Substitute for Arugula

Substitute for Arugula
Substitute for Arugula

Arugula is a green vegetable that is under the family Brassicaceae. This leafy green has a bitter taste and is used for almost everything, like pizza, sandwiches, salads, sauces, and soups. Arugula has a pepper taste, making it lovely for people to use in their dishes.

Besides the above, Arugula has enough health benefits like reducing cancer risk, heart disease, and diabetes. It also contains important nutrients like calcium, potassium, and vitamins K and C. it comes from America and is sometimes called “Rocket”. Although not everyone loves arugula because of its bitter and pepper taste, it could come to a point where it would not be available, and you would need substitutes. A few substitutes are;

1. Frisee

Frisee or curved endive is a pale green leaf with a bitter taste and can be used as a substitute for arugula. Frisee is used for our salads and soups but it doesn’t have the bitter taste as arugula, which is bitterer.

Frisee contains vitamins A and K, which give it antioxidant properties and is good for the body. It is also low in calories, making it very helpful for persons suffering from obesity and diabetes.


Frisee endive is a good substitute for arugula because it is green and has a slightly bitter taste. The presence of low calorie and vitamins makes it good to consume.

2. Watercress

Watercress is an aquatic green vegetable that belongs to the family Brassicaceae. This leaf is highly nutritious and can be used to prepare food from pizza, soup, salad, and others.

Watercress is a good substitute for arugula as it has a bitter, spicy, or peeper taste which makes it so sumptuous when used for our soups. It also contains essential nutrients like vitamin K and minerals. Its health benefits include; prevention of cancer and improving heart health.


Watercress is a good substitute for arugula and has the same bitter and pepper taste as the former. Its health benefits are something to adore.

3. Radicchio

Radicchio is another unique vegetable that can be used as a substitute for arugula. It is kind of different from the rest because it is red, which makes it rich in antioxidants.

Radicchio also has pepper and bitter taste as arugula and is highly recommended for your pizza, salad, and major sauces. This vegetable helps to improve your digestive system, heart health, and strong bones.


Radicchio has a red wine color and a good substitute for arugula as it also has a bitter and pepper taste with nice health benefits.

4. Escarole

Escarole is another beautiful and delicious substitute for arugula. This green vegetable is very edible but doesn’t have a bitter taste as the above 3 vegetables. Escarole contains important nutrients like Vitamin A and K which makes it low in calories and improves the flow of blood in the heart.

Escarole has a nice taste and very good for salads, soups, stews, and pizzas.


Escarole is highly beneficial in the flow of blood in the heart. It has a slightly bitter and sweet taste and very good to prepare soups and stew.

5. Baby spinach

Of course, baby spinach is another good substitute for arugula. Although it doesn’t have that pepper taste like arugula and but can be used as a recipe for salads and soups.

Baby spinach is so sweet and of a good scent. It contains important nutrients like calcium, iron, folic acid, and a good source of vitamins A and K.

It is good for the eyes and in reducing blood pressure. It also helps in the prevention of cancer.


Baby spinach is a good substitute for arugula and has a nice taste for your soups and salads. It is highly recommended for good eyesight and prevention of cancer.

Facts Summary Table

Substitute Flavor Profile Texture Best Used In Source
Frisee Bitter, slightly nutty Crisp, curly leaves Salads, garnishes Leafy green vegetable
Watercress Peppery, slightly tangy Tender stems and leaves Salads, sandwiches, garnishes Aquatic plant
Radicchio Bitter, slightly spicy Crunchy leaves Salads, grilling, roasting Leafy vegetable
Escarole Mildly bitter, slightly sweet Tender leaves Salads, soups, sautéing Leafy green vegetable
Baby Spinach Mild, slightly earthy Tender leaves Salads, smoothies, sandwiches Young spinach leaves


What can be used in place of Arugula?

If you don’t have arugula, you can consider using baby spinach, watercress, or even a mix of different salad greens as a substitute.

What vegetables are similar to Arugula?

Watercress and mustard greens have a similar peppery taste to arugula, making them good alternatives.

Can you replace arugula with spinach?

Yes, you can replace arugula with spinach in many recipes. Spinach has a milder taste but can provide a similar leafy green base.

What lettuce tastes like Arugula?

Lettuces like baby kale or mizuna have slightly similar flavors to arugula, with a hint of peppery and earthy taste. While not an exact match, they can offer a similar culinary experience.


Arugula is a leafy green vegetable that has a peppery flavor. It is often used in salads, sandwiches, and pizzas. If you are looking for a substitute for arugula, many good options are available. Some good substitutes include watercress, spinach, dandelion greens, and baby kale. The best substitute for you will depend on the flavor and texture of the dish you are making.

Ji Eun Kim

Written by Ji Eun Kim

Don't listen to anyone who says you can't be vegan and do well in sports and fitness. Vegans can do great, look good, and feel awesome!

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