how many heads of lettuce do we need to feed 20 people?

i'm growing butter lettuce

lydia mcknight


Cav February 8, 2016
20. That way everyone gets their own lettuce.
Nancy February 8, 2016
Help us answer you better by providing a little more info...what's your main dish? in what dish is lettuce being used and how?
Also, you can overbuy if you're worried about running out and have options for afterwards: an exchange-friendly grocery store, send home extras as care packages or are able to use the lettuce in your own kitchen after the event.
Nancy February 8, 2016
PS If it's part of salad, you may need as few as 6 heads. Have a look at these quantity recipes.
Nancy February 10, 2016
Yes read your question more closely. You grow the lettuce, so no supply worries.
Just prep & planning.

Voted the Best Reply!

702551 February 10, 2016
Actually, she has more supply concerns by growing the lettuce herself.

She has to worry about sufficient crop size, abnormal growing conditions, crop damage from a variety of factors including frost, heat, and pests. You don't just plant some seeds and come back later a few months for harvest; if she goes away for a couple of weeks, she probably needs to find someone to look after her plants.

Also, if she is planning on serving this lettuce on a particular day, she wants to time her planting so the lettuces reach the desired maturity by the event date.

By going to the grocery store, you basically reduce your supply concerns to zero. You just buy what you need. You take your vacation and don't worry about what the farmer is doing. It just shows up in the refrigerated cases in the produce aisle.

Lydia has a host of things to worry about by growing her own lettuce.

A big part of the reason why we have grocery stores, commercial growing operators, and produce distribution is to reduce supply concerns.

She will spend *FAR* more time and attention tending to her lettuce plants than planning, prepping, and assembling her salad.
702551 February 8, 2016
It's worth pointing out that there are dozens of butter lettuce cultivars. I'm sure some were bred for large size, that's pretty typical of the commercial agriculture industry in general (not just lettuce growers).

Some varieties tend to be smaller. Of course, when in the growing stage the lettuce is harvested makes a difference.

If you are planning on serving these on a particular day, you will have make a guess on the growth rate of your crop and put a few extras in the ground just in case they grow slowly. You might also consider staggering the planting over a week or two to have lettuce heads at different points of maturity. That would compensate for an unusually fast growing season. Don't forget, Mother Nature always bats last.

Ultimately, you will be the one who answers the question based on the butter lettuce variety(ies) you plant and when you harvest them.
foodndrink February 8, 2016
Depends on the size, type and presentation. A quarter wedge salad would make it 5 heads, You can probably get 5-6 out of each head so 4. If you are just using it as a cup, then many more. What type of salad are you making?
702551 February 8, 2016
I see butter lettuce heads in all sizes at my town's farmers market.

A small one might serve 2-3, a large one might serve 4-6 assuming the salad is a side dish -- which is how I eat salad (never as a main course).
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