The Best Substitute For Fresh Cilantro: Herb Hacks Unleashed
The Best Substitute For Fresh Cilantro: Herb Hacks Unleashed

The Best Substitute For Fresh Cilantro: Herb Hacks Unleashed

With the hack of 10 best Cilantro substitutes, it can be a good way to replace it in your kitchen rack. Even if you are allergic to cilantro or you love it but it’s unavailable at your place, immediate replacements can ensure that you are not compromising on the taste of your favorite food!

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Fresh cilantro has a diverse fan base. Some people completely hate it while others cannot resist its fresh aroma. In both situations, the absence of this herb generates a need to get a substitute for fresh Cilantro!

What does Fresh Cilantro mean?

Cilantro belongs to the carrot family. Another name for it is Chinese Parsley and also commonly known in Asian countries as Coriander. Fresh Cilantro is the stalks and leaves that are plucked from Coriander plants. Its pungent smell is the reason why some people are very fond of it and include it in every cuisine. Especially in the Caribbean, Asian and Mexican countries, its applications are immensely done. Talking about its appearance, Cilantro leaves look more like the Italian Parsley.

Fresh Cilantro is a prominent herb popularly added to recipes globally. The exclusive taste and aroma although it has no comparison still you can search substitutes for fresh Cilantro.

Some facts about fresh Cilantro!

  • It is unusual to know this but the liking or disliking to Cilantro is genetic.
  • After studying some traits of people who like or dislike Cilantro, it was striking that this herb allures some of them while others are hesitant about its presence in any recipe.
  • In short, either this herb is either liked or hated. It is a popular garnishing element in most of the recipes.
  • Many recipes and dishes are incomplete without Cilantro addition like soups, salsas, meat, and stews.
  • Fresh Cilantro gives an exotic taste to all types of Indian and Latin American dishes.
  • Cilantro acquires its name from Coriandrum Sativum which belongs to the Apiaceae herb family. It is a native herb to countries of South Europe and Southwest Asia.
  • Seeds of Cilantro are known as Coriander and have many culinary uses. Powdered Cilantro is the main spice at many places as people love to relish its fresh flavor and it adds a zest to any recipe.
Substitute For Fresh Cilantro
Many recipes and dishes are incomplete without Cilantro

However, many people still have a dislike to it and may need to search for a substitute for fresh Cilantro. Also, there might be instances when you wish to use this spice but are not getting it around. In such a scenario, getting knowledge about closely related substitutes can be highly beneficial.

Scientific causes to dislike fresh Cilantro

Well, there is some positive aspect to this angle. There are several easily available alternatives to Cilantro that can replicate its taste and fragrance. It can be a great kitchen hack for all who are distressed with no availability of Cilantro when their favorite dish is on the verge of completion.

The receptor gene is a very big reason why many people are not fond of Cilantro. A study has shown that people allergic to Cilantro also face discomfort with few soaps and bugs. This might be the reason why many people complain that Cilantro tastes like soap to them.

It is always good to get a substitute for fresh Cilantro. There are many options you can easily find at home that can replace this herb in your meal.

Can you start developing a taste for fresh Cilantro?

Reactions and allergies for many herbs or spices are sometimes the outcomes of old experiences. You might have not been usual to the consumption of certain foods. This is the reason why you can start developing dislike towards it. For this, you can try using this herb with a variety of cuisines. There are high chances that your culinary experience can help you in developing taste buds for fresh Cilantro. Another option is to crush or finely chop it before usage. This action will help in the development of an enzyme in its leaves and enhances its taste.

Substitute For Fresh Cilantro
It is always good to get a substitute for fresh Cilantro

Best substitutes for fresh cilantro

Even though Cilantro is a premium addition to any of your recipes, still there are possibilities that you might work without it. Adding other comprehensive flavors such as fresh roasted garlic, red pepper or some sauces can surely work in your favor. But if you are a Cilantro lover, these substitutes can be a savior to you:

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Cumin seeds are quite closely connected to Cilantro. They combine interestingly blended flavors to offer an exotic taste. The nutty and aromatic flavor of this seed can surely add a pinch of freshness to your favorite tacos platter.

Curry powder

It is a very delightful spice mix that involves many spices and herbs to it. Some prominent ones are turmeric, ginger, and chili. You can mainly find them in various soups and marinades. Adding this powder can surely compensate for the cilantro. Next time you are ordering the grocery list, do not miss out on curry powder as it can be a substantial substitute for fresh Cilantro.


Yet another amazing herb is Caraway that can be an essentially great replacement to coriander. You can use this option in any dish where you wish to add coriander. This is because they own a similar kind of taste. So it can be a good option to amplify the palate of your favorite soups.

Substitute For Fresh Cilantro
Yet another amazing herb is Caraway

Fresh cilantro has that grassy freshness which makes it incredibly refreshing in every dish. Also, it has a tangy texture that compels one to have more of it. If you are in search of a substitute for fresh cilantro, these herbs would allure you:


Basil and Cilantro are close cousins to each other. Basil has a sweeter texture in comparison to Cilantro but both of them can equally enhance the food quality. Curry dishes can be made immensely tasteful with the basil leaves into it. Basil is a commonly available ingredient that you can derive from local markets.


