Miner’s Lettuce

I found a patch of miner’s lettuce while hiking yesterday. It’s a native plant to the Western U.S. but probably more often found on the coast. I was surprised to see it in the foothills. Super high in Vitamin C, like it’s relatives purslane and mountain sorrel, miner’s lettuce got it’s name because the California gold miners ate it to prevent scurvy & rickets. Miner’s lettuce is also high in Vitamin A and also iron!

What does it taste like, you may wonder. Well, it tastes to me like mountain sorrel. It’s a bit sour, like a citrus fruit, and many call mountain sorrel “sour grass.” Miner’s lettuce is not spicy like a nasturtium leaf, but it is flat and rounded like one.

You can add it to salads, cook it like spinach *** Edit: After reading Michael’s comment below and spending more time with miner’s lettuce, I think it might be wise to stick with eating it raw *** , or just eat it raw while you are hiking to impress your friends.

2 thoughts on “Miner’s Lettuce

  1. There’s actually a lot of miner’s lettuce growing in our backyard here (in Portland). We use it in salads, but I’ve never tried cooking it – I think it would likely turn to mush.

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