“Rocket” Science: Selecting and Serving Arugula

With a sharp, distinct peppery flavor, arugula is a great choice for dishes that highlight greens. Easy to prepare and surprisingly flexible in its culinary capacity, arugula will more than earn its spot on your menu. Here are a few tips to help choose the best arugula no matter the dish!

  • There are two main types of arugula. Besides the standard arugula, there is a varietal known as “wild arugula” that is botanically different from cultivated arugula. Though more uncommon, wild arugula can be found in temperate regions from spring through fall. Comparatively, wild arugula has an intense, more pronounced flavor, as well as a stronger aroma.
  • When selecting cultivated arugula, be aware of leaf size. Generally, loose leaf arugula will contain smaller leaves than arugula sold in bunches. Different leaf sizes are better suited to different dishes. Smaller leaves typically have a milder taste, making them ideal served raw. Larger leaves, on the other hand, have a stronger taste that maintains its quality after cooking.
  • Besides serving it raw, arugula can be used in ways you might not expect! Whether you’re in the mood for arugula pesto, chilled soup, or pizza, arugula brings along its refined flavor.
    • Pro Tip: When cooking with arugula, treat it similarly to how you would treat spinach. Quick cook times are key!