready to grab for lunch at work. The hilarious part of all of this is the fun my 17 yr old grandson was having with the vacuum. I may have to buy an extra one and maybe put one in his Christmas gifts.

  158. I tried this with the baby lettuces that come in a 4-pack plastic tub, washed, spun dried & packed in my qt. wide mouth jars that I have had forevvvvver! Not much chopping as they are small….I just opened the last forgotten one in the back of fridge, OMG, no wilt, no off taste, crisp….amazing, thanks! Oh, forgot to mention that this one jar has been in there 2 weeks!

  159. FYI: If you already have a air sealant machine that’s awesome – BUT, the leaves get brown because the lettuce is reacting to the metal blade of your knife! My cousin is an executive chef and I have proven his teaching many times – if you hand tear the lettuce or use a PLASTIC lettuce knife, your lettuce won’t go limp and brown on the edges immediately (eventually it does happen) you can also add a little tiny bit of water to your storage method (I love the glass jars) your lettuce will live longer also.

    1. Hi Jacki,
      Thanks for taking the time to write. Many people have suggested the plastic lettuce knife so I tried it. You can read about the experiment here. It is not necessary to have a large vacuum-pack machine. I have written about cheaper options here and here. I have not tried adding water. I do my best to get rid of it by spinning the lettuce dry before I vacuum-pack it.

      I appreciate what you’re saying about the plastic knife and it has its place, but my method is designed for those of us who want a ready-to-eat, chopped lettuce salad, ready to go into a lunch bag or a salad bowl–one that can be prepared up to a week ahead of time. Now THAT is convenience! It gives me absolutely no excuse not to eat salad for lunch, even on days I have to be at work at 7:00 in the morning and work 12 hour days.

  160. Sondra Van Huss says:

    What a great idea! I’m such a dummy since I vacuum seal just about everything I can but never thought of lettuce maybe because I use it fairly quickly. I’m going to try this. Another item that really vacuum seals well is cut avocado – lasts for days, if not weeks! I have a Weston vacuum sealer and I use the wide mouth jar sealer with it and works fine. Anyone wants to know how best to go about that just drop me an e-mail. Thanks for the great tip!!

  161. I know I should read all the questions first before I ask….but, how many times can you use the the little metal lid for the jars, not the collar, the little flat piece? I thought those “wore out” after awhile. Also, can you use the reusable little thin lid thing for this? Thanks!

  162. Question: is there anyway your “salad in a jar” concept could be used for any plastic type jars? My three and four year old usually carry the picnic bag for me and aren’t very graceful to the lunchbox. I hate using glass. Thanks!

    1. Hi Jenn,
      Sorry for the delay in answering your question. I had to think about it awhile and then it got lost in the shuffle. You can buy plastic canisters made by FoodSaver in various sizes specifically for vacuum-packing. I have tried them but they all cracked after using them a few times. The plastic just wasn’t strong enough, I guess, and they aren’t cheap. Beyond that, I don’t have a good answer. Perhaps use the glass jars and pack them in some sort of padded carrier??

  163. have lots of allergies, one being mold. I’m hyper sensitive to it! So my Dr. told me to wash all my leaf veggies and berries in a sink full if cold water with a 1/4 white vinegar. No soaking, just cut up lettuce dump it in a colander, immerge in water/vinegar, swish around a bit, pull out and pat dry with clean towel or paper towels. I store my lettuce in small Rubbermaid produce containers (the lid doesn’t seal completely and there’s a grate in the bottom) its crazy, but it laeasiest more than a week! Super crispy and fresh too. Strawberries and blue berries last much longer too, might be worth a try for you.

    1. Hi Lizr,
      It didn’t work for me–probably because I like my lettuce cut in small ready-to-eat pieces. But if it works for you, that’s great. Thanks so much for writing.

  164. Will this method work for keeping fresh vegtables fresh longer in the fridge as well? Things like broccoli?

    1. Jaime,
      Works better for some than others. I don’t know about broccoli but perhaps worth a try. I do not add them to my lettuce. See this post.

  165. Wow what a great idea! I have been wanting to eat healthier, and I hate throwing out that browned lettuce. I will dust of my vacuum sealer !!

  166. I bet you could put “other” veggies in the bottom of the jars and then put the lettuce on top, for it to stay fresher?

