If you’ve done any reading on arugula, you’ve heard how scrumptious and spicy it is. But one thing you might not be sure of is if arugula needs to be cooked.
We’re here to answer that question for you today. We’ll be talking about the merits of cooking arugula, and if you absolutely have to cook it before eating it.
Quick Answer: Does Arugula Need to be Cooked?
No. Arugula is safe to eat either raw or cooked. It’s a matter of personal preference which way you choose to eat it.
If you’d like to know more about its flavor, you can learn more about the taste here.
What Happens When You Cook Arugula?
When it’s uncooked, arugula has an almost spiny look. Each leaf has distinct lobes, with the largest and roundest lobe on the end. They look very similar to dandelion leaves.
When you cook them, they lose a lot of this definition. They get a shiny look, and the large lobes shrivel a little bit.
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The appearance isn’t all that changes, though. Arugula usually has a bitter or spicy taste to it, and this flavor mellows out a bit once it’s been cooked. For that reason, some people actually prefer arugula cooked as opposed to raw.
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Uses for Cooked and Uncooked Arugula
Arugula is a versatile veggie. It can be used in a ton of recipes, either raw or uncooked.
Let’s take a look at what kinds of uses it has in either form.
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Cooked arugula wilts and becomes less bitter. It also gets moist, even potentially slimy if you cook it too much.
You can choose to eat it by itself this way if you would like, but we think this texture probably wouldn’t be good in a salad with a mix of raw veggies. However, it could work great in a pasta or even a soup.
You could potentially even put it in a smoothie, where the texture doesn’t matter as much, since it’s going to be blended up, anyway.
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There are tons of uses for uncooked arugula, but the most popular purpose is for salads. The main reason for this is arugula’s unique peppery taste. It adds a nice twist to any uninteresting salad.
However, arugula smoothies are pretty common, too. We also think it would make a tasty garnish on top of a vegan pizza.
Just like with cooked arugula, you could blend it for use in a soup, as well.
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One of the greatest things about arugula is its flexibility. Cooked or uncooked, it has unique uses and flavors to bring to your kitchen table. There are so many recipes out there to try with this spicy and interesting vegetable.
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