Parsley is again a very fresh and grassy substitute with all cilantro attributes in it. Appearance-wise, you may get mistaken between the two as they resemble each other a lot. Although it is a little bitter, it can be given a zippy twist by adding some lemon juice to your recipe.


Dill and Cilantro are two opposites. They also have very distinct characteristics. Even then, dill is a good substitute to enhance the flavors of vegetable salads or cold soups. But ensure that you only add a bit of it or else it can overcome other attributes of the food.

Substitute For Fresh Cilantro
Dill and Cilantro are two opposites

Vietnamese Coriander

This herb is commonly found in various Malaysian and Vietnamese cuisines. Other popular names for it are Vietnamese mint or Cambodian mint. It is fresh and also replicates the cilantro flavors. This makes is a good option to use when cilantro is unavailable at your place.


Papalo is another Mexican herb that has a Cilantro type of flavor. It has some Cucumber and citrus properties to it. Other names for it include summer cilantro or the Bolivian coriander. Although it has a pungent taste using it at the time of cooking can help get the perfect taste. Papalo is the main ingredient of your favorite salsa sauces. It can also amazingly blend with other dishes such as guacamole, sandwiches, and fish dishes. To get the best flavors out of it, you must add it raw at the end of your cooking process.

Celery leaves

Another good substitute for fresh Cilantro is celery leaves. You can add them to many types of soups and cooked dishes. Celery leaves as well as celery seeds can add up a good spice to your favorite dish. It has a crunchy nutty taste that can be a good seasoning option for many recipes. Even celery stalks can also enhance the salad flavors. Apart from the use of celery leaves in stews and soups, you can also use them in a wide range of stir-fries. May it be any dips, sauces, cheese, or peanut butter; celery is a mind-blowing substitute.

Mint leaves

Mint leaves might appear to be a vague substitute for fresh Cilantro but can be a good alternative. Many Asian dishes comprise of Cilantro seasoning. Especially, Indians are highly fond of cilantro recipes and dips. Using mint can be tricky due to its cool menthol taste. A small hack can help you out with this. You can add some vinegar to the finely chopped mint leaves as that helps exclude the mint taste.

However, you do not need to do this if using it for garnishing purposes. If you are using mint as a cilantro substitute for a dip or a recipe, adding some lime wedges can balance its taste and remove the minty flavor.

Substitute For Fresh Cilantro
You can add some vinegar to the finely chopped mint leaves as that helps exclude the mint taste

Medicinal properties

Cilantro has many uses as it can be a part of your daily meal in the form of spices. Cilantro seeds are ground and used as a spice for a variety of vegetables and preparations. Only a few know that it also has some medicinal properties. Oral consumption of cilantro is advantageous in the removal of various poisonous substances from the human body.

Dangerous metals such as lead, mercury, and aluminum can be relieved with the regular intake of this plant. It also has antioxidant properties that are beneficial in curing toothache. If you are taking the anti-viral medication, the intake of Cilantro can boost their effects on your body. Few bacterial infections can also get minimized with its intake. It exhibits antiepileptic properties.

Allergies to Cilantro

Despite so many flavoring and medicinal properties, many people are unable to eat cilantro due to adverse side effects and allergies. Several people go through many severe reactions after the intake of this plant. As a result, many restaurants and hotels ask specifically whether Cilantro should be added to food or not.

In a few circumstances, people may get facial or throat swelling after its consumption. Another study proves that Cilantro intake has led to other side effects and allergic reactions such as stomach pain, depression, darkened skin, and dehydration. Many women have also gone through a lapse of menstruation.

The nutritional value of Cilantro is very rich. It has a lot of magnesium and iron. Adding it to your meal ensures that you are not deficient in these nutritional values.

Lastly, breastfeeding or pregnant moms must intake Cilantro in limited quantities. It can also result in slow clotting for those who have just undergone major surgery. As a result, you need to be sure of its intake. If you have an inner urge to eat cilantro dip, opt any substitute for fresh cilantro and enjoy a similar taste.

Substitute For Fresh Cilantro
Breastfeeding or pregnant moms must intake Cilantro in limited quantities

Use substitute for fresh cilantro wisely

This is yet another major aspect that you need to work on. Cilantro as well as its substitutes provide the best taste and aroma when added just before plating the dish or after you have almost finished cooking. There is a proven reason for this aspect.

Any type of heating or cooking techniques can minimize the flavor of your favorite herbs. Hence, the last moment addition ensures that their exotic whiff remains unaffected. You can chop and keep a bowl of fresh Cilantro or its substitute ready for garnishing purposes. Adding it fresh on the top revives its grassy refreshment and one likes to eat more of it.


The above information cannot just help in searching for a substitute for fresh Cilantro but also understand more about it. You might have not even realized that the small herbs and spices that are a part of our daily meal can have potent qualities. Every herb hack can help you to explore many other options. With this, you would now not bother if there is no Cilantro at your home. Its substitutes are as tasty and rich in nutrients just like it.

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