    1. Hi Connie,
      You could add other veggies but most of them will not last as long as Romaine lettuce so your storage time will likely be decreased.

  167. I was wondering what size your mason jars are and also where you buy them from??????

    1. I use wide-mouth quart jars. I’ve had them forever so don’t remember where I got them, but you can buy them at Walmart, large grocery stores, some kitchen stores and also, hardware stores–and probably online.

  168. Hi Paula, I love the idea and want to try it!! I alread have a vaccum machine where I can attach a hose and a jar sealer. My question is how you get the lids off the mason jars without piercing them?

  169. Coralie Oliveira says:

    What is the best size jar. The 32 oz. or double that size. I was thinking a quart size for one day..

    1. Coralie,
      I use the quart-size jars.

  170. This works with a wine pump, too, and they’re pretty cheap. I punched a nail hole in the Mason lid and covered it with electrical tape, just as you said. Then I cut a gasket out of an old silicone hot pad to form an air-tight seal between the wine pump and the lid. Put the lid on the jar with tape on the hole, lay down the gasket, then pump out the air. You can tell if it worked because the tape will be sucked into the hole a little bit. Thanks for this great idea!

    http://www.target.com/p/oneida-vacuum-pump-wine-saver/-/A-11044778?reco=Rec|pdp|11044778|ClickCP|item_page.vertical_1&lnk=Rec|pdp|ClickCP|item_page.vertical_1

  171. Do you have to use new lids every time?

  172. Glenda Williams says:

    Love the idea of salad in a jar but can you use the same flat lids over and over, or do you have to buy new ones each time.Thanks

  173. One question: Can you reuse the flat lids? I know when you can somthing you can not reuse the flat lid. I really want to try this. Thanks for your help.

  174. You can wash and spin the lettuce. Then I air dry it. I put the lettuce in a ziploc bags and squeeze out as much air as I can. It keeps the lettuce nice for at least a week.

    1. Deb,
      I have used your suggestion and it works great. However, I like my lettuce in small bite-size pieces–ready to eat instantly, especially when packing a lunch. So I needed a way to store chopped lettuce for a week. You might find the following post interesting.

  175. Awesome info thanks! O noted where you said this wont work for leafy greens. I’d seen on pintrest that for leafy greens put them in a bag, let all of the air out of the bag then blow some air(carbon) into the bag then seal it with a twisty tie. I’ve not tried it yet, so im mot sure if it works, but I though I’d pass it on!

    1. Hi Ashley,
      I’ve seen that suggestion before and tried it myself. Didn’t really work for me but perhaps I did something wrong. Hope it works for you. pr

  176. Do you need to vacuum seal jars ? I am asking because I don’t have one.

    1. Melissa, Yes, if you want chopped lettuce and you want them to last more than a day or two. Check out these posts for an inexpensive way to try out the process.

  177. Kathy Matthews says:

    Thank you! Great idea.

    Kathy M.

  178. I’d like to see low sugar recipes. Not low fat. I have hypoglycemiamia, and try to watch my sugar intake. Thanks. Love the salad in a jar idea!

  179. mixaleena says:

    We make the salads in a jar as well…we put dressing on the bottom, layer our veggies (zucchini, cucumber, tomato) then lettuce, then toppings (we have done: cheese, raisins, lunchmeat). I would not suggest eggs or broccoli/cauliflower. We do not vacuum seal and ours have lasted 7-10 days and still been fresh. I use a metal knife to cut everything…so I don’t know. But we do it and it works for us!
    I just made mine today with 2 pkg romaine hearts, 1 1/2 cucumbers, 16oz grape tomatoes and 1 zucchini and it made (8) qt size and (8) pt size.

  180. mixaleena says:

    Let me clarify. We usually go through our salads within 4-5 days. But we have in the past had them last 7-10. Just want to make sure that you know it isn’t the norm. But if you are okay with 4-5 days then you can do this without a sealer…that was my point! =) Thanks!

    1. Hi Mixaleena,
      Your salads sound delicious. Thanks for the clarification on the time. I have not have such good luck but it depends a lot on how fresh your produce is going in. I notice you say you do not vacuum seal them. I definitely recommend you do NOT vacuum-pack when you add lots of those ingredients. It can get ugly. One question. Do you cut your lettuce or leave it in pretty big pieces? I like to cut my lettuce ahead of time and find that vacuum-packing makes a HUGE difference. You might find the following posts interesting. Also this one. Thanks so much for writing.

  181. mixaleena says:

    Everything is cut except for the grape tomatoes. I use romaine lettuce hearts and chop them about 1″ thick all the way up the heart. I actually cut them up today in about 1/4″ ‘slices’ so to speak (kind of like shredded lettuce), so we shall see how long those last! Of course, this time I only made enough for four days, so that experiment won’t work very well! I was actually browsing to see if anyone had tried pasta or rice in their salads. We have used lunchmeat, but again that isn’t something you want for 7-9 days…more like a normal workweek (4-5) days. =)

  182. mixaleena says:

    Everything is cut except for the grape tomatoes. I use romaine lettuce hearts and chop them about 1″ thick all the way up the heart. I actually cut them up today in about 1/4″ ‘slices’ so to speak (kind of like shredded lettuce), so we shall see how long those last! Of course, this time I only made enough for four days, so that experiment won’t work very well! I was actually browsing to see if anyone had tried pasta or rice in their salads. We have used lunchmeat, but again that isn’t something you want for 7-9 days…more like a normal workweek (4-5) days. =) and no, I don’t have a sealer.

    1. Hi Mixaleena,
      Very interesting the way you make your salad and it all sounds very yummy. I think we are playing two different games here but each has its own merit. Thanks so much for writing.

  183. I just started doing this: put any dressing (if you are using) at the bottom of the jar, then layer beans and/or veggies that can stand marinating all day (I use red peppers, carrots, celery), then put in the lettuce. I make 3 at a time, and they last several days (once, I forgot to take one of mine for lunch, and didn’t get to it until a week after I made it. It was still good: even the lettuce was fresh and crisp.

  184. Kerstin Bremer says:

    Hi, i thank you so much!!!
    I saw your idea by printerest and visit your site. The idea is so great! I bought the Handheld Vacuum-Pack Machine and some jars by amazon.com (because i didn´t get in germany). Now i´m so happy! ♥ Everyday a fresh salad. Thank YOU! ♥

    Greetings from Germany,
    Kerstin

  185. Came across your site searching for a bread maker roll recipe. Love all your recipes and will certainly bookmark so I will check your site regularly. The salad in a jar is a fantastic idea. Have everything I need except the Romaine and will get that on my next shopping trip. Even though I’m retired with supposedly all the time in the world, I like to make a few batches of recipes and store. Hey, you already have everything out, so make the most of it. Got to tell my daughter and sister about you. Thanks a bunch…(no pun intended)

  186. I would like to add a comment regarding preparing vegetables as a safety precaution to bacteria. You have to trust me on this:
    * pull or cut each leaf off of the head of lettuce.
    * place the leaves in a large glass or tupperware bowl
    * fill the bowl with cold tap water
    * add approximately 1 TBSP of regular salt to the water/leaves
    * using your hands (washed, of course), move the leaves around in
    the salty water for approximately 30 sec.
    * allow the leaaves to soak in the salty water mixture for about 15-30
    minutes – either/or.
    * pour leaves in collinder and rinse with cold tap water.
    * put leaves in a clean pillowcase and tie it up with a knot.
    * place the pillowcase in your washing machine on the spin cycle.
    * chop up your leaves and then place in a storage bowl with the lid.
    * the leaves will stay fresh and crunch for a much longer time.

    I was afraid that the salty water would make my lettuce leaves mushy! NOT AT ALL!!! The leaves are so crunchy and you can eat your salad without the fear of bacteria, and/or bugs.

  187. Carol Dunbar says:

    Absolutely brilliant! Am always looking to eat better and save time. For me it means more time with the Gypsy Vanners.

  188. I just made a salad with chopped romanie that had been sealed in a jar since Mar 13! It looked & tasted like I just bought it. Granted I did not open the jar every day, I only opened & resealed it about 3-4 times. Thank you so much for the wonderful tip!

  189. Donna Luce says:

    Does the salad have to be completely dry?

    1. Hi Donna,
      No. I spin it in a salad spinner a time or two to remove the excess moisture.

  190. I found your video on pinterest and I’m excited to start making salads in jars. 🙂 I read your other post about what you add to your salads and I noticed you carry the stuff separately from your lettuce. I like shredded carrots in mine and was curious if I could shred them with the lettuce and add them before I seal the jars… do you think that would work or would it probably ruin the lettuce? Thanks.

  191. Do you think this would work with fresh fruit? Making a fruit salad instead of a green salad?

    1. Rachel,
      Every type of fruit reacts differently to vacuum-packing. It can also vary according the the freshness of the fruit at the time you make the salad. In my experience, you don’t buy that much extra time by vacuum-packing most fruits. When it comes to fresh produce, I pretty much stick to Romaine lettuce. See this post for more about my philosphy.

  192. I’ve been sealing mason jars for years. For some items the larger half-gallon jars work much better and would be a great choice for lettuce that you eat at home. I had to order mine on-line but in recent years they have become available locally. We vacuum all of the berries, placing a folded paper towel in the bottom. They keep for weeks. My favorite use is for cherries and grapes. They stay nice and crisp forever but will get an acid flavor if kept too long. Pineapple also stays great for about two weeks. If you’re hesitating because of the price I can promise it will pay for itself in no time. Just think… no more moldy cheese!

  193. I do not have a food saver, so I was looking for a cost effective way to do this. I came across this YouTube video! Check it out if you too are looking for an alternative way to vacuum seal wide-mouth mason jars!

    http://m.youtube.com/watch?v=lGfUwEf810g

    1. Hi Nica,
      You might enjoy these posts . I wrote some time ago giving alternate ways to vacuum pack.

  194. I have been using my Food Saver canisters to store lettuce. I have not had much luck. The lettuce becomes soggy no matter how many times I spin it. Even with paper towels in the canister it does not last more than a few days. Could it be the type of lettuce I am using? I ise a loose leaf green and/or red lettuce. I have noticed the red goes bad first. Maybe I should keep them separate when storing? Ayway, I would appreciate any advice.

    1. Hi Szalotta,

      I have a couple ideas. First, the loose leaf lettuce is not suited for vacuum-packing, as you have figured out. It is too fragile. Romaine and Radicchio work best. Spinach and spring mix are also too fragile.

      I do not care for the Food Saver Canisters because all of mine developed hairline cracks at the bottom very quickly after I bought them. Of course, this means the seal is broken. I prefer Mason jars. You can use a large canister to vacuum-pack Mason jars inside of them. I demonstrate how on one of my videos.

      Glad you asked.

  195. Hi,
    Thanks for sharing! I am a Sam’s club shopper and buy a “box” of Baby Spring Mix. I noticed you made a comment about it not working, but couldn’t find the further explanation. Could you please elaborate? 😉
    Thanx!

    1. Suzanne,
      Spring mix is too delicate for vacuum-packing. Same for spinach. That’s why I recommend romaine exclusively. See this post.

  196. I’ve had a FoodSaver for years and love it, but have never done lettuce before. Romaine is a hearty lettuce and keeps much longer than many of the other varieties, even without food saving. I was wondering if you’ve ever tried food saving any of the pre-washed bagged mixes? (Romaine, Arugula, Cabbage, Carrots, etc) We love those mixes, but I stopped buying them because they would start getting limp and turning to mush in less than a week. At first I thought my refrigerator setting might be too cold and it was freezing the lettuce. But I have two refrigerators and this was happening in both of them. When I switched to regular lettuce (other than mixes) I didn’t have this problem. So I was wondering if I washed and spun dry the bagged mixed and then food saved them, if they would last longer? Really enjoy your website and all the great comments from everyone.

    1. Hi Shirley,
      Yes, Romaine keeps quite awhile even if you don’t vacuum-pack it. However, I want it chopped and ready to eat because I have zero time to prepare lunch and would not eat a salad if I had to do anything more than pour it out of a jar. Of course, once the lettuce is chopped, it isn’t long before the edges turn brown, even if you use a plastic knife or tear it by hand. That’s why I love to vacuum-pack.

      Regarding the pre-washed mixes: I haven’t messed with those much because I had so much trouble finding fresh bags of lettuce. How well they vacuum pack probably depends on the original freshness and also, the other ingredients besides romaine. If they are not as sturdy, they may go bad sooner and ruin the whole salad. Some veggies put off a gas when vacuum-packed that makes them spoil. I would be suspicious of cabbage but have not really tried it. It’s worth a try if you really like those mixes. Thanks for writing.

  197. I think using the vacuum seal bags to make salads would take a lot less room in the refrigerator and would last just as long as they would in the jar.no washing jars just throw bag away when your done eating the salad. you could take all your extra toppings and then add them to bag when you are ready to eat the salad. then shake the bag and then dump onto plate.then By shaking it in the bag all the lettuce will get coated and you will use less dressing then just pouring it on the salad.

  198. So you are essentially canning the lettuce for 7-9 days. A cheaper way to do this would be to seal the jars with a pot of boiling water.

    1. Aja,
      Please read again! This is not a canning procedure–unless you like boiled lettuce in your salad.

  199. Cynthia W. says:

    I’ve had a foodsaver for years and love it. I’m also a canner, but had never heard of the wide mouth sealing attachment. A few weeks ago on a whim after a trip to Costco I shoved a head of lettuce into a bag and sealed it. It was irreversibly squished, of course. Imagine my surprise tonight upon stumbling onto this post! Thank you so much for sharing. I can’t wait to try this.

    1. Cynthia,
      I have had quite a few people ask me about using the bags. Your experience pretty much answers that question.

  200. I am still waiting to see an actual salad. This is just cut up lettuce that you plan on eating with salad dressing. Where is the actual salad? I wash lettuce and put it in a plastic bag each week, with a couple of paper towels on each side. That easily lasts 7+ days as well.

    1. Nancy,
      Yes, you have a valid point. I would probably name this all differently if I was doing it over, but very difficult to change at this point. I know that whole lettuce leaves will last a long time using the process you describe. Call me lazy, but when I’m ready to eat lunch, I usually grab the most convenient thing I can that requires the least preparation. Even tearing or chopping lettuce takes more time than I want to spend, especially if I’m packing a lunch at 5:30 or 6:00 in the morning (I work in healthcare so we start early.) On the other hand, opening a jar of vacuum-packed CHOPPED lettuce with no brown edges takes approximately 1 second so that’s what I do, almost every single day. The fact that they can last up to 9-10 days (depending on the freshness of the romaine I am able to buy) is just icing on the cake.

      We all have different lifestyles and priorities. I’m only sharing this method as a possibility for those whose current method for trying to eat more salad doesn’t work. As you know, many people with good intentions buy lots of fresh lettuce, don’t feel like fixing it because they have no time and/or energy, so it turns brown and goes bad in the fridge. They have not only wasted money, but also have probably not made other healthy food choices.

      Thanks so much for sharing your method.

  201. I thought that old time Chef, Graham Kerr, I think was his name, said that you should never cut any lettuce, but rather tear it apart by hand to prevent the brown edges. I always tear my lettuce, but have never tried to keep it for extended time.

    1. Charlie,
      I’ve always heard the same thing. However, if you vacuum-pack lettuce according to my method, it doesn’t matter because there is no oxygen to turn the edges brown whether you cut or tear them. With the amount of lettuce I eat every day, there’s no way I’m going to be tearing my lettuce anytime soon.

  202. I use old tomato sauce jars with the one lid. It doesn’t separate like urs….how can I seal it??

    1. I do not know of a way to seal one piece lids at home. However, the two piece lids often fit old tomato sauce jars. You might try it and see.

  203. Judy Tolen says:

    I loved reading about salad in a jar. Very unique idea! However, I do a similar thing in plastic Rubbermaid containers for the whole week and my lettuce AND VEGETABLES stay fresh. I don’t own a food sealing machine.
    I also use hearts of romaine lettuce. It has more body then other lettuces so it stays fresher longer. I also wash and chop my romaine lettuce, then put it through the salad spinner to remove excess water. After doing that I fill my plastic Rubbermaid containers with the desired amount of lettuce, then add all my vegetable, cheese toppings. I store the salads in the refrigerator and just grab a container of salad and some salad dressing on my way out the door to work. Unlike salad in a jar, I don’t also have to pick out and pack my toppings everyday since my salads are completely pre-made. By the way, it takes me less than an hour to assemble 10 salads (five for me and five for my husband) for the week. I do this on the weekend when I have more time. Its been working great so give it a try!

    1. Hi Judy,
      Thanks for sharing. We all have to find what works best for us. I tried an experiment comparing vacuum-packed with “non-vaccuum-packed” lettuce and the vacuum-packed was the winner. It works for me. Glad you have a good system, too.

  204. she crafty says:

    A fantastic idea!!! Is there any way of using a household vacuum cleaner to suck out the air, as in the plastic storage bags for clothes?
    Thank you so much for your handy tip.

    1. A vacuum cleaner hose isn’t going to have the seal needed to use with the jar attachment needed to vaccuum-seal a glass jar.

  205. Paula,

    How do I use the lids over and over? Some suggest putting a hole in lid and then covering up with tape. How do you prevent your lids from bending?

    1. Hi Rebecca,
      The only time you need to put a hole in the lid and cover with tape is when you use the method described here to vacuum pack. If you use the method described in this post, you do not need to poke a whole. You shouldn’t have trouble not bending the lids if you will use a pop-top type of bottle opener to open your vacuum-packed jars.

  206. What size jars are they and where did you get them from. I live in UK and cannot find them anywhere…. thanks

  207. kentuckylady717 says:

    What a great idea…..I need to try this….I have lettuce now in a jar in fridge, but I didn’t go it your way….I just washed it, drained it well and put in jars and it has stayed over a week…..I used a plastic knife to keep lettuce from turning brown, so they say….and it did for several days, but then it still turned brown….but not as bad as cutting it with steel knife…..

  208. I find using a plastic knife or lettuce knife helps with the browning process you dont put your lettuce on the sink so why would you cut with a metal knife. Just sayin. I dont have a vacuuum sealer. YET!

    1. Hi Suzee,

      I did an experiment with the plastic knife vs. vacuum-packing lettuce. You might find it interesting.

  209. Charles Jenkins says:

    Paula, Thanks so much for the info about lettuce n a jar. As u can see I’m a dude and not very good n the kitchen. I’m trying to learn as much as I can and your info really helps. I’m now a bachelor and guess I’m gonna buy a vacuum machine. U are defiantly a smart person. Thanks again

  210. Is it possible to add tomatoes into the jar also and then seal it? Would the tomatoes stay good?

    1. Kathy,
      I do not like tomatoes after they have been refrigerated. So for me, it’s an absolute “no.” They also will not stay good very long once sliced. You can always try it. Probably wouldn’t matter too much if you eat in a day or two but I prefer not to add anything to my salad so the jars can last at least a week or more.

  211. Patricia Eriksen says:

    It’s best to wash lettuce in water …not running water.
    Cut off core…drop in water and move it around. Picking it up and down.
    The dirt will fall to the bottom. Then rinse it off. Dry off in towel. You can leave it in damp towel until you use it.

  212. Surly Cerley says:

    I can’t get the vacuum seal off! I have tried everything I know but I can tell I am going to ruin the top if I keep forcing implements up against the sealed lid edge. Please, someone help!

    1. Hi Surly,
      Are you talking about the flat lid that you have vacuum-sealed on top of a quart jar? It is ok to use an old-fashioned bottle opener to get the lid off. Just be careful not to bend the lid in the process.

    2. Deborah S Zarzyczny says:

      @Surly Cerley, punch a hole in the lid and cover with electrical tap. It just needs to be a small hole. When you want to open the jar, just peel the tape. The vacuum is gone and the lid can be pulled off by hand.

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  218. Suhana Morgan says:

    5 stars
    Great house making salad tips. I Appreciate your hard work. It will be helpful for every food lover and housekeeper. By the blessing of almighty, you did not stop writing those beautiful recipes. It helps me more.

  219. Bonnie Smith says:

    5 stars
    A terrific idea for advance salad prep. I eat and enjoy so much more salad this way. Thanks, Paula!

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  221. I’ll have to give this a try; though I’ve lived by a lettuce rule since my 7th grade home school teacher taught it was “never cut lettuce with a knife, it causes it to brown, tear it instead”.

    1. Mary, thanks for writing. Your teacher’s comment about the knife made me smile. I heard the same thing. Obviously, she did not know about vacuum-packing lettuce. It is probably still a good idea if you are making a salad to eat the same day, and it will be a while before you eat the salad. There has to be time for oxidation to happen. Vacuum-packing short-circuits the whole oxidation process.

  222. I tried the lettuce in a mason jar and it works like a charm to keep lettuce crispy and lasting longer.

    1. It sure does! Hope you enjoy the convenience now that you did a little prep.

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